Corruption

09/20/2022

Corruption and Why Your November Vote is Important.

Corruption is a word tossed out frequently but one that could be understood better than it is. We should first understand the various meanings and uses of that word, corruption.

Our friends at Webster provide us with this definition of corruption: 1a - dishonest or illegal behavior, especially by influential people (such as government officials or police officers), depravity. b - an inducement to wrong by improper or unlawful means (such as bribery), the corruption of government officials. c: a departure from the original or from what is pure or correct, the corruption of a text, the corruption of computer files. d: decay, decomposition, the corruption of a carcass.

We find corruption can mean anything from Trumpian-like behavior to a rotting corpse. It can mean almost anything that has gone haywire or is falling apart. Corruption can be, by design, a voluntary act of sabotage, an unintentional error, or an unforeseen problem that mucks up a process. As humans, we generally accept that perfection is seldom the rule and that we do screw things up at times, thus corrupting the outcome of a given process.

But, what tends to grind our gears is when we discover that someone has intentionally corrupted a process or a universally held perception or a commitment to something that was meant to be good and helpful but fails to deliver because of the corruptor's influence on its promise in their effort to personally gain either politically or financially.

That brings me to our infamous ex-president, possibly the most corrupt individual we've known. He is the most corrupt piece of crap to have ever held the title of President. Here are a few examples:

• There is compelling evidence that President Trump likely committed several crimes in his Ukraine conduct for which ordinary Americans could be prosecuted and punished.

• The Office of Special Counsel has found at least 13 senior Trump aides to have violated the Hatch Act by using their official position for partisan politics.

• Trump has trafficked conspiracy theories about voting by mail and expressed fear that it would harm his electoral prospects.

• Trump refused to divest his business holdings. On January 22, 2017, Citizens for Responsible Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed suit against Trump for violating the Constitution by illegally receiving payments from foreign and domestic governments, including through guests and events at his hotels, leases in his buildings, and eventually the federal government's improper decision to let him maintain his lease of the Old Post Office for his DC hotel.

• As of September 14, 2020, CREW has documented more than three thousand instances of Trump's conflicts of interest since day one of his administration.

• In an egregious act of nepotism, the Department of Justice reversed a decades-old precedent on the same day President Trump took the oath of office. It approved Trump hiring his daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner to work in the White House.

• Surrounding himself with like-minded criminals, Trump, in total, brought in eight associates who were later arrested or convicted of crimes.

• Interior Secretary Zinke racked up 18 investigations into his behavior, including allegations of lavish spending and travel and whistleblower retaliation, before he was forced to resign. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was the subject of numerous complaints of ethical misconduct, including allegations that he made false statements to OGE when he misrepresented he divested certain stock holdings before actually doing so and violated the STOCK Act and other insider trading laws by engaging in short sale transactions. Health and Human Services Tom Price resigned abruptly after CREW and others exposed his inappropriate use of thousands of taxpayer money on unnecessary private jet travel.

This is the tip of the iceberg of the depths of corruption in the Trump administration. You can read more detail by visiting citizensforethics.org and searching for Trump's worst offenses.

Like a maggot-infested apple sitting on top of a fruit basket, Trump's lies and dishonesty have oozed down through the other apples and begun rotting them. There are dozens of Trump acolytes trying to get elected at all levels of government in November 2022, all of whom show signs of rot. This concerted effort corrupts our government, electoral system, and democracy.

These radicalized Republicans are steeped in the lies and conspiracy that Trump has peddled during his one term and since being ejected from office. It is paramount for Americans of all political stripes to vote in November and deny Trump and his minions of corrupt followers the opportunity to further corrupt our governing system.