Thursday, December 11, 2008

December 15, 2008-Power Corrupts

Consider This for December 15, 2008-Power Corrupts

Governor Rod Blagojevich of Illinois is in deep doo doo. He is up to his eyeballs in the brown sticky stuff.

And to top that off he actually looks like Mike Meyers from “Wayne’s World” and “Saturday Night Live” and the Austin Powers movie series.

The old saying is that “Power Corrupts.” Then is always changed to absolute power corrupts absolutely. This saying has been attributed to Winston Churchill and several other great orators.

Today it describes the Governor of the great state of Illinois and his alleged insane desire to gain some personal benefit from being able to be the sole person on this planet to name the replacement for President Elect Barack Obama in the United States Senate.

To understand how this terrible thing happened you must be able to understand the thinking of the men (Yes, men. Women were not allowed to get involved beyond doing what they were told to do by the men.) who wrote our constitution and the federalist papers.

I am sure that there are a few people out there who are prepared to attack what I am about to say but this is the easiest way to understand the dilemma.

Our nation was founded as a Federalist nation. It is today actually fifty different countries who each have their own constitution and their own set of laws. It is hard to believe this considering what we have today but there are only two things our federal government is supposed to do. One is to provide for the national defense. States cannot and should not declare war on other countries. The other thing is to provide for foreign relations. States cannot and should not negotiate with other countries and have treaties with other countries on their own. They must go through the Department of State. Aka: Hillary Clinton.

As a result each state can and does create laws concerning the filling of a vacancy in congress either for United States Senator or United States Representative.

I tell my students that the most real example of states rights and federalism is our traffic laws. Each state makes their own unique traffic laws and if you have ever lived in a state other than Colorado you will know what I mean. And yes, there are cases where the federal government in all their wisdom will step in and tell the states to pass certain traffic laws under threat of withholding federal highway funds. One was the old 55 mile per hour law and a more recent one is the drinking age must be 21 in every state. I could hear the bodies flipping in the ground in Virginia and Maryland as those laws were passed.

So what’s a mother to do? The people of Illinois as in every other state are stuck with a system that creates an environment where a governor can ask for patronage for his or her decision to replace an elected official.

This was also apparent as there was speculation that Governor Palin of Alaska might appoint herself to fill the vacancy in the senate seat occupied by the now convicted felon Senator Craig.

I think that the first Mayor Daley and his regime added a lot of fuel to the fire. I knew many Chicago Police Officers during that time and they were no better or worse than even the Denver Police Department who was committing burglaries while working in uniform and using Denver Police cars to haul off their loot.

My point is that no town or city is either better or worse than another when it comes to corruption and crime. Chicago and Illinois just seems to get the bulk of the idiots and the resulting publicity.

The bottom line is the amount of public scrutiny there is on such matters. Public scrutiny by the citizens and especially local media. Newspapers, radio and television are so very important in this process.

If guilty the Governor of Illinois should be hung up by his thumbs at the gate to the city for all to see. Our elected officials are not for sale although they might have been in Chicago at one time.

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