Most Corrupt State

Back in the 1970’s I put in a request to the Legislative Council (the General Assembly’s non-partisan research agency) to develop a way to compare corruption among the states.

That was when United States Attorney Jim Thompson was convicting lots of Democrats and Republicans or assorted nastinesses.

Thompson was my last candidate for political hero. I didn’t get disillusioned until after the election. I was sitting in my car on the senate driveway listening to the radio.

Thompson was asked if he were going to keep Governor Dan Walker’s Ford. His reply was,

“No. What do you think this job is all about?”

Later, he came up with something that sounded a bit more reasonable. He needed a limo because of his long legs.

Under pressure, he finally settled for a Checker Cab…painted black, of course.

Anyway, my request was considered for a while and then Gerry Gherardini called to tell me they didn’t think that was an appropriate research topic.

I remember going to my fifth reunion at Oberlin College In 1970 and asking a new government profession about research in corruption.

He pretty much pooh-poohed my question, telling me that corruption was the grease that allowed government to operation.

Since then, I’ve seen a fair amount of research on the topic. Then, it was pretty much a virgin topic.

In any event, a month ago I happened upon this in the Rockford Register:

Most corrupt state? Illinois a leader in the competition

It’s not something that compares corruption, but at least its headline is asking the right question.


Most Corrupt State — 2 Comments

  1. There is illegal corruption.

    And legal corruption.

    Technically those terms may not make sense.

    Practically they make perfect sense.

    How do you get an $83B unfunded pension liability?

    Legal corruption.

    Illinois is a leader in both categories.

    What is legal corruption?

    The ability to go into closed session board meetings for so many different reasons is legal corruption.

    The ability to put a pension protection clause in the State Constitution in 1970, then in 38 of the next 40 years from 1971 – 2011 pass legislation and sign it into state law over 100 pension hikes, without the public having a clue, is legal corruption.

    Did the IEA, IFT, CTU, and We Are One bother to tell you that?

    The brazeness of some boards to deny their own members access to closed session minutes is legal corruption.

    Well maybe that one’s illegal.

    The House Rules Committee is legal corruption.

    There’s a starter list.
    Who has some more?

  2. To put the pension protection clause in more explicit detail.

    It’s legal for pensions to go up but not down.

    There is no ceiling.

    To infinity and beyond is the ceiling.

    There is a floor.

    The floor can go up but not down.

    Is anyone catching on?

    Obviously they haven’t yet.

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