The Clover Who Squealed, by Eric Peters

Just because something’s lawful doesn’t make it morally right, and just because something’s illegal doesn’t make it morally wrong. If you’ve grasped that concept, you’re intellectually more advanced than the “clover who squealed.” From Eric Peters on a guest post at

Late last week, it was revealed who squealed.

The Clover responsible for making it impossible for any of us to buy a diesel-powered Volkswagen henceforth – and a lot more – is Stuart Johnson, the former head of VW’s Engineering and Environmental Office in Auburn Hills, Michigan. He was outed in a book written about the VW “cheating” business by New York Times reporter Jack Ewing.

Johnson, of course, is about to get everything short of a ticker-tape parade. A bust of him will likely be cast and placed in the Hall of Mirrors – or whatever the equivalent is in the foyer of the EPA. He is already being lionized in the Usual Corners as a “hero” (that term, along with “community,” has worn out its welcome and ought to be etymologically euthanized).

You’d think he did something good. I suppose this depends on your perspective.

If you are a government bureaucrat then Johnson is your kind of guy. The sort who is pained by the idea of any action contrary to regulation or edict. Who feels guilty when – as here – a business attempts to get around a ridiculous edict or absurd regulation.

 Which are never perceived as ridiculous or absurd by people like Johnson because they come from the government, are “the law” and therefore must not merely obeyed but reverenced. Visualize the ritual triple curtsey before The Presence of the king. . . .
Such people are the new people in American business, popped out of their molds after 12 years in care of government molding centers, then sent – the smarter ones – for higher technical training. But never training in how to think conceptually, beyond the narrow range of their specialty, such as engineering. And then off to work either for the government or on its behalf in the increasingly not-private sector of the economy. Which has become – operationally speaking – a kind of adjunct or subsidiary operation of the government.

To continue reading: The Clover Who Squealed


2 responses to “The Clover Who Squealed, by Eric Peters

  1. And the fewer who grasp that concept, the closer we get to That which is not forbidden is compulsory.. If the poll you cited a few posts back is any indication, it doesn’t look like the number who do grasp it is getting any larger.


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