posted on Apr, 21 2009 @ 05:49 PM
No leaders, whether they be elected by the people or appointed by elected officials, or ordained by God, should ever be above the law. Ideally,
leaders should be exemplars of the law that they serve. At worst, they should be held accountable just as any other citizen when they do not uphold
Generally, Presidential Pardons aside, our leaders are held accountable when they willfully, and even inadvertently break those laws.
Congressmen are always getting slapped with DUIIs just like everybody else when they drink and drive.
As far as financially, it is generally the same. Illinois Governor Blagojevich is just one primary example of this.
The GAO (General Accountabilty Office) oversees the investigative arm of Congress and is the congressional watchdog. GAO supports the Congress in
meeting its constitutional responsibilities and helps improve the performance and accountability of the federal government for the benefit of the
American people. The Red Book (Principles of Federal Appropriations Law) is the regulations by which the GAO holds Congress accountable. This even
extends to Government Contract Bids.
However, there are issues that are currently unregulated. Although regulation over Gifts have become more strict, for the most part they are still
deemed unethical rather than illegal. Although numerous times members of Congress have brought up the issue of Lobbyists and Special Interests, there
still remains no legislation to restrict the activities of such.
Likewise, the FBI spends an awful lot of its resources investigating Political Corruption. Federal Bribery is a serious crime, and the FBI has had a
record number of investigations in this area in the past few years.
The practice of Political Appointments, however, is currently a legal "Grey" area. Much like Hiring Laws, you can't just appoint someone not
qualified for the job, just because of Nepotism or Political Favors. They do have to qualified for the appointment...but how does one prove that you
chose one appointee over another who was more qualified because they did you a favor? You really can't. Ultimately, Political Appointments need to be
more stringently monitored and regulated as well, but by whom? Most appointments made by either the President or by Congress are overseen by a
Congressional Committee, but still, it's not enough (what if those Committee members are on the take too? Obama appointing 5 RIAA lawyers to the
Justice Department and no one on the Congressional Committee questionning it is a perfect example. I'm willing to bet the RIAA was a major
contributer to every single one of those Committee member's campaigns).
No one should ever be above the Law, just as no one should ever be denied the Law. The law is for all. When the law no longer pertains to all equally
and without bias, then democracy gives way to corruption and tyranny. The hard part is when the Law Makers themselves become corrupt, because they
lack the incentive to push for stricter oversight. We must always remember that in a democratic society we empower the Law Makers with our votes. If a
Law Maker becomes so corrupt that they no longer serve the people's interests that they represent, then we can vote in someone who will.
Although I agree that Political Corruption seems more rampant than it has been for some time, there are checks in place and penalties when it happens.
But just as people speed regardless of the penalties knowing that the odds are more likely someone else will be pulled over for speeding instead of
them, Politicians are prone to the same flawed way of thinking. For every corrupt Politician the GAO rebukes, or the FBI catches, you can be certain
that there are a dozen more who were doing the exact same thing.