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Top Ethics Official Resigns, Says Working for Trump Requires 'Abandonment of Conscience'


Top Ethics Official Resigns, Says Working for Trump Requires 'Abandonment of Conscience'

Jake Johnson, staff writer

A top Justice Department official tasked with reining in corporate crime and upholding accountability standards has resigned, citing "conduct at the top"—a thinly veiled reference to President Donald Trump and his staff—that made her job impossible.


This is the Republican/Trump gamble that ethical people in government will come to accept a climate of corruption rather than resign.

Good people take a look at a great American on this Independence Day holiday - Ms. Hui Chen.

If more people who hold themselves to standards of ethics and decency choose to publicly take a stand for these beliefs rather than simply dispensing with them in favor of a paycheck, the creeping corruption that Trump is spreading throughout our democracy would cease in the light of public condemnation! Even now intelligent people are looking hard at government office holders and employees to see if they comply with obviously unethical compromises forced on them by Trump and Co.! The question being asked is whether or not our traditions of decency and standards of behavior while in government, still determine who we are. The Trump and Minions Mafia want to compromise everybody (just like the real Mafia) and once someone is corrupted, then Trump and Co. won't fear them ...choosing to be ethical!

Brava Ms. Chen! Many of your countrymen admire you!


I respect what she did and understand why she did it, but part of me wishes she stayed on. We still need good people in good places, especially the DOJ. This will be the case even more so once and when Justice Kennedy retires.


Thank you, Hui Chen, for your courage and integrity! May you serve as an example for us all!


It doesn't work that way. You can't do good while doing bad, so to speak. While maybe she might have held out for a time, eventually the corruption machine would make her doing a good job impossible. Sooner or later she would be put into a situation where the pressure to be corrupt would come down from the top and taints of corruption arising from the bottom would submerge the very ethical behavior you suggest.

Let's just say that you can't be the one honest guy (gal) in a group of bank robbers. It just doesn't work that way.

I think she is awesome and courageous. She is our best - our American! She is who we want our government people to be. Ethical!


I agree with what you're saying. But how much will trump & company fear the totally corrupted person they will replace MS. Chen with?


It isn't over. Other government employees are now talking about what she did and about their own situations under the Trump administration. Moreover whomever Trump replaces her with is going to bristle at any suggestion of impropriety and will be overly conscious of the way they got the position and that others are conscious of it too.

That is the gamble! To corrupt and be corrupted or to refuse to do either. Which will a person choose? You know there are serious concerns about more than just monetary corruption with this administration. Trump's people have read him the riot act now but he already showed his true colors when he revealed classified intel to the Russian ambassador. What else does Trump do that they are doing their best to keep out of the public eye?


Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.


Good god, "Abandonment of Conscience"!

The majority of the signers of the Constitution were slave owners. Since time immemorial, aggregates of homo sapiens had what we enlightened modernists call slaves. The new democratic state of the US was constructed to accommodate that social and economic, that basic construct. Washington was one of the wealthiest, if not the wealthiest citizen of this aggregate of the new extension of the 18th Century social order known as capitalism. He had a shit-load of slaves, On the one hand the aggregate of wealthy land owners was the most progressive socioeconomic order of a new human social and economic culture. On the other, it represented raptor capitalism really breaking out of its egg. I for one would march for a pan-human world order, but I believe it is much too late. Global Warming and/or a nuclear Armageddon are licking at our heals. Have a great Forth, but be clear minded.

Quoting George Carlin:

"We’re going away. Pack your shit, folks. We’re going away. And we won’t leave much of a trace, either. Maybe a little Styrofoam … The planet’ll be here and we’ll be long gone. Just another failed mutation. Just another closed-end biological mistake. An evolutionary cul-de-sac. The planet’ll shake us off like a bad case of fleas.

The planet will be here for a long, long, LONG time after we’re gone, and it will heal itself, it will cleanse itself, ’cause that’s what it does. It’s a self-correcting system. The air and the water will recover, the earth will be renewed. And if it’s true that plastic is not degradable, well, the planet will simply incorporate plastic into a new paradigm: the earth plus plastic. The earth doesn’t share our prejudice toward plastic. Plastic came out of the earth. The earth probably sees plastic as just another one of its children. Could be the only reason the earth allowed us to be spawned from it in the first place. It wanted plastic for itself. Didn’t know how to make it. Needed us. Could be the answer to our age-old egocentric philosophical question, 'Why are we here?'

