How Corrupt is Illinois? This Corrupt

Wednesday, February 19, AD 2014

Understanding Illinois Politics



Ah, my home state.  Just when you think it has hit rock bottom it sinks lower.  Paul Mirengoff of the Powerline blog gives us the details of the latest outrage in the Land of Lincoln:


Arthur Bishop, the new director of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), was convicted in the 1990s of bilking his employer, a substance abuse counseling center, out of money received from its clients. According to the center’s director at the time, Bishop created a bogus program for convicted drunk drivers. He took money from patients and provided them with forms they wrongly believed would allow them to get their driver’s licenses back.

Unfortunately for Bishop’s victims, the center wasn’t licensed by the state to provide that service at the time. Bishop pleaded guilty to misdemeanor theft.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, a Democrat, is standing by his decision to make Bishop the state’s top child-welfare official. He claims to see no connection between Bishop’s corruption and his ability to lead a department that has been plagued by charges of failure to keep track of its money. In December, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan sued a Chicago businessman and friend of a former DCFS director to recover millions of dollars in state grant money the businessman allegedly misspent.

If Quinn can’t see the connection between stealing and unfitness to run a large government agency, perhaps he can connect the dots on Bishop’s own “children and family” issues. Court records show that a paternity case was filed against Bishop in 2003, when he was a DCFS deputy director. DNA tests showed he was the father of Erica Bishop, then 17.

According to the child’s mother, Bishop, who was married to another woman when Erica was born, “denies his own daughter’s existence” even though “he visited us on numerous occasions at my parents’ house when she was a child.” The mother further alleged that Bishop “even asked me if he could live in with me if his wife put him out after she learned the truth.”

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8 Responses to How Corrupt is Illinois? This Corrupt

  • How will these ( men ) be able to lift up their heads when Jesus draws near?
    The poor sort.
    They have no soul.

  • Its amazing that after a criminal conviction ca. 1995 he was hired in short order for the first in a string of positions in the child welfare apparat. He was not some adolescent punk who stole $50 from his summer employer, but a 43 year old professional who embezzled a four-digit sum at the time he was convicted.

    I will wager this social services lifer has a sponsor among Chicago’s South Side and West Side aldermen. I would be fascinated to know with whom Gov. Quinn cut this deal.

  • He sired a bastard child when he was 33 years old, not 17.

  • The Land of Obamo and then late Mr Lincoln is and always will be the utmost sewer of political dimwits who seem to turn a blind eye to corruption as long as their pockets are full of so called ” Bridges to No Where ” cash that was originally meant for what liberals love to call “Social Justice” Projects serving the poor and less advantaged ?!#??Only problem is they ( liberals) are the poor and less advataged ,intolerant, of anyone or any organization that dares to expose their hippocrisy !

  • Seems to be another case of ‘birds of a feather …’ – rapacious birds that don’t sing.

  • At the entrance of the State office where I work there are two circle/slash style signs posted, one for “no smoking” and the other for “no guns” since Illinois now has a concealed carry law (the first permits are expected to go out next month). They really should add a third sign: the circle/slash “no bull—-” sticker.

  • I am eagerly awaiting the No Crooks sign Elaine!

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11 Responses to Blagojevich Gets 14 years

  • I am not surprised. What politician from Illinois is not corrupt?. Can anybody tell?

  • I remember when he tried to get on a reality show in the middle of his trial. Maybe reality will finally catch up with him.

  • More likely than not, other corrupt pols in Illinois are either thinking about ways to legally achieve the same results (oodles of campaign cash) as Blago, or more creative ways to avoid getting caught.

    As for what politician from Illinois is NOT corrupt, I can think of a few examples from the recent past. Sen. Peter Fitzgerald, for example, a Republican who preceded Obama in the seat that later became the subject of Blago’s “sale”. He was pro-life and generally conservative, and was most responsible for getting Patrick Fitzgerald (no relation), the man who eventually prosecuted Blago, appointed U.S. attorney.

    Likewise, I do not believe the current governor, Democrat Pat Quinn, is corrupt in the legal/criminal sense (i.e. directly soliciting bribes as Blago did). However, non-corruption alone does not a statesman make. He is incompetent, waffling, and very messed up in his notion of Catholic moral teaching. As far as basic competence and in potential damage to state (and especially Catholic) institutions, arguably Quinn is as bad or worse than Blago.

    In theory, Blago could end up as a cellmate of his predecessor, George Ryan, who is currently in the federal pen at Terre Haute, Ind. and has a year left to go on HIS sentence. However, since Blago’s sentence is over 10 years he will most likely be sent to a slightly higher security institution than Ryan and not a “Club Fed”.

  • “I am not surprised. What politician from Illinois is not corrupt?. Can anybody tell?”

    The same could be said of NYS where I once lived. They are, however, good at not getting caught, but not always so good at avoiding scandal. Can you spell Anthony Weiner?

  • I have a dream.

    In a couple years you will read this headline. “Obama Gets 50 Years to Life for Stealing $3 trillion Dollars and Wrecking America.”

  • “Obama Gets 50 Years to Life for Stealing $3 trillion Dollars and Wrecking America.”

    What does he get for authorizing the indiscriminate murder of the unborn and the sanctification of homosexual filth?

  • Dante would provide a specific trench in the Inferno for Obama, Biden, Pelosi, Sibellius, Teddy Chappaquidick, et al.

  • A commenter at one of my favorite Illinois political junkie blogs said this today: Blago’s sentence amounts to about 30 seconds for each of his 13 million victims (Illinois residents).

    Actually, Dante did assign a specific trench in the Inferno to “grafters,” i.e. corrupt rulers/politicians, who spend eternity immersed in boiling tar, symbolic of their “sticky fingers.” At one point a demon shows up bearing one of “Santa Zita’s elders,” an alderman from the Italian city of Lucca, where “no is yes, and yes is no, for a fee” — the 13th century version of “pay to play.”

  • 13th century – 21st century – it’s all the same.

  • 13th century – 21st century – it’s all the same.

    Human-nature wise, yeah. (And, as it’s popular to notice once again, politics is very much about human nature.)

Blagojevich Guilty Today on 17 Counts

Monday, June 27, AD 2011

Well, it wasn’t quite as exciting as the above courtroom scene from The Untouchables, but today Rod Blagojevich, twice elected governor of the Land of Lincoln, was found guilty on 17 counts in the Federal criminal prosecution brought against him:

  • Count 1-Wire fraud related to Children’s Memorial Hospital-GUILTY
  • Count 2-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 3-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 4-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 5-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 6-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 7-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 8-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 9-Wire fraud related to the Racing Bill-GUILTY
  • Count 10-Wire fraud related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 11-Attempted extortion related to School Shakedown-NO VERDICT
  • Count 12-Attempted extortion related to Children’s Memorial Hospital-GUILTY
  • Count 13-Bribery related to Children’s Memorial Hospital-GUILTY
  • Count 14-Extortion conspiracy related to Racing Bill-GUILTY
  • Count 15-Bribery conspiracy related to Racing Bill-GUILTY
  • Count 16-Attempted Extortion related to Tollway Shakedown-NO VERDICT
  • Count 17-Bibery related to Tollway Shakedown-NOT GUILTY
  • Count 18-Extortion conspiracy related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 19-Attempted extortion related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
  • Count 20-Bribery conspiracy related to the Senate Seat-GUILTY
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28 Responses to Blagojevich Guilty Today on 17 Counts

  • But Donald, at least Blago will get his just deserts in prison in ways that he has previously never envisioned.

  • It is true Paul that bad Elvis impersonators do rank pretty low in the prison pecking order. 🙂

  • So much for the theory, voiced by some jury “experts,” that a female-dominated jury (11 women and one man) would take pity on him and be less likely to vote for conviction.

    Methinks in this case, however, that the women on this jury had fully functional horse hockey detectors (the same kind they use on husbands and children) which enabled them to tell when Blago was lying to them… basically every time he opened his mouth.

    Personally, I think justice will be done if he stays in prison long enough for his hair to turn gray and/or fall out.

  • “Personally, I think justice will be done if he stays in prison long enough for his hair to turn gray and/or fall out.”

    That would be poetic justice indeed Elaine! 🙂

  • Hooray. I know he has retired, but maybe Daley next.

  • Of course 0bama and Emmanuel knew nothing of this. Innocent bystanders I tell you.

  • God love him. I may disagree with Blogo on most issues but I would have voted for him. Why? He is one of the few honest politicians out there. He is only guilty of being stupid enough to voice the thought process that most politicians go though when they make decisions and appointments, i.e., How will this benefit me? How will this effect my poll numbers? Will this effect my ability to raise funds or cause others to support my opposition?

    I was listening to the Chris Mathews show on the way home from work tonight and his guests agreed that Blogo was going to do nothing different with the open Senate position than any other politician. He was just “too crass” saying it out loud.

    How true, we have now made being crass a federal offense. But I think more importantly Blogo was guilty of destroying the illusion held by the public that politicians are “public servants” and aren’t self serving SOBs who only work to consolidate more and more power.

