Home / General / The Case of Brendan Eich

The Case of Brendan Eich

Comments
/
/
/
47 Views

James Taranto believes that the briefly tenured CEO of Firefox has an unspecified right to continue to be a CEO, and that political donations should remain private:

But California’s disclosure law turns out to have been a grievous violation of Eich’s rights and the rights of others.

Prominent intarwebs hack Glenn Reynolds, whose interest in gay and lesbian rights begins and ends with opportunities to play various forms of poetic-justice-as-fairness with liberals, inevitably invokes fascism:

GLEICHSCHALTUNG! Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich forced to resign for supporting traditional marriage laws. To be clear, for holding, in 2009, the view of gay marriage that Barack Obama held, instead of the view that Dick Cheney held.

As someone who was publicly supporting gay marriage even before Dick Cheney, I find this degree of bullying and blacklisting repellent. I’m beginning to think that the only thing the left found wrong with the 1950s blacklists was that they were aimed at . . . the left.

Let’s try apply some actual thought to this question:

  • As an aside, Eich didn’t hold the “same view” of gay marriage that Barack Obama did in 2009.  Obama opposed Prop 8 at the time, and also supported constitutional efforts to have it overturned.  Dick Cheney, conversely, refused to oppose the George W. Bush-supported Federal Marriage Amendment, although he was willing to be open about his Miss America conservatism when it was no longer politically consequential.
  • The rather obvious difference between Eich resigning and the blacklist of the 50s is that the blacklist was generally directed at ordinary employees, not top-decision makers.  If an ordinary employee was fired for supporting Prop 8, I would actually be inclined to agree with Taranto and Reynolds.   But a CEO, or anyone else who publicly represents an organization and has discretion over employment decisions — that’s a different question.  A single past donation to an anti-LBGT cause is not necessarily disqualifying in itself, but it’s fair to ask questions about whether someone’s bias on these questions might affect their decisions or reflect badly on the company.
  • The fact that has was CEO is relevant for another reason as well: he wasn’t fired, he resigned.  Nobody was in the position to “demand”  that he do anything.   He decided that he didn’t want to say and defend his various odious reactionary political views as head of a progressive non-profit rather than make his commitment to equality clear.   This isn’t much of a “blacklist.”
  • I must have missed Reynolds, Taranto et al. foaming at the mouth over, say World Vision pledging to maintain a refusal to hire employees in same-sex relationships after facing pressure from evangelical groups far more intense than anything Mozilla faced.  Again, if you actually cared about outside pressure restricting the free speech rights of employees, this is a much more pressing concern.  But obviously Reynolds and Taranto don’t care in the slightest about the pressure faced by ordinary employees; they care about saying nyah-nyah to liberals.

…As runsinbackground (following up on ChrisTS) notes in comments about the specious comparison to the 50s blacklist: “in this retelling there’s no McCarthy, and no HUAC either, unless you want to count a popular free dating website.”  Another commenter notes this from Josh Marshall, which is indeed excellent on the crucial difference between a CEO and an ordinary employee.

 

FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Linkedin
  • Pinterest
  • wengler

    Don’t worry. In 20 years no one will have claimed to have been against gay marriage.

    • Warren Terra

      More than that, in twenty or thirty years we’ll be constantly bombarded with assertions that the Republicans were the defenders of Gay rights, based on some cherry-picked examples of good Republicans or alleged Republicans and bad Democrats.

      • Malaclypse

        Manju will use DW-Nominate to prove Republicans were always the party of gay rights.

      • Hogan

        Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia.

      • Reynolds is already on it! Republicans like Dick Cheney struggled bravely against the homophobic rule of pre-2012 Barack Obama and his Democrats.

    • manju

      I agree… confederate apologists pull shit like this all the time. Case in point:

      Warren Terra says:

      And could we please stop acting as if Robert Byrd was frozen in carbonite in the 1950s? Yup, he exploited and participated in a corrupt and evil social structure in his early rise to power. But in the last several decades of his life he must have spent aggregate days or weeks talking to interviewers about this part of his biography, and his regrets. You Conservatives all talk about him as if at his funeral his pallbearers were all wearing Klan robes.

      http://lawyersgunsmon.wpengine.com/2011/11/sexual-harassment-denialism/comment-page-1#comment-180081

      In case anyone thinks Warren’s narrative is anything but batshit ahistorical, here’s a quick debunking:

      1970 Voting Rights Act:

      Nay D Byrd, Robert WV

      https://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes/91-1970/s342

      • DrDick

        Onver again proving that 9th graders should not try to match wits with professional historians. Isn’t it past your bedtime? Tomorrow is a school day, after all.

        • Manju

          Southern white man (repeatedly) tries to whitewash racism that’s inconvenient to his ideology:

          “[Robert Byrd] voted for the 1968 Civil Rights Act and consistently voted for Civil Rights afterward. Reality is not your friend.”

          http://lawyersgunsmon.wpengine.com/2012/10/what-a-pathetic-operation-tucker-carlson-is-running/comment-page-1#comment-363897

          Gets falsified.

          Proceeds to (repeatedly) use racial tinged language against the the man who demasked his racist assertions.

          Boy, It’s Hard Out There for Confederate Apologists, indeed.

          • Keep fucking that chicken, Manju, someone will have their opinion changed by that one factoid that nobody ever remembers.

            • Manju

              Shorter “Get Chutney Love”…Voting Rights for Af Ams = one factoid that nobody ever remembers.

              No racism here. Keep moving.

              • Manju, what was the party of the noted politician who opined while celebrating the 100th birthday of a noted Dixiecrat who ran for President. that the country would’ve been better if said Dixiecrat had been elected in that election?

                Does the name Lee Atwater ring a bell?

                • Manju

                  Why do you ask?

                • Because I knew that you couldn’t answer my question honestly.

                • Manju

                  Because I knew that you couldn’t answer my question honestly.

                  You’ve asked me before and I’ve answered: Republican. Yes.

                  Since those are the correct answers, why do you ask again?

          • DrDick

            Dumbshit teenager once again demonstrates he has no clue what he is talking about. I have been fighting against racism longer than you have been alive. Maybe longer than your parents have. I am not whitewashing anything, you are the one distorting the record to deny that the GOP has been the party of racism since Nixon. That is why the once solidly Democratic South turned Republican.

            • Manju

              Dumbshit teenager

              racist euphemism for “boy”.

              I am not whitewashing anything

              “[Robert Byrd] voted for the 1968 Civil Rights Act and consistently voted for Civil Rights afterward. Reality is not your friend.” -DrDick

              I have been fighting against racism longer than you have been alive.

              Newt Gingrich fought racism too (he defeated a dixiecrat when he ran for congress. That doesn’t make “Welfare President” any less a dogwhistle.

              you are the one distorting the record to deny that the GOP has been the party of racism since Nixon.

              cites omitted

  • ChrisTS

    I think a more salient difference between the Hollywood blacklists and Eich’s case is that the blacklists were an industry response to ostensibly state pressure.

    Further, it’s worth pointing out that McCarthy gave 2 shits about evidence of anyone’s actually being a communist.

    • runsinbackground

      Not only that, but in this retelling there’s no McCarthy, and no HUAC either, unless you want to count a popular free dating website.

      • Alan in SF

        Wow, so Eich will never be able to work in the U.S. for the rest of his life? Damn we lefties are powerful. High five!

  • Aimai

    I don’t get it–the right wing has been rehabilitating McCarthy for years now. Its one of Ann Coulter’s favorite go-to gestures, or at least it was when she was still visible. I thought we all approved of McCarthy these days. Was Eich asked to “name names?” At least he actually did the thing of which he was accused.

