U.S. slips to historic low in global corruption index

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The United States has dropped out of the "top 20" in a global league table of least corrupt nations, tarnished by financial scandals and the influence of money in politics, Transparency International said on Tuesday.

Somalia was judged the most corrupt country, followed by Myanmar and Afghanistan at joint second-worst and then by Iraq, in the Berlin-based watchdog TI's annual corruption perceptions index (CPI).

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11 Comments
Posted October 26, 2010 at 12:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

We are already seeing reports of voter fraud committed by the Democrats in the early voting.  Also, there seems to be some strange convergence of military absentee ballots not being sent in time by several Democrat controlled states.  If Democrats are going to commit fraud during elections (the peaceful means of bringing about change in government), then they are sowing to the wind and should expect to reap the whirlwind.

October 26, 1:41 pm | [comment link]
2. MCPLAW wrote:

There are allegations like yours in every election against both sides; and in hyper-partisan America, allegations will only get worse.  Republicans have certainly never hesitated to take action to suppress the voter turn out of people who may vote a Democrat. 

However, the downgrade had to do with the ever increasing influence of money, particularly anonymous money, in American politics.  I share that concern, and after the recent Sup. Ct. ruling, I think America deserved the downgrade.  When a major News Organization, can literally write a million dollar check to a particular party, and continue to bash the opposite party without repercussion, when corporations who may have contracts with the government or want contracts with the government can spend unlimited money on targeted campaigns, without disclosure; and when foreign nations can set up US corporations and funnel billions of dollars into the country to influence US elections we are in deep trouble.

October 26, 2:46 pm | [comment link]
3. Billy wrote:

#2, you sound like Democratic Party talking points.  Where is your evidence of what you allege - or like Mr. Axelrod said, are the Repubs to have to prove your allegations are false?  And by the way, specifically where is the evidence of Repubs suppressing voting as opposed to we know about Black Panthers doing that in the name of Dems?

October 26, 3:02 pm | [comment link]
4. In Texas wrote:

#2, something I’ve never quite understood why allegations of voter fraud against Republicans usually seems to be in close elections in major urban areas.  You know, those urban areas where city and county government are nearly 100% Democratic controlled, with ballot arrangement, processing of voter registration, etc, are determined by Democratic officials and unionized government workers (and ACORN!).  Wonder how the dastardly Republicans pulled that off?  Ditto with suppressing votor turnout in those urban areas?

This foreign money bit – well I guess us poor unwashed masses in the middle of the country are too stupid (and fearful) to know when a TV ad goes overboard.  Thank goodness the Democrats and unions are being upright and honest, and not running false, libelous, ads, and not spending money from special interest groups.  Darn, strike the last sentence, just found out they are outspending the Republicans, and are running ads claiming non-Democratic candidates are “American Taliban” or some similar neanderthal extremism.

October 26, 3:37 pm | [comment link]
5. Br. Michael wrote:

It’s not surprising that incumbents want to control the amount of money spent by their opponents.  And look at the facts of the case before the Supreme Court.  If the Court had ruled in favor of the law it would have given the Government the power to ban political books, moves etc. right before an election.

October 26, 4:57 pm | [comment link]
6. MCPLAW wrote:

I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat.  I am an independent who has voted Republican more than Democrat.  But I have watched politics for a long time, and I am not buying the Republicans are pure and the Democrats steal elections nonsense.  Both parties have been corrupted by special interest with a lot of money.  Neither side is interested in the US or what is good for the country.  They each have their contributors that is who they are working for; and either side will do anything, or say anything to win. 

I am not going to re-argue the Sup. Ct. case. I concede defeat.  The lobbyist won.  Lets just say I disagree with the holding that Corporations have free speech rights, and I contend the Court could have structured a remedy that would have preserved some semblance of hope the average American could be heard or at least could hear somthing other than talking points and lies.  But for now that is over, and I believe that unless something changes America will soon enter a period of goverment corruption that will surpass the government corruption of the late 1800s.  Elections will be bought and sold, and democratic rule may well be threatened since we will not even know who the buyer is.

