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Government Corruption

Why should we care about out Government Corruption?
As Americans, it should be shocking that we would even ask this question. But watching “Hard Ball” one night one couldn’t help but be struck by the casual conversation between the media elite and several current and former politicians, including one who had run for president. In light of the 2008 Illinois Governor scandal, they were discussing what is an acceptable form of “normal influence” we should expect our public servants to accept. Neither the conservative nor the liberal saw anything at all wrong with politicians accepting large cash sums from special interests.

Speaking Out and Doing Nothing
The first form of corruption is really an abdication of one’s duty. Sometimes you can be corrupt by simply not doing your job (a sin of omission as opposed to commission.) Not surprisingly, many politicians will say all kinds of things that ring true with Americans without actually doing anything to back up their “tough talk”. One example is John Kerry, who in the 2004 presidential campaign spoke of heads of companies that outsource American jobs as “Benedict Arnold CEOs”. However five years later, he has done absolutely nothing since (sponsored no legislation) to pass laws or provide economic incentives to help Americans in this area. Nada. Nothing.

Is It Really “Organic”?
A new demand for more healthy food has swept the US, and so-called “free marketers” trumpet the amazing ability of suppliers to respond with a plethora of new healthy food products. “Isn’t the free market grand?” they say. Small farmers are given hope that they can finally compete with the multinational food conglomerates that have successfully lobbied Washington for years. Finally, a market the “little guy” can compete in. Of course multinational agribusiness must cash in on this demand even though they don’t really produce organic food (theirs is laden with pesticides and growth hormones). What will they do? They will do what they do best – bribe your legislators! Get them to write a loophole in the definition of what food is “organic” – and that’s exactly what the Organic Trade Association did. Turns out that any company that can’t find “commercially available” ingredients is exempt from having to provide food that is actually organic. So much for healthy food.

How’s Your ED?
Could anyone imagine ten years ago seeing voyeuristic advertisements for erectile dysfunction on prime time TV? Many would argue that its just a “sign of the times” and shake their head at the moral decay of the USA as though people aren’t attending enough church these days. But the truth is these ads would never have been brought to television had not laws been passed by “public servants” to allow them on behalf of guess who? - Drug companies with lots of cash and lucrative lobbying jobs awaiting any politician willing to allow such crap on the public airwaves. Did you know that the USA and New Zealand are the only countries in the world that allow drug companies to advertise on TV? Further, how did American and New Zealand men all of a sudden get this pathetic condition? Clearly, it has become an epidemic! Was it hereditary? Or is it simply hyped up demand caused by drug companies and doctors who “prescribe” it for recreational use? Go ahead – write your congressman – I dare you. I’ll bet there is NO WAY these ads will ever get off TV no matter that 99% of Americans find them offensive, irritating and embarrassing. Why? - Because your government represents the drug companies, not you.

What’s Wrong with this picture?
The attitude that we just have to accept corruption in our government is not only unacceptable, it is unconstitutional (even though the Supreme Court apparently doesn’t agree).

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Democrat Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich - 2008 - Typical Illinois corrupt politics

Republican
Crooked Senate Leader Joseph Bruno Indicted on Federal Corruption Charges

Democrat
Crooked Chris Dodd - “In an investigative story by Matthew Kaufman and Jesse A. Hamilton, the newspaper reveals that although Dodd was a presidential also-ran in terms of votes, in terms of cash money he ranks among the top five receivers of donations from the nation's now-troubled financial sector. During the past 20 years, the Courant reports, "PACs and employees of finance-related firms have contributed more than $13 million to Dodd's election efforts, including nearly $6 million in the past two years.”

Republican
Tom DeLay indicted on bribery charges

Democrat
Bill Richardson Withdraws as Commerce Nominee - Pay to Play continued...

Lobbyist and former Democratic Senator Tom Daschle has “earned” $5 million (yes, that’s $5,000,000.00) since he left office just a few years ago. What a difference a few friends can make!