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Quote of the Day: Just Because Something Is Not Illegal….” | Missouri Political News Service

Quote of the Day: Just Because Something Is Not Illegal….”

July 11th, 2008 by mopns · No Comments

 “I am not a crook”

We couldn’t have said it better orselves. From reader Jim Byrne.

“Just because something is not illegal (at least not currently illegal) does not mean that it is not unethical.

As long as we keep electing politicians that are more concerned with what they can legally get away with, than what they should ethically avoid, we will continue to suffer from the fate we have chosen.

Since Jetton is relying on law, rather than ethics, I decided to look up a few things in my numerous legal dictionaries.

INTEGRITY -is not listed

ETHICAL -(see unethical)

UNETHICAL -not in accordance with the accepted practices of a profession.

The standard is set pretty low!”



Tags: Decision '08 · Picture/Quote of the Day · Spkr. Jetton

0 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jackson // Jul 11, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Not the first time Byrne has demonstrated he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

    I saw this posted on one of the other blogs and thought it a good summary. Hat tip to JasonB2:

    “Jetton has a point. Why should lawyers – or doctors – or farmers be allowed to vote on issues affecting them and their livelihoods and other professions not be allowed to do so? You need to go back and listen to the statement again – or for the first time.

    We are supposed to have a citizen legislature. That means people who have knowledge like lawyers – doctors – farmers – even political consultants bring their knowledge and experience with them. Lawyers in the legislature always have and probably alwys will vote on laws that they get PAID to defend or “prosecute” in court. Under the definition applied here, how is that any less of a conflict?

    The reason is that some don’t like Jetton – nothing more nothing less. It’s a shame that politics revolves around creating perceptions so they don’t have to talk about the realities.”

    It’s obvious that MOPNS and its puppet masters don’t like Jetton. It’s also obvious that the only way they can attempt to harm him is to distort any little fact. Too bad MOPNS isn’t an independent thinker.

  • 2 Jim Byrne // Jul 11, 2008 at 1:21 pm


    Are you really attempting to insinuate that ethics should be ignored, simply because it has become an accepted practice?

    You claim that I don’t know what I am talking about, yet you present nothing to refute my statement or observations.

    I will concede that I am not infallible. However, if you wish to establish that anything I have may have stated is incorrect, I ask that you lose your cloak of anonymity (as I have) and provide us with any such error.

  • 3 Jackson // Jul 12, 2008 at 10:36 am

    Mr. Byrne, you are confused on many things not the least of which who posted what. In my original post, I clearly “quoted” a JasonB post on another blog. However, I take full responsibility for my posts here.

    No one has been able to provide any proof of anything illegal or unethical Jetton has done. The reason I used JasonB’s post is that you and others don’t have a problem with the aforementioned “professions” having the very same conflict as you say Jetton “ethically” has.

    The only way you can prove Jetton is acting unethicially is to provide proof, someting more than the idiot saying that ‘perception is reality for some’, that only applies to non-thinkers. Prove he gave Onder bills because he was his client. Prove he got Onder’s bills taken up on the House floor. Prove he got the Senate to pass Onder’s bills. Since Onder carried those bills last year as well as this year, you have an uphill battle.

    However, if you can prove all that, then you have an proven that an ethics issue is in question. Until then, it’s just an opinion and we all know about those.

  • 4 Jim Byrne // Jul 12, 2008 at 12:47 pm


    Immediately after posting my comment, I noticed that I had incorrectly addressed my comment to JasonB instead of you (Jackson). I doubt that any reader was too confused. Noting such, I immediately sent an e-mail to editor@mopns.com asking them to change it to Jackson, or delete the post so that I could post a corrected response. (I apologize to JasonB)

    In your first comment, you stated that I don’t know what I am talking about. You followed up by stating that I am confused about many things. (Is it too much to ask for you to indentify such?)
    While I take full responsibility for the inadvertent placement of an incorrect name in my response, I see no other place in which you have identified anything else that I have been incorrect about. (Perhaps a profound statement of your character)

    You have made it quite clear that you and Jetton do not feel that his activity is considered unethical. Then again, suicide bombers don’t consider their actions to be unethical. Drug dealers, that sell their wares to children, don’t consider their actions to be unethical. Many shoplifters don’t consider their actions to be unethical.

    When you have something to gain by ignoring the appearance of partiality, it is hardly the time to make the decision for yourself. Jetton’s not a bad guy. He just let the allure of power cloud his judgment.

