Congrats to Massachussetts

Apparently, they have had three straight speakers of their state House of Representatives facing criminal charges.  And by the way parents .... unless you want to almost guarantee your kid is going to be investigated for corruption and racketeering by the FBI, don't name him Salvatore.

  • Dan

    Three straight?

    Pretty good. In my home state of Illinois, each of the last two governors (one from each party) has been convicted of corruption and the former is in prison.

    And we had two other ex-governors go to prison in the 60s and 70s. Altogether, five of the last nine Illinois govs have faced charges and three have gone to prison.

    Now, some of the charges may have been trumped up by political opponents, but even so, this is quite a record of corruption.

  • bob sykes

    When you consider the totality of corrupt politicians in both Illinois and Massachusetts, you have to conclude that substantial majorities of the people in both state are themselves corrupt.

    PS. I grew up in MA, and I will never return. Most of my family left long ago.

  • caseyboy

    To your point bob sykes, Boston residents elected James Michael Curley as Mayor 3 times, once while in he was in jail. Not sure if he was also one of the 3 stooges? I lived up there for 10 years. "Pay Go" has a slightly different connotation up there.

  • Rick Caird

    I find it astonishing that in both Illinois and Massachusetts, politicians can look at their predecessors and then go ahead and do the same things under the false belief "That can't happen to me". I guess that explains why we are governed so poorly. They are morons.

  • NL

    Just to be clear, the Finneran prosecution was kind of a railroad job. He was a client of the guy who wrote Three Felonies A Day, Harvey Silverglate, who did a decent job of explaining why there really was no criminal intent and no real harm caused. He plead guilty to avoid a jail sentence. The feds are pretty intimidating, and federal prosecutors love local corruption cases.

    His supposed crime was perjury for slightly downplaying his role in redistricting, even though he acknowledged his influence.
    http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2010/01/16/finnerans_only_crime_is_careful_diplomacy/

  • Old Soldier

    The biggest crook of them all - Billy Bulger (Whitey's brother) was never caught.

  • ErisGuy

    Status Quo: government by lawyers ("Let's see what we can get away with; with our knowledge of the law and our connections, we'll be fine!"). As long as the government is avaricious and powerful: nothing to see here; move on.

  • Lance Magnum

    We take pride in the fact that current speaker gets to ride around in a car where the license plate was made by his predecessor.

  • Dan

    Funny, Lance!

    I'm not sure if in all cases these politicians were corrupt to begin with, though some people no doubt enter politics to take advantage of others and personally profit, and others are corrupted by the power once they get there.

    But there are definitely cases in which good people in politics get railroaded by their opponents for political reasons, and sometimes, it's unclear whether corruption really existed or if the charges were trumped up or even fictional. I'm thinking in particular of a recent Democratic governor of Alabama who ended up in prison. There was a lot of debate afterward about whether he truly was guilty or if the case was a witch hunt.

    And there was a Chicago alderman (don't laugh at the reference) named Larry Bloom, who served for many years on the city council and to me always seemed like an honest man who cared about the city and his constituents, but eventually left office due to corruption issues. I'm don't remember if he faced formal charges or was convicted of anything, but it's a case I plan to look back at because I wouldn't be surprised if it was another case based more on politics than any real crime.

  • Pete

    For a good read try the book "the brothers bulger" and you get a real appreciation of the one that got away

  • caseyboy

    Remember in politics it isn't the weight of the evidence, it is the seriousness of the allegation. Get the allegation our there, let the media run with it and destroy the person. Charges dropped at a later date? Doesn't matter, mission accomplished.

  • caseyboy

    Was that cynical on my part?

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