    • I thought we all approved of McCarthy these days

      I assume that comparisons to McCarthy are made on the same principle that says that everything is as bad as slavery except slavery, which wasn’t that bad.

      • Aimai

        Hey, that works. “Everything is McCarthyism except actual McCarthyism-that was fair.”

        • Mike Schilling

          “What are you going to do, libtard, create a House Anti-Gay Activities Committee? That was such a great idea last time.”

          “You wrote last week that we need to bring HUAC back to fight terrorism.”

          “Umm, look, a UFO!”

        • James E. Powell

          Everything is McCarthyism except actual McCarthyism, which was a patriotic movement that saved America from communists and fellow-travelers who hated freedom almost as much as they hated Jesus.

  • Aimai

    All joking aside I wish the World Vision people had stepped up to the plate–and whatever gay mafia actually exists–and put out the following plea:

    Dear Friends, Neighbors, and Potential Future Members,

    After prayerfully coming to the conclusion that we want to be inclusive and allow all people of good faith and good will to help us in our work succoring the poor around the world we find ourselves being boycotted by our former supporters. Since we can’t get out of the helping people business, we find it necessary to find new supporters rather than dissolving our organization and ceasing to help the poor in order to minister full time to the bigotry of some Americans. If you are more interested in helping poor children survive than punishing gay people could you please toss us a few bucks and consider becoming a member of our organization? We are looking for a few good Christians, and we’ve decided to look harder.

    • MAJeff

      I’m sure Virgin Ben is outraged such a statement wasn’t forthcoming.

    • ThrottleJockey

      Clever statement. They should’ve asked these folks how many poor kids were they willing to starve in order to show the gay rights crowd what’s what.

      • MAJeff

        They should’ve asked these folks how many poor kids were they willing to starve in order to show the gay rights crowd what’s what.

        All of them.

    • ckc (not kc)

      World Vision Canada stepped “toward” the plate:

      Friends, we’ve been getting lots of questions about World Vision US’s hiring policy and I wanted to let you know that this does not affect World Vision Canada’s policies or actions.

      Canada’s legal environment is quite different from that of the United States. We comply with provincial laws on this matter which prohibit discrimination in employment. For example, as part of our hiring process, we do not ask questions about sexual orientation, marriage or related issues. However, when we hire, we are very clear about our values and our Christian identity. We explain how our Christian identity motivates and informs our work and how we work together here in Canada.

      While we have a code of conduct on ethical and legal issues, we don’t ask staff to sign a lifestyle code of conduct.

      We want our staff to be united around our mission of following Christ in serving the poor. When we hire staff, our Christian faith is clear. And when they join World Vision they are aligning with us as a Christian organization.

      This is what is most key for us: When it comes to working with the poor, World Vision serves children, families and communities, regardless of whether they are aligned with our values or not. Race, ethnicity, gender, religion or sexual orientation do not prevent us from serving the poorest of the poor.

      …a bit of tiptoeing, but better than nothing, I guess.

  • Eric k

    Josh Marshall has a long post on his site that sums up my feelings as well. CEO is different than employee. I have concerns about engineers, project mangers etc being fired fir unpopular political views that don’t affect their job performance. But the CEO is the public face of the organization, if they as a company favor marriage equality then the CEO needs to reflect that as well.

    • Aimai

      Job performance is an odd concept here, though. If you are setting goals for the company, representing it, and also hiring and firing people lower down then your Job includes how you handle all those duties. There are lots of personal, private, even non political preferences and traits that could make the “job performance” of a CEO an issue. Management is always going to be different and be held to a different standard–of dress, comportment, probity, good sense, etc..etc..etc… If you have a demonstrated inability to treat all your workers and customers fairly–whether because you are racist, bigoted, or opposed to their excercise of their civil right to marry–that’s going to be a problem for the company. And that would be as true of a CEO who had given money to prevent Christians from getting married.

    • ThrottleJockey

      I’m sorry I don’t buy that line of logic. I believe in tolerance. Even tolerating the intolerant. In that light all that really matters is discrimination. Absent actual discrimination from Eich firing/forcing resignations of people for their political donations is toxic. I’m with Andrew Sullivan on this.

      • Aimai

        I think thats the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. Truly a liberal is a person who won’t even take his own side in an argument. If a CEO becomes a lightning rod for anxiety and fear on the part of the workforce, if he becomes a symbol to the customer base of bigoted and retrograde positions on matters as important as who people get to marry, the board is well within its rights to ask for his resignation. People are asked to resign all the time. CEOs are simply not the new witch hunt and Eich is not Dreyfus.

      • Carolannie1949

        No one fired Eich, and the board of directors was free to accept his resignation since he was not being a good representative for Mozilla. Nothing to do with anything else you mentioned.

        • Col Bat Guano

          I think this is a critical point. He chose to resign. I’ve heard claims that the board must have “forced him out”, but that seems unlikely given the timeline. He could have tried to fight and, given the success rate of boycotts, probably would have won.

      • Joshua

        This whole “tolerance is about tolerating the intolerant” thing is a load of crap. It dumps everything back on the people fighting for justice and inclusion while letting the bigots espouse their crappy, retrograde views. Even though I am quite conflicted about this firing, I cannot accept that line of thinking.

        I’m not sure if Brandon Eich is a by-the-book bigot, but he certainly backed a bad-faith proposition that used a lot of scummy tactics and lies in order to win over the public. I think it is absolutely fair to criticize his judgment based on that.

        • KmCO

          This whole “tolerance is about tolerating the intolerant” thing is a load of crap. It dumps everything back on the people fighting for justice and inclusion while letting the bigots espouse their crappy, retrograde views.

          Yep. It’s almost as if that’s the intent

      • ChrisTS

        Not only did the remnants of the board not fire Eich (they could not, in fact), but they asked him to stay. He resigned.

        And, personally, I have had it up to here with ‘intolerance of intolerance is intolerance,’ or whatever that line is. Call every stage of it ‘intolerance,’ if you will. That simply means we need to think more carefully about whether some forms of intolerance are ok.

        • djw

          Not only did the remnants of the board not fire Eich (they could not, in fact), but they asked him to stay.

          Hadn’t heard this. Am curious if you have a source?

        • All sorts of intolerance are okay. I’m intolerant of the promotion of child porn, for example. I’m sure everyone here has a list of positions they are intolerant of. That’s not the same thing as saying those positions should be sanctioned by law, the way all* of us agree child porn should be.

          *I’m going to pretend that everyone here agrees on this issue. I’m going to sleep soon and I wish to do so happily.

          • Less well known is the paradox of tolerance: Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance.(ed) If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them. — In this formulation, I do not imply, for instance, that we should always suppress the utterance of intolerant philosophies; as long as we can counter them by rational argument and keep them in check by public opinion, suppression would certainly be unwise. But we should claim the right to suppress them if necessary even by force; for it may easily turn out that they are not prepared to meet us on the level of rational argument, but begin by denouncing all argument; they may forbid their followers to listen to rational argument, because it is deceptive, and teach them to answer arguments by the use of their fists or pistols. We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant. We should claim that any movement preaching intolerance places itself outside the law, and we should consider incitement to intolerance and persecution as criminal, in the same way as we should consider incitement to murder, or to kidnapping, or to the revival of the slave trade, as criminal.

            Karl Popper

            • N__B

              Bastard stole it from me.

