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Thread: Why ethical people make unethical choices

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    From conservative opinion writer for the Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin...

    The Party of Lying Liars

    When listening to President Trump and fellow Republicans throw around accusations against Democrats and the media or advance defenses for Trump’s impeachable conduct, there is a better than even chance they are misleading if not downright lying. In some cases, we discover the lies because other individuals are caught lying.

    Roger Stone was convicted, among other things, of lying to Congress about his conversations with WikiLeaks’s Julian Assange. He falsely claimed: He had no emails, documents or texts relating to WikiLeaks; he never sought damaging information (i.e., emails) about Hillary Clinton; never contacted WikiLeaks through intermediaries; and never contacted the Trump campaign about WikiLeaks. The last lie — denying contacts with the Trump campaign — raises the question as to whether President Trump lied in responses to Robert S. Mueller III.


    At the trial we learned about Stone’s numerous contacts with the campaign:

    Rick Gates, who served as Trump’s deputy campaign chairman, testified Tuesday that Stone began discussing Clinton leaks with the campaign in April 2016 and that from May onward Gates understood Stone to be the campaign’s intermediary with WikiLeaks. By July 2016, Gates testified, Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort said he was updating Trump and others regularly and directed Gates to keep following up with Stone. After Trump ended one phone call from Stone at the end of that month, Gates testified, the future president said to Gates that “more information would be coming.”

    In his written answers, however, Trump claimed he had “no recollection” of conversations with Stone about WikiLeaks nor did he recall knowing Stone had discussed WikiLeaks’s email drops with the campaign. Perhaps Trump’s memory is addled; if not, it appears he lied to Mueller.


    Likewise, in the Ukraine matter multiple witnesses gave testimony that suggests that Ambassador to the European Union Gordon Sondland has been telling falsehoods under oath. Some he has remedied, such as his initial statement that he had not communicated to the Ukrainians that military aid was dependent upon their opening an investigation into the Bidens. However, we now know from at least one other witness that Sondland’s denial that he spoke to the president or to the State Department was false. (He spoke to both.) One wonders if he’ll share a similar fate as Stone, the former Trump confidant who this week was found guilty on charges of lying to Congress, obstruction of justice and witness tampering.

    The Trump lies relating to Ukraine are numerous and serious, although not delivered under oath. CNN fact-checker Daniel Dale has documented 45 Trump lies concerning Ukraine including:

    Trump did not ask [Ukrainian President Volodymyr] Zelensky for anything on the call. (Trump asked Zelensky to look into former Vice President Joe Biden, look into a debunked conspiracy theory about Democratic computer servers, and speak with his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Attorney General William Barr.)

    Zelensky criticized former US ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch “out of the blue” on the call. (Trump brought up Yovanovitch first.) . . . .

    The whistleblower was “sooo wrong.” (The rough transcript and witness testimony have proven the whistleblower to have been highly accurate.) . . .

    Schiff might have been the whistleblower’s source. (This is nonsense. The whistleblower said in the complaint that information about the call came from “multiple White House officials with direct knowledge of the call.”)

    Other Trump lies include his denial that United States military aid was held up, his bizarre accusations that House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam B. Schiff (D-Calif.) was the whistleblower’s source and his unfounded allegations that former vice president Joe Biden “stole” millions of dollars from foreign countries and pressured Ukraine to fire a prosecutor when Hunter Biden was still under investigation.

    House Republicans continually traffic in lies — e.g., Ukraine interfered with our election, Joe Biden’s conduct pressuring removal of a delinquent prosecutor was illegal or corrupt, Trump was concerned about Ukraine’s corruption in general.

    On procedure, they’ve lied about the depositions (routinely used in investigations), claiming they violate “due process” or amount to a “Soviet-style” star chamber. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) lied in claiming she was prevented from asking questions. (In fact, she was permitted time during the five-minute questions by members but the ranking Republican, Rep. Devin Nunes of California, was not permitted under rules of which she was familiar to yield some of his time in the 45-minute opening round.) Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) falsely claimed not producing the whistleblower violates Trump’s Sixth Amendment rights.

    At times, Republicans deliberately ignore evidence in front of their eyes. They seem to have settled on the theory that Trump never communicated to Zelensky that aid was tied to investigations of Biden, Burisma and Trump’s crackpot Ukraine interference conspiracy. Trump, however, raised these items in the phone call (“I would like you to do us a favor though"), as we know from the rough transcription. (In transcripts of depositions we learn from multiple officials they were alarmed about injecting Trump’s political agenda into U.S. foreign policy.)

