Sometimes It Is Best To Laugh
by James Glaser
December 11, 2008

I listen to the media people showing surprise about how the Governor of Illinois was willing to sell Barack Obama's vacated senate seat to the highest bidder, and I have to laugh. It is like they think politicians are honest, and finding a "dirty" politician is out of the ordinary.

I am sorry to say that I would be surprised if the media found an honest politician for he or she would be the exception. Just think about all the vote trading that goes on in Washington and every State Capital in the country. People will tell you that it's just politics, and you have to do that if you want to get anything done. I don't buy that. Politicians trade votes for many reasons, the greatest of which is to get something in return. It might be campaign money, it might be a job for a relative, maybe a new highway built next to land they own, or the promise of backing when they try for chairmanship of some committee. Chairmanship of committees is where the real money is.

Show me a politician who keeps his or her campaign promises. They don't, and they use the excuse that they have to compromise if they are to get anything done. The only trouble is that they compromise on their principles.

Politicians soon realize that their only job in office is to stay in office. They play games with their votes to get the money to run again. If a vote can bring money to their reelection committee, well that is part of the game too. Governor Blagojevich knew he had a good thing in his ability to appoint somebody to fill the rest of Obama's term in the US Senate. Politicians know that a Senate campaign will cost them tens of millions of dollars, so if they can "buy" an appointment for even half a million dollars, that is a no-brainer.

I have to laugh when I hear of another crooked politician getting caught, because if I didn't laugh, I would have to cry.

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