      • Bruce Baugh

        Dissolving some employees’ marriages and telling them they’ll never be allowed to marry again, nor to exercise parental or adoption rights, strikes me as straightforwardly discriminatory as it gets.

        • MAJeff

          How dare you impugn them by pointing out what they want to do!

      • BigHank53

        Andrew Sullivan is a master of rhetorical goalpost-shifting, in order so that conservatives in general (and himself in particular) can place themselves under the merciless boot heel of The Left. Remember how people who opposed torture were fifth columnists bent on destroying America from within? Trust me, whenever you find yourself agreeing with him, sit down and write out his argument on paper to find the trick in it: regardless of his blind-pig ability to find the occasional acorn, he’s a reliable member of Team Evil.

        • BigHank53

          Correction: it was folks who weren’t willing to stamp all over the rights of Muslims, not the anti-torturers. Racial profiling was A-OK with Mr. Sullivan, because he’ll never be brown.

        • Anonymous

          Well said.

      • pseudalicious

        I believe in tolerance. Even tolerating the intolerant.

        And this is why I’m a big fan of the “justice,” rather than “equality” framework when it comes to securing rights. There are winners and losers in every political struggle. Homophobes gonna lose.

  • Ns

    It’s a good point that nobody fired him and he left voluntarily. But there was a lot of outrage from liberals, and I wonder why, exactly? It’s pretty clear that Mozilla wasn’t going to change its politicies regarding lgbt employees. I’m not going to cry for a big time CEO, but shouldn’t they get to have their own private political lives?

    • Aimai

      Its not at all clear that “Mozilla wasn’t going to change its policies regarding lgbt employees” In fact, given Hobby Lobby’s thin end of the wedge, it was pretty clear that from the point of view of the LGBTQ employees and customers Eich coming to power in the system might well be a grim herald of things to come. Its one thing, as people have pointed out, to work closely with someone who despises you and wants to keep you from getting married or your loved ones from having security–its quite another to work for that person.

      A person doesn’t have a “private political life”–a political life is, definitionally, public–its about trying to get the public to see things your way and to do things your way. If Eich didn’t really want to change society to make life harder for LGBT people he wouldn’t have given the money to Prop 8. And if he did really want to change society to make life harder for LGBT people then he was a bad choice for CEO and people who care about Mozilla, workers and customers, had a duty to say so.

      • Aaron B.

        I think there’s good reason to believe that Silicon Valley tech companies are uniquely susceptible to public perception on issues like this and that it wouldn’t have represented the “thin end of the wedge.” If actual mistreatment or a change in benefits policy came to light that is absolutely something that would generate a public outcry.

        I don’t think we need to appeal to “liberal fascism” to say that our attitude towards people with views we dislike should not necessarily be forcibly ousting them from institutions where progressives have some measure of control, at least in cases where that view is not likely to be directly relevant to their job. It’s not an instance of blacklisting or coercion, but I do think it goes too far in attempts to enforce conformity. I.e. The problem is epistemic closure, not McCarthyism.

        • Aimai

          He wasn’t “forcibly ousted.” CEO’s lose their jobs all the time–they serve at the pleasure of their boards. Nobody made them do anything.

          • Aaron B.

            Yeah, and Nixon could have retired whenever he wanted!

            • Aimai

              I don’t even know what that means. Was Eich about to be brought up on charges for breaking the law?

              • Aaron B.

                Putting someone in a situation where doing anything but resigning would cause serious damage to themselves and an institution they care can’t be said to be voluntary. It’s different than a firing but claiming it was freely chosen is pretty disingenuous.

                • Howin Wolfe

                  “The institution they care about” – so they should have let the institution suffer so the bigot could continue his tenure?

                • Scott Lemieux

                  it was freely chosen

                  What choices are “free” in the sense you’re using the term, which seems to imply “entirely devoid of external constraints?”

                • Aaron B.

                  No, I’m responding to Aimai’s specific nitpicking post above about how Eich’s resignation was voluntary and therefore totally kosher, or something. See the post above for my view and then get back to me.

              • Sharculese

                Aimai is not the one who is ‘nitpicking’ here.

        • junker

          So if I choose not to support a company for being anti-union, is that wrong of me? Is hurting company profits because I don’t like their policies forcing conformity? After all, a CEO might be fired if I organize a boycott and profits go down.

          Remember all those bus boycotts in the south? Why didn’t anyone tell them they were enforcing conformity!

          • Malaclypse

            I just wish MLK had realized that politics didn’t belong in the bus drivers’ workplace.

            • Lee Rudolph

              He DID realize that; he was, after all, a True Conservative. But the rat-bastard Trotskyites and outside agitators forced him to betray his beliefs!!!

          • Aaron B.

            Stop being wilfully stupid. Having anti-labor views is directly relevant to an executive’s job performance in a number of ways that supporting marriage discrimination is not.

            • junker

              Okay jackass, how about those who boycott chick fil am for their contributions to anti gay causes? And what about those civil rights boycotts?

            • You are apparently not gay-married if you think that’s a simple statement of fact.

              “Supporting marriage discrimination has nothing to do with job performance” is exactly as true as the job doesn’t involve gay people as workers, investors, volunteers or customers/end users.

      • Ns

        Couldn’t disagree more. Marriage equality was a live debate in this country, and there numerous people who argued the wrong side. Are they now to be barred forever from high positions? And don’t make a mistake in how this will dampen the political expression of regular employees going forward, now that its clear what the consequence of being wrong are.

        • Aimai

          Are the consequences of “being wrong” any different today than they were yesterday? Ordinary employees have been fired over having the wrong bumpersticker on the back of their car. People have been threatened by their employers over their votes in local elections and national. They have been threatened and lost their jobs over supporting Democratic candidates, over being gay, over getting married (for christ’s sake) after having a premarital sexual relationship People have very few protections against being fired–even at what is sometimes great personal cost to themselves–why should a CEO be protected?.

          • Ns

            So all the examples you give are bad, but suddenly they’re good if they impact the CEO? I would say that all employees who, when not representing the company, engage in political speech should expect to have that speech protected.

            • Manta

              “I would say that all employees who, when not representing the company, engage in political speech should expect to have that speech protected.”

              Well said.

              • Aimai

                Also: management are, in fact, pretty much “representing the company” at all times.

                • Ns

                  Even if by management you only mean to include c level officials, that’s a debatable statement. If you mean anybody is the management structure at all its crazy.

                • Aimai

                  People get fired all the time–for everything. You have yet to explain why you think that Eich exists in a platonic universe where CEOs never get asked to step down. The protections we would like to see in place for lower level workers are not at issue here. Eich had a ton of power in this situation and he chose to throw the job away by pissing off coworkers and customers. I simply fail to see what the outrage is about. People either produce or they get asked to leave. Pissing on workers and customers is really stupid.

                • Manta

                  “Management are, in fact, pretty much “representing the company” at all times.”

                  Even before being hired?

                • Hogan

                  There was a lapse in the board’s due diligence before they hired him. That doesn’t entitle him to lifetime tenure.

                • BigHank53

                  Even before being hired?

                  Just like everybody else. Try lying about your arrest record on a job application.

                  CEOs have responsibility above and beyond that of ordinary employees. Anyone who has supervisory power or hiring and firing responsibilities faces additional scrutiny as well. Dinesh d’Souza was famously canned for adultery.