    Trump also spoke to Sondland about the investigations, according to testimony, and in one instance was overheard by multiple State Department staffers. (Other officials testify that Sondland repeatedly claimed he was acting on Trump’s behalf and directly conditioned aid on the Biden investigation.)

    Republicans’ lies are so numerous and obvious that one requires only a minimal amount of fact-checking to see that they lie because they have no truthful factual defenses nor valid constitutional argument. The facts are the facts: Trump conditioned aid to an ally in a war for its sovereignty on production of dirt to smear a political rival. He has refused to allow key witnesses to produce documents or to testify, thereby obstructing Congress. He has sought to intimidate and threaten witnesses including the whistleblower and Marie Yovanovitch, sending out the message you will be targeted and smeared if you provide evidence against him.

    As for the Constitution, we know that “bribery,” enumerated as one of the grounds for impeachment in the parlance of the Framers, includes asking for or giving personal favors in exchange for political acts. That is precisely what occurred here. Obstruction and witness intimidation are obviously "high crimes."

    House Republicans have become so invested in crackpot theories, bogus procedural complains and constitutional illiteracy that they will never recognize the president’s wrongdoing. They are as incapable of upholding their oath, which requires impeachment for high crimes and misdemeanors or bribery, as he is. Both Trump and his House enablers are unfit to serve since personal and political considerations obliterate their ability to detect the truth and thereby to uphold their public obligations. It would be refreshing if House Republicans simply admitted Trump violated his oath but that they are unwilling to abide by theirs and remove him. The candor would be preferable to the non-stop lying.

    It remains an open question as to whether Senate Republicans are willing to ignore and distort reality so as to avoid voting to convict a president of their own party. Unfortunately, we find it highly unlikely that more than a few (if that many) would concede that Trump and the right-wing echo chamber that protects him have been spinning a web of lies for nearly three years.


  2. #22
    realultimatepower.net JoeMama's Avatar
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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by notacon View Post
    From conservative opinion writer for the Washington Post, Jennifer Rubin...

    The Party of Lying Liars
    LOL

    Reminds me of one of my favorite books from the Dubya era.

    Disclaimer: The sentiment expressed in this post is strictly for entertainment purposes only.

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeMama View Post
    LOL

    Reminds me of one of my favorite books from the Dubya era.

    I read that book. It was astounding.

    Yes, the dishonesty of the Republican Party and the type of "conservatism" they espouse is based, in FULL, on lies, misrepresentation, cultism and the demonization and invalidation of objective facts.

    Once again....it was not always this way. This is a phenomena that was started with the upheaval of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 & the Voting Right Act of 1965, and the mass movement of racist Democrats Southern Democrats to the Republican Party.

    That movement was mobilized by Richard Nixon's "Southern Strategy"....and advanced with Ronald Reagan, who took the lid off mass dishonesty when he ditched the Fairness Doctrine. That gave birth to the modern rabid radical right wing blowhard talk radio debacle, aided by bomb trowing liar, Not Gingrich, who institutionalized LIES and misrepresentation as the foundation of today's conservative "movement" and today's Republican Party.

    Trump is an extension of that. NOTHNG he says or thinks is NOT from rabid radical right wing blowhard talk radio....and since Trump can only understand pictures, the TV extension of that, Fox News.

    The GOP today IS Fox News.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oh...there is nothing even close to this phenomena on the political left. Anyone who tries to say there is, is a liar and a blind idiot.

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    The Meathead of Muslims! ticatfan's Avatar
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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by notacon View Post
    I read that book. It was astounding.

    Yes, the dishonesty of the Republican Party and the type of "conservatism" they espouse is based, in FULL, on lies, misrepresentation, cultism and the demonization and invalidation of objective facts.

    Once again....it was not always this way. This is a phenomena that was started with the upheaval of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 & the Voting Right Act of 1965, and the mass movement of racist Democrats Southern Democrats to the Republican Party.

    That movement was mobilized by Richard Nixon's "Southern Strategy"....and advanced with Ronald Reagan, who took the lid off mass dishonesty when he ditched the Fairness Doctrine. That gave birth to the modern rabid radical right wing blowhard talk radio debacle, aided by bomb trowing liar, Not Gingrich, who institutionalized LIES and misrepresentation as the foundation of today's conservative "movement" and today's Republican Party.

