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#306268 - 04/06/18 06:36 PM Historic Corruption
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 16060
Quote:
cor·rup·tion
kəˈrəpSH(ə)n
noun
1.
dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power, typically involving bribery.
"the journalist who wants to expose corruption in high places"
synonyms: dishonesty, unscrupulousness, double-dealing, fraud, fraudulence, misconduct, crime, criminality, wrongdoing; bribery, venality, extortion, profiteering, payola; graft, grift, crookedness, sleaze

Political corruption is the use of powers by government officials for illegitimate private gain. An illegal act by an officeholder constitutes political corruption only if the act is directly related to their official duties, is done under color of law or involves trading in influence.


Based upon the above definitions, we are in an historic period in American politics. Obviously, in dictatorships, and in many less-than-democratic nations around the world, blatant corruption is much more endemic than in the United States. There have been periods in our history where presidential cabinets have been remarkably corrupt. Immediately, I think of the administration of Ulysses Grant (Ulysses S. Grant presidential administration scandals - Wikipedia), which resulted in the creation of the Civil Service, and the Teapot Dome scandal during Warren G. Harding's administration.

What makes our current conditions different, is that those incidents involved Cabinet Members - the President was not involved, but just picked badly, and didn't police well. While we certainly have an unprecedented level of corruption amongst our Cabinet Members, what sets the current administration apart is the corruption of the President as well. While we've had corrupt Presidents before - The 5 most notorious presidents in US history - the current administration leaves them all in the dust. Opinion: Trump Era Corruption — Where’s the Outrage? Roll Call.

Quote:
During the first 14 months of the Trump era, liberals have been fixated on the Mueller investigation while the news media gyrates from tweet to tweet in a dance of distraction.

Every week brings a new episode of scandal-tainment like a porn star credibly claiming she had a fling with Donald Trump four months after his wife Melania gave birth to their son Barron.

But, in truth, the defining characteristic of the Trump administration may be a pattern of corruption on a level unseen in American life since the Gilded Age. Compared to Trump, Bill Clinton was a paragon of ethics and Lyndon Johnson was a mild-mannered owner of a Texas TV station.


Unfortunately, this is not a novel idea: Newsweek, "TRUMP IS LEADING THE MOS...EPTOCRATS"; Washington Post, "The Trump preside... history?"; Vox, “The fish rots from the head”: a historian on the unique corruption of Trump’s White House. Indeed, it is rapidly becoming the consensus.
_________________________
A well reasoned argument is like a diamond: impervious to corruption and crystal clear - and infinitely rarer.

Here, as elsewhere, people are outraged at what feels like a rigged game -- an economy that won't respond, a democracy that won't listen, and a financial sector that holds all the cards. - Robert Reich

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#306294 - 04/09/18 06:10 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 16060
The United States has had a relatively good reputation regarding corruption in recent years, although ranking 18th among the world's nations, according to the Corruption Perception Index. That will undoubtedly change as Donald Trump seeks to compete with China (77th), Turkey (81st), and Russia (135th out of 180) on the bottom half of the list. Transparency International notes that "This year’s Corruption Perceptions Index highlights that the majority of countries are making little or no progress in ending corruption, while further analysis shows journalists and activists in corrupt countries risking their lives every day in an effort to speak out." Boy, Howdy! What keeps the United States from plunging is 1) a free press and 2) Congressional oversight. Explains why Trump keeps attacking them.

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#306295 - 04/09/18 06:35 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
pondering_it_all Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 7692
Loc: North San Diego County
People who believe the 2nd Amendment keeps us free from tyranny are deluded. The avid gun collector who decides to take up arms in "defense of liberty" risks certain death. He might as well have a Revolutionary War musket, for all the good it does him against even modern police SWAT teams. Not to mention the National Guard and US Armed Forces.

What keeps us free is the First Amendment, the free press, and the right to take the government to court. Those three things can defeat any army. Donald Trump attacking the press and assaulting the judicial system is a real threat. Letting us arm our selves is just misdirection.

