Thursday, December 18, 2008

Politics Chicago style

There's lots of innocent merriment coming out of Chicago these days. It turns out many Chicago politicians are crooks, selling political office, appointing wives of contributors to cushy jobs, and cursing over the telephone, among other crimes and misdemeanors.

I don't really mind the sleaziness on display here. What sticks in my craw is the sanctimoniousness of it all. These crooks--sorry, elected officials--profess just to want to work tirelessly for the people of Illinois, particularly the poor and underprivileged. It's all for the poor--and the children, of course. The combination of high-mindedness and criminality really sickens me.

I am reminded of Adam Clayton Powell, Jr, a Harlem politician, minister and crook. He was unabashedly in it for the money and the wine, women and song. He didn't assume an air of piety while having his hand in your pocket. He was a scoundrel, he knew it, and everybody else knew it, including the voters who kept returning him to office. As politicians go, he was refreshing. His polar opposite would be Eliot Spitzer, who gave holier-than-thouness a bad name.

2 comments:

creakypavillion said...

...and who shamelessly scheduled - not just public appearance, but participation in a debate about financial crisis!
As if he's not the one who helped, in heaps, to start it!

dick stanley said...

ACP Jr. was a black man other blacks hailed (and voted for) because he was their guy getting some of the swag in the corrupt white congress. That's why he used a Step-n-Fetchit grin whenever some white journalist accused him of being crooked. Nowadays guys like Rangel are just crooks. It will be interesting to see how long it will take for Barry to get caught at it and what the reaction will be.