  • No Eva, we have made engaging in criminal acts a criminal offense. Too many politicians are just as corrupt as Blago, but that doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t be going to prison, but that they also should be punished for their crimes.

  • Corrupt Illinois Politician Headed for Jail…this is news?

  • Don:

    Just curious. How are Blogo’s actions any different then handing out ambassadorships to your top contributors? Or, naming political opponents to plum political positions to gain their support, i.e., Hillary to State or Bush as VP. Again, if Blogo had had been more discrete and kept his mouth shut he could have gotten everything he wanted and been praised as an sure politician.

  • Meant to say “astute” politician.

  • Blago intended to profit personally from his nefarious schemes. He made that quite clear on the tapes and that is quite illegal.

    “I’ve got this thing and it’s f—— golden” and “I’m just not giving it up for … nothing.”

    Blago is an attorney, and so I assume that he knew what he was doing was illegal. If he didn’t then, he does now. Thank God he was too stupid to cover his tracks effectively as many another politician has.

  • Don:

    I understand where you are coming from; but again how does that make Blogo any different from any other politician. Let’s be honest they all use their positions to their personal profit (either direct or indirect). Blogo just spoke out loud what other politicians think. Not to be insulting, but it is somewhat naïve to think that Presidents and Governors make political appointments based upon who is the best person for the job and not based primarily upon personal political considerations, i.e., Will it help me get re-elected? Will this appointment or decision get me more political contibutions? Politicians aren’t an altruistic class.

    There are few, if any, politicians who don’t enter the political system (especially the federal system) as paupers and don’t leave as millionaires or who don’t enter the system as millionaires and leave as multi-millionaires or billionaires. There are few congressmen who after leaving office (voluntarily or involuntarily) don’t step into a nice cushy job with industry (Haliburton, Blackstone), lucrative speaking engagements before those groups that were favored by your policies or votes, or as a lobbyist. Politicians often remind me of the wicked steward in Luke 16:1-9.

  • It is as wrong Eva to say that all politicians are crooks as it is to say that all politicians are self-sacrificing statesmen in the mode of George Washington or Abraham Lincoln. I tend to think that politicians overall reflect the people they come from, and if the current crop of politicians are a poor lot, they might mirror a general decline in morality, and educational standards come to think of it, over the past few decades.

    When dealing with those who wield power, it is always important to prosecute those who cross the line into illegality. As is true with all criminal prosecutions, far more escape prosecution than are prosecuted, but those who are caught deserve the full severity of the law. As for the rest, it is up to the voters to elect good men and women to public office. As long as the average voter is content to be apathetic and often shockingly ill-informed, idiots, charlatans and outright crooks will continue to be elected to high office in our nation.

  • Thanks for deleting my post, Donald. Sometimes I am an idiot. 🙁

  • There are few congressmen who after leaving office (voluntarily or involuntarily) don’t step into a nice cushy job with industry (Haliburton, Blackstone), lucrative speaking engagements before those groups that were favored by your policies or votes, or as a lobbyist.

    Last I heard, Gary Condit and his family were running an ice-cream parlor. A none too lucrative one.

  • Art:

    I guess leaving Congress under a cloud of suspicion of murdering an intern doesn’t do much for your market value. Definitely an exception and not the rule

  • …that bad Elvis impersonators do rank pretty low in the prison pecking order

    On the news item over here, the TV commentator suggested that Blago wasn’t very inclined to do Elvis’ “Jail House Rock” 😆

    (Back in my callow youth, I thought that was a great movie) 🙂

  • Elvis had his moments Don, although most of his films are better relegated to the memory hole.

  • Well, I’d feel all superior to you flatlander folks – if it wasn’t for the Wisconsin Supreme Fight Club we have goin’ up here. Justices in their golden years accused of choking each other, rushing each other with upraised fists and so on. Boy, wouldn’t you subscribe to pay-for-view to see a Prosser vs. Bradley smack down?

    Really, to all of you who are tired of Wisconsin politics – I agree wholeheartedly! I’m tired of Wisconsin politics too! I now HATE Wisconsin politics!

  • And I believe that is exactly one of the tactics Alinsky advocated – wearing down conservative folk to the point where they would simply give up.

    Well, I am tired of Wisconsin lefties, but that does not motivate me to stay at home come election day. Quite the opposite, Mr. Alinsky.

  • Each of the charges for which Blago was convicted carries a maximum prison term of 20 years, which means his theoretical maximum sentence would be more than 300 years… that must include time in purgatory 🙂

  • “Wisconsin Supreme Fight Club”

    That is hilarious Donna! In my experience appellate court and supreme court justices not uncommonly have fairly poisonous relations with some of their colleagues, but usually they are bright enough to restrict it to some tart rejoinder in an opinion. They forgot that the cardinal rule of Wisconsin Supreme Fight Club is that you do not talk about it! 🙂

  • For a Illinois politican to be indicted and convicted is not a shame, it’s a career move! LOL!

  • Talk to your kids before they get involved in Illinois politics!

  • Friends don’t let friends… run for public office in Illinois 🙂

  • Paul Simon, Charles Percy, and Richard Ogilivie. Were any of these men crooks?

  • Paul Simon was a loon but not a crook. Percy was a Rino’s Rino, but too rich to be a crook. Ogilvie was an honest man, but radically expanded the size of Illinois government during his one term in office and championed passage of the Illinois state income tax.

2 Responses to Bribe, What Bribe?

Politics The Illinois Way

Friday, February 5, AD 2010

Illinois politics has always had a rather corrupt and colorful flavor about it.  Sort of Louisiana with bad winters.  Two examples:

1.    Alexi Giannoulias is the Democrat nominee for Obama’s old senate seat.  As the bare knuckles Republican ad above indicates, Giannoulias has been alleged to have substantial mob ties due to Broadway Bank , a Bank owned by the Giannoulias family and which made substantial loans to Chicago crime figures.  A comprehensive look at Mr. Giannoulias is here.

2.    Scott Lee Cohen, a wealthy Chicago pawnbroker, won the Democrat nomination for  Lieutenant  Governor on Tuesday.  Immediately after he won, it came out that in 2005 he was arrested for allegedly holding a knife to the throat of a former girl-friend, a woman who was once convicted of prostitution.   The woman failed to show up at a subsequent hearing, and the charge was dropped.  One might ask why none of his opponents brought this scandal up prior to the voters going to the polls.  I have no answer.  Governor Quinn, the Democrat nominee for Governor, has stated that Cohen must step down.  Cohen has indicated that he has no intention of stepping down.

Ah, the Land of Lincoln.  We may be the most misgoverned state in the Union, but I do believe we get good entertainment value from our politicians!

Update I: From my co-blogger, and fellow Illinoisan, Elaine:

The Cohen debacle is literally getting worse by the minute.

Not only do we have the domestic battery charge from ‘05 — which he did actually admit to in an interview nearly a YEAR ago — his divorce papers and other documents have been made public, and they allege 1) steroid abuse and ‘roid rages against his wife and kids, 2) attempts to rape his wife, 3) harassing messages written in lipstick on his (now ex) wife’s mirror, 4) failure to pay child support for his four kids while he was spending $2 million or so on running for lite guv, 5) numerous lawsuits against him, including his OWN BROTHER suing him for $200K (haven’t found out what for yet).

On top of all that, his major endorsers and campaign contributors included…. wait for it… Planned Parenthood and Personal PAC (a PAC known for endorsing only the most radical pro-aborts it can find). Even some liberals are shaking their heads at the irony of an allegedly “pro woman” PAC donating to the campaign of a domestic abuser and deadbeat dad!

Illinois politics, better than any novel!

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20 Responses to Politics The Illinois Way

  • The Cohen debacle is literally getting worse by the minute.

    Not only do we have the domestic battery charge from ’05 — which he did actually admit to in an interview nearly a YEAR ago — his divorce papers and other documents have been made public, and they allege 1) steroid abuse and ‘roid rages against his wife and kids, 2) attempts to rape his wife, 3) harassing messages written in lipstick on his (now ex) wife’s mirror, 4) failure to pay child support for his four kids while he was spending $2 million or so on running for lite guv, 5) numerous lawsuits against him, including his OWN BROTHER suing him for $200K (haven’t found out what for yet).

    On top of all that, his major endorsers and campaign contributors included…. wait for it… Planned Parenthood and Personal PAC (a PAC known for endorsing only the most radical pro-aborts it can find). Even some liberals are shaking their heads at the irony of an allegedly “pro woman” PAC donating to the campaign of a domestic abuser and deadbeat dad!

  • “One might ask why none of his opponents brought this scandal up prior to the voters going to the polls.”

    1. They didn’t think he would win — although anyone in the state who wasn’t blind and deaf could see that he had the best funded and organized campaign, the most yard signs, mailers, etc.

    2. Some of the more conspiracy minded Illinois political junkies think it’s all part of a plot by all-powerful House Speaker Mike Madigan to insure that a Republican gets elected governor AND gets saddled with all the blame for the difficult fiscal and other decisions that MUST be made in the next four years, thereby clearing the way for his daughter, AG Lisa Madigan, to run for governor four years from now.

