Ethics of Representative

Posted by Esceptico 11 months, 1 week ago to Politics
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The other night I saw two delegates from Florida interviewed. Both were elected to vote for Trump at the convention. The two were Cruz supporters and freely admitted on national television they ran as Trump delegates only so they could switch their vote to Cruz on the second ballot if there was one. I gather is part of the Cruz “ground team” procedure. The rules allow this. The two were asked if they thought they were doing anything unethical by being elected to vote for Trump with an agenda to vote for Cruz. Both answered it was not unethical. What is the opinion in the Gulch?


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  • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
    Context is everything. In this case we are being asked to decide the ethics of an action within an overall process that is clearly unethical. What gives political parties the right to be "gatekeepers" to eligibility for political office within a free society?

    It's like asking whether it is ethical for a group of thieves to give some members less of the loot than they had promised them. Any answer is wrong.
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    • Posted by  $  Olduglycarl 11 months ago
      If all the people were invested (owning, producing or creating value) and informed (issues, and the constitution- what max freedom and max responsibility is) or if only those people that are, then we could have a honest direct system.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      While I agree with your comments, my question is specifically to actions based upon an undisclosed intent when elected.
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      • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
        Then I would argue that yes, it is ethical. The delegate has agreed to do what is required if elected, that is, support Trump on the first ballot. It is up to those voting in that caucus or primary to "vet" that delegate and find out whether he/she is a true Trump supporter, before electing that person as a delegate.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          Exactly how does one vet the delegate under these circumstances? Typically we do not even get the individual's name, we get only they are pledged to a particular candidate.
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          • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
            Then who selects the actual delegates? Are they selected in secret by party bosses? If the process is that non-transparant and primary/caucus voters are willing to put up with it, they deserve the Cruz-in-Trump's-clothing delegates they get.
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              This does not go to my fundamental question, which is: "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by saying you are a supporter of X when in truth you are a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity."
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              • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                How can a potential delegate mislead you when you say you don't even get the individual's name, let alone talk to him or her? If the rules say that this unnamed person is pledged to your candidate on the first vote, that's all you can assume when you vote for that delegate.
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                • Posted by 11 months ago
                  It is misleading simply because if one wants to be a delegate for X, the voter (at least me) assumes the proposed delegate is truly a supporter of X and not a mole for Y.
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  • Posted by  $  WilliamShipley 11 months ago
    It is unethical. If you are a delegate for candidate X, then you are supposed to honestly be a supporter for X.

    Obviously if the first ballot doesn't select someone then somebody is going to have to be persuaded to change -- but they shouldn't be actually an advocate for a different candidate.

    It isn't just the vote, it's also voting on rules and other procedural things. If you are actually voting against the interest of the person you are supposedly representing you are acting unethically.
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    • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
      "It is unethical. If you are a delegate for candidate X, then you are supposed to honestly be a supporter for X."

      Then is it ethical to vote for a candidate in the general election if you do not truly support that candidate's views, that is, if your "hidden agenda" is really to advance a cause contrary to the one that candidate supports? If not, then your only ethical choices are to vote Libertarian, cast a write-in ballot or stay home.
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      • Posted by  $  WilliamShipley 11 months ago
        By a "supporter for candidate x" I don't mean that you think that they are the best of all possible candidates, only that they are the best of the candidates in reasonable contention.

        Like Treebeard in "Lord of the RIngs", since no one is entirely on my side, I'm not entirely on anyone else's side. But that doesn't mean I stay in the forest and don't fight in the battle for Middle Earth.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          The question I posed has nothing to do with this. I has to do with a fundamental question of ethics. "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by saying you are a supporter of X when in truth you are a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity."
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          • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
            It would be unethical for a potential delegate to say that he/she supports Trump when that person actually supports Cruz. However, it would be ethical for that person to say that if elected, he or she will vote for Trump on the first ballot. But if, as you say, you don't even know the name of the delegate your are voting for, how can he or she mislead you?
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              It is misleading simply because if one wants to be a delegate for X, the voter (at least me) assumes the proposed delegate is truly a supporter of X and not a mole for Y. The proposed delegate should make the duplicity clear and by failing to do so commits the sin of ommision.-- promotes a lie.
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              • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                If you voluntarily choose to participate in a process in which information is systematically hidden from you, you should expect that such information is hidden for a reason, and not assume that those hiding such information are honest and have your best interests at heart.

                This whole delegate mess makes me very happy that I’m not a Republican.
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                • Posted by 11 months ago
                  I do expect it. And I love it being exposed. But the question dealt with how Objectivists view this from an ethical perspective.
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                  • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                    The Objectivist Ethics says that an individual may not violate the rights of other individuals. The example you are citing violates your expectations, but I don't see how it violates your rights. Therefore I don't see how it violates the Objectivist Ethics, any more than does commercial advertising that touts the benefits of a product but not its disadvantages.
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          • Posted by  $  WilliamShipley 11 months ago
            I was responding to the idea that it is unethical to vote for a candidate which doesn't completely agree with your views.

            If that were the case, I could only legitimately vote for myself -- and I'm not running.
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            • Posted by CircuitGuy 11 months ago
              ""a cause contrary to the one that candidate supports?" - CBJ
              "a candidate which doesn't completely agree with your views." --WilliamShpley
              I don't think candidates have strong views. They're generally not philosophers or policy wonks. They're popular people who enjoy being popular. To get to that level of popularity requires careful strategizing and saying/doing things that make people feel like the candidate represents them.