                • DrDick

                  Even if by management you only mean to include c level officials

                  That is actually generally considered to be the case, at least if you embarrass the company in any way. More to the point, CEO is not a C-level executive. He is the public face of the company and is held to a much higher standard. He could probably have weathered this if he had not been appointed CEO (it actually would not likely have even become an issue in that case), but as CEO, his actions taint the whole company.

            • Aimai

              Yes, management are different from ordinary workers. For one thing: management has greater power over the lives of ordinary workers. For another thing the CEO’s opinion about prop 8 is an actual statement about how he feels about his co-workers. He is determined to treat gay and lesbian co-workers differently from heterosexual coworkers. Thats a problem for his coworkers and for his subordinates. This was not just “a political position” on something that was quite distant from the company’s concerns–like a position of drilling in Alaska or on high speed rail. He has explicitly taken a position against rights enjoyed by his own workers and customers.

              • Ns

                You can’t infer what you’re claiming from the bare fact he supported prop 8. All you can really say is that he supported prop 8. Did he ever say that Mozilla should fire its lgbt employees or not extend them benefits to cover their partners, in states that don’t recognize marriage equality? No. Quite the contrary actually.

                • Aimai

                  Yes, you can make a strong inference that someone who donates money to a political cause supports that cause until they explain that they have changed their mind.

                • MAJeff

                  Prop 8 was, by definition and law, treating gay citizens–and co-workers–differently than heterosexual ones. It really is that simple.

                  There is NO reason to donate to Prop 8 other than to treat gay folks differently than heterosexual ones. None.

            • Howin Wolfe

              You want a law that says you can’t fire a CEO if the board thinks it will hurt the company? Shareholders be damned? Okay, go lobby!!

        • Murc

          Marriage equality was a live debate in this country, and there numerous people who argued the wrong side. Are they now to be barred forever from high positions?

          Brendan Eich is in no way “barred” from occupying any position he wishes, from dog-catcher to President.

          It could be that people who aren’t awful will not deign to offer him these positions, which isn’t the same thing.

          • Ns

            Well of course there’s no legal restriction, if that’s what you mean. But no one is suggesting that–its that the outrage that led to his resignation is worrying. He didnt go speak at a rally or tweet or write an editorial in the news paper, and he did this well before becoming CEO. It’s just completely out of proportion to what he actually did.

            • Aimai

              Just because you want to pretend to be worried does not mean that “its worrying.” The man had a public political stance on a hot topic. People are responsible for how they behave in public. He was given many chances to explain himself to his coworkers and customers and he refused to temper his hostile stance so the company got rid of him. They couldn’t afford him. That’s pretty much a central tenet of capitalism. I fail to see why I should weep to see a CEO who was going to have the power to hire and fire…hired and fired.

            • Howin Wolfe

              Let him go be the CEE EEE OH of some other company that doesn’t care about its public face being that of a bigot. It’s the free market, after all.
              But if you are calling for pro-lgbtq people to back off their beliefs and principles, then you’ve got a thankless task, which I’m glad not to thank you for.
              If you’re making a “we don’t want to descent to their level” type argument, I think your head’s in the sand.

        • lawguy

          It seems to me that a lot of the arguments on the left about whether or not people should have tried to force Eich out boil down to “Do we want to do what is necessary to win? Or do we just want to be more moral than the other side?” I don’t mean to sound like Conan the Barbarian here, but he did have a point.

        • ChrisTS

          Regular employees’ expression has long been dampened.

        • pseudalicious

          Are they now to be barred forever from high positions?

          Yes.

          • pseudalicious

            P.S. In my dreams.

      • ThrottleJockey

        Shorter Aimai: You shouldn’t have to work for people you think might discriminate against you, maybe, one day, in the future.

        • Aimai

          But he is advocating discrimination right now–donating to prop 8 meant that he materially contributed to preventing gay people from getting married and threw the lives of co-workers who did into confusion. Absolutely I think people should feel safe in their jobs and not have to worry that management is going to fuck them over out of personal bigotry. Should everyone have quit en masse to avoid it? Or is it ok with you if people made their concerns known to management which unable to guarantee that Eich wouldn’t act on his animus, chose to ask him to resign.

          • ThrottleJockey

            I’ve worked for people who were rednecks, but I evaluated them on whether or not they actually discriminated against people. As long as Eich has been at Mozilla, if he discriminated against LGBT employees there should be several people accusing him of discrimination.

            Neither Obama nor either Clinton supported gay marriage until recently. Did anyone suggest that they would be discriminating against LGBT people? For a lot of people, marriage is a fundamentally religious concept, getting them to see it as also a civic institution has taken an enormous amount of time. In a sense, I may as well as penalize them for their religious beliefs.

            • DrDick

              The point is that Eich had already discriminated against LGBT people. He did that when he donated to the Prop 8 campaign. It is one thing to work for a man who is a redneck, it is something else to work for the man who is Grand Klaxon of the local KKK.

        • Hogan

          Shorter TJ: CEOs should get a special dispensation from the conditions under which their employees work.

          • ThrottleJockey

            No, not this ever. Since liberals tend to be in the minority in most offices, saying people shouldn’t be forced out because of their politics is a form of self protection. I don’t support “right-to-work” bills or “at will” employment. Politics just don’t belong in the workplace.

            • Aimai

              But politics is in the workplace. Liberals get fired for this stuff all the time. Literally nothing protects people from being fired for politics so why kick up a fuss about this one incident. When did CEO’s become the new big eyed super cute megafauna of the political world?

              • Lee Rudolph

                The thing about the old kind of megafauna is, they were pretty well guaranteed to have thick skins. The new kind? Not so much.

              • KmCO

                When did CEO’s become the new big eyed super cute megafauna of the political world?

                I want to marry this sentence. That is all.

                • DrDick

                  I’ll fight you for it!

              • ThrottleJockey

                That’s why I oppose it, Aimai–because it happens to liberals all the time. Its always wrong. And always will be. My father worked for the city when the mayor, had a dispute with my aunt, a county commissioner. So he demoted my father in response. I was about 10, and that’s when I learned that politics don’t belong in the workplace. Dad wasn’t even in a policy/political position; he managed the city’s communications network. Lost about 15% of his salary overnight. No red bike that Christmas.

                • Joshua

                  That sounds like something a union could have helped with. Just sayin’.

                • Aimai

                  For fuck’s sake my great uncle was a lawyer for the blacklisted under McCarthy–you are not telling anyone anything they don’t know. But no actual workers were harmed by the resignation of Eich. He had a lot of power in the situation which he chose not to exercise. Someone you know being fired purely because they were of a different politicl party from their boss is not in Eich’s situation. He wasn’t fired for being a Republican. He wasn’t even fired for being a conservative. He resigned because he actively brought disrepute to Mozilla by his past actions and present associations. People fall on their sword all the time in business–the alternative to that is to assert that the CEO is more important than the company itself and that simply protects rip off artists. Nothing in this case has anything to do with your family’s situation. Again: a union would have helped.

                • Ronan

                  I agree.

                • Ronan

                  above to TJ

                • Manta

                  “Politics don’t belong in the workplace”
                  very well said.

                • KmCO

                  “Politics don’t belong in the workplace.”

                  Politics are everywhere. The only politics-free spaces that exist also happen to be human-free.

                • Malaclypse

                  “Politics don’t belong in the workplace”

                  This always boils down to “My views are just common-sense, yours are political.” Yes, if gays, and black people, and (insert non-white-male perspective here) would just keep in their place, everything would be fine. For certain awful values of “fine.”