    I happen to think that Jetton’s activity is unethical. That is my opinion. (And the opinion of many others.)

    Ethics is not something that is necessarily determined by committee. In fact, if you need a committee to determine such, you already have a problem. What is ethical is a statement of moral conscience. If that is something to which you are oblivious, it may be too late to help you.

  • 5 Jackson // Jul 12, 2008 at 2:00 pm

    Mr. Byrne, as to my comment about not know what you are talking about refers to you many previous posts especially those attacking Gibbons. This is a personal opinion of mine also shared by others and serves as the basis of questioning your bias on this issue.

    You state that you and many others believe that Jetton’s activity is unethical. That’s fine but using what measure, “the appearance of partiality”? Why then are the lawyers, doctors, farmers etc not also guilty of an ethical lapse when they vote on issues affecting them?

    The fact remains undisputed that you nor anyone else has presented proof that Jetton has ethically violated anything other than an “appearance” standard. The facts dispute the “appearance of partiality” question as Onder had carried those bills previously. The “appearance of partiality” standard is my problem.

    “Appearance” is not neccesarily reality. “Appearance” may result in the need to investigate a situation further uncovering proof of an ethical lapse but in and of itself is not an ethical lapse. I concede that “appearance” has replaced proof in our society but that doesn’t mean anyone of should accept that false standard.

    The “appearance” you give is that “innocent until PROVEN guilty” is not the standard you wish to apply to this issue. That is sad.

  • 6 Jim Byrne // Jul 12, 2008 at 3:24 pm

    Jackson… (hey- I got it right)

    If you feel that a statement I made about Gibbons was inaccurate, you are welcome to bring it up for discussion. I would be happy to support my conclusion, as well as, admit my error if logic dictates such. (What does Gibbons lack of understanding of our laws have to do with Jetton’s ethical lapses?)

    As for the appearance of partiality:

    It has been a long standing doctrine of our legal system that a judge should avoid the appearance of partiality. When such presents itself, the judge is required to recuse themself. (Perhaps you would like to remind Judge Patricia Joyce of that, as she was on the Board of Directors for a hospital whose finances would be affected by her decision (a decision that was reversed in the Missouri Supreme Court because the Plaintiff lacked standing. (A jurisdictional decision that the judge also got wrong.))) This is not a matter of guilty until proven innocent. It’s a matter of avoiding the appearance of a conflict of interest.

    Your claim that doctors, lawyers, farmers, and the like, having the ability to vote on laws that may affect them does present a potential, if not acute, conflict of interest does have merit. I would have no problem supporting a law calling for them to refrain from voting in such instances. However, we would first need to remove the dominance of lawyers, as a profession, in the Legislature or their participation as lawmakers would be ineffective.

    Unlike most members of the Legislature, Jetton, as Speaker of the House, can act alone. He also has the ability to nix a Bill when presented. How many Bills did he simply throw in the trash? Could one of those Bills that he trashed been more important than something that Onder sponsored. -I guess we’ll never know.

    As I have clearly demonstrated, the appearance of partiality, as something to be avoided, is not some novel idea that I have come up with.

  • 7 Jackson // Jul 12, 2008 at 6:11 pm

    As another example of your inaccuracy is your charge that lawyers dominate the legislature. Perhaps you could tell us out of 197 members of the legislature, how many are lawyers? When you are able to tell us, we will find that they do not dominate the legislature.

    Bottom line, you have not clearly demonstrated anything but your insistence to continue building a false charge. Every speaker in the past 30 years has been accused of doing something for some “personal profit” reason. Those that did went to jail with the most notable being Bob Griffen.

    Still waiting to have the proof you have failed to provide showing an unethical action on Jetton’s part. Until then you will have to content yourself with manufactured ones.

  • 8 Jim Byrne // Jul 12, 2008 at 8:14 pm


    Last time I checked 28 of the 197 are attorneys; that’s nearly 15%. What other profession is so well represented?

    No one is claiming that Jetton broke the law or performed an act that the Ethics Committee would find to be actionable.

    My claim, that Jetton’s actions are unethical, is purely from a moral standpoint, as I feel that he presented, at least, an appearance of impropriety.

    Don’t worry. I don’t expect you or Jetton to agree.

  • 9 Jackson // Jul 14, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    There is no “moral” issue invovled here. You equate the “appearance of impropriety” of judges to legislators which is a false comparison to use.