              Most politicians probably don't understand policy at the level of most people on this message board. The average politician would blow us away at walking into an event, meeting ten strangers, and committing to memory all their names and a funny anecdote from each of their work or family lives.
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              I could not even vote for myself if that 100% compliance was required --- I change my mind when presented with new credible evidence, so my views may be different several months apart.
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  • Posted by  $  Zenphamy 11 months ago
    Yes, its objectively unethical. But the questioner is as well unethical, by posing the question to people involved in a primary system, 'democratic election', and political process that are by themselves unethical, implying to the general public that such consideration even exists in the minds of those involved. And more, that the democratic process was ever intended to be a part of the entire ' Presidential Election Process'.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      The questioner was a reporter observing what happened. I do not see that as unethical.
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      • Posted by  $  Zenphamy 11 months ago
        The 'reporter' posed a soft-ball question based on the concept that there was a consideration of ethics in the primary. The reporter, if experienced at all in elections already knew that almost no individuals involved in 'democratic elections' in this country have any respect for ethics in the process except for rhetoric. Why wouldn't the reporter pose questions to the elected delegates that points out to the public that ethics is not something they could ever rely on?
        A far better question might have been: 'You ran for the position of delegate for the convention based on support for Trump, yet you've admitted publicly that you are actually supporters of Cruz or another nominee and will do whatever you can to support other than Trump? How can anyone in the community ever believe in or trust that anything that you ever say in business or personally, you will stand behind? What makes you 'so special' that you know better than the people that voted for you, even if they believed your lies.?
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  • Posted by jdg 11 months ago
    If I had the opportunity I'd do the same thing.

    I'm with CBJ -- the whole political process is so deeply illegitimate on so many levels that just about any action that may slow down or stop any of its many invasions of liberty becomes justifiable. Disobeying the law will only be wrong per se if we first get a completely rightful set of laws.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      Are you saying the ends justify the means?
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      • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
        I would say that to secure your liberty against those who use the political process to destroy it, any defensive action is justified that does not violate the rights of others not involved in the dispute. And by the way, I am not a supporter of Cruz or his methods, since I don't consider him to be a friend of liberty in any meaningful sense.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          This sounds like "the ends justify the means" which drives me to ask: is this behavior is consistent with Objectivist ethics?
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          • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
            Yes it is. Please re-read my post above.
            Ends: "Secure your liberty against those who use the political process to destroy it."
            Means: "Any defensive action that does not violate the rights of others not involved in the dispute."
            How is self-defense inconsistent with Objectivist ethics?
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              Because this is not a "self-defense" question. Restated, it is misleading simply because if one wants to be a delegate for X, the voter (at least me) assumes the proposed delegate is truly a supporter of X and not a mole for Y. Is this consistent with Objectivist ethics?
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              • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                How is the proposed delegate responsible for your assumptions? If he or she agrees to vote for a particular candidate on the first ballot and you elect that delegate, that's all you are entitled to. If you assume something more, you are free to make further inquiries and act on the basis of what those inquiries reveal.
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  • Posted by  $  richrobinson 11 months, 1 week ago
    I'm okay with it as long as they vote Trump on the first ballot. If you don't secure the nomination on the first ballot then it's a free for all. I live in Pennsylvania and we have a crazy system. We have 71 delegates but the primary winner only gets 17 of them on the first ballot. The other 54 are free to vote for who ever they want. Most delegates running have said they will vote consistent with their district on the first ballot but they are not required to. What a mess.
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    • Posted by 11 months, 1 week ago
      The question is ethics. Do you think it is ethical?
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      • Posted by  $  richrobinson 11 months ago
        Yes it is ethical. They are bound on the first vote but not subsequent votes. If they were it would never get resolved. I don't like this switching after the primaries that is going on. I haven't been much of a Cruz fan all along but this makes him look like a slime.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          That is the rule,I agree. But it is ethical to hide your true intent when running for the position when your intent is to double cross the people electing you as the first opportunity?
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          • Posted by Steven-Wells 11 months ago
            Are you talking about the delegates or the presidential candidate? With all the Cruz-hate in this forum, can I question the ethics of Emperor Donald, who often changes his position on issues, sometimes in mid paragraph of his incoherent discourse?

            We who laud ethics often get most upset with the ethics of those we would like to respect. Let's have a shout out for the vile "ethics" of the utterly corrupt Clinton. Or the jovially perceived monster in the Bernie suit, selling the poison of socialism to unwitting children.

            Delegates who will actually vote for what they promised by law fall a lot closer to the ethics tree than most of what transpires in presidential campaigns.
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              IMy questions was founded on "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by saying you are a supporter of X when in truth you are a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity." The context was the GOP candidates and who you represented you favored as a delegate.
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              • Posted by Steven-Wells 11 months ago
                I was aware of the ethics question and the context. None of the ethics in this candidate process smells nice.

                We've got the armed robbery level of mal-ethics when a candidate says, "I'll do this when I'm elected," but never even trying to observe the promise later. Then we have the relative jaywalking level of mal-ethics in "I'll vote for him" and honoring at least the first portion of that commitment, possibly the entirety of the commitment if a first-round vote establishes a win for the promised candidate. I’ll tolerate that level.

                Let's muddy the ethical waters further. Suppose I were a delegate who considers my "officially" supported candidate to be a nation-crushing mini-Mussolini. I reason (you might say rationalize) that misrepresenting my second round vote (but not the first round) serves the positive good of protecting the citizenry from impending evil. Here in post-constitutional America, I might consider that non-destructive measure as my only acceptable alternative to the carnage of an attempted assassination.

