The current Illinois situation is part and parcel of my own dilemma about the new Obama administration's philosophy regarding cooperation and good old simple revenge.
Personally, I have always been a revenge person. When Tricky Dickie gave his final wave from the helicopter leaving the White House in 1974, I was among the cheering masses, naively believing nobody could do a better job of screwing up the Constitution than Old Beetle Brow.
Now that I know better, I've got a new kind of problem: should I just be eager to forget about our latest insult to our Founding Fathers as he leaves office or should I be baying at the moon for accountabiity?
Governor Rod Blagojevich, by his own words, planned to sell the vacant Senate seat of Barack Obama to the highest bidder. He was working on the simple capitalistic principle of supply and demand. In his own mind and system of ethics, he was just following the rules of the game - if you have something valuable, don't just give it away.
Governor Blgojevich's problem is simple. While he understood capitalism, he didn't understand democracy. Appointing a new senator wasn't part of his salary; it was a trust that was given to him by the people of Illinois - and which could be taken back.
This is the same problem that Mr. Cheney had - and has - as evidenced by his response that most Americans opposed the war in Iraq. Said Cheney, "So what?" Some have detected the same thing in Mr. Bush.
In my heart, I know that Obama is right about not nursing grudges and beginning anew with a determination to bury our hatchets and work for the common good. However, as I see the mentality of the Blagojeviches and the Cheneys, I have this urge to work like mad to see them put behind bars. This is a more complicated problem than the Governor's. What I have to decide goes into religion as well as ethics: Was the Sermon on the Mount a joke or is turning the other cheek one of a Christian's duties?
Personally, I feel that Blagojevich (and Cheney), by subverting the principles on which our country was founded, have committed treason. Should I turn the other cheek?
Which is better - to put the past behind us and look to the future or make sure the people who are trying to send us back to an ethical stone age face the music?