    If that’s the case, methinks that may not be quite going according to “plan” either, since the currently presumptive GOP nominee, Bill Brady, is (mirabile dictu!) an unquestionably conservative downstate legislator, who was almost completly ignored in the Chicago media market, and not expected to win. Most people’s bets were on the more “moderate” Kirk Dillard or cash-loaded Andy McKenna.

    I may be getting way ahead of myself here but (continuing the comparisons to Louisiana) I think if anyone has the potential to be the Bobby Jindal of Illinois, it’s Brady.

  • Elaine, I truly think that people who do not live in the Sucker State have no idea how truly bizarre Illinois politics can get! This may give them an inkling!

  • To borrow Franz Werfel’s famous quote about Lourdes, for a much more profane subject… for those who live in Illinois, no explanation is necessary; for those who don’t, no explanation is possible.

    The only thing more amusing than trying to figure out Illinois politics, is watching national pundits and talking heads try to figure it out. Of course they are seeing everything through (Scott) Brown-colored glasses right now.

    I do have a couple of cosmetic quibbles with the Alexi G. You Tube clip: Chicagoans call it “The Outfit,” not “The Mob”, and the narrator’s accent sounds more Noo Yawk than Chicaguh to me. (SNL made the same mistake in their Blago sketches last year.) But it’s pretty good otherwise.

  • …and the narrator’s accent sounds more Noo Yawk than Chicaguh to me.

    I probably wouldn’t have picked up it without you mentioning it, Elaine, but now I can’t listen to it without thinking how silly it sounds in the context of Chicago.

    As to Chicago politics, it’s not hard for us outsiders to understand just how corrupt it is. Sure, some seemingly innocuous things may actually be loaded with negative implications that only locals would get, but it’s enough for us to just know it exists. After all, it’s not like the politics of my hometown of Detroit isn’t rotten too. My complaint with Chicago is actually with those who came before you. I can’t figure out why the dead always vote for the most corrupt politicians, you’d think they would have a better judge of character!

  • Yes isn’t it interesting and now the GANG is running the country..Where is Elliot Ness when we need the old saying goes there is a sucker born every minute and several million were taken in by the Pied Piper last Novenber and followed like good little lennings to the cliff..and the spending goes on and on til finaly the presses break and lend lease wwill be back only this time it will be from other counries to bail us out and the GANG will return Chicago fat happy laughing all the way with our momey in their pockets…LOL

  • I don’t know. I think Louisiana, California, New York, New Jersey, Minnesota, and DC can all make good cases for “most bizarre local politics.”

    I’d like to nominate my state of NY. With names like Rudy Giuliani, Vito Fossella, and Joey Bruno you know there’ll be trouble. Forgetting colorful characters like Nelson Rockefeller, just in the last 10 years we had:

    1. The daughter of JFK, who secretly campaigned for appointment to the Senate seat vacated by a carpetbagging former first lady only to be rejected by a blind governor who admitted to having an affair and who only became governor because his predecessor was caught hiring a prostitute.

    2. A mayor who liked to dress in drag, had a messy divorce while in office, then became the Republican frontrunner for president. This mayor was replaced by the 17th richest man in the world, who switched parties while in office, increased his own term limits, and set the record for most spent on an election campaign anywhere, ever!

    3. A police commissioner who withdrew his nomination to head Homeland Security after it was revealed that he hired illegal immigrants. He was then convicted of ethics violations. Now he’s awaiting sentencing for tax fraud.

    4. A conservative Republican US congressman who had a secret second family in Virginia. When he decided not run for reelection, the GOP nominated a guy who’s estranged son decided to run against him. The father died before the election and the seat was won by a Democrat for the first time in 30 years.

    5. A state comptroller who plead guilty to defrauding the government and who spent $800,000 to get an incumbent state assemblyman to step aside for his son.

    6. Two Democratic state senators who switched parties, giving the Republicans a majority. One then redefected leaving 31 Republicans and 31 Democrats. The lieutenant governor then becomes the tie-breaker but because the governor resigned, we had no LG. The president of the senate, a Republican on trial for corruption (he’s since been convicted and is now awaiting sentencing), becomes acting LG when the governor is out of state, so the governor refused to leave the state. Both parties claimed the senate leadership. We literally had two senates in the same room going about business as usual as if the other party didn’t exist. Senators yelling over each other. The governor appointed a new LG but the state AG said that was unconstitutional. The crisis ended when the other defector redefected to the Democrats in exchange for the majority leader seat.

    7. State Assembly members over 65 who collect salaries and pensions at the same time. They “retire” on New Year’s Eve then get sworn in as freshmen the next day.

    8. A lesbian city council speaker and the nation’s only pagan politician.

  • restrainedradical, I must stand up for Illinois! Illinois has had three governors go to prison and one I think who will eventually land there. Unless a state can boast at least three governors in the pen I don’t think it is even in the running.

  • You know what they say:

    Illinois- “Where Our Governors Make Our License Plates”

  • Elaine K.,

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe it was Saint Thomas Aquinas who said the alleged quote from Franz Werfel.

  • I’ll have to look that up Tito. Thanks for the tip.

    If the truth be told, I’m sure bizarre politics exist, or can exist, anywhere, since we live in a fallen world; but the odds of such increase exponentially the more people there are — hence, big city “machines” like Chicago, New York, et al. generate the most spectacular and frequent examples.

    Still, even God’s Chosen People themselves, and Holy Mother Church, have had leaders that were nothing to brag about (Kings Ahaz and Manasseh, the Borgia Popes) and who make Blago, Spitzer, Sanford, et al. look like rank amateurs in the corruption department.

  • Regarding dead people “voting”, G.K. Chesterton once wrote that:

    “Tradition means giving a vote to most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to the small and arrogant oligarchy of those who merely happen to be walking about. All democrats object to men being disqualified by the accident of birth; tradition objects to their being disqualified by the accident of death. Democracy tells us not to neglect a good man’s opinion, even if he is our groom; tradition asks us not to neglect a good man’s opinion, even if he is our father.”

    Of course, GKC didn’t have Chicago politics in mind when he wrote that 🙂

  • My best friend used to live in Chicago. When he and his wife bought their first house, they went to vote for the first time. The two guys they bought the house from had already voted! In fact, they voted in every election as long as my friends lived there.

    Now my friend is the mayor of our city in Oregon. He’s been to some National League of Cities meetings where he’s met the alderman from the area where he used to live. He told the guy, “Hey, I voted for you!”

  • Ah yes, Chicago politics, where our president learned his craft via the democratic machine. My favorite was counting the number of city alderman who got indicted. Isn’t it over 100?

  • Update II: Cohen is now said to be seeking a “dignified” way out of his situation — according to some reports, he is willing to resign from the Democratic ticket but only under certain conditions which haven’t yet been made public.

    Meanwhile, his ex-girlfriend apparently has hired none other than Gloria Allred (noted celebrity/feminist wacko attorney) as her lawyer, and issued a statement through Allred that Cohen “is not fit to hold any public office.” Allred’s other clients include the family of Nicole Brown Simpson and one of Tiger Woods’ alleged mistresses.

    Well, I think the “dignified” way out is pretty much shot at this point.

  • Update III: As if Gloria Allred didn’t have enough on her plate, she’s also in the news right now for her claims that Tim Tebow’s mother is lying about the circumstances of his birth (because she allegedly would never have been told to have an abortion when abortion is supposed to be illegal in the Phillippines.)

    To top it all off, in 2003, Allred stated in a TV interview concerning the Scott and Laci Peterson murder case that “there are two individuals that are dead there, Laci and Connor (her unborn child).”

  • Update IV: He quit.

    “Scott Lee Cohen, the pawnbroker whose surprise victory in last week’s Democratic lieutenant governor primary was followed by scandalous revelations about him, quit the race tonight at the urging of party leaders.

    “Cohen made the tearful announcement at the Hop Haus tavern on the Far North Side.

    “For the good of the people of the state of Illinois and for the Democratic party, I will resign,” an emotional Cohen told a crowd of supporters and reporters.

    “I hope and I pray, with all my heart, that I didn’t hurt the people that I love so much,” Cohen said, choking up. “All I ever wanted to do was to run for office and to help the people, not to cause chaos,” he said, clutching his 11-year-old son, Jacob.”


    If he didn’t want to “hurt the people (he) love(s) so much,” he should have thought of that sooner… like about 5 years ago… but I digress.

    The Illinois Democratic Central Committee will choose a replacement candidate sometime in the next month; that person will replace Cohen as Gov. Quinn’s “running mate” for the general election.

  • That was a lot quicker than I thought it would be Elaine. I wonder what type of pressure they put on the pawnbroker. After dropping two million dollars of his own money on the race, I’m surprised he goes so tamely.

  • Well, perhaps all the pressure he needed was Mike Madigan telling him that there was no bleeping way he would ever take office.

    If Cohen had stayed on the ticket, Quinn would probably have done what Adlai Stevenson III did in 1986 when he got saddled with a LaRouchie running mate in a similar primary election debacle: form a “new” political party with slated candidates and try to convince Democrats to vote for that party instead of the actual Democrats. It didn’t work for Stevenson and probably wouldn’t have worked this time either.