                [Note for the record: I currently am not a candidate or delegate, nor am I involved in any assassination plans. My affirmatively physical acts to attempt to displace a politician from office have consisted only of my lawful candidacy for the US House of Representatives some eight years ago. Rather than write my congressman, I attempted to become my congressman.]
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                • Posted by 11 months ago
                  This seems to me to be an "the ends justify the means" position.
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                  • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                    This gets back to my original point. It's like asking whether it is ethical for a group of thieves to give some members less of the loot than they had promised them. Any answer is wrong.

                    Let’s take the above hypothetical scenario a step further. It’s the second ballot and you’re the deciding vote. By the convention rules, you’re now free to vote for any candidate. Do you vote for the “nation-crushing mini-Mussolini” that you were pledged to on the first vote, thus securing his nomination, or do you betray the “expectations” of those who elected you and vote for another candidate, thus blocking his nomination?
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  • Posted by patricking 10 months, 4 weeks ago
    I think the more important question is whether it would be unethical for voters to band together and murder these two fraudsters? Obviously it's unethical to take a job and then turn the job to your own advantage. Is it unethical for a bank employee to take money customers deposit and use it for his own purposes? By all means, explain the difference here.
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    • Posted by 10 months, 4 weeks ago
      Gee, murder may be a bit harsh. Apparently many in the Gulch do not think these two delegates were unethical. I do. But I am surpised how many in the Gulch wanted to "explain away" the behaviour.
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  • Posted by XenokRoy 11 months ago
    I would compare the current political system to the point in Atlas Shrugged where the financial and regulatory system makes it so that the only honest men are those who deal in secret.

    Is it ethical to deal in secret in politics? I do not think so. However I have always liked this ethical question.

    FDR poked and prodded Japan to attack us. Even ordered the admiral that was over Hawaii to ignore his instincts that said they were about to be attacked and sent all the newer ships away so we would only loose the old ones.

    FDR recognized that if the US did not get into the war Germany would become to powerful to stop. He asked for and got a plan to get Japan to attack us, then let it happen. It was the only way he saw to get the Americans to get away from isolation.

    I think there were likely other ways to deal with this problem that did not involve 3k Americans dying and multiple ships lost. Lets assume for the argument that there was not.

    If true what FDR did was not ethical, but required for the future freedom of the US and world citizens.

    When the Sons of Liberty took tax collectors, stripped them down and left them tarred and feathered on the lamp post in front of the tax collection office in Boston it was certifiably not ethical to do so. As the "Join or Die" changed to "Don't tread on me" the organization changed from a non ethical terrorist organization to a natural law and reason driven group. Without the unethical start to the sons of liberty I am not sure that America would exist.

    It is something I am very devided on. I would greately prefer all actions to be ethical, but the truth is without some breaches of ethics for the right reasons the world would be a much worse place. It is also true that without the breach of ethics for the wrong reasons those breaches that were done in response would not have been needed.

    I think perhaps when a system exists that is completely unethical and void of reason the only remaining course of action is also going to be unethical, but full of reason as to why it must be done. That however is a very slippery slope and it is rare that the first steps down it are taken and then the person or organization is able to pull back to an ethical position.

    The sons of liberty did so, the US government has never pulled back from the manipulations used to get us into world war II.

    I do not think the question is if its ethical or not, as its obviously not. The question is are there cases where a breach of ethics is needed, and if so is this such a situation?

    I personally still have these two questions and am not sure of my answers on either at this time.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      It is misleading simply because if one wants to be a delegate for X, the voter (at least me) assumes the proposed delegate is truly a supporter of X and not a mole for Y. Is this consistent with Objectivist ethics?
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  • Posted by johnpe1 11 months ago
    the shameful thing is that this is news. . we should have
    expected as much, and known it in advance. . these folks
    are playing games with money and power, at the expense
    of us taxpayers, and this kind of maneuvering should be
    anticipated. . IMHO. -- j
    .
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      AT least CNN's reporter brought it out in one interview. However, to my surprise, misleading innocent people seems to be controversial even here at the Gulch.
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      • Posted by johnpe1 11 months ago
        please let me apologize, Richard. . I did not intend to
        signal controversy, but instead to criticize the mis-led
        innocent people -- the voting public -- who have for decades
        continued to expect more from "the best politicians
        money can buy" here in the u.s. . Yes, I am glad that
        this reporter brought this out felicitously. . it's just that
        the games being played with our votes dismay me to tears. -- j
        .
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          I understand fully. Also, email/blogs/etc are very easy to misinterpret. There is no eye contact, voice tone, or facial expression to communicate fully the words written. I think we all have this happen to us and do it ourselves. Just part of the “text life” we lead.
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          • Posted by johnpe1 11 months ago
            and Thank You for your timely post -- revealing and
            helpful, we need this kind of thing posted on billboards
            and shouted from the rooftops! . people are numb. -- j
            .
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  • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months ago
    Couldn't tell you. I have a secret weapon. But every time the Gulch wants a new sign in it erases all my settings. It's a useful check to see if any one has qualified as worth reading. Those who aren't get the ignore button again but the topic does get answered. Time is too valuable to waste so the settings normally go back on.

    The answer is as some stated it's allowed under the rules. the rules also allow voting for the same individual or some third individual.

    Depending on the State. I can find no evidence of any elector being fined or jailed for doing otherwise ...how ever Why? Probably it would violate the federal rules. Has anyone made a serious move to make a change? No. They have not. It's not of enough importance except for a few. The couch potato vote doesn't matter.

    They are all talk and no walk just channel clickers which no doubt tires them out.

    Only one instance of of popular being overturned in the entire history of the country and no it wasn't Gore.

