When I write about “government corruption” I usually mean one of three things:
- Government personnel breaking their public trust and “working for themselves,” as in taking kick-backs and the like. You know, like Rep. Duke Cunningham (R-Calif.) taking $2.3 million in bribes, and Hillary Clinton’s cattle future trades of a generation ago. This is what most people mean by corruption.
- Judgment and behavior modified by the practice of or access to power. In recent times, police have been engaging in SWAT team exercises, shooting innocents “by accident,” dogs on purpose — heart-rending examples of Lord Acton’s “power corrupts” maxim.
- Ideological corruption, whereby folks change their ideas — including abandoning principles — to fit into their new “class interest.” A balanced-budget talking, pro-term-limits politician enters office and Lo, a few years later, all he’s “learned” would be a shame to waste outside of office and every spending proposal deserves his vote.
But then there’s crazy stuff.
Environmental Protection Agency “Management for Region 8 in Denver, Colo., wrote an email earlier this year to all staff in the area pleading with them to stop inappropriate bathroom behavior, including defecating in the hallway.”
That’s according to Government Executive’s article “EPA Employees Told to Stop Pooping in the Hallway.”
Brian Doherty, at Reason, quipped that environmental bureaucrats “are just like us! If we like to leave feces around the hallways of our offices, that is.”
It’s a disgusting whiff of . . . something very rotten in the halls of government.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.