            • Manta

              “liberals tend to be in the minority in most offices”

              I suppose that’s your experience: but from reading comments I would infer the opposite is true, and all these people cheering for dismissals based on political opinions are quite safe in the knowledge it will never happen to them, since they have the right political opinions.
              (well, that’s true for Scott, safe in the protection afforded by university policies. I wonder what he would write if he did not have such protections)

              • Hogan

                but from reading comments I would infer the opposite is true, and all these people cheering for dismissals based on political opinions are quite safe in the knowledge it will never happen to them, since they have the right political opinions.

                Not from reading the comments so much as an irresistible compulsion to sneer at the commenters, since you have no fucking clue where most of them work. But by all means, carry on posing as the valiant truthteller; I infer from your comments that your miserable little life has very few other satisfactions.

                • Manta

                  Come on, Hogan, you should be able to retain a little bit of dignity.
                  I suggest that you go out for a walk, and come back in a few hours.

                • Col Bat Guano

                  Perhaps you shouldn’t smugly assume that everyone is working in a liberal safe haven based on comments in a blog post. Why don’t you talk a walk… and don’t bother to come back.

                • Sharculese

                  Announcing that he’s more high minded than us is pretty much the only thing Manta knows how to do.

                  The adorable part is that he thinks he’s being clever.

              • Malaclypse

                all these people cheering for dismissals based on political opinions are quite safe in the knowledge it will never happen to them, since they have the right political opinions.

                I’m an openly socialist accountant. You think I’m comfortably in the majority?

                • ThrottleJockey

                  Wow, that’s got to be rough. Your nym should be ‘Masochist’!

                • DrDick

                  And I am an openly socialist professor in a red state.

              • Manta

                I see the tags got eaten: let me retry

                “I suppose that’s your experience: [sarcasm] but from reading comments I would infer the opposite is true, and all these people cheering for dismissals based on political opinions are quite safe in the knowledge it will never happen to them, since they have the right political opinions.[/sarcasm]”

                Better?

              • (well, that’s true for Scott, safe in the protection afforded by university policies. I wonder what he would write if he did not have such protections)

                Scott has tenure? News to me. Tenure track job offers few, if any speech protections. You won’t be fired for being unpopular, but you can certainly damage your chance of getting tenure.

              • DrDick

                WE are not supporting his resignation because of his political beliefs. We are supporting it because of his actions to deny other people their basic civil and human rights. I realize you are incapable of understanding the distinction because it does not apply to you, but do feel free to fuck off an die.

            • Hogan

              If you want to get rid of at-will employment, pack a lunch, because you’ve got a very long and very steep climb in front of you. In the meantime, its inconveniences shouldn’t stop at the door to the C-suite. In fact, that’s the last place they should stop. Brendan Eich will be fine.

            • witless chum

              I’m sure if liberals refrain than conservatives totally will. As a practical argument, that doesn’t work and, absent some kind of legislation, there’s no reason to unilaterally disarm.

              Just like Phil Robertson, part of the dude’s job is being liked by enough of America. He’s failing at that job and choose to resign.

              • ThrottleJockey

                Yeah, chum, its not about “if liberals refrain conservatives will to”…Not to me at least; its about doing the right thing. You know the Golden Rule and all, do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

                • KmCO

                  Not to me at least; its about doing the right thing. You know the Golden Rule and all, do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

                  Great, but see here’s the thing: not everyone abides by that principle. I would say that a great many social conservatives do not believe in the Golden Rule when it comes to “the other.”

                • Aimai

                  Again, this is completely besides the point. What you, TJ, are willing to tolerate is not relevant here. And I daresay that it not even true. You just don’t have a dog in this hunt. But if you were working for a company and they choose a staunch member of the KKK to run it, and customers said they wouldn’t work with him and would switch to other suppliers, then you absolutely would reconsider the hiring of the new CEO. Its not even mean or hurtful. Its just business.

                • Aaron B.

                  It’s obviously possible to imagine cases where a person’s political views are beyond the pale and their hiring would just be a liability to the company but supporting Prop 8 should not be one of those cases unless we want to cut ourselves off from 52% of California ca. 2008. I agree that it’s not a matter of coercion or McCarthyism but it sure as hell is no way to live in a pluralistic society.

                • Malaclypse

                  unless we want to cut ourselves off from 52% of California ca. 2008.

                  52% made the active decision to donate to and help organize the cause? Who knew!

                • MAJeff

                  unless we want to cut ourselves off from 52% of California ca. 2008.

                  If one of those people is my boss and I’m aware…I’m looking for a new job immediately because i cannot trust that person to treat me fairly.

                • KmCO

                  Prop 8 should not be one of those cases unless we want to cut ourselves off from 52% of California ca. 2008.

                  Guess what? In 2008 52% of Californians demonstrably behaved as bigots. I am more than happy to “cut myself off” from such people.

                • Lee Rudolph

                  supporting Prop 8 should not be one of those cases unless we want to cut ourselves off from 52% of California ca. 2008.

                  It may not be relevant to your argument (though I think it is; but then again, I’d be happy to cut myself off from 52% of California ca. 2008), but it seems to me that “supporting Prop 8” in the sense of giving money (albeit a tiny amount, given his economic situation) to actively promote the ad campaign for it, and “supporting Prop 8” in the sense of casting a vote for it—which is what I believe you must mean by “52% of California”—are two very different kinds of “support”; and it further seems to me that the former is much more culpable. What do you think?

                • Aaron B.

                  52% made the active decision to donate to and help organize the cause? Who knew!

                  This is an extremely important distinction that contributes meaningfully to the point I am making. /sarcasm

                • ThrottleJockey

                  Actually, Aimai, the Golden Rule for me comes before anything else. And having it any other way is hypocritical. Choices have costs. Doing the right thing can be costly; it doesn’t make it any less right. So, yeah, Mozilla should’ve stood up to its detractors the same way WorldVision should’ve stood up against their’s.

                • Malaclypse

                  If you think the Golden Rule means you need to protect bigotry, we have different understandings of the Rule.

                • ThrottleJockey

                  Lee–Lemieux tries that trick–differentiating donating money from voting–but its thin gruel. Its a distinction but not much difference. The people who voted for Prop 8 were lambasted by the LGBT community as bigots. And rightly so in my estimation. MAJeff points that out above in saying that he wouldn’t work for such a person.

                  In a pluralistic society, we can’t fire people for their political views, just for discrimination.

                • Aaron B.

                  it seems to me that “supporting Prop 8″ in the sense of giving money (albeit a tiny amount, given his economic situation) to actively promote the ad campaign for it, and “supporting Prop 8″ in the sense of casting a vote for it—which is what I believe you must mean by “52% of California”—are two very different kinds of “support”; and it further seems to me that the former is much more culpable. What do you think?

                  I can see why you might say that. Certainly I hold the Mormon church more responsible for Prop 8 passing than Joe Sacramento. But I don’t think the fact that someone is an active rather than merely a tacit supporter of a discriminatory policy is the important distinction here. Both the active and the tacit supporter still have the unpleasant view, the active supporter just has the courage of their convictions.

                  In either case, though, I don’t think it reaches the level where we should try to bar that person from any given job, absent evidence of personal animus that would hurt their ability to do their job or treat their employees fairly.

                • ThrottleJockey

                  The Golden Rule, Mal, is that I don’t want to be fired for my political views, ergo I can’t fire others for their political views. Anything else is simply hypocritical.

                • Hogan

                  unless we want to cut ourselves off from 52% of California ca. 2008.

                  where “cut ourselves off from” means “not hire as CEO for a private company one of whose main assets is a reputation for inclusiveness.” Oh the humanity.

