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Inherent hypocrisy

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009

* The Chicago Sun-Times editorial board demonstrates the real problem with enacting reforms

In the coming weeks, you’ll hear plenty of arguments against these reforms, many of which will sound perfectly reasonable. But we urge you to question those arguments and find the self-serving nonsense at their core.

How can anyone have an honest debate on the governor’s reform commission proposals with a warning shot like that?

* The Tribune, which editorialized just a few days ago against the commission’s campaign contribution caps, runs a thundering edit today entitled “Madigan, Cullerton — Act” and ledes with this…

“Half-measures will not suffice to repair our State’s troubled [governing] infrastructure or our citizens’ broken confidence. . . . This blueprint for reform will be meaningless unless the changes we have envisioned become reality.”

– “100-Day Report,” Illinois Reform Commission

The Trib is apparently suffering from a severe case of amnesia and delusion. In reality, they support “half-measures” on campaign contribution caps. So, are they part of the problem? Apparently so.

* The Post-Dispatch also includes the commission’s “half-measures” line in its editorial today and then opines…

Campaign finance is the index issue, the one from which nearly every other political evil flows. Outright bribery is rare; doing favors for big contributors is the coin of the realm. If Illinois doesn’t fix this one, all the rest of the talk about “reform” is mere conversation.

OK, but the Trib is not in favor of the commission’s caps, so it’s enabling evil, too? More from the Post-Dispatch…

We’re not 100 percent sold on all 39 of the commission’s recommendations; for example, giving the state attorney general the right to convene grand juries to investigate public corruption is an idea that seems ripe for abuse.

The P-D is also, apparently, for half-measures.

* The Bloomington Pantagraph claims: “Reform commission report already facing resistance.” Translation: If legislators say they’re not sold on a particular provision, it’s “resistance.” If a newspaper editorial board makes the exact same criticisms, well, that’s just honest and open debate.

* Related…

* State officials face choice on response to scandal

* If the flame is extiguished

* Inspector General report highlights need for transparency reforms

* If the state had 2 more employees …

* Can citizens end political corruption?

* Pass of the torch

* Illinois ethics reform: Panel releases report of recommendations

* Citizen ethics panel suggests 34 reforms

* Illinois Reform Panel Delivers Recommendations

* Illinois commission recommends sweeping ethics reforms in the wake of Rod Blagojevich

* Gov. Quinn’s reform panel calls for new limits on campaign money

- Posted by Rich Miller        

7 Comments
  1. - Sewanee - Wednesday, Apr 29, 09 @ 10:24 am:

    Rich, maybe you’ve written a column about this already, but if we could cast aside personal power-plays (aka existing corruption), what reform proposals would we see? I know “in a perfect world” hypotheticals are trite, but perhaps starting with a list like that would help us push through one or two genuine reforms. What would you shoot for?


  2. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Apr 29, 09 @ 10:29 am:

    –In the coming weeks, you’ll hear plenty of arguments against these reforms, many of which will sound perfectly reasonable. But we urge you to question those arguments and find the self-serving nonsense at their core.–

    Memo to self: Reject all reason.

    Where were the big papers on Con-Con, again?


  3. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Apr 29, 09 @ 11:52 am:

    Sewanee, we’ve done post after post on that subject here. Check the archives.


  4. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Apr 29, 09 @ 1:22 pm:

    wordslinger, the two big Chicago papers split, as I recall. Most other papers were against it.


  5. - BannedForLife - Wednesday, Apr 29, 09 @ 1:39 pm:

    “If a newspaper editorial board makes the exact same criticisms, well, that’s just honest and open debate.”

    starting rumors about the political ambitions of a commissioner, that’s honest & open debate


  6. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Apr 29, 09 @ 1:45 pm:

    Ha!

    Actually, I didn’t start a rumor. I just mused aloud that he activated my radar.


  7. - BannedForLife - Thursday, Apr 30, 09 @ 9:31 am:

    ok, CF is “just a blog”


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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