    Back to the topic. Is it ethical. Yes because they folowed the rules. Do I personally approve of it? No? Has nothing to do with anything it isn't important enough. So I don't whine every five seconds

    Even so if you want the opinion of the members of the Gulch assuming you you mean objectivists the answer will be be as many as their are members. Each individually responsible for their own morals, values and ethics and upholding them . If today we have 100 reading and 50 members there will be 50 valid objectivist opinions.

    If you have any facts to present to sway those opinions by all means present them. And their sources When that happens we will have 51.
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  • Posted by Herb7734 11 months ago
    Legality doesn't make a procedure ethical.There are so many examples of this that could be made, but, let me say that there are so many convoluted and so many laws on the books that almost anything can be deemed legal or illegal. At one time slavery was legal -- need I say more? .Those delegates know that. Shame on them.
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  • Posted by librty 11 months ago
    In a slightly different situation, in the 1972 presidential election I remember a young Roger McBride was a republican elector in the electoral college who voted his conscience and voted for the newly formed Libertarian Party candidates, John Hospers and Toni Nathan, who by the way was the first woman candidate to receive an electoral vote in U.S. history.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      Was that ethical under Objectivist standards?
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      • Posted by librty 11 months ago
        It is much different than establishment created party primaries that if closely examined are probably not constitutional to begin with. The constitution created the Electoral college and with no requirement that a Elector has to vote on party lines. As a matter of fact the president and vice president were merely the first and second in number of votes no matter party affiliation. The primary system is one of the most corrupt systems pushed through by progressives. That is why the Libertarian party only uses the convention system set up in the constitution. Rather than vote for Nixon who the year before destroyed the dollar by taking us off the gold standard, McBride chose to vote for a more objective alternative.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          I aked a simply yes or no question.
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          • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
            It's not a simple yes or no question. Legitimate Objectivist arguments could be made on both sides of the issue. In the context of a corrupt system, it is often the case that any course of action will encounter ethical land mines. Under such circumstances, our job is simply to navigate them as best we can.
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              Does this include misleading innocents?
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              • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                How can a would-be delegate mislead you when you don't even know who he or she is, and are given no opportunity to see that person's stands on the issues and candidates? You said earlier that "we do not even get the individual's name, we get only they are pledged to a particular candidate."
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                • Posted by 11 months ago
                  It is misleading simply because if one wants to be a delegate for X, the voter (at least me) assumes the proposed delegate is truly a supporter of X and not a mole for Y.
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                  • Posted by  $  CBJ 11 months ago
                    If you voluntarily choose to participate in a process in which information is systematically hidden from you, you should expect that such information is hidden for a reason, and not assume that those hiding such information are honest and have your best interests at heart.
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      • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months ago
        Ethical standards are an individual choice and an individual responsibility something most people including the entire left wing of politics runs from. As for the guidelines of objectivism it would require first finding out all the facts and second judging them by one's own ethical and moral values. Assuming any of that unsubstantiated information had any basis in fact. The new liberal way is 'mere suspicious' which on it' s face is morally reprehensible and of no ethical value.' By the ways could have been used more profitably with sources and verifiable facts in evidence. assuming such a person exists.

        Not our job to change diapers. Your (whoever presented this example) charge your responsibility. Judging without some proof the charge is valid and then on the merits of the charge is pre judging before facts are in evidence another way of saying prejudicial. Any chance it will be presented and if not this should have been presented in tht manner as a made up example and presented in that manner. I cannot accept 'memory' without confirmation and the rest of the requirements of at the least that required to establish probable cause.
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  • Posted by  $  ObjectiveAnalyst 11 months ago
    Hello Esceptico,
    They are unethical. I have little time, or regard for those that tolerate or commit fraud. At its base is deceit and duplicity. The system is corrupt and they not only give sanction, but use its corruption as intended and manipulate it at will. Most are not so bold as to admit it publicly... trusting Joe Public not to look beneath the hood. Even if enough people see the problem it will not matter, as long as it is legal, they will feel impotent. That is why it is set up as is. The establishment machine created it and counts on it.
    Respectfully,
    O.A.
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  • Posted by  $  puzzlelady 11 months ago
    It's not just unethical, fraudulent and dishonest. It basically constitutes breach of contract.

    If the system allows switching between ballots, then there is something afoul in the system itself. It's the wolf sneaking in in sheep's clothing. It's a chameleon masquerading as an elephant. It's raising deceit to a legitimate tool of statecraft (oh, wait, that's already enshrined).

    What sickens me is that the deceivers congratulate themselves on their cleverness as though succeeding through deception were a virtue. Hah, another case of the ends justifying the means. For them, A equals any letter of the alphabet except A.

    Such a philosophy will turn all of us into liars or paranoids. It is said, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." The concept of honor is vanishing from our value system.

    Even Rand said that we don't owe honesty to a hold-up man (or any enemy). How far do we want to extend this justification of deception? To any rival or competitor, to any but our closest and trusted allies, and for only as long as they remain trustworthy?

    Let's check that premise. If honor and honesty are so negotiable, so provisional even within a rational philosophy, we will never build a rational free society. The biggest liars and the biggest guns will always win, and there will be honor only among thieves.

    Objective ethics? What a quaint idea.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      You are saying exactly the point I was trying to get people to think about. When you look at the responses, I guess I was not as clear as I thought because the responses did not stay on the point I was aiming for.
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      • Posted by  $  puzzlelady 11 months ago
        You were clear, Esceptico. It's how what you were saying impacted on every mind's different unique filter that colored their responses.