                • Tristan

                  the Golden Rule for me comes before anything else

                  This is comically easy to disprove with the most cursory perusal of discussions you’ve participated in about other topics on this very site.

        • DrDick

          How would you feel if your company hired the head of the KKK as their CEO? You don’t know he would discriminate against you.

    • Hanspeter

      One of Eich’s responses in his defense was that since Firefox was used in Indonesia, where LGBT equality isn’t common, and Firefox needed worldwide support to succeed, therefore he was the right person for the position. Shovel, meet hole.

      Eich is still free to have his positions (no re-education camp for him), but his actions (not just ideas) don’t have to be consequence free.

      • Aaron B.

        Yes, but of course no one’s trying to help him “avoid consequences” of his actions. We’re claiming that these “consequences” are inappropriate and set a bad precedent.

        • Howin Wolfe

          So this is some sort of legal system, this “precedent”? I thought it was a business board making a decision, not some stare decisis monster.

  • These morons are just astounded that someone could be disciplined, or fired, or have to resign for something stupid, ignorant, bigoted, and wrong, that they said or wrote!

    The pundit class, on TV, radio, on Op-ed pages, and certainly on the Reich-Wing intertubes, is never, EVER, held accountable or responsible for anything!!!!!

    How could someone else?
    Like, a guy who’d just taken a step closer to being a real Galtian Overlord, and a “Job Creator!!!”
    ALL. GONE.

    The assorted Conservative pundits never face any consequences.*
    SO. THEY. JUST. DON’T. GET. WHY. SOMEONE. WHO. AGREES. WITH. THEM. HAS. TO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    *Rule does NOT apply for Liberals or Democrats!

    • Mike Schilling

      It is a form of projection, isn’t it? If you could be fired for, say, an unhealthy obsession with a young woman’s pregnancy, Sully would be toast.

      • Aimai

        bwhahahah.

  • somethingblue

    For the record, dude’s first name is “Brendan.”

  • junker

    No love for Andrew “I’m for gay rights but not if I can bash some liberals” Sullivan?

    • Craigo

      Andrew Sullivan is pro-Sully, not pro-gay. Any bigotry that doesn’t affect him personally is perfectly fine by him.

  • Hanspeter

    Eich also donated to Buchanan and Ron Paul. Apparently very good programmer (although any one that has actually tried to work with JS might disagree), but his strategic decision making skills (as a CEO would need) should be questioned (apart from CEO being the face of a company).

    • parsimon

      Thanks for pointing out the donations to Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul. We’re apparently still at a point in our society at which anti-gay sentiments might be considered forgivable, but support of those two does take it up a notch.

      • MAJeff

        We’re apparently still at a point in our society at which anti-gay sentiments might be considered forgivable

        This will always be the case.

    • Vance Maverick

      I have no love for JS, but to have invented and established a browser scripting language at that time, when we were only starting to figure out we needed one, was good work. On a larger intellectual scale, compare COBOL — maybe horrible in retrospect, by standards of 15+ years later, but to invent and establish a language for non-technical people to use computers was a huge step. So Eich’s achievement was maybe not on the level of Grace Murray Hopper’s, but pretty strong.

      On the political side, he was wrong, and I’m glad he was pushed out.

      • Too be fair to him, he had 8 days (or something similar) to do it. Javascript picked up a lot of somewhat outre language features (prototype based instead of class bases is the canonical example).

        In a lot of ways, Javascript is pretty typical for a dynamically typed, “interpreted” scripting language esp. of that era (cf, Python, Perl, or for goodness sake, TCL). Now, I would have been superhappier if they had just picked up Python, but many of the quirks are hardly indicative of horribleness.

        Indeed, I’d say more that there’s too much cleverness.

  • DrDick

    Let’s also be very clear about why Eich was forced out. The publicity about his activities was hurting the brand. It was a purely business decision by Mozilla that they did not want to be identified with Pop 8. Companies generally expect a certain degree of discretion on the part of their executives.

    • Craigo

      Not only that, but the app developers that Mozilla depend upon were very vocal about taking their talents to another browser. The guy was kneecapping his own company.

      • ChrisTS

        Really, the board kneecapped their own company.

        Everyone at Mozilla knew of this guy’s support for Buchanan as well as for Robertson, etc. None of the rank and file wanted him to be CEO. No one with any dealings with Mozilla wanted him.

        The 3 remaining members of the board just screwed this up royally. Mozilla people put up with Eich as one of their ranks; they lost it when he became the face of their – very beloved – company.

        • Craigo

          Yes, and it’s a shame that the only three board members who had any sense are the ones that are gone. It doesn’t bode well for Mozilla that the remaining numbskulls are going to be driving yet another long, drawn-out search.

    • ThrottleJockey

      It was a “purely business decision”? And you’re ok with purely business decisions today?

      White merchants in the South used to say, “Its not that I don’t like black people, its that my customers don’t like black people, and its a purely business decision that I not hire them.”

      • Aimai

        Yes, its purely a business decision. And when Brendan Eich leads a civil rights battle lasting 400 years to get his right to deny other people the right to marry we can talk about how this is just like civil rights. I can assure you that if the shoe were on the other foot Brendan Eich would not be leading the charge for a gay CEO who was married.

        • ThrottleJockey

          But it is, Aimai. You’re promoting mere tribalism.

          You’re invoking “purely business decisions” when on every other topic you complain about “purely business decisions”. That’s entirely hypocritical, and that’s the difference between tribalism and liberalism.

          You’ve written that you approach every issue by looking at how the powerless fare. But when the powerless become the powerful, it doesn’t mean that they get to employ the tactics that their oppressors used. That’s equally wrong.

          • Vance Maverick

            Response in two tacks:

            (1) How did the powerless fare in this case? I think they were unharmed.

            (2) What powerful formerly powerless people used bad tactics? Be a little concrete. Also specify why we should care. Brendan Eich is doing fine.

          • Brad Nailer

            First of all, in our society the powerless rarely become the powerful. Life doesn’t usually work that way.

            That being said, the fact that I could be canned from my big-box-store job for wearing a “Free Mumia” t-shirt might be just as wrong as Brandon Eich being forced to resign for his retrograde political views. Both of these actions might be wrong from a free-expression standpoint, but business decisions being what they are, if management thinks you’re harming the brand by expressing yourself at the workplace, then, well, such is life in the world of at-will employment. (Though I do have to wonder what the terms of Mr. Eich’s contract were; certainly he wasn’t hired “at will” like you or me.) The powerful/powerless dichotomy becomes clear here because Brandon Eich has millions in the bank to fall back on while he does his job search–or while people search for him–while I have to suck it up, draw unemployment and hope something turns up before I can’t pay the rent anymore.

            So, yeah, at-will employment sucks for everybody, CEOs included (quotations around “at-will” for them). But it sucks a lot more for people on the bottom.

            • I think TJs point is a reverse Niemohler: first they came for the CEO…

      • DN

        TJ thinks losing a hater is just like apartheid. Work that argument, silly boy.
        DN

      • Apartheid and jim crow require state action. They are not “purely business” and we attacked them through civil rights legislation that made a distinction between certain kinds of businesses and others.

        But please tell me what class of people eich belongs to who are being discriminated against. ? Not being ceo is not the same as never being hired. You might just as well argue that he refused to fulfill the functions of his job by refusing to make the customers happy because of his bigotry. He is more like a fry cook who refused to serve some customers and was asked to do better but refused than he is a lunch counter protester.

