Morning Ethics Warm-Up, April 9, 2018: Experiment Results, Flowering Trees From Hell, And Ominous Signs From The Left..

Good morning…

…Mrs. Calabash, wherever you are…

1. Apologies for a lost Sunday. I was never able to get back to my computer yesterday. The combination of my responsibilities to the Georgetown Gilbert & Sullivan Society as it celebrated its 46th year of operation against daunting odds, some pressing client matters and important family matters just overwhelmed my schedule, plus I was wiped out by the early evening. Of course, based on the blog’s traffic this month and the continuing ethics rot, I console my self in the message of the most famous song from “Ruddigore,” GG&SS’s student production for the anniversary…especially the final line…

“This particularly rapid unintelligible patter isn’t generally heard, and if it is, it doesn’t matter.”

Ethics commentary in a nutshell.

2. However: The regulars came through in a pinch. The free swim produced at least four  Comment of the Day quality posts, including a history of the Gettysburg address. Thanks everybody. The experiment was a ringing success, and I will have more open forums in the future.

3.  This kind of thing is why I have a hard time taking environmentalist doom-saying seriously. We planted Bradford Pear trees, which are now blooming beautifully as is their wont, in front of our house almost 20 years ago. They have their downsides, to be sure, and you have to trim them back or they are likely to split or fall over. However, here is an environmentalist claiming that they are trees from hell, and who writes in part: Continue reading

ACORN, the Saint’s Excuse, and the Ruddigore Fallacy

Today’s New York Times discusses the impending end of ACORN, brought down by bad publicity, loose oversight, sloppy governance, and a little matter of the cover-up of a million dollar embezzlement. It would be helpful to other non-profit organizations that do needed good works to learn the proper lessons from ACORN’s fate, but the reaction of some supporters don’t advance that cause. Bertha Lewis, Acorn’s chief executive, has blamed “relentless, well-funded right-wing attacks” for ACORN’s demise, painting the organization as a victim rather than its own assassin. ACORN’s leader’s thought that the usual standards of good governance, diligence, and competence didn’t apply to it, because the group’s mission was virtuous and its accomplishments great. Continue reading