        Most people opt for short-term gain, range-of-the-moment benefits, and don't think through to the very long-range goal of the larger self-interest. They don't see adhering to ethical choices as an investment towards that rational society in which they can actualize their own happiness, freedom and purpose of their life.

        To consider only one's own short-range benefit, say within one's own lifetime, and ignore long-range consequences for humanity, such as the survival of billions of individuals in a closed eco-system, is like sacrificing all those others to oneself.

        Genuine self-interest needs to take into account not only one's immediate and exclusively self-serving interests but an entire society in which all individuals can act to conduct their lives to attain their purposes and happiness.

        A smidgen of rational ethics applied long-range would better serve everyone's self-interest. That would be a truly virtuous self-serving code of values.

        It's ironic that even in this motherlode of Objectivist ethics people still can't agree on what they are. I see the cause as an evolutionary process, with humanity still having one foot in the predatory animal state and the other foot not yet firmly planted on the volitional-consciousness level. We have our work cut out for us.
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  • Posted by  $  DrZarkov99 11 months ago
    The confusion is in the difference between rules and ethics, just like laws and ethics. Some people don't really care about ethics, so long as their actions follow the rules (or the law), and tend to rationalize that if they didn't break the party rules, they did nothing wrong. People are just discovering how self serving political parties are.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      Yes, I think that is accurate, but not exactly on point. Objectivism says “ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices and actions—the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life. Ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices and actions—the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life.”

      As I said here before: "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by W saying he is a supporter of X when in truth W is a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity." This is not a matter changing one's mind later, it is a matter of deceit from the start.

      Under the framework of Objectivist ethics, is this ethical?
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  • Posted by cjferraris 11 months ago
    What I think is a travesty is that we live in a time of situational ethics. You say you're acting ethically if you have an argument to justify your actions in YOUR mind. We can't truly follow ethics in this PC world we live in now. If you stand up for something now, you're called names (bigot, racist, homophobe, etc.) just because you take a stand that isn't popular in the court of public opinion. People who risked everything because they were standing up for what was right, could have also been considered traitors. Look at our founding fathers, if we had not won the revolution, we'd be praising Benedict Arnold instead of George Washington.
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  • Posted by  $  teri-amborn 11 months ago
    I base my ethical judgment calls on this criterion:

    1. Is there an issue here or is an issue being created (including giving false or misleading information)?

    2. If there is an issue, are reality and reason going to prevail or are lies going to win the day?

    3. Is the issue at hand an attempt to overtake reality and reason and replace them with a counterfeit reality?

    Deception is always an indicator of ethical misconduct. Look for deception and you will find ethics are under assault.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      Objectivism says “ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices and actions—the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life. Ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices and actions—the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life.”

      As I said here before: "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by W saying he is a supporter of X when in truth W is a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity." This is not a matter changing one's mind later, it is a matter of deceit from the start.

      Under the framework of Objectivist ethics, is this ethical?

      From your comment, I judge you are saying the conduct by W is not ethical.
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      • Posted by  $  teri-amborn 11 months ago
        Correct.
        There is an anthology written by Dr. Leonard Peikoff about an early encounter with Ayn where he presents a scenario where dishonesty is involved to deceive and Ayn carefully picks it apart so that Leonard saw that the lies would come back to haunt the deceiver.
        Rational self-interest is for the long-term and must be part of global thinking.
        A quick victory through cheating will come to harm later.
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        • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months ago
          Speaking of which did this Mcbride person actually exist and when will we see some evidence behind the charge....Seems like everyone forgot that little part of the problem puzzle.

          Without that information go back one step and the charge itself is baseless and unethical. Until facts have been presented no determination can be made.and to attempt to do so is unethical and immoral.
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          • Posted by 11 months ago
            Are you serioius when you ask if McBride actually existed?
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            • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months ago
              Are you seriously asking me to accept anything anyone says at face value with out some sources and back up? Some of us were busy with more important issues in other parts of the world at some of those times. Some of us weren't born then. Some went to schools that didn't bother to include the mysterious Mr. McBride in the their history curriculum.

              And your only answer is accept what I say at face value with nothing to back it up? Get real. I noted Mr. or Mrs. or Ms. Lbrty didn't mind adding to his/her or their comment.

              Objectivism of which you are a stranger demands facts and background and does not judge in a prejudicial manner for that you want Socialism and the philosophy of Plato.

              Does that answer your question?


              And you want me to accept t.
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          • Posted by  $  teri-amborn 11 months ago
            IDK about this McBride person...
            However, you are correct and completely on the same path to truth that I am.
            False accusation is the first aggressive step of people with evil intentions.
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  • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
    The rules of being a delegate are that - according to the rules of that State - one is bound to vote for a particular delegate only on the first vote - which votes are the current tabulation shown to the public leading to the "magic" 1237 number.

    However, what one must recognize is that this very style of election was first used to select our President of the United States. If the votes are distributed in such a manner in which no candidate achieves the critical number necessary to secure that seat (or in this case nomination) than some votes must necessarily change to break the impasse. So to say that changing one's vote after the first/obligated vote is unethical is ridiculous. It would result only in perpetual stalemate of the system. Voters must be able to be swayed to break such an impasse. Otherwise, you would have no delegate at all from that Party.

    Hmmmm... Maybe I inadvertently hit on something there...

