The corruption behind Denny Hastert raises questions about who among our rulers cannot be blackmailed?
In his post, “The Ominous Warning in Denny Hastert’s Downfall,” Philippe Gastonne highlights two of the three main aspects of the Dennis Hastert case that have occupied my mind: 1) This situation is yet another illustration of how centralizing power in Washington, DC, is pushing the nation toward total corruption and bankruptcy, and 2) The illegitimate nature of the charges that brought this situation into the public eye.
On point one, as Gastonne writes:
“Why is it that former senators and representatives so often become wealthy? It is because they can deliver government favors to private interests. That they can [become] millionaires doing this is less significant than the fact that these favors exist in the first place. If Washington lacked power to grant these favors, businesses wouldn’t pay to acquire them and people like Hastert wouldn’t get wealthy delivering them. The root problem is the favors, not the way they are distributed.”
If my neighbors chose to leave all of their personal wealth in my house for safekeeping, where would criminals target their activities? They certainly wouldn’t waste time chasing a few leftover trinkets in my neighbor’s homes, they would head toward mine!
When we allow DC to hold the keys to all of our wealth and earthly power, of course it becomes a magnet for the worst characters humanity has to offer. This is one main reason the Founders divided power, and severely restricted the authority of the Federal government in the Constitution—they knew men are evil. We have suppressed this fact, and are paying the price.
Secondly, quoting Gastonne again:
“As delightful as it is to see the mighty brought low, Hastert may also be victim of a grave injustice. This is the main lesson we should draw. We do not know for sure whether Hastert sexually molested anyone. The indictment says only that he sought to conceal ‘past misconduct.’ Some person or persons inside the investigation leaked the lurid details that now dominate headlines.
“If the government thinks it can prove Hastert committed a sex crime, the right course would be to file charges and let a jury decide. They didn’t do that. They instead filed minor charges and enhanced them by spreading unprovable allegations that will tarnish Hastert’s reputation and harm his entire family. The people who did this to Speaker Hastert can do the same to anyone they please.”
Read that last sentence two more times. Go ahead; do it. If you’re not chilled by that reality, you’re not thinking clearly. You might claim, “But I haven’t done anything wrong.” Uh huh, and Dennis Hastert was simply taking his own money out of the bank—now there’s a serious crime!!
My third main takeaway is a growing despair about whether there are any honorable men or women in our national leadership at all. Perhaps, as Orin Kerr of the George Washington School of Leadership illustrates in a Washington Post quip, the major qualification for Democratic or Republican Party leadership is that you have to have completely out-of-control sexual appetites:
“If I understand the history correctly, in the late 1990s, the President was impeached for lying about a sexual affair by a House of Representatives led by a man who was also then hiding a sexual affair, who was supposed to be replaced by another Congressman who stepped down when forced to reveal that he too was having a sexual affair, which led to the election of a new Speaker of the House who now has been indicted for lying about payments covering up his sexual contact with a boy.”
It’s almost impossible to disagree with the blunt observation of journalist and commentator Robert Stacy McCain, who ‘tweeted’: “Our nation’s ruling elite is decadent and depraved.”
Is there anyone in DC who is not subject to blackmail?
One question that immediately rises to my own conscious mind, in this context: Why did John Roberts clearly change his vote at the last minute on the original Obamacare decision, angering several of his fellow justices? Could it be that he has skeletons in his closet? Are those same skeletons about to rattle at the end of June, when the Court is expected to overrule God Himself on the definition of “marriage”?
When America began, we had leaders drawn from real life, who took time out to serve their country–often at great sacrifice—and then returned to their productive and neighbor-serving lives. Now, a certain class of people studies “political science” which seems to be the art of using polls and propaganda to gain power for power’s sake. Rather than serving neighbors our leaders plunder them for their own benefit.
Maybe it’s time to begin disqualifying anyone who majored in political science, and to start looking again for people who really don’t want to hold political office, but who will sacrifice to do so. If nothing else, we could at least keep the reins of power out of the hands of the kind of depraved sociopaths who now almost universally hold them.