October 26, 7:55 pm | [comment link]
7. MCPLAW wrote:

well I guess us poor unwashed masses in the middle of the country are too stupid (and fearful) to know when a TV ad goes overboard.

First I do not understand what your location has to do with it, and I don’t understand your point.  You can’t know the truth unless there is a vehicle through which you can hear it.  When Corporations are allowed to spend unlimited money, they can buy up all the media time or the media companies and sell their coverage to the highest bidder, or get their candidate elected and then suppress all negative information about him.

October 26, 8:42 pm | [comment link]
8. Br. Michael wrote:

6, do you mean that even newspapers, most if not all of whom are incorporated, should have their speech controlled?  Should newspapers be prohibited from endorsing a candidate?  Within 30-60 days before an election?  Should a private organization such as the NRA or ACLU be prohibited from endorsing or supporting candidates favorable to their agendas?  (Both of whom were on the same side in the Supreme Court case)  People join organizations precisely in order to effect political outcomes.  Are you saying that political speech need to be regulated the more effective it becomes?  After all no one cares about ineffective political speech (You can put up all the posters you want in the privacy of your bedroom after all.)

Maybe you could flesh out your ideas more concretely.  When you say “special interests”  everyone is in numerous special interest groups.  I suspect that you actually have a select few in mind.  There is no one organization labeled “The Special Interests”.  If you limit free speech to natural persons only then how would you actually be able to communicate?  As we all know effective distribution costs money, far more money than the average person has.

I understand your sentiment, but I don’t know how to accomplish what you seem to want without having massive government control of the political process, a common feature of totalitarian systems.

October 27, 10:03 am | [comment link]
9. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

#7
The National Rifle Association is my voice on the 1st and 2nd Amendment.  I intentionally join with millions of other voices to collectively be heard.  National Right to Life is my voice on the political issues of abortion, partial-birth abortion, euthanasia, and infanticide. I intentionally join with millions of other voices to collectively be heard.  Focus on the Family is my voice on GLBT issues such as “gay marriage” and “hate crimes”.  I intentionally join with millions of other voices to collectively be heard.

McCain-Feingold effectively silenced my voice and the voices of millions of other people.  At the same time, Chinese money was plowed into our elections to support the Democrat party. 

I, for one, am grateful that the SCOTUS did what they did.

October 27, 11:46 am | [comment link]
10. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

John316 sent me an email link: http://republicanoffenders.com/

I attempted to respond by email, but his/her inbox is full, so here is my response publicly:

Hello John316,

My comment was specifically directed at voter fraud and election rigging by the Democrats.  Your link adds nothing to that conversation.  Politicians of all backgrounds and parties are subject to corruption.  That is no surprise.  I condemn corruption, dishonesty, and immorality no matter which party commits them.

I hope you join with me in condemning Democrat attempts to commit voter fraud.

If you have evidence of Republican attempts to commit voter fraud, I would be interested in seeing them.

Thank you for taking the time to contact me,

Sick & Tired of Nuance

October 27, 12:15 pm | [comment link]
11. Br. Michael wrote:

Then there is this:

Arizona’s election law requiring residents to show proof of citizenship conflicts with the National Voter Registration Act, a federal appeals court ruled in overturning portions of the measure.

The U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco Tuesday invalidated parts of Arizona’s Proposition 200, a 2004 voter-approved initiative on registration for state and federal elections. The court didn’t disturb a requirement that voters show identification at the polls.

A three-judge panel of the court, in a 2-1 decision, said the proof-of-citizenship requirement conflicted with the intent of the federal law aiming to increase voter registration by streamlining the process with a single form and removing state-imposed obstacles to registration.

The federal law requires applicants to “attest to their citizenship under penalty of perjury” without requiring documentary proof, the panel said.

http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/arizona-citizenship-law-overturned/2010/10/27/id/375001

So the law requires you to swear that you are a citizen, but prohibits any means of verification.  While the intent of the law may be to increase voter registration it does so at the expense of voter legitimacy.  It would appear that the plaintiffs, “Voting rights and Hispanic advocacy groups” have a lot of illegals they want to get to the polls.  Maybe the UN should monitor our elections to root out voter fraud.

October 27, 12:37 pm | [comment link]
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