Monday, November 12, 2007

"I'll Sell My Soul To The Devil": Ted Stevens et. al., Oil, and Corruption in Alaska

Whew. However bad you thought it was, it's worse. (in the WaPo)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You got to has this to the Alaskans: There are a few states where public corruption reaches such brazen, gleeful levels (Lousiana, New Jersey), but Alaska is the only state that directly buys off its whole electorate.

My favorite part of the article is where ordinary Alaskans express their dismay at the low, low prices their representatives were taking.

2:27 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

It's the GOP Tammany Hall.

Interesting article, and not an outlier; I've seen a lot of similar stuff. When everybody's dealt in to some degree, well, that's the way most of the world works.

4:54 PM  
Blogger lovable liberal said...

Loved the used riding lawn mower comment, but we should remember that the oil guys were making regular payments in a lease arrangement, not buying politicians for life for such small change. I'm sure they preferred to lease to own, since otherwise pols don't stay bought. Heh.

5:56 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Tom. Dude.

Digging back to Tammany Hall might be your biggest stretch yet to try to pretend there's parity between the parties.

Why not a more recent comparison? Like, e.g., "The Republican Abramoff scandal"...oh, no, that won't work...

When the Dems get caught in their next big financial scandal some day, do I get to call it "The Democratic Teapot Dome"?

Seriously, man!

8:18 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

I didn't mean it that way. If I did, I'd only have to go back to Louisiana or Chicago of the near-present, not the 1800s. And there is no defense of Ted Stevens (R-AK).

No, I really wasn't going there. I find Tammany Hall fascinating. It was a system that worked for a lot of people. We get on our cosmic justice high horse, but the philosophically-minded see it for what it was.

When we remember Ellis Island was in New York harbor (with the Statue of Liberty) and it is estimated that two fifths of the American population have relatives that were processed through that in migration site, the Plunkett "plain talk" starts to make sense. "Think what the people of New York are. On half, more than one half, are of foreign birth. They do not speak our language, they do not know our laws, they are the raw material with which we have to build up the state....there is no denying the service that Tammany has rendered the Republic. There is no other organization for taking hold of untrained, friendless men and converting them into citizens. Who else in the city would do it? There is not a mugwump who would shake their hand."

I mean, that's byooful, man, in its way.

3:47 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Sorry then. I see the point.

7:04 AM  

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