Thursday, February 21, 2008

“Obama and McCain are going to be….

our choices.” was part of a lengthy discussion the couple next to me on the train down here this morning was having.

The discussion lasted most of the ride in, except for when we bended into Union Station and the whole train got quiet as people looked out the windows and saw the lake effect snow that was blowing sideways, but I digress.

I wasn’t raised in a very politically minded family. That isn’t to say that on rare occasion's politics/politicians weren’t vehemently discussed around the kitchen table by my father and his father, beers in hand, fists pounding, voices raised talking about that Son-of-a-Bitch that did such-and-such,the corruption and let us not forget the communists.

I did mention corruption, right?

Is it possible to be in a political office and not be corrupted on some level?

No way.


(Sorry, I will leave the immigration issue for a later blog.)

In my circle of family and friends, I have asked countless times for help in finding a car for one of my kids; a connection for employment; leads for photography jobs, colleges, etc. The list goes on and on.

I will always help out family/friends in need and vice-versa.

So when your circle of friends becomes people of power, influence and wealth – where/how do you draw the line?

Do you put a monetary value on every “favor”?

Do you only except favors valued under $100; $1,000; $10,000?

I know that if I were to run for a political office on a platform of morality and the “back to the basics” of faith, family, finances and friends that I believe so strongly in - I would be very hard-pressed to not fall into the black abyss of corruption.

“Oh, no thank you, I could not possibly accept this case of Entenmanns’ chocolate donuts on behalf of your company.”

“Thanks, but no thanks, I must decline your offer of introducing my photographer son to the editor of Life magazine.”

“A new car – no, no, please - my 2000 VW Golf with the masking tape on the broken window and 100,000+ miles on it is just fine.”

"Well…maybe one box of donuts – they are our favorites."

"Just an introduction - there wouldn't be any harm in that."

"My car really isn’t running that great and when the window falls into the door again and it is freezing cold out..

and I do have my image to maintain."

It’s insane.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


The word should be, in this instance, convertsensation...

We know Special Interest groups exist, that they are well organized, that they constitute a power behind the throne. Ah, but, do you know the rest of the story?

You are newly elected to Congress. Your ideals, you carry on your sleeve. You don't know it, but your whole political career has been cataloged, your life is neatly in a well-documented brochure, down to and including how and why and where you sowed your oats in school. You are welcomed by many of the "old school."

Then, in ways you later would have trouble describing, you are made aware of the facts of life. The substance of your term in office will be dependent on being named to a committee or committees. Failing that, you are a nobody who remains a nobody. committee, you will go the way the committee steers you. Then, if you are a nice girl, well, okay, we'll take a look at what you have on your mind. for having it get to the floor, it first must go through committee.

Do you understand that? Now, we are certain you will like this political life, but that depends on your being re-elected come the next election. That means you must show the folks at home concrete evidence that you are working in and for their benefit. Now, you go back there, find out what your district needs the most, then let us know. Of course, any such thing must go through committee, but that's just regular protocol. Oh, yes, one of the first things you need to do is to submit a list of the committees on which you'd like to serve--you will find the listings quite interesting--and we'll do everything we can to help you.

Oh, yes, your staff. Well, how many people do you have in mind? We have specific guidelines which you will find most helpful. But, remember, when your party calls, you must make particular pains not to miss it. Have a moment? Let us introduce you around.

Not the end.