    Speaking of Lyndon LaRouche, I assumed he was either dead by now or safely residing in the “Where Are They Now File,” but apparently, he’s still alive and kicking at age 87. He served 5 years in prison for mail fraud and conspiracy in the early 90s. At one point he had televangelist Jim Bakker as his cellmate; Bakker later said of LaRouche that “to describe him as a little paranoid is like saying the Titanic had a little leak.”

  • Jim Bakker and Lyndon LaRouche cellmates! There is a great comedy masterpiece waiting to be made about that.

$100 Million: Enough to Buy Landrieu Vote

Sunday, November 22, AD 2009

Democrat Party Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana cast her vote for Harry Reid’s health care bill and became the biggest purchased vote in American legislative history.  She sold her vote for a cool $100 million in order to begin debate on the anti-life health care bill.

As of 24 hours ago Senator Landrieu was still wavering on whether to vote for the health care bill.  But in a dark smoke filled room away from the lights and cameras of the media a deal had been struck which bought the senators vote.  Surprising considering President Obama promised an open and lively debate throughout the entire process and he has failed miserably in delivering on this promise.

Lies, corruption, and blatant disregard for the American people, in this instance, the people of Louisiana was in full display as Senator Landrieu cast bought vote for the health care bill.  She was so brazen about selling out her soul for money the U.S. government does not have that she proudly declared, “And it’s not a $100 million fix. It’s a $300 million fix.”  Bragging that she was bought for $300 million.  Some have called it the great new Louisiana Purchase.

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26 Responses to $100 Million: Enough to Buy Landrieu Vote

  • Tito, she didn’t vote for the health care bill itself, she voted on a “cloture” motion to begin DEBATING it, which is not necessarily the same thing. While it might be logical to assume that anyone who voted for the cloture motion is in favor of the bill itself, that could change at any time, especially if they start getting flak from their constituents.

    You criticize Obama for not delivering the “open and lively debate” he promised; well, isn’t this exactly what we’re going to get with this cloture motion having passed?

  • “she sold her vote against the wishes of the Louisiana people for an outrageous $300 million.”

    Am I missing something? I thought she got $300 million for Louisiana out of it.

  • and she got $300 million for her vote, not $100,000!
    Where in the ten commandments does it say that one can sell integrity if the price is high enough? Or is an honest politician a contradiction of terms? It’s said that the average payment in the house for a vote for health care destruction was $150 million. My how 30 pieces of silver has escalated.
    Yes this was a ‘start debate’ vote but historically,
    97% of bills getting through this hurdle, get passed!
    I’m amazed at how quickly the Democrats have been able to destroy the country we love.

  • To Elaine Krewer,

    I don’t want an open and lively debate on the health care bill. I want it defeated along with Barack Hussein Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Joe Biden and every other liberal politician who legitimatizes (1) experiments on unborn babies for “medical research”, (2) extraction of the brains of unborn babies as a “right to choose”, (3) murder of the aged and infirm as some sort of “death with dignity”, (4) sanctification of sodomy as a “human right”, and (5) all the other madness they extoll as “human rights”.

    One does NOT debate with the satanic legions of hell. One prays for their utter, total and complete defeat.

  • Paul, I’d rather it had never even been debated either, and were I one of Landrieu’s constituents I’d be disappointed in her decision as well.

    However, the fact remains, this was NOT a vote on the bill itself and it’s premature to portray it as such. Even if historically 97 percent of bills advanced to this stage pass, there’s still that other 3 percent.

    Needless to say, this bill is probably in the top 3 percent (or less) of most controversial bills ever and as such has a higher chance of still being defeated. Also, opening debate allows amendments to be offered, including pro-life amendments. Plus the Senate and House versions of the bill would still have to be reconciled in conference committee and voted on again. So this is NOT a done deal yet.

  • At the risk of sounding like an apologist…

    How is this payment for a vote different than the regular pork projects that constituents readily, and greedily, accept from their representatives? As a Pennsylvanian, I consider Rep. Murtha to be an embarrassment. He specifically called us racists and ignorant hicks and yet, he retained his seat. Why, because he continues to “bring home the bacon.”

    Frankly, We the People are getting EXACTLY what we deserve in our legislators because we are the ultimate recipients of what is, in essence, bribery. I think we, and the people of LA, have given up the right to claim righteous indignation at the high price paid for this vote. Or, to steal a Casablanca quote: “I am shocked! Shocked! To discover gambling is going on!”… Or something like that.

  • he retained his seat. Why, because he continues to “bring home the bacon.”

    I think that would be of interest to local politicos and for people in favored constituency groups, not to the general public. I think you will find that general public demobilization, not authentic public admiration, accounts for the degree to which incumbents are impregnable. Advertising costs for electoral contests are prohibitive. Also, Congressional districts in densely populated areas are either fairly uniform on certain variables or are seriously gerrymandered. The practical route to removal of the representative is a party primary, something which (I submit) seldom happens unless you alienate identifiable party factions or irritate some individual who can self-finance a run for Congress. An additional problem you have (where I live) is the culture of the press corps. They are often in the pocket of the legislator, and treat him boosterishly as an ‘area man’. Chaps like John Murtha get re-elected (by and large) because the self-selected class of people involved in electoral politics do not generate alternatives.

  • Biographical information on Landrieu indicates that she is 54 years hold, has drawn salaries from political office since she was 24, and has (apparently) had no other occupation since she was 32. She is a cut above Barney Frank, a 69 year old man who has held office since he was 28 and whose antecedent employment history consisted of the sort of part-time and seasonal positions you hold while a student. Still, she is a recognizable type. Jerry Springer explained his departure from electoral politics in Cincinnatti as follows, “if you’re doing this to put bread on the table, you’ll say anything.”

  • First let me make the point that Landrieu is not up for relection 2010. She just got put back into office last years. So while she is feeling heat the fact that 5 years is lifetime in politics is mitigating some of the influence of the people of the State. WHich to be honest is how the Founders intended it I guess

    I was not pleased with this vote but as much as I have opposed Landrieu I don’t find her corrupt. The fact that she received something for the State in exchange for her vote does not strike me as corrupt. Though if I was her I would have held out for more!!

    How she got in again (this is her third term) is a whole different story. She had a tough race 7 years ago. Her Repubican opponent this time ( a former well liked Democrat) ran a horrible race that many were not expecting. Still the race was closer than expected.

    How Mary Landrieu will vote on this at the end is well up in the air. She is pretty cozy with Insurance companies that has made the left very mad at her.

    One factor that might influence her is how her actions affect her brother Mitch Landrieu. Current Lt Governor of Louisiana. Mitch has gained some popularity after being defeated for Mayor of New Orelans (Lt Governor is a nice job not much controversy) He has his eyes on the Governor mansion after Jindal leaves. So that factor might be in play too

  • Though if I was her I would have held out for more!!

    BAH! Can we please give the state and local governments a standard subsidy based on per capita income and population, let them build their own frigging public works, and put federal facilities where they serve to best perform institutional missions? The last reason in the world you want a military base at locus x is to make advertising fodder for Congressman Suckupthecash.

  • Elaine,

    She did sell out her vote.

    She could have easily defeated the bill without it having to be debated on the floor.

    As far as President Obama’s promise of open view of the process, he has failed miserably. None of the behind the door negotiations were on C-SPAN as he claimed would happen.

  • “Can we please give the state and local governments a standard subsidy based on per capita income and population”

    That was my first thought but then I thought, “why give any money to the states and local governments?” Give it to individuals based on individual income and family size. Any state or local projects can be financed by state or local taxes.

  • Give it to individuals based on individual income and family size. Any state or local projects can be financed by state or local taxes.

    State-to-state variation in per capita income in considerable, with Mississippi’s about half that of Connecticut. A program of income redistribution necessary to counteract that would require the assessment and disbursement of ~22% of personal income each year. (Social Security implicates the assessment and disbursement of 5%, btw). The marginal tax rates necessary for such a project of equalization would make for a decidedly anemic economy, I would think. The ratio of state-and-local expenditure to domestic product is 0.17, so the necessary assessment and disbursement would be smaller. When I last checked, intergovernmental transfers amounted to about 3% of domestic product. You would not have to increase these much, just repartition them and remove the conditionality.

  • Art Deco, I read your reply four times and I’m still not sure I’m understanding you correctly. I’m not advocating complete income equalization between the states (which I imagine your idea of state subsidizing wouldn’t do either), just some redistribution.

  • Voting for the cloture motion IS voting for the bill. If Democrats vote it down after the fillibuster-proof, 30 hours MAXIMUM “debate” that will follow, a lot of people will die of shock — me included. There is not going to be a debate. There will be the usual bunch of speeches and then they will pass it because they can.

  • I know it is standard but where do the Constitution, the Ten Commandments or Church Teaching set up politicians to go to Washington to steal as much from everyone who does not live in your state?

    It seems wrong to me, don’t you think?