  • MAJeff

    I can’t recall who said it recently (maybe Joe Jervis at Joe My God), but none of the gay groups were pushing for his firing. OKCupid hardly counts as a gay social movement organization. The whole “gays are the real bullies” is utter bullshit, which is, of course, why Sullivan is pushing it; he’s never met anyone whose anti-gay bigotry he won’t excuse. I’m not sure why Bruni is pushing it, other than the fact he’s always been a shitty thinker.

    • Aimai

      You had me at Sullivan and Bruni. Two horrible people whose desire to suck up to powerful men is greater than their desire to be logical, reasonable, or truthful. Sullivan is a cringing, authoritarian follower who only accidentally is gay and who does not identify with the underdog or the minority for anything more than purely transient and self interested reasons. He’s always on the side of power (except once, in re torture).

      • ThrottleJockey

        “who only accidentally is gay”???

        What does that even mean???

        • Aimai

          I mean that if Sullivan weren’t gay he would never, ever, side with gay people in any political or cultural battle. Just as he doesn’t ever side with women or with non whites. If it doesn’t affect him personally, he could give a fuck. And even when it comes to issues that affect the gay community as a whole he will always strive to give his opinion a little extra something which, he thinks, makes non gay white male power figures say “Oh, Andrew’s ok, he’s not one of them.

          • ThrottleJockey

            That’s an essentialist notion…There was strain of this thinking on bspencer’s thread a few weeks back about “faux lesbians” or something that privileged one type of lesbianism as “authentic” and another as “inauthentic”. I think that’s incredibly problematic because you’re trying to characterize something that’s deeply personal…something that you can’t actually know.

            Beyond that it might come across poorly. Its ok for me to call Clarence Thomas an Uncle Tom because I’m black. If a white person calls Clarence Thomas an Uncle Tom, its a whole other ball of wax.

            • Lee Rudolph

              Authentic lesbians wear pocket protectors and carry sliderules on their belts!

              That’s why they’re called “slipstick lesbians”.

              • Mike Schilling

                That’s awful. And I am going to steal it.

              • ChrisTS

                Uhoh. My daughter is not an authentic lesbian. I don’t know how to break this to her.

            • Aimai

              I’m not criticizing his type of gayness–I’m saying that he does not express solidarity with anyone, certainly not with gay people, if it doesn’t suit him. And if you attend to when it does suit him its only when its vital to his own needs/issues or when it doesn’t piss off the big money. The guy is a lickspittle and a lackey at heart.

          • MAJeff

            I always too it as: He’s a Thatcherite who would have supported Section 28 if he weren’t gay, and would still take the pill to cure it if it’d get him better with conservatives.

          • Joshua

            Sullivan is a contrarian hack and has been for a while. Doesn’t he still support the fundamental argument of The Bell Curve?

            • herr doktor bimler

              That’s not contrarianism, that’s simply mendacity in the cause of white supremacism.

              • MAJeff

                But, “Brothers welcome….”

              • Aimai

                Mendacity in the service… Perfect.

            • Matt T. in New Orleans

              Still does from time to time, actually.

      • ChrisTS

        I think they are not the same creature.

        Bruni is not very bright; certainly, he is intellectually incurious. That piece in the Times suggested he had not even bothered to find out any facts of the case. And, more than an authoritarian toady, he seems to me to be a ‘let’s make nice, everyone’ guy. So, more of a wimp than a toady.

        Sullivan is an authoritarian toady and is quite intelligent enough to do better.

    • ThrottleJockey

      Its commendable, honestly, that this hasn’t come from the gay rights groups. There was a case a year or two ago where an executive at Gallaudet U signed a petition against gay marriage in Maryland and a number of groups tried to force her resignation. The university placed her on leave and looked to be trying to fire her but ultimately her lawyer kept her from being terminated. Notably, the major pro-LGBT organizations in the state came to her defense, as did the Governor who also supported gay marriage.

      • Manta

        Nice! Do you have a link with the story?

        • ChrisTS

          I believe this was their ‘Diversity Director.’

          Play with that as you will.

        • ThrottleJockey

          Sure.

          Another link

          Dr. Angela McCaskill was first asked to go on leave after a faculty member noticed her name on the petition. McCaskill had signed it at church following her preacher’s sermon against gay marriage.

          During a press conference Tuesday, McCaskill, who is deaf, told reporters through sign language that she would like to return to her position. She also criticized the university for its actions.

          “I am dismayed that Gallaudet University is still a university of intolerance, a university that manages by intimidation, a university that allows bullying among faculty staff and students,” she said. “No one has the right to decide what my signature meant.”

          But its true that as a matter of law you can be fired for your political beliefs.

          • I found and continue to find that case very interesting. However,

            “No one has the right to decide what my signature meant.”

            Is clearly wrong. If you sign a petition, at the very least, you endorse the petition. If you donate in support of Prop 8, you support Prop 8. I don’t particularly care why you did it. And supporting prop 8 is an act of anti-gay bigotry. I’m sorry if a supporter didn’t think that that was it was, but they don’t have the right to redefine their actions.

      • Aimai

        Incredible. Apparently no gay people, students or faculty, at the University could be threatened by having an out and out bigot be in charge of their education or their jobs.

        • MAJeff

          Yup, there would be a very strong feeling that this would be an office to work around, the very office we’d supposed to be working with.

        • ThrottleJockey

          Huh? Out and out bigot? Apparently everyone loved her until 2 professors searched online records to find out if anyone at the school had signed the petition. Which is to say no one knew her views on gay marriage or felt like she was discriminating against them. Hell, I had a redneck teacher in school who was great to me. Gave me As, wrote me terrific recommendations, game me many a ride home. Literally my favorite teacher. And I never knew he was a redneck…Until I started dating his daughter ;-) Judge people by what they do, not what you think they maybe, might do.

          There are black people who don’t think they should have to work for Jewish people because they think Jewish people discriminate against blacks. I tell them to stop fearing the worst.

          • KmCO

            This woman might be lovely executive, but if she signed a petition explicitly in disfavor of gay marriage, then on that topic the bigot label applies.

            • ThrottleJockey

              There are people who view marriage as a religious institution, not a civic institution. There are people who believe that homosexuality is a sin even as they believe that pre-marital sex or extra-marital sex is a sin. As people come to see marriage as also a civic institution they’re coming around, though.

              • There are people who view marriage as a religious institution, not a civic institution.

                Dude, this isn’t going to work even a little bit. We’re not talking about debates inside a church. We’re talking about changing state law and state constitutions. These people are anti-gay bigots and trying to enforce their religion via state power!

                (And really, there’s no other way to view it. There has never been a law proposed requiring any church to perform or recognize gay marriages. The battle is ONLY on the civil side. You don’t get to enforce your religiously motivated bigotry on the rest of us! (“You” as in “one”, not as in your personally.)

                • MAJeff

                  but, but, but…anti-queer bigots always deserve the benefit of the doubt when determining if they’re bigots. Animus by another (or religious) name isn’t actually animus!

                • sharculese

                  Yeah, TJ seems to have entered some sort of weird zone where giving money to anti-gay causes isn’t an affirmative act, but anything that happens in response to it is.

                  I don’t understand it and quite frankly, I think it sounds made up.

                • It’s really weird to appeal to “it’s their religion” as if that would eliminate the possibility of bigotry. That’s clearly nonsense. Most religions have all sorts of bigotry embedded in them including, as a prominent example, anti-non-believers bigotry. (And it’s often not enough to suffer for an eternity after death…they should get to beat you up *now*, too!)