    Anyway, going back to the mention about the original elections for President, I think the original election between Adams and Jefferson to be highly instructive as to the ramifications of such a system (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_.... As a result, we got the Twelfth Amendment, which also instituted political parties and neutered the threat of Presidential veto.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by saying you are a supporter of X when in truth you are a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity
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      • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
        You want to argue that somehow it is disingenuous of a person to be called upon in one instance to vote in favor of a particular nominee and then to change their vote in a subsequent round of voting to support a different nominee. I understand what you are arguing. I simply argue that you are superimposing an ethical issue of your own making onto a situation where everyone understands the rules going in.

        You are arguing "fairness" - not ethics at all! It is not unlike Donald Trump's continual whining about how "unfair" the process is despite the fact that the rules were the rules before the campaigning began, but because the outcome wasn't in his favor that somehow it is an ethical dilemma.

        Ethical dilemmas arise when there is a conflict between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law. You are implying that there is a spirit of the law with respect to delegate voting that delegates must continue to vote for the same candidate no matter what. I do not see that implication anywhere in our current voting system, which is what I pointed out with Jefferson v Adams. It is an argument concocted by Trump supporters merely to gin up emotional outrage and manipulate public opinion. I reject such attempts as the resort of the immature: a temper tantrum of a spoiled brat.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          That is not what I am saying. I am saying is "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by saying you are a supporter of X when in truth you are a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity." This is not a matter "changing one's mind later, it is a matter of deceit from the start.
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          • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
            You want to believe that delegates are locked in to voting for one particular candidate ad infinitum no matter what and that to do anything else is disreputable or dishonorably. I look at two things: the actual rules themselves and the history of use of those rules. Both give evidence in opposition to your viewpoint. There is no history of an "unwritten" rule which would contradict the "written rule" of delegate voting to support your position and the actual written rules are in stark contrast to your position (varying State-by-State of course).

            (I will readily grant that the history of a contested convention is one of an abnormality, however, rather than the norm.)
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            • Posted by 11 months ago
              Objectivism says “ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices and actions—the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life. Ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices and actions—the choices and actions that determine the purpose and the course of his life.”

              As I said here before: "The issue here was not the rules, but the ethics of misleading voters by W saying he is a supporter of X when in truth W is a supporter of Y and will turn on X at the first opportunity." This is not a matter changing one's mind later, it is a matter of deceit from the start.

              Under the framework of Objectivist ethics, is this ethical?
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              • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
                If you want to argue that the delegates themselves obtained their positions invalidly, please present your evidence. If you have evidence that according to that State's rules for delegates that a delegate may not switch votes after the first vote, then that candidate announcing such would not only be in violation of the rules, but the ethics of their position and I would agree with you.

                Since neither appears to be the case, I would first point out that Rand would first object to running for office in the first place, so from that standpoint, I find it very difficult to humor the notion that somehow an Objectivist point-of-view can even be used to evaluate this situation.

                Your entire argument is the claim that "it is a matter of deceit from the start." I understand what you are saying, it just appears to me that you aren't interested in anything but acclaim for your rather visceral evocation.

                Rules are a means to an end. What one says when they imply ethical violations in any matter is that there is an end in mind but that the means used to achieve that end are inconsistent with the spirit or letter of that end. The entire Primary process is a matter of selecting a representative for a specific political party to act as a candidate in the General Election. The rules - and goal - are to select a Nominee which is supported by a majority of the delegates (not the People) - in this case at the Republican National Convention. The fallacy that you refuse to admit for yourself is that there is some requirement - either written or unwritten - of those Delegates to continue to vote for the same Candidate over and over and over again - regardless if that person has secured the necessary 51% to actually earn the Nomination. What you are saying is that those Delegates who already declared for Marco Rubio have the same responsibility to continue to vote for Marco Rubio that a Kasich delegate would have to vote for Kasich and so on. It is an absurd proposition that would result in perpetual stalemate (and which actually happened in the election for President of 1800).

                Delegates are committed to vote for a particular candidate only on the first round. That's it. That is ethics, it is history, it is the rules. To argue otherwise is to argue for gridlock - not ethics. Now I know you are going to come back and say that people should only switch their votes if there is another candidate which is more "viable". But even that is entirely the point: how does one determine who is the "viable" candidate? If none of the current crop have mustered the necessary majority count, should we simply toss them all out and select someone one else entirely (Paul Ryan)? Should we re-do all the Primary contests and vote on only those who have secured some arbitrary vote threshold?
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                • Posted by 11 months ago
                  My dear fellow, I think ou miss my point entirely.
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                  • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
                    Instead of just asserting that I don't understand your point, why don't you present what would be the "ethical" decision in this case from your point of view and how that ethical position should be the standard - either from a logical or historical use standpoint as I have done. Make your case.
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                    • Posted by 11 months ago
                      I think to represent oneself as a supporter of X and hide the fact of supporting Y for the purpose of getting elected and then turning against X is unethical. Got it?
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                      • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
                        I do not disagree on the notion that saying one thing and doing another is unethical. I go back to my original statement however: that you are superimposing that standard in a situation into which that standard has never existed. Your assumption is that there is an unwritten rule of loyalty attached to the process of electing delegates. I can find no such assumptions in either historical record nor the rules of party voting to justify such an assertion and it is this assertion (regarding application) upon which I differ with you. See http://constitution.com/lets-clear-te...

                        Several items I think are of import:

                        1. That Cruz' campaign understands how the delegation process works (for good or evil) with bound and unbound delegates. They have been educating delegates on that process and getting involved to make sure delegates favorable to that campaign are in place as much as possible. Cruz is working - and working hard - to secure the nomination.
                        2. That Trump's campaign doesn't understand how the delegation process works. Article after article of talking to party leaders of any level indicate that Trump has done nothing at a grass-roots level in many states to obtain delegates. He has been relying solely on popular opinion. Trump has done little to nothing to secure the nomination.
                        => That Trump's campaign is probably going to lose in a contested convention because it has not spent the time or resources necessary to win over other candidates' delegates to himself.