    I also think that giving scandal to Catholics isn’t helpful. If I was Christian and not Catholic I would see the behaviour of Landrieu, Pelosi, Biden and the rest of the devil’s rejects as a great reason to levy the label, “whore of Babylon” against the Church. Is that ignorant? Of course it is. But is it any more ignorant than being a pro-gay, pro-murder, pro-socialist Catholic?

  • How is it stealing to secure more funding for Medicaid, a program the helps poor people to buy health care?

    That’s as absurd as the notion that voting to allow debate renders one amoral. Where do you people get the idea that hyperbole is effective? It makes you look like nuts (this being the charitable explanation that you aren’t actually nuts). Thank goodness for some people with common sense like Elaine and jh.

  • Zak: “How is it stealing to secure more funding for Medicaid, a program the helps poor people to buy health care?”

    When one is coerced by threat of force to part with private property that is theft, no matter the reason. We can argue about the degree, context, etc. But is still theft.

    Now if Medicaid was actually a program to help the poor have access to health care it may not be so bad. But it isn’t. Medicaid is self-perpetuating bureacracy designed to increase its constituency by making and keeping people dependent on it for access to basic, necessary services (including Family Planning). It is the modern day plantation and seeks to increase power by making more slaves. Do not confuse stated intentions with practical results.

    Setting that aside, Let us assume that Medicaid is good for the poor of Louisianna. How is it just to acquire $100mil, which we don’t have, to purchase the cooperation of a Senator in order to legislate the murder of the pre-born? The poor we will always have with us, the preborn we won’t especially if we are forcibly caused to pay for their deaths. Maybe that is how we solve the problem of the poor – kill them before they are born! Does that make sense?


    And yes, she comes up for election in 2014 next. Sen. Vitter from LA is up in 2010 and he will probably be re-elected, unfortunately.

  • American Knight, have you ever, once, found a doctor of the church or a pope who has condemned taxation as theft? And what is your interpretation of Christ’s teaching about “rendering unto Caesar” which was given in the context of a discussion of taxation.

    It is not yet determined whether the healthcare legislation will include any funding for abortion, so voting to allow debate isn’t legislating the murder of the unborn.

    Regarding whether Medicare makes people slaves, I do think it’s an imprudent, if not absurd, means of argument. Here – “we’ll pay your son’s doctor’s bill when he has the flu so you don’t have to choose between that and food” doesn’t sound quite the same as “pick cotton in the field and if you don’t pick enough I will whip you.” There are certainly major flaws in the welfare state, but a slave plantation it is not.

  • Zak,

    Taxation is a pretty general term. What kind of tax are we talking about? Income taxes are not beneficial in any way shape or form and they constitute a confiscation of wealth from the aggregate economy. People’s wages are income to the worker; however, they are an expense to the producer who pays those incomes. By taxing what is effectively, at a macro-level, an expense the government is stealing from the commonwealth of America. Taking that which does not belong to you is stealing, especially when it is illegal and without consent. Hence any type of income tax on the earnings of a natural person is not a revenue tax but rather an additional expense, hence a burden, on the aggregate wealth. Payroll taxes are especially pejorative because they raise the tax burden on the poor far more than anyone else and along with mandatory minimum wage laws create most of the unemployment for the least skilled, usually the poor and undereducated.

    Federal money units fund Medicaid. These units are fabricated dollar units in the form of notes (debt) owed to the private, illegal Federal Reserve by the US Treasury on behalf of the people of the USA without our consent. The servicing of that debt is income taxes on natural persons (currently over 66% of income tax revenue and headed to 100% very soon). Therefore, it is a confiscation of the aggregate wealth of America in order to service a usurious debt burden based on nothing other than paper (or digital ledger entries).

    While Medicaid allegedly provides for the poor, it is burdened with fraud and self-serving bureaucratic costs. It distorts the natural price system creating over production and service in some areas while creating shortages in others. The former attracts fraud and the latter raises costs and reduces service to the poor. Additionally, each dollar unit fabricated out of thin air dilutes the dollar value and raises the costs, which is a more severe burden on the poor.

    By creating this unethical program and couching it in terms that are appealing to social justice the perpetrators of this fraud are robbing all Americans and doing the most damage to the least advantaged while making them think they are providing a benefit for them. This is unethical and immoral on so many grounds.

    Adding to this crime, we now have an additional $300 million burden to secure the vote to proceed on a bill that includes the murder of the most innocent and vulnerable Americans. How much will it cost to bribe her to vote for the bill proper? It is also horrible that this bribe bought the vote of a Catholic Senator. Did she vote for the bill? No. No one has. Did she vote to discuss, which is an implicit vote for the bill? Yes. Does the bill include murder? Yes. Does the removal of the abortion-funding make this bill better? Yes, in that it will not be directly killing babies; but that does not make it good. It only makes the bill less bad and since abortion is one of the highest sins of our culture and our government, it is first on the list. Do not think the fact that the removal of abortion-funding has prominence means that this bill is not offensive to Catholic teaching in many other areas. It is a horrible bill that creates an apparatus for a secular (often hostile to Christians) government to have control over a large part of our economy and considerable if not total control over our lives.

    To think that a government run by sinners and not only sinners but secular progressive sinners hostile to Christ, His Church and His people will use the power it has for our benefit is naïve at best and more than likely delusional.

    Government has a specific and necessary function and it needs to be funded by taxes to perform those functions. Providing health care and taxing the incomes of natural persons does not fall under the legitimate authority of government and most certainly it does not fall under the authority of our government as established by the Constitution of 1789, properly amended.

    Christ did tell us to render to Caesar what is Caesar’s, but He also warned us not to render to Caesar what is God’s. Our health and our lives belong to God and not to Caesar.

  • BTW – Zak, you have an incorrect view of what a slave plantation was like. Sure some slaves were physically abused and wipped and raped, etc. Horrible.

    But that is a small percentage of slave owners who treated their slaves that way. Most slave owners considered their slaves as their property and a key factor in the plantation’s prodcutive capacity. So physical abuse would be the same as a farmer starving his ox or modern day farmer taking a sledge hammer to his tractor.

    Slaves where actually physically rather well off becuase they were beasts of burden. Ratehr than most slaves suffering physical abuse what they were suffering was abuse of their human dignity.

    People on Medicaid, food stamps and other government welfare programs are suffering the same abuse to their human dignity.

    In fact one could say that African slaves suffered less attack on their dignity than the victims of the modern welfare state becuase at least the African slaves knew they were slaves. Also, since the slavery was more personal, human emotion often got the better of the master’s household. Some slaves were taught to read and write, some were offered a portion of the land to grow their own crops and even sell them. No social worker affords modern-day welfare-slaves that dignity. Some slaveowners even insisted that their slaves be taught the Christian faith – imagine a government worker reading Scripture to a Medicaid recipeint. Gimme a break.

    Before anyone jumps on me for being a racist: I am Southern and I am also an immigrant to the Southland (by the Grace of God) from the lands that Christ walked so I am not exactly white and to my knowledge my family hasn’t owned any African slaves in the last couple of centuries if ever.

    I am also not stating that ante-bellum African slavery was dignified. I am not. It was horrible. I am merely saying it is less bad than the modern day welfare-state slavery of blacks and North and South American Indians and poor whites.

    My plantation analogy still stands. The difference is the plantation is nationwide and the master is the secular progressive government and the slaves are all sorts of different colors.

  • one could say that African slaves suffered less attack on their dignity than the victims of the modern welfare state

    I haven’t been taking American Knight seriously for a while now but this just blew my mind.

    Before anyone jumps on me for being a racist: I am Southern and I am also an immigrant to the Southland (by the Grace of God) from the lands that Christ walked so I am not exactly white and to my knowledge my family hasn’t owned any African slaves in the last couple of centuries if ever.

    Yes, because what determines whether you’re racist is your location, complexion, and whether your ancestors owned slaves.

  • All,

    Be very careful in what you say in the commboxes.

    You’ve been duly warned.

    I don’t take PC-speak from anyone, especially on my post.

  • rr,

    “I haven’t been taking American Knight seriously for a while now but this just blew my mind.”

    Coming from you that is probably a compliment; however, I have taken your posts seriously – otherwise why should I bother responding? If we are searching for truth and debating how our Catholic faith informs our political and cultural involvement we should all take each other seriously. That comment is more a reflection on you than it is on me.

    I share my views here becuase I want to know if I can defend them or if they have flaws. You and I may not agree on practical methods, but I would hope that we agree that we are called to inform our minds and actions with orthodox Catholic teaching. Unless a moderator, whose guest I am on here, tells my that I am out of line then I would appreciate it if you would respond sensibly to my posts, especially those you disagree with, or kindly ignore them.

    “because what determines whether you’re racist is your location, complexion, and whether your ancestors owned slaves.”

    No it doesn’t. But I post on here anonymously so I very few actually know me. I though some generic information may help move the focus on to the veracity of the argument instead of an attack on ‘a typcal southern racist descendant of slave owners’ approach. I feared that small-minded people may decide the post was racism directed at blacks because labeling anything that offends egalitarian political thought racist is a common and easy distraction. I actaully expcted better from you. You won’t dissappoint me again.