    Trump is an extension of that. NOTHNG he says or thinks is NOT from rabid radical right wing blowhard talk radio....and since Trump can only understand pictures, the TV extension of that, Fox News.

    The GOP today IS Fox News.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oh...there is nothing even close to this phenomena on the political left. Anyone who tries to say there is, is a liar and a blind idiot.
    The Clintons would wipe the floor with trump when it comes to corruption and anyone that think the Clintons were not totally corrupt is a fool.
    I admire china because their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime.
    PM Justin Trudeau.

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by ticatfan View Post
    The Clintons would wipe the floor with trump when it comes to corruption and anyone that think the Clintons were not totally corrupt is a fool.
    Prove it!! You are delusional!!!!

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    Registered User jamze132's Avatar
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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by notacon View Post
    BTW...There is nothing to be ashamed of if one has "Republican and conservative tendencies". Geez...I post opinion pieces from writers that are dedicated Republicans and principled conservatives all the time. To be that is not an insult.

    I talk about the history of Republicanism and principled conservatism all the time in respect that in the 50's, 60's and even into the 70"s, the difference between Repubiicans and Democrats was not neatly divided in ideological lines.

    There were lots of liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats. It was President Eisenhower that built the nation highway system we all enjoy today. It was President Eisenhower that warned about the "military-industrial complex" as a future threat.

    It was NY Gov. Nelson Rockefeller that advanced more liberal policies than just about every Democrat after him.

    The problem is that conservatism & the Republican party has warped into some kind of perverse cult. It started with Ronald Reagan (who today could be considered a slightly right of center Democrat) and went into loony tunes territory with Newt Gingrich and the dawn of racial right wing talk radio. Culmiating wtht he radial right wing talk radio president we are buried with today.

    What this country desperately needs James, is for people of intelligence, honor and sanity, like you, that tend right of center to take back the GOP and instill the principles and values that they have seemingly flushed down the toilet.

    THAT'S what I'm talking about.
    I understand where youíre coming from and I agree with most of what you just wrote.

    But every time I do one of those stupid little tests that tells me where I lean, itís always just left of center. Maybe they need updated, but about the only thing I agree with from the right is gun rights, and even then Iím all for expanded background checks. Other than, Iím open to suggestions on any other topic the right or left want to argue about.

    You asked what Iím passionate about or what I stand for... I stand for objectivity. I honestly do not think you are as objective as you may think. Because Iím not tied to either party, I feel I can see things clearer than anyone blinded by partisanship.

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by notacon View Post
    I read that book. It was astounding.

    Yes, the dishonesty of the Republican Party and the type of "conservatism" they espouse is based, in FULL, on lies, misrepresentation, cultism and the demonization and invalidation of objective facts.

    Once again....it was not always this way. This is a phenomena that was started with the upheaval of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 & the Voting Right Act of 1965, and the mass movement of racist Democrats Southern Democrats to the Republican Party.

    That movement was mobilized by Richard Nixon's "Southern Strategy"....and advanced with Ronald Reagan, who took the lid off mass dishonesty when he ditched the Fairness Doctrine. That gave birth to the modern rabid radical right wing blowhard talk radio debacle, aided by bomb trowing liar, Not Gingrich, who institutionalized LIES and misrepresentation as the foundation of today's conservative "movement" and today's Republican Party.

    Trump is an extension of that. NOTHNG he says or thinks is NOT from rabid radical right wing blowhard talk radio....and since Trump can only understand pictures, the TV extension of that, Fox News.

    The GOP today IS Fox News.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oh...there is nothing even close to this phenomena on the political left. Anyone who tries to say there is, is a liar and a blind idiot.
    That book was especially illuminating because it basically told the story of how Republicans during the Bush Era pulled off - quite possibly - the greatest lie in US history.

    Which was combining powers of the White House, Congressional Republicans, and the state run media, Fox News, to convince the American public of the most absurd lie ever told. That Saddam Hussein was involved in 9-11 and that he possessed weapons of mass destruction.

    The neocons in power and their enablers at Fox News who amplified their fables are truly some of history's greatest monsters.

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    notacon (01-21-2020)

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by jamze132 View Post
    I understand where you’re coming from and I agree with most of what you just wrote.

    But every time I do one of those stupid little tests that tells me where I lean, it’s always just left of center. Maybe they need updated, but about the only thing I agree with from the right is gun rights, and even then I’m all for expanded background checks. Other than, I’m open to suggestions on any other topic the right or left want to argue about.