                        I remain open to more information if you have more to provide or a separate context you feel it appropriate to add.
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  • Posted by term2 11 months ago
    The entire republican party is crooked and full of cronyism. Its a business that picks a candidate that will fulfill its monetary and power-hungry goals. We the voters have been duped into trusting this system, which has been a mistake for a long time. Trump is exposing this, as is Sanders on the Democratic side.

    Perhaps its the end of the two party ram-it-down-our-throats system. I hope so. The whole delegate system is VERY unethical and crooked, as is the electoral college.
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    • Posted by 11 months ago
      The electoral college at least has a legitimate purpose in mind when adopted, which was to keep the lower populated and smaller states from being overrun by the larger and more populated states. The senators were appointed by the states, not elected — and that should be the method to keep the intended purpose working. In fact, political parties were not envisioned and there was talk about having the #1 vote-getter be president and the #2 be vice-president. Picture that: Trump resident and Hillary VP. Well, there goes lunch.
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      • Posted by  $  blarman 11 months ago
        Actually, the Electoral College faced this very same problem in the elections of 1800. They couldn't decide even after multiple votes on who would become President, so the House of Representatives actually elected the President that year. And until the Twelfth Amendment was passed, the system actually was to put the highest vote-getter in as President and the second-place finisher to become Vice President. The Twelfth Amendment instituted political parties by declaring that the President and Vice President must be on the same ballot (ie political party).

        Our entire nation would be very different sans the Twelfth Amendment because third party runs for President would be the norm - not the exception. A repeal of the Twelfth Amendment (IMO) would go a long ways towards eliminating much of the power of the current two-party political system we have had for the last two centuries.
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      • Posted by term2 11 months ago
        How about Trump as president and Sanders as VP. They both are anti-establishment and they both say what they think openly. I sometimes wonder how that would work out- at least the whole country would be represented in washington.
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        • Posted by 11 months ago
          Both are the least likely as among the other candidates to get us into WWIII, and neither understands much about economics. One can hope Trump will at least listen to the evidence his goals cannot be had via his plans.
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          • Posted by term2 11 months ago
            I think Trump listens to the facts (his business experience would lead me to expect that) more than Sanders, who is mired is his socialist BS (he is honest about it at least, which I do give him credit for)
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  • Posted by  $  Abaco 11 months, 1 week ago
    I don't think it matters anymore. I think it's all fraudulent and have decided not to participate. But, I don't fault anybody else for hanging in there.
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    • Posted by 11 months, 1 week ago
      The question deals only with the ethics under the circumstances I proposed. Whether or not it matters is not the issue. I have to agree with you, it is rigged.
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      • Posted by  $  Abaco 11 months ago
        It's more complicated than credit default swaps. Oh, you can vote. Sometimes. Sometimes, we'll vote for you. Sometimes we'll have an open primary convention. Maybe not. Blah...Blah... And, the average shmuck plays along and goes, "Oh, I guess they know better than I do." Haha! Kind of funny... And, you did originally ask for our opinion. Mine is that it doesn't matter. Sorry if I misunderstood (wouldn't be the first time).
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  • Posted by  $  Olduglycarl 11 months, 1 week ago
    It's a bizarre environment...but initially the delegate system was a hedge against voters make a BIG mistake that would change the nature of the country...seems the left and the left/right kakistocracy has screwed that up as well. Delegates were supposed to be "statesman" meaning engaged, intelligent and constitutional.

    However, a second ballot requires a rethink because the first one didn't work out the way it was expected to.
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    • Posted by 11 months, 1 week ago
      The question is whether this is ethical. Nothing else.
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      • Posted by  $  Olduglycarl 11 months, 1 week ago
        The obligation is to vote for trump initially...and if they do so, then they have acted in good faith...that is ETHICAL...regardless of their intentions upon a second vote which is not a certainty.
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        • Posted by 11 months, 1 week ago
          What I am getting at is they are really moles for Cruz, who got elected to vote for Trump but did not disclose at voting time they were for Cruz and would change their votes at a second ballot. Is that ethical?

          I can see voting for a different candidate on second vote if you have not pledged to vote for Trump. But where you pledge to vote for Trump do not disclose you are a Trump supporter and actually want to undermine Trump, is that conduct ethical?
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          • Posted by  $  Olduglycarl 11 months, 1 week ago
            And my point is that on a second vote, no matter their pledge or original intentions someone WILL be changing their vote from their vote on the first ballot.

            My answer again is Yes...as long as they stick to the job they were elected for...second votes...all bets are off.
            I am also going to look at it your way, Yes, because their intention is to honor their agreement even though they would rather support TC...I am not sure I would take that chance.
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            • Posted by 11 months, 1 week ago
              They say they want to support Cruz, not Trump, yet ran to get elected saying they would support Trump. The question is whether such conduct is ethical.
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              • Posted by  $  Olduglycarl 11 months, 1 week ago
                Yes it is ethical...so long as they support trump at the caucus. Did they run to support trump for life or all the way thru...that's a different story. However, if I were them and it didn't come down to a second vote at the convention...I would hate myself for being ethical.

                Like I said, I wouldn't take that chance.
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                • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months, 1 week ago
                  Supporting the left wing fascists on any vote is ethical to some as it was in the 1930s. What they call ethics I call something entirely different. But then goose stepping to some is just a new fad dance step.
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                • Posted by term2 11 months ago
                  The delegate arrangement is a crooked system, period, and should be abolished. Its designed to allow the power brokers to run the country- at OUR expense.
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  • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months ago
    I'm going to do this here instead of in the original thread it's the sources of another problem the Cruz Haters have with our system here in the USA. About eligibility. Specifically for those who never learned the art of research.

