12.01.2008 0

The Great Senate Seat Selloff

  • On: 12/10/2008 10:03:56
  • In: Government Transparency
  • By William Warren

    “[This is a] sad day for government.”—U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald

    Add Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich to the long list of politicians absolutely corrupted by absolute power.

    The Democrat governor (for the sake of the Mainstream Media, so many of which neglected to acknowledge his party affiliation) was arrested yesterday morning by federal investigators on corruption charges. “Corruption”, of course, is putting it rather lightly.

    In less flattering language, the governor is an egregious crook. He is under fire for trying to sell Barack Obama’s vacated senate seat for money and/or lofty job positions, strong-arming the Tribune Company to fire critical editorial board staffers from the Chicago Tribune, and doling out—or threatening to withhold—all sorts of government goodies in exchange for kickbacks of every shape and size.

    Speaking of language, the governor’s wiretapped conversations were full of it at its worst. Regarding the empty senate seat, he said the following:

    “[It] is a [expletive] valuable thing, you just don’t give it away for nothing.”

    It’s now evident that being Illinois’ top political figure was apparently not enough to adequately satiate the governor’s avaricious appetite.

    But should this come as any surprise at all? Not in the least.

    What is truly surprising is that more rats haven’t been dredged from the sewer that is Chicago politics. Remember, this is the same city that produced the likes of Governor George Ryan as well as some 79 local elected officials convicted of crimes over the last three decades.

    So when U.S. attorney Patrick Fitzgerald declared yesterday as “a sad day for government,” he is absolutely right—Governor Blagojevich, after all, is the poster boy of Big Government and the manifestation of its many vices. Under Blagojevich and others of his ilk, citizens are sidelined.

    Nevertheless, people all across America are apparently eager to hand their government the unbridled reins of absolute power. Whether it’s through the election of Barack Obama or apathy regarding the rampant government bailouts—i.e., the nationalization of American industries—America is moving in the direction of bigger government and more centralized control.

    Meanwhile, authorities are yanking rats like Blagojevich out of the sewer by the tail.  Ironically, a man who knew more than a little about Big Government abuse, Bill Clinton once said:

    “You can’t say you love your country and hate your government.”

    We guess President Clinton should have added that “that depends on what your definition of ‘government’ is”. Well, former Mr. President, let us help you define it.

    Rod Blagojevich is government.

    Eliot Spitzer is government. Kwame Kilpatrick is government. Ted Stevens is government. William Jefferson is government. Charlie Rangel is government. John Edwards is government.

    And these are just examples from the past year alone.

    Governor Blagojevich and the rest of the horde of rats epitomize the dangers of putting one’s trust in the government. Why yield control to an institution with such an enduring history of corruption, negligence and malfeasance?

    So if the government is fattening itself up with the cheese of self-interest and greed while simultaneously trampling the sovereignty of the American people, it is perfectly legitimate—perhaps even entirely appropriate—to hate government.

    Blagojevich and his kind have betrayed the trust of the American people. Now is the time to work without ceasing to return power to the only ones to whom it can be trusted—“We the People.”

    Power, to quote Mr. Blagojevich, is a valuable thing. It should never again be given away to the likes of him for nothing.

    William Warren is a contributing editor of ALG News Bureau.

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