Friday, June 16, 2006

It's The System Stupid

The following article has hit the nail on the head by saying the cause of the ethical problems in Washington D.C. is the result of the system that is in place:

"Partisan political thought has become so ingrained in today's mindset that the concept of independence is disregarded as a matter of course.

That partisanship, I believe, breeds corruption and allows it to thrive. Unfortunately, because partisanship is so dominant in today's political environment, any chance of cleaning up the system is lost.

"There is no doubt in my mind that political partisanship is at an all time high," says longtime political scientist George Harleigh, who served in both the Nixon and Reagan administrations. "It permeates and pollutes every attempt at rational public debate. It destroys any chance of compromise, coalition-building or resolution."

Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, easily one of the most corrupt, divisive men to ever serve in the U.S. House of Representatives, defended partisanship in his parting shot before leaving Congress last week.

After noting that departing members of Congress usually talk about the "good old days' of political harmony and across-the-aisle camaraderie," DeLay put on his best snake-oil smile and said "I can't do that."

And he didn't.

"You show me a nation without partisanship, and I'll show you a tyranny,'" DeLay said. `"For all its faults, it is partisanship -- based on core principles -- that clarifies our debates, that prevents one party from straying too far from the mainstream, and that constantly refreshes our politics with new ideas and new leaders."

DeLay called disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff a close friend and said he admired his passion for conservative causes - a sad commentary on the crook who has come to symbolize the corruption of money and power in official Washington.

DeLay's tirades prompted a dozen Democrats to walk out of the House chamber during his speech. While their anger is easily understood, their actions were just another case of partisan hotdogging in a political system where bitter partisanship destroys any chance of positive action, reform or effective legislation.

"A large part of (DeLay's) legacy will be a culture of corruption that he built here in the Congress of the United States," says Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif."

"Partisan success is based on power and power draws corrupt men and women to politics like maggots to a rotting corpse.

Tom DeLay is a sleazeball of epic proportions and the hypocritical sendoff that his fellow Republicans gave him last week was sickening proof of just how much they accept such sleaze in their midst. His replacement, Ohio's John Boehner, is a fast-talking, double-dealing, bribe-taking con-artist who lives large at taxpayer expense."

"The players will change and a different set of money changers will become power brokers on K Street. We may see some cosmetic changes at the start but the system will soon regain control.

Votes will be bought, power will be brokered and principles will take a hike.

Corruption will win. It always has. It always will."

The author of this article is correct...the ethical problem in Washington D.C. is the result of the system. A system that has been spawned by the Republicans.

The current ethics problems that now exist in D.C. are the result of people such as Tom Delay, Bob Ney, Duke Cunningham, John Boehner, and company.

What is needed is new leadership who is serious about ethics reform--unlike Boehner, Hastert, and Frist.

I am confident come this November, new leadership is what we will have.