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Culture of Corruption

Sunday, October 2nd, 2005

Author: Marty Martorella

    There is a culture of corruption which has laid siege of Washington. The treasonous acts from voter fraud to an illegitimate war have brought all forms of corruption into the government. There are still the pending questions to who leaked the indignity of Valerie Plame. There is widespread fraud in awarding of government contracts in Iraq and in New Orleans. Paul Bremer once head of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq left with $9 billion missing. There is $1 billion missing from the Iraqi Defense Ministry. The corruption seems to be widespread in the Republican Party. Even “The Conservative voice” said it right, “The Republican Party is on the Ropes!”

Things don't look too good for the Grand Old Party these days. Rep. Tom DeLay's indictment, Sen. Bill Frist's SEC investigation, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the Valerie Plame-CIA leak investigation and the antiwar rally in Washington, DC all received immense news coverage. 

   We will be looking at the numerous scandals brought to us by the Republicans in their Culture of Corruption. What we do not want to do is be so arrogant as to think that corruption is the creation of the Republican Party. It would seem that who ever is in power has the temptation to misuse their power. This is why there is always the need for oversight of the government.  With the indictment House Majority Leader Tom Delay House Majority Leader Tom Delay he was forced to relinquish that post to Rep. Roy Blunt, but he faces ethics questions himself.

Records on file with the Federal Election Commission show that since 2003, Blunt's political action committee has paid $94,000 in salary to the consulting firm of Jim Ellis, a longtime associate of DeLay. Ellis has been indicted in the same case as DeLay, for allegedly conspiring to illegally influence the outcome of Texas legislative elections by channeling corporate money to Republican candidates.

Congressional watchdog groups and Democrats pointed to Blunt hiring Ellis' firm, JW Ellis Co., as evidence of what they said was an atmosphere of corruption on Capitol Hill. t r u t h o u

   The corruption seems to be like a highly contagious disease.

The White House's top procurement officer, David Safavian, was recently arrested for lying and obstructing the investigation of Abramoff. He resigned on the day he was arrested, sparing President Bush the sight of one of his top aides being handcuffed and frog-marched out of the White House. Safavian was working on Hurricane Katrina relief efforts before he resigned. The Brattleboro Reformer Also in NYT

   With Fitzgerald’s investigation into the outing of CIA operative Valerie Plame closing in on the guilty parties names like Libby, Rove and even Vice President Cheney are floating to the top. “A lawyer who knows Mr. Libby’s account said the administration efforts to limit the damage from Mr. Wilson’s criticism extended as high as Mr. Cheney.” PT

New York Times reporter Judith Miller is out of jail after 85 days. Miller’s source has now given her permission to reveal his name. Miller's source was Vice President Cheney’s chief of staff Scooter Libby. Former Ambassador Joe Wilson was on The Ed Schultz Show Thursday. Wilson told Ed that he thought Karl Rove would be indicted. Click here to listen to the interview.

Karl Rove confirmed that he was one of the sources that outed CIA operative, Valerie Plame to Robert D. Novak. Washington Post

    The scandals continue and one must ask how did an administration which came to power saying that it would be moral and honest take such wrong turns? How did a man like Mr. Bush who proclaims to be a born again Christian find himself surrounded in a culture of corruption? It is my opinion that it all began when their first efforts were to grant the great tax give away to the rich in the land. They sold it by saying “it’s your money; you know best how to spend it.” This brought the emphases on taking care of one’s self rather than looking out for the Nation as a whole. It was the idea of taking care of “number one!” The problem is when ever we put ourselves over others we are doomed to failure. Jesus said;

For whoever is bent on saving his [temporal] life [his comfort and security here] shall lose it [eternal life]; and whoever loses his life [his comfort and security here] for My sake shall find it [life everlasting]. Mt 16: 25 (Amplified Bible)

   When we become so self absorbed we push God and everything which is holy out of our lives and begin to do unspeakable things such as seen in the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal.

There have been 17 separate investigations of Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo and other prisoner abuse scandals. All have gone straight to the bottom of every case. All have consistently claimed that no one higher up the chain of command, including the civilian leadership in the Pentagon. If the lowest private fails, then others have failed in training, leading and directing that private. The chain runs from sergeant to lieutenant to captain to lieutenant colonel to colonel to one, two, three and four stars, on to the longest serving, most arrogant secretary of defense in our history, Donald H. Rumsfeld, and beyond him to the commander in chief, President Bush. Knight Ridder Newspapers

   When we put ourselves in the place where only God belongs we find ourselves justifying anything.

Here's where the real GOP corruption can be seen. About 80 percent of the $1.5 billion contracts handed out by the federal government by the Federal Emergency Management Agency were handed with little or no competitive bidding. Much of the work has gone to companies with close ties to the Republican Party, such as Halliburton and Bechtel, companies that are currently under federal investigation for over billing and shoddy work in Iraq. … This is how $300 billion budget surplus got turned into a $550 billion (and rising) budget deficit. This is how al-Qaida was ignored until two jets flew into the World Trade Center. This is how the invasion of Iraq turned into a disaster. This is how people died in the streets of New Orleans waiting for help that never arrived. Corruption and incompetence are the values that the current national Republican Party epitomizes. Budget deficits. Shoveling money at friends. Inaction on important problems. Wars based on lies and wishful thinking. All this is why this nation is in deep trouble. The Brattleboro Reformer

   As we look it would seem as if the Culture of Corruption has totally engulfed the Republican Party. One needs to remember that when ever God is replaced with selfish ambition corruption will follow. This is true no matter which party is in power. It is true no matter how holy or charitable the rhetoric maybe. As Jesus said in Matthew 12: 33 “Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree corrupt, and its fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by its fruit.” These are more articles which reveal that the tree known as the Republican Party is engulfed in the Culture of Corruption.

The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating HCA Inc., the hospital chain founded by Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's family, the company said Thursday. ... Documents show that while HCA insiders were selling millions of dollars of their own stock this year, they were also painting an upbeat picture of the company's outlook for investors. On June 14, the day after Frist, R-Tenn., ordered his shares sold, HCA officers at a Goldman Sachs health care conference in Laguna Niguel, Calif., spoke optimistically about the company's prospects. Yahoo News

Federal auditors said on Friday that the Bush administration violated the law by buying favorable news coverage of President Bush's education policies, by making payments to the conservative commentator Armstrong Williams and by hiring a public relations company to analyze media perceptions of the Republican Party. NYT

Republican insider, fundraiser and Bush "Pioneer" Tom Noe presided over George W. Bush's reelection campaign in Lucas County, which encompasses the city of Toledo. Noe, a Toledo coin dealer -- and former chair of the Lucas County Republican Party -- now presides over a Byzantine political scandal involving fraud with state money, political cronyism, alleged kickbacks and a federal investigation of illegal contributions to George W. Bush.

Ohio Gov. Bob Taft (R) yesterday pleaded no contest to charges that he violated state ethics laws… issued a public apology after being convicted on four misdemeanor counts for failing to report 52 golf outings, dinners and other entertainment gifts. He was fined $4,000, the maximum. The Washington Post