Plastic… asshole.”


and is why so many appointees and staff on different departments are not filled. People with ethics and morals don't want to work for Trump Administration.


Right on target!

CS Lewis's "Inner Ring" address perfectly describes Trump's m.o. for co-opting his staff. It's good to re-read it every now and then.



I wish that I could agree with you, but given the horrible people Tweetle-Dumb has put in place to head the departments of State, Justice, Education and the EPA, all of whom required – and got – the approval of Turtle-Face's Senate, the chance of him naming anyone even half decent to replace Chen is slim indeed.  Just as the pro-Apartheid forces eventually controlled the entire government of South Africa, so the pro-Kakisto­cracy (aka CaCa-stocracy) forces are aiming to control Amerika, top to bottom, with no dissent allowed (or aloud).

And conversely, the Trump administration doesn't want to be hobbled in any way by having people with ethics and morals working for it.

And I wish that I could disagree with you and Carlin, but it seems to me that Mother Earth is already grossly overloaded with two-legged lemmings — and she's about to either drown or roast the lot of us.


A lot like joining the Democratic Party to "reform" it from within, wouldn't you say?


You know a constant barrage of defeatist fatalism (a preference it seems for progressive bloggers) is useful for the other side. It's like a coach telling a sports team that they can never win and then getting mad if they don't! The question becomes just what is the point of listening to that coach at all. He's useless and worse he is actually helping the other side by discouraging his own.

The problem with predicting that the end is nigh is the complete arrogance of those who think that they are so well informed as to be correct in what they say. Far too many people pretend to a scientific expertise garnered from articles they read on the subject written primarily but science writers and not by scientists. When asked to provide citations to data proving some fact, they invariably will quote a line or two by some scientist (taken out of context more often than not) and offer it as proof to support their position.

It very often resembles the 'conspiracy theory' mentality where someone fills in the blanks with guesses not facts and then acts as if this a legitimate path to form a conclusion. In other words, your closing statement of futility is invalid. Outrageously invalid in fact. Yes, the future danger is real but taking the hyperbole of future climate change and presenting it as nearly established fact is sensationalism at its worst.

In short >>> It is too early for it to be too late!

It may be too late to prevent the sixth extinction from continuing but then that is the equation of overpopulation either with climate change or without.

It may be too late to avoid a toxic algae acidic soup we once called the oceans but by the time it so bad that it threatens life by diminishing oxygen production, we would use GMO derived oxygen producing algae to compensate.

It may be too late to keep the heat from rising to the point of vanished glaciers and ice caps but we will then attempt the very risky geoengineering schemes to reduce that heat build up. My guess is that we would shoot for CO2 management on the land and suffer through the heat with solar powered air conditioning etc.
I think humanity is far more grim and durable than do you seem to believe it is. I suggest you use a mixture of common sense observation ( the signs are there but we aren't there yet by any means and scientific research (which better shows where we are headed but also shows that we aren't there yet either). So you think based on reading magazine articles that we don't stand much of a chance? I think that the world that we grew up in will go through drastic changes until it is almost unrecognizable but humanity will survive. We are stubborn as far as species go.

Cut down paradise and put up a parking lot? How about us using CO2 absorbing concrete and solar roofing.

But yeah I agree that paradise will be gone but we (living in that parking lot) won't be!


Ending term limits would be a big start but electing challengers to the old guard works for me too!


What a crock! Your fatalism towards humanity is very much the same as that of fundamentalists and evangelicals who preach the destruction of a sinful humanity with a bizarre note of glee! Try to remember that what you say has not happened and the worst may never happen!

Moreover it is a safe bet that while we may do too little to prevent some of the worst from happening, at some point in the future we will start doing a lot. Survival being a sort of preference for the species in general! Late but not too late!

Plastic will degrade when exposed to the sun. Bury plastic in a landfill and it doesn't degrade.


Working for Trump requires Abandonment of Humanity!


I read your link. It is excellent. Thank you.


Exactly, I agree "you can't do good while doing bad'. Many politicians and public figures are in a moral dilemma with this administration and politics in general. Her leaving says so much about integrity, values and having a conscience. It seems that draining the swamp actually means draining all those that will not sell their souls. A person to keep our eye on in the future.


People like her should run for public office. Voters would be inspired simply to be able to vote for an ethical person.