Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Can we Trust Joe Biden? Plagiarism and Moral Character: A New Engage Podcast

Last week, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper had to face down a peculiar political scandal. It seemed that he had been caught plagiarising a speech from Australian Prime Minister John Howard. You can see Harper's notorious speech next to the original here.

In an article for the website Inside Higher Ed, Jonathan Beecher Field wonders why we in the United States aren't outraged that Joe Biden is a contender for one of the highest public offices in the land, considering that he is habitual plagiarist. It seems that not only did Joe Biden fail a class in law school for plagiarising, he was later caught stealing from a speech during his 1988 bid for the presidency. Field says that all academics should be outraged at the choice of this man for the VP position.

In the newest Engage interview, Dr. Courtney Campbell, the Hundere Professor in Religion and Culture at OSU, talks with me about the moral nature of plagiarism and why it should be condemned as a practice. We discuss what kind of harm plagiarism causes and how we should understand and evaluate the character of people, such as Joe Biden, Martin Luther King, Jr. and now, Stephen Harper, who are public figures, seeking the trust of their communities, but have been shown to exhibit this kind of moral failing.

You can listen to this interview at the new Engage site here.

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At 3:34 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Si bene dictum est ab meum est, Magister. Si non bene dictum est, non meum est.":
If it's well said it came from me, Professor. If it isn't well said, it's not mine.

At 11:40 PM , Blogger ROGER COTTRELL said...

Call me a cynic but we shouldn't be investing that many illusions in ANY Bourgeois politician in any case. That's no excuse for abstention, however. The important thing is to keep the Republicans out, take those who expect real change from OBama and Biden through that experience and build a real alternative.


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