  • Pingback: Senator Nelson Sells Out Unborn, Health Care Bill Heads to Vote « The American Catholic

House to Acorn: Drop Dead

Friday, September 18, AD 2009



The House has voted to cut off all federal funds for Acorn.  The vote was 345-75.  Here is a list of the 75 House members who want to continue to shovel your tax dollars to Acorn.  Everyone of the 75 is a Democrat.

In other Acorn news,  the Obama campaign website has been scrubbing away references to Acorn down the old Orwell memory hole.

You know that Acorn is toast when even the Lying Worthless Political Hack, a/k/a Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, is calling for an investigation of Acorn.  The day before yesterday she wasn’t even aware that the Senate had voted to cut off funding for Acorn.

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13 Responses to House to Acorn: Drop Dead

  • Donald,
    One congressman argued this legislation was unconstitutional because it’s a bill of attainder, which Congress is prohibited from passing. What is your opinion on that?

  • Zak,

    it’s not a finding of guilt or a punishment for a crime. It’s cutting of taxpayer funding of their programs, to which they are not “entitled”.

  • ACORN prepares to retaliate against Dems
    ACORN Considers Ending Voter Registration Work
    Troubled community-organizing group Acorn announced Thursday it was considering quitting its voter-registration work amid growing outrage over its activities, a move that could hurt Democrats at the polls.

  • Matt,
    I don’t know. I’m not a lawyer, but I was looking at U.S. vs. Lovett (referred by wikipedia), and there the Supreme Court said that Congress couldn’t prohibit the paying of salaries of government employees because they were Communists. It ruled (

    Legislative acts, no matter what their form, that apply either to named individuals or to easily ascertainable members of a group in such a way as to inflict punishment on them without a judicial trial, are bills of attainder prohibited by the Constitution. Cummins v. Missouri, 4 Wall. 277; Ex parte Garland, 4 Wall. 333. P. 315.

    (c) The fact that the punishment is inflicted through the instrumentality of an Act specifically cutting off the pay of certain named individuals found by Congress to be guilty of disloyalty make it no less effective than if it had been done by an Act which designated the conduct as criminal. P. 316.

    It seems like establishes a pretty close precedent.

  • Although one could argue, as you are, that paying a salary is something to which one is entitled, while government procurement is not, so it is different. But what if Congress prohibited Boeing from any aerospace procurement contracts? Would that be a bill of attainder?

  • I don’t see how, since those people where “entitled” to their paychecks. Nobody is entitled to have the federal government grant them funding for a project.

  • what if Congress prohibited Boeing from any aerospace procurement contracts? Would that be a bill of attainder

    I don’t think it would be technically a bill of attainder, but it could be challenged for other causes if the action wasn’t justifiable.

  • Zak, my opinion is that it was a manifestly silly statement by the Congresscritter. Matt’s statement is absolutely correct, and it has been well litigated that Congress, as controller of the purse, can cut off funding to any organization at any time.

  • I don’t know. It’s an interesting question, and I’m glad to have learned a little more about our founding document on Constitution Day! Thanks

  • Oh. I hadn’t seen your comment, Donald. I guess it makes sense that there has been plenty of litigation on this issue in the past. Thanks

  • Donald has nailed it. Silly reference to bill of attainder. Not a chance.

  • One other interesting thing – are you familiar with Cummings v. Missouri, another case on Bills of Attainder? “Cummings, a Catholic Priest, was convicted for teaching and preaching as a minister without taking the oath [of loyalty].” (from Black’s Decision in Lovett. It struck me as interesting that there does not appear to be a first amendment consideration (probably because it was a state law, and there was no incorporation doctrine at the time – actually the decision predates the 14th amendment).

  • I’m quite sure there are numerous provisions attached to the receipt of government grants (well, there should be). I don’t think it would be hard to argue that the actions of Acorn violated one or many of those provisions. Also, years ago I looked at the 501c3 provisions and they’re pretty restrictive. Acorn could easily lose it’s tax status, which if done, *may* preclude them receiving much of their other grant monies. I’m not a lawyer – I just know they’re really good at making things complex. 😉

One Response to Acorn San Diego: O'Keefe and Giles Strike Again!

  • I actually wonder how much of this is actually from the organization itself, and how much is from the liberal mindset? It seems like a really bad case of non-judgementalism on behalf of the employees. From the ‘consent is the criteria for the good’ angle, the people they are dealing with are consenting adults whose illegal activities will be ‘victimless’. The smuggling girls across the border – that seems a little hard to believe.

Acorn on the Ropes

Thursday, September 17, AD 2009


1.  The second part of the San Bernardino Acorn expose of O’Keefe and Giles.  Go here to read the comments of Giles regarding her “girl talk” with the flakey Acorn employee.


2.  In the wake of the Acorn scandal exposed by the intrepid duo of O’Keefe and Giles, Acorn has announced that it is suspending advising new clients and is setting up an independent review board.  Hmmm, this is an amazing turnabout from the initial reaction of  Acorn to the videos  which was that the whole thing was a conspiracy against Acorn put together by Fox.  Of course the “independent review board” is stacked with cronies and supporters of Acorn, but at least Acorn is under such pressure that it has to pretend to be trying to reform itself.

3.  Governor Pawlenty of Minnesota has ordered a review and suspension of any state contracts with Acorn.

4.  Governor Schwarzenegger in California is calling for a full investigation of Acorn’s California activities.

5.  Meantime Acorn has joined the Reverend Wright, and many other groups and individuals under the Obama bus.  Obama had a somewhat different attitude regarding the organization just last year:

When Obama met with ACORN leaders in November, he reminded them of his history with ACORN and his beginnings in Illinois as a Project Vote organizer, a nonprofit focused on voter rights and education. Senator Obama said, “I come out of a grassroots organizing background. That’s what I did for three and half years before I went to law school. That’s the reason I moved to Chicago was to organize. So this is something that I know personally, the work you do, the importance of it. I’ve been fighting alongside ACORN on issues you care about my entire career. Even before I was an elected official, when I ran Project Vote voter registration drive in Illinois, ACORN was smack dab in the middle of it, and we appreciate your work.”

6.  The Lying Worthless Political Hack, a/k/a Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, was asked about the Senate bill cutting off funding for Acorn, her response was as follows:  “I don’t even know what they passed,” Pelosi told The Post yesterday. “What did they do? They defunded it?”

7.  I have never liked Jon Stewart:  too liberal for my conservative tastes.  However, this clip of his show here where he lambastes the mainstream media for missing the Acorn story is a must see.  As he notes, he is a fake journalist and he feels terrible about being scooped on a story by a couple of kids.  He gets to the heart of the matter.  The corruption of Acorn has been apparent for years, but neither the media nor the politicians did anything until a very inventive “couple of kids” took the initiative to expose the corruption for all to see.  A media that ignores this type of story is a media that is worthless.  Politicians who tolerate this type of corruption and shovel taxpayer funds at a manifestly corrupt organization are worse than worthless.  What O’Keefe and Giles have demonstrated is that we do not have to put up with this state of affairs.  Look forward for more shoes to drop:    more videos are on the way.

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9 Responses to Acorn on the Ropes

  • Someone pointed out at NRO that all this is because of 2 brave people whose combined age is 45. If the media had done their jobs, this sort of citizen activism would be unnecessary.

  • No, I do not work for Acorn, I simply wish to share links to contribute to a fair and balanced discussion.

    Again, I do not ask you to agree with every words in the comments. I simply ask you to take a look at the charges of promoting lies and then respond. Thank you.

  • I love the way Jon Stewart says these two did the entire story for less than it costs CNN to shop-vac Wolf Blitzer’s beard or turn on their fancy hologram! 😉

  • Well, Brian, looks like they debunked the dead husband (and lucky for him!).

    As to the rest of it…?

    Moreover, to have a balanced discussion, it would be nice if you at least acknowledged the grotesque employee behavior that occurred at the other offices.

  • As Dale points out, please address the problems with the other sites. I know you provided links about thes also. Most of the comments on those links were “they broke the law” by taping. Maybe so. Still doesn’t absolve the wrongs that ACORN does.

    Also noted this banner on the link your provided above. Why is this using the “N” word?

    “Why Won’t The Media Address the Real Issue? ‘ACORN’ Is Wingnut Code for The ‘N’ Word.”

  • Why on Earth would the San Diego lady go along with this little “hoax” and play up the hooker angle? At best, she is incredibly stupid, and funding should be stopped for that alone.

  • What is most damning about these vids is that the workers take the requests completely in stride – as if they’ve given similiar advice many times.

    The thing I wonder about is that while just about any woman under the age of 40 can make herself look whorish just by applying makeup with a trowel and putting on some tacky clothes*, O’Keefe strikes me as the world’s least convincing “pimp.” (And not because he is white. He just doesn’t have a “street-smart” aura about him.) I’m surprised the ACORN workers bought it.

    *I remember the hookers on DC’s 14th Street before that area was cleaned up. I felt sorry for them. Virtually none of them looked liked Giles or Julia Roberts. Many of them looked ill – either obese or heroin-addict skinny -and like they were in a drug haze. What a wretched life.

