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Harvey Weinstein, donor, democrats, corruption, sex scandal, boycott,

Choice Corruption

What is corruption? said no jesting Pilate ever. But please, stay for an answer. A week ago, Jimmie Moore pleaded guilty to filing a false campaign finance report in order to conceal a $90,000 payment to drop out of a congressional race. Moore is a former Philadelphia judge (heavens). The






Seattle, City Light, corruption, security, police, scandal, cronyism

Interfering With a Sweet Racket?

One way for governments and enterprises to save money is to contract out some or all of their services. Towns, cities, counties, states — even the federal government — engage in such practices all the time. It is really just outsourcing, as business lingo dubs it.* But, like any system






great fiction, government, citizen, initiative, term limits, Paul Jacob

The Great Faction

Politics isn’t a pretty business. Frédéric Bastiat called the beast it serves “that great fiction” not because it doesn’t exist — intrusive state power sure persists — but rather because what it promises cannot really happen: “everyone living at the expense of everyone else.” What can we do? How do






John Tyler, Trump, hated, leverage, elites, Ted Cruz, Paul Jacob, despised, term limits, unpopular

Most Hated

I was once “the most hated man in Washington.”* Why? For my work on term limits. I wore the appellation as a badge of honor. Last year I noted that Ted Cruz had taken up the mantle, but now, certainly, it’s President Donald Trump’s. Has ever a president been as






CATO, FEE, crony, cronyism, Washington, corruption, elites, lobbyist, politicians, privilege, power

Cronyism Pays

Daniel Mitchell, a senior fellow in fiscal policy at the Cato Institute, is a nice guy. But he’s sort of depressing, too. Weeks ago, writing for the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE), Mitchell offered that “The Washington, DC Gilded Class Is Thriving.” He even provided a “depressing chart” graphing “median






separation of power, conflict of interest, politician, interests, balance of power, civil asset forfeiture, legislative, executive, judicial

Separation of Senators

The separation of powers doctrine has been a bedrock principle of small-r republican government. Each branch — legislative, executive, judicial — should be independent, and check the power of the other branches. This requires that no person hold positions simultaneously in more than one branch of government. Which brings us






cronyism, pork, stadium, Tom Hanks, ballot initiative, welfare

A Wall of Separation

Whatever you think of Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists, wherein he celebrated the First Amendment for “building a wall of separation between Church & State,” let’s agree that it would have been nice had he penned another letter — to the Waterbury Methodists or someone — urging a






Arkansas, Jon Woods, corruption, crime, Micah Neal, term limits

Another Political Crook

Last week, the other shoe dropped. When last we touched upon Arkansas state legislator Micah Neal, he had pled guilty to steering hundreds of thousands of state tax dollars to a small private college in exchange for big, fat bribes. He also implicated the state’s No. 1 term limits opponent,






Prince George, council, county, Maryland, graft, corruption, car

Of Protests & Politicians

Last Friday, I applauded massive protests that erupted in Romania — over a since-rescinded governmental decree to decriminalize graft up to $47,000. On Sunday at Townhall, I wondered why there weren’t similar demonstrations against the corruption afflicting Prince George’s County, Maryland. The county, bordering the nation’s capital, lavishes its nine






corporations, influence, corporation, democracy, power, government, big government, meme, Common Sense, illustration

Corporate influence. . .

Corporations can buy unfair favors from government…because government has unfair favors to sell. Big Government is the problem. Click below for a high resolution version of this image:  






Arkansas, corruption, term limits, Jon Woods, GIF

Politicians Bearing GIFs

Yesterday, we discovered that the biggest term limits opponent in Arkansas — former state senator Jon Woods — also allegedly led an elaborate legislative fraud scheme, whereby he and a state representative traded tax dollars for cash bribes. For now, Woods is an unindicted co-conspirator. But last week, the representative






Arkansas State Rep. Micah Neal, Independent Citizens Commission, Senator Jon Woods

Hog-Wild Corruption

Former Arkansas State Rep. Micah Neal pled guilty last week to a felony charge of conspiring “with an Arkansas state senator to use their official positions to appropriate government money to certain nonprofits in exchange for bribes.” Neal, who embraced graft his first month in office, received $38,000 in “legislating-around”






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