Here are ethics items that have nothing to do with the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School anti-Second Amendment demogogues.
2. Unethical Lawsuit of the Year. Incredibly, the Democratic National Committee yesterday announced that it is suing the Trump campaign, the Russian government, and Wikileaks, accusing them of conspiring to disrupt the 2016 Presidential election. Suits require facts. There are no facts to support this lawsuit, only speculation, rumors and propaganda. The legal analysts whose opinions I respect haven’t even acknowledged the suit yet, perhaps because they suspect, or know, that it is a cynical publicity ploy and merely laying the foundation for a Democratic Party fundraising blitz. (Using the civil courts for such purposes is unethical, of course.) The betting here (and elsewhere) is that the lawsuit will be dismissed in short order. It is grandstanding, and to my eye, pretty desperate grandstanding. Such a lawsuit would open the Democrats, their allies and the Clinton campaign to all manner of intrusive and embarrassing discovery. My first reaction to the news was that this almost as stupid as Oscar Wilde’s criminal libel suit over being called “a Sodomite.”
Wikileaks had an amusing response:
“The Democrats are suing
@WikiLeaks and @JulianAssange for revealing how the DNC rigged the Democratic primaries. Help us counter-sue. We’ve never lost a publishing case and discovery is going to be amazing fun.”
3. More future news! Ann Althouse flagged for us a future news (psychic news?) classic, Morning Joe” Scarborough’s op-ed in the Washington Post, “It’s becoming clear that Trump won’t run in 2020”.
I’m reading the headline and laughing. It’s on the most-read list at The Washington Post. It’s what people want to read, and isn’t that what fake news is all about, giving the people what they want (and getting them to want what you want them to want)? “Allies are quietly admitting”… “Republicans are sensing”… and Joe Scarborough is picking up the message. It seems to me Trump has faced vicious opposition all along, and he keeps winning in spite of/because of it.
This isn’t really fake news, though. Psychic news or future news is a different unethical beast, and in this case, it’s just an abuse of punditry. It becomes fake news when the headline “Trump won’t run for re-election, insiders say” starts turning up. What is especially ironic about this trend is that there has never been a President whose stated intentions have been so changeable and unreliable, and yet the very same journalists who complain about this are willing to run breathless stories about what some leaker claims he said was his intent. President trump can’t be counted upon to do this week what he said he would do last week, and the Post thinks it is worth publishing what Morning Joe’s sources say President Trump plans on doing three years from now. Continue reading