  • O’Keefe and Giles are a pimp and a whore right out of a Disney cartoon. They are completely unconvincing. This makes the whole thing all the more delicious! The Acorn people are not only crooks, they are stupid crooks!

  • I suppose that I made yet another weak attempt at stirring discussion. I apologize. I have tried before and I may try again, but I admit that this time I made mistakes.

The Acorn Scandals Continue

Tuesday, September 15, AD 2009

O’Keefe and Giles take their pimp and prostitute masquerade to an Acorn office in San Bernadino California and are met with open arms!  Four Acorn offices across the nation have no problem with helping out a criminal enterprise involving underage prostitutes!  This has been a brilliant sting which has brought Acorn to its knees in just a few days.  Amazing, simply amazing!  Go here to read Hannah Giles’ comments on the science behind the Acorn sting. 

The mainstream media and this story?  Best summed up by ABC’s Charlie Gibson’s comment this morning on WLS in Chicago that he knew nothing about it.  If a story reflects poorly on Democrats, it might as well not exist for much of the mainstream media.  In the day of blogs and youtube, this type of partisan “ostrich journalism” is rapidly becoming extinct.  They will not be missed.


Update:  The New York City city council has suspended payments to Acorn and the Attorney General of New York has announced an investigation into pork barrel grants to Acorn. 

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7 Responses to The Acorn Scandals Continue

  • I don’t why I’m still surprised by Charles Gibson’s reaction. But I like the term you coined “ostrich journalism”.

    I think we should add that as our new tag to articles such as these.

  • Good idea Tito. I have added the “OJ” tag!

  • Ostrich journalism? I think not. The MSM is bravely covering Congress’s heroic effort to censure Joe Wilson.

  • “The mainstream media and this story? Best summed up by ABC’s Charlie Wilson’s comment this morning on WLS in Chicago that he knew nothing about it.”

    Charlie Wilson? or Gibson??

    Mini Rant:

    From ACORN to Unions to Planned Parenthood, I will say it seems to be so much about SPECIAL INTERESTS.

    Perhaps it is fair play to say Insurance Companies are behind some who oppose Health Care, I don’t know. That is why Tort Reform is needed.

    Now, Carter and the Democrats are trying an end run and bringing up race. Some oppose Obama based on race I would admit but not a significant percentage.

    But these matters with ACORN certainly bring to light the special interest nature of some Democrats. If as we have heard a long time ago, we did not have the most pro-abortion president ever, I might be more tolerant in other areas.

  • Tom, thank you for catching my error as to Mr. Gibson’s last name and I have corrected it in the post.

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From Tiny Acorns Mighty Scandals Grow

Tuesday, September 15, AD 2009

Acorn, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, is a left wing political action group with close ties to the Democrat party.  Since 1994 it has received over 53 million dollars in federal funds.  It has a long history of involvement in voter registration fraud.  Obama has a very long history of involvement with Acorn.  Acorn has acknowledged problems in voter registration fraud but has blamed a few “bad apples”.

Thanks to the intrepid James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles, posing as a pimp and prostitute, we now know quite a bit more about advice that Acorn gives to those seeking assistance from them.  Hitting Acorn offices in Baltimore, Washington and Brooklyn, Acorn employees were only too happy to assist O’Keefe and Giles in setting up a fictitious house of prostitution involving underage prostitutes.  The advice of the Acorn worker in Baltimore that the girl prostitutes could be listed as dependents on the tax returns of O”Keefe and Giles is pure comedy gold!

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31 Responses to From Tiny Acorns Mighty Scandals Grow

  • Looks like Bob Casey is also one of the seven.

  • Am I remembering correctly that back around the election, conservative Catholics were being scolded for objecting to the bishops funnelling a million or so from the Catholic Campaign For Human Development into these folks?

  • Accusing left wing Catholics of defending Acorn? For shame Darwin!

  • Interesting; all that talk about breaking the cycle of poverty and structures of sin. Of course those are noble goals and I’d say a moral obligation. But as often the case it boils down to what one considers to be the cycle of poverty, the structure of sin, and the means of breaking it – and what one is willing to do, allow, or overlook to enact their cure. Clearly some will excuse any injustice, immorality, or counterproductive acts if it favors their political ideology.

    Here’s the prototype of the response:

    You so called conservatives, you’re really liberals in the true sense of the word. You’re not against human trafficking, the exploitation of minors and wome. You’re just imperialists who don’t want poor Latin American to have gainful employment!

  • It is truly amazing with all that smoke and indeed some fire these folks were going to play a role in the Census. And no one in the media seemed to care

  • funnelling a million or so from the Catholic Campaign For Human Development into these folks?

    they got a lot of money from there, which is cut-off now, but the money is going to birds of a feather anyway. Don’t give anything to these socialism pushers.

  • I agree with Matt. I used to give, but unfortunately no longer trust them to use the money wisely.

  • MIke I still urge people to give to the collection. THey just did to be asking the Bishops where it is going!!

    I think the very Orthodox Diocese of Kanasa City did this right

  • Oh, I apologize for the links leaking over onto the next column. I really had no idea that would happen.

  • Sort of off topic: Undercover work requires lying. Can Catholics be undercover officers?

  • Considering the number of brave priests over the centuries who have adopted false identities in order to spread the message of Christ in areas hostile to the Church, I do not believe there is a blanket condemnation of deceit in all circumstances. Here are some relevant passages from the Catechism:

    “2488 The right to the communication of the truth is not unconditional. Everyone must conform his life to the Gospel precept of fraternal love. This requires us in concrete situations to judge whether or not it is appropriate to reveal the truth to someone who asks for it.

    2489 Charity and respect for the truth should dictate the response to every request for information or communication. The good and safety of others, respect for privacy, and the common good are sufficient reasons for being silent about what ought not be known or for making use of a discreet language. The duty to avoid scandal often commands strict discretion. No one is bound to reveal the truth to someone who does not have the right to know it.282

    2491 Professional secrets – for example, those of political office holders, soldiers, physicians, and lawyers – or confidential information given under the seal of secrecy must be kept, save in exceptional cases where keeping the secret is bound to cause very grave harm to the one who confided it, to the one who received it or to a third party, and where the very grave harm can be avoided only by divulging the truth. Even if not confided under the seal of secrecy, private information prejudicial to another is not to be divulged without a grave and proportionate reason.”

  • Don,

    I’m not so sure you can call it “deceit”; this has too much of a negative connotation attached to it that folks might mistake it as having malicious intent.

    Just like those brave priests you mentioned, I would not think theirs could even be considered such a case.

    They are not unlike those brave Catholics who essentially did the same when facilitating the escape of those Jews undergoing persecution during WWII.

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  • I agree with you e. There are times when it is very immoral to tell the truth.

  • “the filmmakers reportedly went to several ACORN offices, where their ploy was unsuccessful, before finding someone to fall for their scheme.”

    Sorry, Brian, but that statement does not equal “they found only one office that took their bait.” It merely implies that some ACORN offices of the total that were visited didn’t bite. (Why they didn’t immediately call the police is another question.) Unless you’ve got something more definitive stashed somewhere, I’d say the Newshounds appear to be the kind of hound who’ll yap at anything.

  • I will grant, however, that there appears to be a time stamp discrepancy on the film (Newshounds missed that, but a commenter remarked on it so it doesn’t alter my opinion of them.) The version Big Government has is edited and has no time stamp, but the camera pans briefly to a dry-erase calendar labeled “July ’09.” I’m looking for it on the vids above, but no dice yet.

  • They allegedly visited multiple branches of ACORN and found only one that took their bait.

    Given that they’ve already released videos from four different offices (each offering to help them with their prostitution ring) this seems unlikely.

  • There are times when it is very immoral to tell the truth.

    But isn’t it always immoral to lie? “I’m a pimp” is a lie, not a withholding of truth.

  • “But isn’t it always immoral to lie? “I’m a pimp” is a lie, not a withholding of truth.”

    Well, there go investigative journalism, detective work, and intel as career options for practicing Catholics.

  • restrainedradical: It’s 1942 and you’re hiding Anne Frank and her family in Amsterdam. An SS officer asks you if you know where any Jews are hidden. Do you say, “Well, since it’s always immoral to lie, officer, they’re in that building over there, right up those stairs.”

  • restrainedradical: It’s 1942 and you’re hiding Anne Frank and her family in Amsterdam. An SS officer asks you if you know where any Jews are hidden. Do you say, “Well, since it’s always immoral to lie, officer, they’re in that building over there, right up those stairs.”

    I’d hope that God gives me the strength to say to the officer, “none of your business.”

  • I covered this issue with my criticism of Lila Rose.

    What I decided, since there does not seem to be clear Church teaching on this, is that undercover work may be moral, but entrapment is not, because it is an attempt to lead people into sins they would not otherwise commit. As I see it, that is an offense against human dignity. We’re supposed to lead people away from sin in order to save them, not lead them into it in order to condemn them (that would be Satan’s mission).

    I’m not sure it is the case here, since the ACORN employees seem to have been ready with the relevant information, as if it were a thing they typically do. They didn’t have to be persuaded. The possibility was brought up and they immediately seized upon it. It suggests that they have done this sort of thing before.

