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News Governors gone bad

  1. Sep 7, 2014 #1

    Astronuc

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    What is about politicians, who serve themselves rather than the electorate/taxpayers?

    With the conviction (to be appealed) of former Virginia GOP Gov. Bob McDonnell for corruption, fraud and bribery, his name could be added to a long list of top state officials who have experience similar failings - and this is only the last 21 years.


    If It's Not About Sex, It Must Be About Money — Unless It's About Power
    http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpoli...it-must-be-about-money-unless-its-about-power


    From Statehouse To Big House: A Guide To Governors Gone Bad ( 6 serving or have served prison time, 8 convicted without prison time)
    http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpoli...se-to-big-house-a-guide-to-governors-gone-bad
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 7, 2014 #2

    phinds

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    I think it's about power AND money. Successful politician are often seriously egocentric. That's one of the things that allows them to let criticism and negative comments slid off which helps them be successful at getting elected. Once in, they think they deserve whatever they can get. Fortunately although, as you point out, in absolute terms there have been quite a few of them over the years (and it is certainly NOT just in recent years) I think it still remains a reasonably small proportion of all of them. There ARE, after all, 50 governors at any one time and a fair amount of churn in those offices, so that makes for a lot of governors per decade.
     
  4. Sep 8, 2014 #3
    I suggest a simple test:

    If you owned a big business and were hiring a manager, would you consider many of your politicians as trustworthy and qualified enough for that purpose?

    The selection and supervision process does not work specially well in democracy. (to be clear and not look like market fundamentalist: in stock share companies with diluted ownership it also disappoints.) As general rule: you need an informed and disciplined owner, who knows what he is doing and what's going on.
     
  5. Sep 8, 2014 #4

    phinds

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    "Informed and disciplined" is considerably too narrow, as it does not rule out sociopaths who would care only about themselves and not about their employees/constituents/stockholders/whatever and who would use their intelligence and discipline only to further their own goals (being smart enough to know that they have to be really good a faking honesty and sincerity)
     
  6. Sep 8, 2014 #5
    I mean "informed and disciplined" as requirement for voters / shareholders. Rational psychopaths are OK if they had to build a wide coalition and reach a compromise that protects the best their interests.

    You may only risk ending up with reduction of prison spending because of using convicts to test on them new weapons systems. ;)
     
  7. Sep 11, 2014 #6
    Narcissism fuels their bad behavior.
    http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/health/2009-09-28-political-narcissism_N.htm
     
  8. Sep 11, 2014 #7

    Vanadium 50

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    Well, yes, but it's also true that four of the last seven Illinois governors went to prison. Seems like rather a lot.
     
  9. Sep 11, 2014 #8

    phinds

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    Yes, but Illinois and New Jersey are special cases. Those are the American incubators for crooked politicians and they ruin the curve. :smile:
     
  10. Sep 11, 2014 #9

    lisab

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    I don't follow Florida politics (being as far as I can get away from it and still be in the contiguous US), but Florida must be in that group as well, don't you think?!
     
  11. Sep 11, 2014 #10

    D H

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    Florida isn't immune. Nor are states whose name starts with the letters A, C, L, M, N, or W, or a whole bunch of other letters in between.

    From what I've seen, it's only the states whose name starts with the letter B, J, Q, X, Y, or Z that appear to be immune.
     
  12. Sep 11, 2014 #11

    SteamKing

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    Four years in the State House leads to 10-20 years in the Big House. Either way, they're sponging off the state.
     
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