GOVERNOR ROD BLAGOJEVICH
Illinois Governor Blagojevich is not guilty. He is charged with federal crimes, but at this time, is not convicted and is innocent of all charges. Still, U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald says the charges against the 51year old represent a "truly new low" ... and that Blagojevich's "conduct would make Lincoln roll over in his grave."
Abraham Lincoln once stated: When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That's my religion.
Evidence shows that numerous politicians don't follow Lincoln's religion.
In Illinois ... since the 1970's, three ex-governors have served prison time for a variety of crimes: bribery, tax evasion, bank fraud, kickbacks and other corrupt acts. Their names: Otto Kerner, governor from 1961-68 ... Dan Walker, governor from 1973 to 1977 ... George Ryan, governor from 1999 to 2003. Another Illinois governor, William Stratton ( 1953-1961) was indicted on income tax evasion, but was acquitted.
Other states have their problem governors. Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards was convicted of racketeering for taking political bribes and before him, Governor Richard Leche ( 1936-1939).
Other governors who ran into legal trouble either while in office or afterwards: Ohio Governor Bob Taft, Alabama Governor Guy Hunt, Alabama Governor Don Siegelman, Arkansas Governor Jim Guy Tucker, Arizona's Fife Symington, Connecticut's John G. Rowland, Maryland's Marvin Mandel, Rhode Island's Edward DiPrete, Tennesse Governor Ray Blanton and West Virginia's Arch A. Moore.
The list of politicans breaking laws includes 5 U.S. Senators ... most recently Alaska Senator Ted Stevens. I won't burden you with the criminal list of U.S. Congressmen or state legislators, mayors or other elected or appointed public officers at any and every level of government.
You get the picture ... and it's not pretty.
Did all of these politicans have an inherent flaw that suddenly surfaced ... did they have larcency in their hearts from the beginning ... is it arrogance, stupidity ...did they just think they were "entitled" to more than the rest of us?
There are probably numerous answers to each individual case, and yet, a singular answer to each individual case.
What is fundamentally clear ... is each believed that he "couldn't be touched" and was "above the law".
There is a line in the Frost-Nixon interview which is now a movie where David Frost asks Richard Nixon about illegal acts. Nixon states basically, If the President does it ... it is not illegal.
That one line says a lot about these politicans who decide they can do anything they want and walk free.
Some of these politicans who are elected, appointed by the voters ... think they are "annointed".
We will wait to see where the allegations against Governor Blagojevich go ... but in the meantime, there's way too much evidence that far too many politicians need instruction in ethics and character.
I'm reminded of an anonymous quote stating: Reputation is what the world thinks a man is; character is what he really is.
What do you think?