It came as no surprise to me that our Government Ethics Chief, Walter Shaub, resigned a few weeks ago. I had the pleasure of listening to him speak and answer questions today at the NPC where he discussed the seriousness of what’s happening inside our White House, and to our country. He reminded us that ethics is “neither for or against a party.” The definition of Ethics, according to the dictionary, (because I think it’s time we’re all reminded), is “a moral set of principles that govern a person’s behavior or the conducting of an activity.” Synonyms include: morals, moral codes, values. What is right and what is wrong. Ideals and standards, virtues, dictates of conscience. Shaub expressed how important it was for journalists and for citizens to keep initiating conversation about the importance of ethics in the executive branch, that we cannot depart from our ethics and values, that departing from these norms means that we’re setting new standards of behavior (we all know now that Steve Bannon is apparently busy s*cking his own c*ck) as well as adding a level of fragility to our ethics agency.
I appreciated Schaub’s vulnerability and authenticity when he was candid about the administration’s attempt to smear his name. He feels -and fears- that many in the current administration might not stand up to this erosion of ethics we’re experiencing (i.e. Trump still hasn’t released his tax returns and he hasn’t sold his business assets), setting up a “blind trust” is irrelevant, they all fear the same: they’re scared their name will be smeared and a professional future doomed.
Schaub also expressed extreme concern that this will become the new norm, and that it is up to US to keep SPEAKING OUT, remembering that of this IS NOT NORMAL.
“We have to challenge this before it takes root... If Mueller gets fired, it would be destructive to our society in ways we can’t even fathom right now,” Shaub said.
“We have to be vigorous in holding the norms of our civil society. We have to protect our institutions.”
When asked what more we can do as citizens to help fight against this kind of corruption and greed, Shaub said if you know anyone who is a financial expert, have them write to congress and share their views and expertise, help them understand the complexities of MONEY - now that the 1% has taken over our government. It is typically very hard to follow this kind of money but it can be done.
He ended with this, “Sunlight is the best disinfectant.” #resist
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