                  That their bigotry is religious offers them some extra first amendment protections. But, as I said, not only does claiming religious motivation not shield one from being a bigot, it makes all the prop 8 and other similar laws and efforts straight up attempts at state enforcement of (widely shared) religious precepts which obvious infringe on all sorts of people’s explicit religious beliefs.

                  Seriously, TJ, I hope you recognize that you’ve slid into an intellectually tenuous position.

                • sharculese

                  Well, TJ has made it clear in the past that he feels most things, if identified as an article of faith, are beyond criticism or suspicion.I don’t understand or agree with it, but I know to expect it.

                  What I don’t get is the leap from that to saying that giving money to a malicious smear campaign against gay people because some advocates (although as far as I know, not Eich) claimed to be motivated by faith, is somehow beyond question or reproach. That makes absolutely no sense.

                • Well, TJ has made it clear in the past that he feels most things, if identified as an article of faith, are beyond criticism or suspicion.I don’t understand or agree with it, but I know to expect it.

                  Well, that explains why he thinks (wrongly) that it’s a defence against being a bigot, but not why he thinks it means that it’s ok to impose your religious belief on other people with the support of the state in the form of material loss, denial of access when sick, etc. etc. etc.

              • DrDick

                You do realize those same people used those same arguments against interracial marriage during my lifetime, don’t you? No. They get no slack or leeway. If you try to deny anyone their basic civil rights I want no part of you.

      • ChrisTS

        There is no “THE” Gay Rights Group.

        • ThrottleJockey

          I didn’t say “THE Gay Rights Group”. I said “the gay rights groups”. The major gay rights groups haven’t been calling for people’s heads in cases over signing petitions and donating money. Its mostly come from individuals and small groups, a founder of OKCupid and some professors/students at Gallaudet.

  • Rob

    Not understanding the difference between firing and resigning again brings to the front that conservatives do not understand consent.

    • Bruce Vail

      No, when you are the CEO of wealthy corporation the difference between resigning and being fired can get a little complicated.

      I don’t have any insider info about Mozilla, but by all outward appearances Eich’s ‘resignation’ was, in fact, a dismissal. So, if you can accept that, then Eich was indeed fired for having inconvenient political views.

      • Craigo

        So, if you can accept that, then Eich was indeed fired for having inconvenient political views.

        That misses the point. He was fired because his views offended the directors, employees, developers, and consumers of Mozilla. Eich was hurting his company, and he had to go. It was pure business.

        • Manta

          He DID specify “inconvenient”.

      • Tristan

        The fact that ‘resigned’ is a polite euphemism for ‘dismissed’ in cases like CEOs is part of why it’s very different from what we generally think of as being ‘fired’. Any CEO in such a position can dig his heels in and force his employer to truly oust him. The reason this very, very rarely happens is that ‘resigning’ generally comes with a pretty sweet financial kiss off. I personally have never been fortunate enough to leave a job under such ‘complicated’ circumstances, but I’d certainly would have liked to. Given this, it remains quite pertinent to point it out as an example of the absurdity of the right-wing howls of unfairness over the matter, especially given the general attitude towards employees for whom the difference between ‘fired’ and ‘resigned’ is quite clear, and often involves no additional compensation either way.

  • Shakezula

    The free market is only supposed to control the lives of the little people!

  • Manta

    I thought it was illegal to fire somebody (or force him out) because of his political opinions.

    Can somebody clarify it to me?

    • MAJeff

      No one was fired.

      • Manta

        From what I’ve read, I think “forced out” is a good description of what happened.

        • Shakezula

          that’s very sad.

        • KmCO

          Then you might want to strengthen your reading comprehension.

          • Manta

            I think it’s quite good, but thanks for the concern.

        • ChrisTS

          JEEZUS: the 3 remaining board members asked him to stay.

          Unless, of course, everyone involved is lying.

          • Tristan

            Unless, of course, everyone involved is lying.

            The real truth is he hasn’t actually even resigned, nor did he ever give money to prop 8, nor was he ever CEO of Mozilla, nor is ‘Eich’ even his real name, the whole thing is an unprecedented disinformation campaign orchestrated by The Gays for shadowy, yet paradoxically garishly flamboyant, Gay Reasons.

    • Malaclypse

      I thought it was illegal to fire somebody (or force him out) because of his political opinions.

      No, in America, you absolutely can be legally fired for your politics. “Employee at will” means you can be fired for any reason, or for no reason.

      Because Freedom!

      • Manta
        • Aimai

          Are you not a US citizen, Manta? Are you just making stuff up when you post here? Because we live in an at will country. And the people who want to make the surest sure that employees have no power over their employer? Those are, generally speaking, all on the far right side of the aisle. Anti bullying statutes? They are against them. Worker’s rights of all kind? They are against them. Family leave? Against it. Religious freedom for non christian groups? Against it. Atheist freedom from religious encroachment on the public sphere? Strongly against it.

    • Hogan

      I thought it was illegal to fire somebody (or force him out) because of his political opinions.

      What made you think that?

    • Craigo

      Yes, and according to subsection (c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act, all employees are to receive at least one pony per year (or a pony’s cash equivalent).

    • Scott Lemieux

      I thought it was illegal to fire somebody (or force him out) because of his political opinions.

      You thought wrong, at least as far as federal law is concerned.

      • Manta

        Thanks.

        Do you think the lack of such protections is a good thing?

        • Scott Lemieux

          No, but it’s hard to imagine any civil rights law protecting the job of a CEO whose political actions were bad for the company.

          • Manta

            Yes, you are probably right on this.

            Also because instead of firing him, they can “resign” him, or make him understand that he needs more time with his family, etc.

            • Hogan

              Poor CEOs. Poor CEOs.

  • Pingback: Further thoughts on Eich’s resignation - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money()

  • Joshua

    The weird thing about this story is that three of the Mozilla board of directors resigned after he was hired. Mozilla, though, only has six board of directors. Obviously I am not familiar with the inner workings of Mozilla board politics, but I find it hard to believe that three board members just steamrolled the other three like so. They knew this was coming, right? Why was he hired in the first place?

    • junker

      Obviously we should also question whether those protest resignations infringed on his right to speech by making it more likely that he would need to resign. /sarcasm

    • Kurzleg

      I had heard that three resigned but didn’t know there were only six on the board. That is strange. I don’t know much about the rules governing boards of directors, so is it possible that you need a majority to reject a candidate but not to hire one?

  • they care about saying nyah-nyah to liberals

    For many of them that’s the only thing that gets them out of bed in the morning.

  • Pingback: Peak Eich | Bark Bark Woof Woof()

  • Pingback: [BLOG] Some Monday links | A Bit More Detail()

  • Pingback: Donald Sterling: Same As He Ever Was - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money()

  • Pingback: Donald Sterling, The Most Influential "Democrat" On Civil Rights Since Robert Byrd - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money()

  • Pingback: Clearly, This Is My Careerism Talking - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money()

  • Pingback: Gleichschaltung | David's Commonplace Book()

  • Among the activities can be an opportunity for guests to create a vibrant poster that will be
    displayed in the 2014 Gay Games in August to encourage positivity and inclusivity
    on the list of athletes and audiences. While the primary i –
    Phone application reviews discussed the potential from the device, showcasing simple programs for flashlights, currency
    conversion, tip calculators, and note taking, the latest critiques may
    include ideas of a great deal more depth. Not solo games
    to do by yourself, but it really is you against your buddies.

    Some in the mature games that you can use are very daring.

It is main inner container footer text