    Again I challenge you to support your appearance charge: Onder sponsored same or similar bills the previous year. The Republican Caucus voted to make Onder’s bills a caucus priority giving them a lot of weight to move forward. The bills passed the House and went to the Senate. The Senate passed Onder’s bills. The Governor signed Onder’s bills. Now, are you saying that Jetton controlled all that?

    Where in the process is the “appearance of impropriety”? To claim that one exists you would have to ignore the facts of the matter and deal in purely emotional reactions.

    And you needn’t worry that I expect you to agree. I’m not losing any sleep over it.

  • 10 Jim Byrne // Jul 14, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    OK Jackson

    I can see that you don’t understand.

    I’m glad that Sarah Steelman, Pete Kinder, and many, many more get it.

    If I was you; I’d want to remain anonymous too.

  • 11 Jackson // Jul 15, 2008 at 9:20 am

    I fully understand that what our political system has come to is not dealing in realities but dealing in “appearances”. People wonder why our system is so screwed up. It’s because people don’t care about reality they care about “apprearances”.

  • 12 You be the judge // Jul 15, 2008 at 11:26 am

    How to avoid the appearance of impropriety:

    Don’t put yourself in a position where your interest in the outcome could be affected by your ability to influence such.

    Avoid anything that may present a conflict of interest. (real or imagined)

    If Jetton had not been hired to further the political career of Onder, he would not have had a motive to do so.

    While no one may be able to prove that Jetton did anything wrong; appearances are what make up our reality.

    “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.” -Albert Einstein

  • 13 Jackson // Jul 15, 2008 at 12:12 pm

    Appearances do not make up reality.

    There is a very real and distinct difference between the “appearance” of a concrete barrier on a blacktop road on a hot southwest day and a real concrete barrier. The appearance (optical illusion) won’t hurt you or your care but the very real concrete barrier will.

    The realiance on appearances only as the make up of reality is for those either too lazy to find out the truth or for those who don’t care.

  • 14 You be the judge // Jul 15, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    Jackson is correct. Einstein is wrong.

    We don’t really have stars in our night sky, because we can’t touch them.

    The sun doesn’t really provide us with heat, because we can’t touch it.

    Does the sun even exist? Are the stars real? Prove it- take me there. I don’t want to be considered “too lazy” or someone claim that I “don’t care”.

    As long as Jetton and Jackson say that it’s alright, it becomes reality.

    I think I’ll stick with Einstein…Einstein

  • 15 Jackson // Jul 15, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    Why you must be one of those dasterdly politicians the way you so adeptly twist and misrepresent what is said.

    You don’t have to go to the sun to prove it is real. Take your shirt off, go oustide unprotected by anything during the day for 5 or 6 hours and I guarantee that you will have more than the appearance the sun exists. You may not be able to touch it, it will touch you.

    As to the stars, many space missions have been flown to them and beyond sending back pictures etc. Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Venus, Mercury, and other celestial bodies, all stars at some point in their trajectories have yielded of themselves the proof they exist. Hubble has shown us much more and even dwarf planets. However, I suppose you could be one of those who believe the moon landings took place on a hollywood soundstage rather than the real moon.

    So tell us, do you get your Einstein toasted or do you take them plain? It’s more than apparent, that nasty “appearance” thing of which you are so enamored with, yea, have clearly demonstrated that it’s not Albert you are sticking with when you say Einstein. I hope you get some good toppings on your Einstein, they will be easier to stick with if you get the right kind of toppings.

    And oh, by all means, please stay with your anonymous name tag, I wouldn’t want you to be embarrassed by revealing your name after the postings you have placed here.

  • 16 Fly on the wall // Jul 15, 2008 at 3:26 pm

    “And oh, by all means, please stay with your anonymous name tag, I wouldn’t want you to be embarrassed by revealing your name after the postings you have placed here.”

    Is the pot calling the kettle black? If find that you enjoyed your anonymity when Mr. Byrne suggested that you remove your cloak, but now you want to call someone out for following your lead.

    I think I figured it out. — You are Rowdy Rod Jetton -Aren’t you?

  • 17 Jim Byrne // Jul 16, 2008 at 7:52 am

    “As to the stars, many space missions have been flown to them and beyond sending back pictures etc.” – Jackson

    Don’t hold back. Tell us what YOU really think!

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