Thursday, March 25, 2004

Ethicists, on dolebludging and gambling

The job title "ethicist", when applied outside academia, is one that seems to have only come into existence in recent years, a similar situation to that of "depreciation advisor/specialist". With both new types of professionals (to use that word loosely), there appears to be no peak body governing standards, etc. Perhaps an Institute of Ethicists, to police ethics among ethicists, is redundant strictly-speaking. But based on this tawdry piece of crap, written by self-described ethicists, Rufus Black and Hayden Ramsay, the evidence appears otherwise:

Gambling can contribute to the enrichment of individual and community life. There are clear principles, which, if followed, would make that contribution reasonable. If both conclusions hold, then the provision of gambling can be an ethical business. A gambling industry that took itself seriously could undo the harm done and discover its real potential to contribute to human fulfilment and the common good.

Err, Rufus and Hayden, I think the fact that you were paid for your words by gambling giant Tattersalls more than adequately indicates that gambling industry already takes itself seriously, very seriously. I don't know anything of Hayden Ramsay, but I went to law school with Rufus Black and it is disappointing to see a once-promising Gen Xer reduced to churning out meritricious nonsense. I trust that you'll now pour all your Tattersalls wages into their own poker machines - and thus do you own bit for "human fulfilment and the common good", eh Rufus? Or even take a walk-of-discovery around Melbourne's casino, jam-packed at 5 am, and take in the sense of "community" there and then - oh yeah.

On the other hand, not all ethicists are out-and-out whores of Moloch. Neil Levy has written this elegant defence of dolebludging - and even manged to incorporate a financial disclosure into it, without any hint of his own ethics being compromised. Yes, Neil was once on the dole himself.

So get thee to a Centrelink, Rufus Black and Hayden Ramsay - boys, you aint no "ethicist" until you've queued for hours just to eat some humble pie. And then done this again and again and again.

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