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#306334 - 04/10/18 09:37 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
jgw Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 2033
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
I think we got our reputation, and the place everybody wants to come to, is because, over the years, we have become more and more 'civilized". I just googled that and got:
verb
past tense: civilized; past participle: civilized

bring (a place or people) to a stage of social, cultural, and moral development considered to be more advanced.
"a civilized society"
synonyms: enlighten, edify, improve, educate, instruct, refine, cultivate, polish, socialize, humanize
"they were trying to civilize people who strongly resented the intrusion"
polite and well-mannered.
adjective: civilized; adjective: civilised
"such an affront to civilized behavior will no longer be tolerated"

This is, pretty much, spot on. Basically, people wanted to come here, I believe, because we HAD learned to live with one another without killing one another, and people who come here are, basically, running from places where people are killing one another.

Obviously, the belief in the USA as 'peaceful and civilized' is being denigrated as fast as our elected class can make it happen. Given that same elected class is being elected, time and time again by the voters, I would submit that our reputation is a bit scruffy around the edges and we seem to be headed down a different road?

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#306352 - 04/11/18 05:31 AM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
Jeffery J. Haas Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 13202
Loc: Whittier, California
THIS ROAD:

_________________________
"He wakes up in the morning, ****s all over Twitter, ****s all over us, ****s all over his staff, then hits golf balls."
---Congressman Peter King

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#306414 - 04/15/18 04:36 AM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
Jeffery J. Haas Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/03/04
Posts: 13202
Loc: Whittier, California
Quote:
"I am unaware of anybody who has taken a serious look at Trump’s business who doesn’t believe that there is a high likelihood of rampant criminality. In Azerbaijan, he did business with a likely money launderer for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. In the Republic of Georgia, he partnered with a group that was being investigated for a possible role in the largest known bank-fraud and money-laundering case in history.
In Indonesia, his development partner is “knee-deep in dirty politics”; there are criminal investigations of his deals in Brazil; the F.B.I. is reportedly looking into his daughter Ivanka’s role in the Trump hotel in Vancouver, for which she worked with a Malaysian family that has admitted to financial fraud.
Back home, Donald, Jr., and Ivanka were investigated for financial crimes associated with the Trump hotel in SoHo—an investigation that was halted suspiciously. His Taj Mahal casino received what was then the largest fine in history for money-laundering violations.


Cohen and the End Stage of the Trump Presidency
_________________________
"He wakes up in the morning, ****s all over Twitter, ****s all over us, ****s all over his staff, then hits golf balls."
---Congressman Peter King

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#306415 - 04/15/18 07:05 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
jgw Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 2033
Loc: Port Angeles, WA
I actually tried to find anybody who had been in business with him who were proud of it. All I found were people that got screwed. This included investors in various bogus deals (including the casinos) as well as tradesmen and contractors he stiffed (didn't pay). Then you add in the bankruptcies and how he looted his own before leaving his investors swinging in the wind. Now add in the quote above from Jeffery J. Haas

The Jackass, and, apparently, his entire family seems to be a criminal enterprise. Now add in the fact that he is being sued several times (I can't remember when a sitting president was being sued multiple times whilst serving). One of the suits involves the constitution and the emolument clause and at least 2 by woman issues.

Now add in that he has, apparently taken over, and is admired by, most of the Republicans. One cannot help but wonder about that one too! I was tempted to ask "what is wrong with these people?" but, instead, will leave the rest to your imagination.

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#306426 - 04/16/18 12:07 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
rporter314 Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/18/03
Posts: 6434
Loc: Highlands, Tx
Corruption is the new normal in America
_________________________
ignorance is the enemy
without equality there is no liberty

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#306430 - 04/16/18 04:34 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: rporter314]
NW Ponderer Offline
Moderator
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/09/11
Posts: 16060
It's sad to see "corruption" and "normal" in the same sentence.

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#306480 - 04/25/18 05:23 PM Re: Historic Corruption [Re: NW Ponderer]
Greger Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/24/06
Posts: 14039
Loc: Florida
Quote:
It's sad to see "corruption" and "normal" in the same sentence.

It may be sad, but government and corruption have gone hand in hand since we climbed down from the trees. "Corruption" is and has always been "normal"
_________________________
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."— Oscar Wilde

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