    The Supreme Court has never made a judgement on natural born citizen and refused to overturn the one made in Pennsylvania.

    Congress refused to comment any further on the subject and backed up the Pennsylvania decision on the matter.

    No one else has bothered to push the issue in the court system

    The Department of Immigration and Naturalization now counts as native born and natural born those born outside the country of at least one US Citizen parent.

    This is the last time I'm offering diaper service on the matter.

    Here is the beginning of the resources any competent individual would have checked prior to commenting

    Harvard Law Review: Ted Cruz is a natural born citizen and ...
    https://winteryknight.com/.../harvard......
    Jan 14, 2016 - Donald Trump has been questioning whether Ted Cruz is eligible to run for ... Harvard Law Review: Ted Cruz is a natural born citizen and is eligible to become President ... A legal opinion from the Harvard Law Review.
    Harvard scholar: Ted Cruz's citizenship, eligibility for president
    www.theguardian.com › US News › Ted Cruz
    Jan 10, 2016 - Harvard scholar: Ted Cruz's citizenship, eligibility for president 'unsettled' ... Cruz has since cited a bipartisan Harvard Law Review article by two former ..... ever have an opinion that was helpful to a rightwing nutter like Trump.
    Ted Cruz is not eligible to be president - The Washington Post
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinio......
    Jan 12, 2016 - Mary Brigid McManamon is a constitutional law professor at Widener ... [Opinion: Yes, Ted Cruz is a “natural-born citizen”] ... This notion appears to emanate largely from a recent comment in the Harvard Law Review Forum by ...
    On the Meaning of “Natural Born Citizen” - Harvard Law ...
    harvardlawreview.org/2015/03/on-the-m...
    Mar 11, 2015 - Harvard Law Review Forum ... See Christina S. Lohman, Presidential Eligibility: The Meaning of the Natural-Born ... candidate, Senator Ted Cruz, was born in a Canadian hospital to a U.S. citizen mother. ... See, e.g., Laurence H. Tribe & Theodore B. Olson, Opinion Letter, Presidents and Citizenship, 2 J.L.
    Harvard law professor: Ted Cruz's eligibility to be president is
    www.rawstory.com/.../harvard-law-prof......
    Jan 11, 2016 - Harvard law professor: Ted Cruz's eligibility to be president is 'murky ... Cruz has since cited a bipartisan Harvard Law Review article by two ...
    Constitutional Scholars Explain Why Ted Cruz Is Eligible to ...
    abcnews.go.com/Politics/constitutiona......
    Jan 6, 2016 - Legal scholars say Ted Cruz is eligible to occupy the Oval Office. ... as President,” the bipartisan duo wrote in a Harvard Law Review article in March 2015. ... Laurence Tribe, a professor at Harvard Law School, told ABC News ...
    Ted Cruz has a very real birther problem: The law is not settled
    www.salon.com/.../ted_cruz_has_a_very......
    Jan 22, 2016 - The founders did restrict the presidency to natural-born citizens. ... over the eligibility of Canadian-born Ted Cruz to serve as president awakened ... to the Harvard Law Review to argue the opposite side from Harvard's Lawrence ... In 1774, Thomas Jefferson published “Summary View of the Rights of British ...
    The debate over whether Ted Cruz is eligible to be ... - Vox
    www.vox.com/explainers/2016/1/14/1077...
    Jan 15, 2016 - Is Ted Cruz constitutionally eligible to serve as president of the United States? ... And court opinions that have mentioned the term in passing while ruling ... But it's a stretch to say, as Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe did earlier .... It's not like this dilemma was unforeseeable: A law review article about ...
    Is Cruz Eligible to Run for President? A Primer -- NYMag
    nymag.com/daily/.../01/cruz-eligible-...
    Jan 22, 2016 - Cruz is clearly a citizen under the second qualification, so what's the problem? ... in an often-cited March 2015 op-ed in the Harvard Law Review. ... in a CNN opinion piece that Cruz might not have been eligible if he were born in 1790. ... When Cruz was my constitutional law student at Harvard, he aced the ...
    Ted Cruz - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ted_Cruz
    Rafael Edward "Ted" Cruz (born December 22, 1970) is an American politician and the junior United States Senator from Texas. He is a candidate for the Republican nomination for President of the United States in the 2016 election. Cruz graduated from Princeton University in 1992, and from Harvard Law .... While at Harvard Law, he was a primary editor of the Harvard Law Review, ...
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    • Posted by  $  WilliamShipley 11 months ago
      It is bizarre how eligibility for the highest office in the government seems to be based on the honor system. Apparently no agency is responsible or even authorized to determine that someone is actually eligible.

      If a 25 year old ran for office, who would demand to see his birth certificate to determine that he was at least 35? Would anyone who brought the issue up be called a "birther"?
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    • Posted by  $  MichaelAarethun 11 months ago
      Truth Mr. Eseptico is NEVER far afield from a free an open discussion.

      I must now do a Sherman having found out I could have run for President all those years ago as I was born in UK of one US Citizen parent.

      If nominated I shall not run.
      If elected i shall not serve.
      I'm having too much fun Objectively
      Tilting at Subjective wind mills philosophically.

      Sourcing your comments is always a good idea as it helps the rest of us follow your thinking to a conclusion. With thanks for those who are at that level.
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