  • I interpret Aquinas as saying that undercover work is a venial sin and entrapment is a mortal sin. But wouldn’t it be a mortal sin to accepts a job that requires constant venial sinning? Shouldn’t the Church ban Catholics from becoming undercover officers?

  • I’m not sure it is the case here, since the ACORN employees seem to have been ready with the relevant information, as if it were a thing they typically do. They didn’t have to be persuaded.

    Same thing with Rose and Planned Parenthood. That’s the whole point of Rose’s videos.

  • I wonder if I can respond to this without having every word I type “reinterpreted” to suit the needs of the moment.

    I didn’t see the ‘same thing’ in the videos where Lila Rose is trying to expose racism at Planned Parenthood.

    People never seem to understand or acknowledge a very simple thing: she did two different things. Exposing Planned Parenthood’s flouting of state laws was, I think, legitimate undercover work.

    Trying to make the case that Planned Parenthood is racist because one of its clinics took money that was supposed to be ear-marked for black abortions is entrapment, if not of a legal kind, of a moral kind. The people on the other end of the line had clearly never heard such a request before and were clearly not in the habit of doing that sort of thing.

    So, in one case, yes, it was the same. In the other case, no, it wasn’t.

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  • I’d hope that God gives me the strength to say to the officer, “none of your business.”

    Do you think that was an option in Nazi-occupied Europe? So you say that and the SS officer has you arrested and tortured and imprisoned. In the meantime, the Jews you have hidden are starving because you haven’t been able to bring them provisions and they can’t very well go out and get them themselves.

    So not only your life, but theirs is endangered. But gee, that’s fine, because you haven’t lied.

  • Under such circumstances I’d lie a million times if need be to save an innocent life and I do believe my guardian angel would be cheering me on.

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Blagojevich Impeached

Monday, January 12, AD 2009

Blagojevich impeached in a cliffhanger, with the vote for impeachment only 114-1.  Here is the House report on which the impeachment vote was based.  Blagojevich is the first Illinois governor to be impeached which is rather remarkable when you consider some of the public thieves who have misgoverned my state.  Now on to the Senate for the trial.  Blagojevich is vowing to fight on, and I expect his legal team to pull every possible maneuver to delay the inevitable.

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3 Responses to Blagojevich Impeached

  • Yowie zowie. What shall I do? My Iggles continue their magical mystery tour thru playoffs in 23-11 beatdown of New York Football Giants. And yet a new chapter in the Blago Story emerges with impeachment. Combined with tawdry spectacle of Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon indicted for doing tacky stuff like using gift cards meant for poor folks. Such quality entertainment on so many fronts.

  • Well, this whole mess is making me feel better about my governor, Doyle, although he’s no treat either.

    Can it possibly be that Blago honestly (I know, I know, those are two words not often seen together in the same sentence) does not think he’s done anything wrong? Does a fish know it’s wet? Well, this is going to get better and better, although my sympathy really does go out to hapless down-staters who are outvoted by Chicagoland.

    I really wish Blago would stop quoting Kipling. As a poster on another site pointed out, if it’s poetry he wants to quote, “The Ballad of Reading Gaol” would be a more appropriate choice.

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Wednesday, January 7, AD 2009


A bit more to the Richardson removal from consideration as Commerce Secretary than I first thought.  Apparently the Obama campaign got $30,000.00 from David Rubin, the man at the center of the Richardson pay for play investigation.  This would explain why, combined with the Blagojevich indictment, that Richardson was thrown under the bus so quickly.  Since Obama raised over 600 million in the Presidential campaign, one can imagine all the seedy characters who tossed substantial funds into the pot, no doubt solely because they believed in “hope and change”.  Bet that Team Obama is matching with a microscope their fund raising records against those of each nominee now.

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One Response to Hmmm

  • Or not. Richardson might have been among the most blatant possible offenders. Getting more concerned about other appointments. Like Leon Panetta at CIA. Might be as qualified for the job as Mrs. Schlossberg for the U.S. Senate. Which is to say not really. Showing the relative shallowness and naive perspective of Team Obama beginning with the top Hope And Change Guy. At first easy to rely on recycled Clintonoids. Or keeping Robert Gates at Defense. Now onto the jobs that require grownups. Or people who aren’t career political hacks.

5 Responses to The Illinois Way

  • Would be nice if Pat Fitz stays in job. Round here, must give serious props to former U.S. Attorney Pat Meehan with his own share of scalps. A former City Councilman. The brother of the previous mayor. The former city managing director. Various investment types trying to get in good with the previous mayor. The rich loon who murdered a wrestler resisting his advances- who previously had naming rights to what is now nicknamed The Ski Lodge, at Villanova University. Set in motion the current trial of a prominent former state senator from South Philly. Seems like U.S. Attorneys are busy in places that were big FDR Whistle Stops back in 1932. The places where gummint expanded and expanded. Thus creating more and more opportunities for official mischief. May the Lord be with Mr. Fitz in his august responsibilities.

  • Here’s a great quote:

    “As FBI Agent Robert Grant put it: ‘Illinois might not be the most corrupt state in the union, but it’s a helluva competitor.'”

  • Correction- Meehan’s office bagged city finance director. Would have nailed a local attorney for whom the finance guy served as loyal servant, but passed away before trial. Rats. Philly politics still not weird like Chi-town’s.

  • “As FBI Agent Robert Grant put it: ‘Illinois might not be the most corrupt state in the union, but it’s a helluva competitor.’”

    Unfortunately there is a lot of competition. Louisiana comes to mind. And New Jersey. And Alaska.

15 Responses to The War on Joe the Plumber-the Report

  • I agree with your anger Jonolan but I deleted your comment. Talk of “gunning down” the officials involved goes way, way over the line.

  • If you say so, Donald; it’s your blog.

  • How infidels may be punished for daring to challenge the Most High and Mighty President Elect. Of course the main bureaucrat responsible donated a couple grand or so to the campaign. Would write It Will Have A Chilling Effect and Beware The Fairness Doctrine and so forth. I have very little faith in anyone involved in the business of politics- as Scripture warns put not your trust in princes. But I sense the Obamaites will fall over themselves to implement their many and varied and often conflicting agendas. From Fairness Doctrine to FOCA to whatever, they may well wind up with a losing batting average. Consider the Dems’ panic at the thought of a 2010 meltdown. While sending up Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano to Homeland Security. In past life, she was legal counsel in 1991 for St. Anita Hill, Virgin And Martyr. I would expect her confirmation hearing to be jolly fun, particularly if she faces my senior Senator, the Hon. Arlen Specter. AKA Chief Inquistitor for St. Anita. As for our Joe, he will walk away with much coin following the mandatory lawsuits against these officials. A special guest star at GOP fundraisers. Nothing succeeds like excess.

  • Maybe you should offer Plumber Joe’s (along with You Betcha Sarah’s) book through American Catholic…

    They all seem to go hand in hand…

  • Funny how I did not see a similar concern from you over the Bush Administration’s outing of Valerie Plame…

  • Funny how I did not see a similar concern from you over the Bush Administration’s outing of Valerie Plame…

    I don’t know why I am bothering to respond to this troll, but A) This blog didn’t exist in 2005, and B) the Bush administration did not “out” Valerie Plame, but of course knowing that would require getting one’s news from something other than the Daily Show and CNN.

  • My recollection is that, indeed, American Catholic was silent about the Plame affair. Additionally, we failed to condemn Watergate, opposition to the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and Joe McCarthy ;-).

  • Btw, I don’t think Mr. DeFrancisis is a troll (despite occasional similarities).

  • Oh, so he just plays a troll on the internet?

  • The Plame case is still an existing civil suit.

  • The person who revealed the non-secret secret that Valerie Plame was a CIA agent and used her position to have her husband Joe Wilson investigate Iraqi attempts to purchase yellow cake in Niger was Richard Armitage, right hand man of Obama endorser Colin Powell. The Plame civil suit was dismissed in federal court on july 19, 2007 and the dismissal was upheld on appeal on August 12, 2008.

  • Let us also remember – well, learn if the Leftists have that capacity – that there is no direct equivalence between outing a CIA operative and illegally using government resources in order to harm a private citizen who embarrassed a political candidate. Both are wrong, but they’re not equivalent crimes against America.

  • Well said Jonolan, especially when the fact that the CIA operative was a CIA operative was an open “secret” in Washington is taken into account. Joe Wilson, her garrulous husband, certainly went out of his way to tell reporters that his wife worked for the CIA when he was shopping around his take on his role in the Niger yellowcake investigation:

  • Tito,

    Thanks for this bit. Can’t wait to see an update on the news tonight.

One Response to Chicago Style

  • Much of what our voting brethren failed to consider this Tuesday. Uh oh stomach hurting again but I started typing here so I’ll finish it. Rahm is your basic hardcore political streetfighter. Seen with derision when GOP partisans show it but got oohs and aahs from MSM. As though Obama would select a non-loyalist as his principal gatekeeper. Also keeps Crazy Uncle Joe squared safely away in White House attic. Will let him downstairs only for parties, holiday celebrations, and Redskins games no doubt.