Some bribes are paid with dollar bills. Some bribes are paid with false promises. Many bribes are paid with lies. What all these versions of bribes have in common — what makes a bribe a bribe — is that the receiver takes it knowing it’s wrong.
Here are two tales separated by oceans and continents of two different bribes. You decide which is more egregious.
Today in America:
Yesterday CBS News discovered a new campaign ad for Gingrich produced by Winning Our Future (WOF) which claims Newt (1) cut taxes; (2) created millions of jobs; and (3) reduced welfare by 60%, as well as how he stood with Reagan and battled Clinton.
These claims are spurious if not outright lies. Spurious are those about cutting taxes and creating millions of jobs, because no one person does that, and while he was Speaker of the House taxes were actually raised, not lowered. As for reducing welfare by 60%… outright lie.
The ad is paid for by a SuperPac which the Supreme Court this year released from any campaign contribution restraints in the famous case where our erudite highest court decided that corporations are people. WOF’s president is Becky Burkett, a close Gingrich ally and former employee.
Today in southern Kenya:
“I knew there was a traffic check along the way, so I was strictly driving at 80kph. On approaching the traffic check, one officer waved me down and I noticed that he wrote down my registration number on a piece of paper. He told me that I was speeding at 120kph. I laughed out loud and asked him if he was sure and to show the radar. He showed me my reg no on his paper and told me that he was given this info by his colleague a km further down. Told him that I saw him write down the number as I came closer! He handed back the DL and told me to go.”
I can, of course, pick and choose from literally thousands of examples in both the U.S. and Kenya, and so admittedly this is rather biased. But the point is that your average person in virtually any society on earth doesn’t condone lying and works against corruption. That’s your average Joe and you cynical idiots who might think otherwise need to read more.
That statement that the average Joe worldwide is not corrupt bristles American conservatives who thrive on the rapacious notion that other places are corrupt and they’re lily white. For years I’ve been battling this notion with constant reminders of hundreds of cases of corruption in America from Enron to Bernie Maddow, about literally hundreds of corrupt politicians like …
… well, do you remember one who was thrown out of his own party and resigned as Speaker of the House?
Corruption is endemic anywhere that there’s enough extra money to pay someone off. And whether that be a handoff of dollar bills or a golden parachute, it’s the same. Getting something that wasn’t earned by working well, hard, ethically and …
Sorry. I can no longer add the adverb “legally” since our Supreme Court has even corrupted that.