    You asked what I’m passionate about or what I stand for... I stand for objectivity. I honestly do not think you are as objective as you may think. Because I’m not tied to either party, I feel I can see things clearer than anyone blinded by partisanship.
    Fair enough. I apologize if I misjudged your posts.

    The same lack of objectivity you see in me, I see in you. Maybe we're both misjudging each other.

    I admit to loathing today's Republican Party and especially Trump. But, it's not because I'm a Democrat or a liberal....it's because they are an anathema to everything I believe in, and every American value and principle this country was formed on. This is NOT "partisanship" except the partisanship of loving America and all it stands for.

    Over the years I have been called and labelled everything in the book....from radical looney leftie, to a Republican and a conservative. Yes...some posters have actually said that.

    I take the multitude of labels as a badge of honor became it perfectly illustrates the sentiment that you just expressed.... I judge every issue before me on the merits.....based on the principles and values that I have honed over a lifetime of experiences.

    I have a feeling that we agree on much more than disagree. I am certainly further to the left of you on most issues...but not all. I think of myself as a liberal with pragmatism and a sense of history.

    Too many young people think that the political climate today is something different or more divisive than ever before.

    Horsehockey. This country has been built strong BECSUE of the differences of it's myriad and wide ranging race, religions and origins. Personal history and experience shape us all.

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by notacon View Post
    Fair enough. I apologize if I misjudged your posts.

    The same lack of objectivity you see in me, I see in you. Maybe we're both misjudging each other.

    I admit to loathing today's Republican Party and especially Trump. But, it's not because I'm a Democrat or a liberal....it's because they are an anathema to everything I believe in, and every American value and principle this country was formed on. This is NOT "partisanship" except the partisanship of loving America and all it stands for.

    Over the years I have been called and labelled everything in the book....from radical looney leftie, to a Republican and a conservative. Yes...some posters have actually said that.

    I take the multitude of labels as a badge of honor became it perfectly illustrates the sentiment that you just expressed.... I judge every issue before me on the merits.....based on the principles and values that I have honed over a lifetime of experiences.

    I have a feeling that we agree on much more than disagree. I am certainly further to the left of you on most issues...but not all. I think of myself as a liberal with pragmatism and a sense of history.

    Too many young people think that the political climate today is something different or more divisive than ever before.

    Horsehockey. This country has been built strong BECSUE of the differences of it's myriad and wide ranging race, religions and origins. Personal history and experience shape us all.
    A very objective post!

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeMama View Post
    That book was especially illuminating because it basically told the story of how Republicans during the Bush Era pulled off - quite possibly - the greatest lie in US history.

    Which was combining powers of the White House, Congressional Republicans, and the state run media, Fox News, to convince the American public of the most absurd lie ever told. That Saddam Hussein was involved in 9-11 and that he possessed weapons of mass destruction.

    The neocons in power and their enablers at Fox News who amplified their fables are truly some of history's greatest monsters.
    Ok, 99% of what you said I completely agree with. But Sadam did have chemical weapons and they were sent to Syria...before the war started. The KGB even assisted (not many folks know that, but I’m retired now so screw it!) I was in Iraq a “couple of times” and can tell you this was indeed true. Bush and Co. knew what was going on and they still kept that part from the public because they knew they wouldn’t get the support from Congress or the people. The biggest lie ever told.

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    Re: Why ethical people make unethical choices

    Quote Originally Posted by jamze132 View Post
    Ok, 99% of what you said I completely agree with. But Sadam did have chemical weapons and they were sent to Syria...before the war started. The KGB even assisted (not many folks know that, but I’m retired now so screw it!) I was in Iraq a “couple of times” and can tell you this was indeed true. Bush and Co. knew what was going on and they still kept that part from the public because they knew they wouldn’t get the support from Congress or the people. The biggest lie ever told.
    I'm not going to challenge you on the chemical weapon claim. I'll accept what you write.

    But, that illustrates the problem with Bush's lies even more. Bush's most explosive and frightening claims, that was the biggest catalyst for the push to war, was ALL about nuclear weapons, the progress of that supposed program and how that threatened the nation security of the US.

    It was ALL based on PURPOSEFUL LIES.

    If Bush would have stuck to chemical weapons, no mater how accurate the claims, it would not be enough to push for war.

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