Category: Morality

How Passive-Aggressive Behavior Destroys

All of us have at one time or another known someone who has behaved in a way that psychologists identify as passive-aggressive. We may have even been that person. For those who may be blissfully unaware of this syndrome, I would like very much to join you on whatever planet you live on. For the...

Sexless Marriage

According to the bus stop advertisements and billboards around town, another disposable situation comedy is about to make its debut on network television. The conceit of this one, called “‘Til Death Do Us Part,” is that his adorable wife henpecks a regular guy (the aggressively unfunny Brad Garrett) to the point of emasculation. The tag...

A Fine Mess at the FCC

Last week President Bush signed legislation that will increase the fines broadcasters pay when their programming exceeds “the bounds of decency.” For language or imagery the Federal Communications Commission doesn’t like, the over-the-air media faces penalties as high as $325,000 per incident — a 1000% increase beyond the former maximum. This legislation is the climax...

The Lords of Power

The chief goal of almost all elected officials, clergymen, CEOs, talent agents, executive vice-presidents, district managers, assistant managers, and onward down the chain of command, is to lord power over others. One can detect a quasi-sexual glee in the ministrations and machinations of those who can affect the lives of others. To the power-holder, the...

Doing the Right Thing

In a world that increasingly seems to lack absolute values, where right and wrong have constantly shifting shades of meaning interpreted by courts, church pulpits, and the vicissitudes of public whim, “doing the right thing” can be problematic. How can anyone be sure he’s acting righteously if the notion of righteousness is constantly in flux?...

Remind Us Again. . .

Remind us again…why one group of people should be permitted to tell another group of people what they may (or may not) eat, drink, or smoke? Why is it illegal to make a bet on a football game but legal to make a bet on the stock market? Why is it illegal for a woman to earn money...

Looking at Child Porn

We received an email from an address we didn’t recognize, with a subject line that said “Children Porn.” We considered forwarding it to the FBI, but that would have required opening it, which we didn’t want to do. In today’s political climate, we imagined all sorts of horrible scenarios involving illicit materials found on our hard drive,...

Sheep, Cows, and Fields of Grass

Spending a week in the Welsh countryside is like a drinking a nepenthe that scours away all memory of air pollution, terrorist attacks, and venal corporations. The real world feels far, far away. Although it was the first country to become industrialized (to exploit the coal, copper, and tin in its ground), Wales today is...

The Slippery Slope of Indecency

Haters of sin rejoiced this week when the FCC, under pressure from righteous politicians and their outraged constituents, announced that broadcasters would be subject to fines of as much as $500,000 and a reevaluation of their licenses should they transmit “indecent” programming to the innocent ears and eyes of the American citizenry. Believe it or...

Why Gays Should Be Permitted to Marry

Yesterday the Massachusetts legislature voted down a constitutional amendment that would have limited the august institution of marriage to people of the opposite sex. Hateful religious types traveled from out-of-state to protest at the Senate steps, outraged at the erosion of “family values” propagated by egalitarian lawmakers who inexplicably think the laws of our nation...