(Mark Noonan) – Much is written and said about what we must do – first to win, then what programs to implement once we’re in power. Lost in all of this is any attention to what is most important: clearing out corruption.
As reported by the Nevada News Bureau, Assemblywoman Kathy McClain is being investigated by the Secretary of State for spending campaign funds on herself. Can you imagine? I mean, someone gives you money for a cause, and you blow it on yourself? No decent person would even think of doing that. But politicians do think of it. Why?
Well, an excellent example is one of our most prominent politicians, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. On her very first foray in to politics – as Chairwoman of the Northern California Democrat party – she didn’t report a donation of $90,000.00. She was fined $7,000.00. You do the math.
It went on like that – right up to her setting up of an illegal PAC in 2004 to buy Democrat support for her bid for House leadership. For career, machine politicians – like McClain who is term-limited out of her current office but now seeks a new office to keep living off the tax payer – the calculus is simple: you can get away with it, so you might as well do it.
Top to bottom, we have politicians who routinely ignore the law. We’ve seen it in Carson City. In our county and local governments. All over Washington, DC. They are corrupt and corrupting.
A few years ago I wrote a book – with Matt Margolis – called “Caucus of Corruption”. In that book, we told a story of endemic corruption. While the book concentrated on the corruption in the Democrat party – written in 2006, we felt that the GOP corruption was being well reported while Democrats were being given a pass – the final lesson of the book is that corruption grows when politicians feel they can get away with it. This is the problem we have right now: they feel they can get away with it.
The worst aspect of the corruption is that when government is bought by special interests, it ceases to serve the needs of all. This, I think, is the ultimate source of the collapse of confidence in government. There is a public perception that no matter what we, the people, want, the government is just going to do the bidding of the monied and well connected. This is what we must change if we want to convert anti-government anger in to a sustained, conservative government capable of restoring our State and nation.
If we fail in this supreme task; if we fail to take corruption seriously and ruthlessly go after it (even, and especially, when it is members of our own party), then we will find ourselves quickly back out of power. The people have lost patience with politicians who promise the Moon, and deliver moldy, dried out green cheese. And we won’t be able to keep our promises to cut taxes, cut spending, secure the border and all the rest of it if we’re burdened with corrupt members who will sell us out for a bribe or kickback.
“Good enough” isn’t sufficient for our side – we must aspire to be very pure. Being a cut above will give us the moral authority to cut at corruption root and branch. We’ll never be able to get rid of it all – people will be people – but we can bring it down and no longer have it as the true driving force behind government. Better to have one less Senator or Assemblyman than to have a corrupt member.
The corruption in our government should be a center piece to our campaign. A pledge that we despise it. A promise that we will go after it. A oath taken that we will no longer tolerate it on our own side. The people vs The Machine – the honest against the corrupt.
The fate of our State and our nation lies in our hands. We have the opportunity in 2010 and beyond to secure the power necessary to roll back the liberalism which has wrecked our nation for the past decades. We can win it all, and restore America to the Founder’s vision – and be worthy of the men and women who gave their all for our country. But we can only do this if we first get rid of corruption in government.