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U.S. Republican Sen. Ted Stevens (C) of Alaska departs the U.S. Federal Courthouse in Washington October 27, 2008. Stevens was found guilty on Monday on corruption charges. REUTERS/Hyungwon Kang
Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens, exiting courthouse after being found guilty of corruption charges.
So how shocked are you that the nation's most corrupt states also happen to be some of the GOP's most reliable states?

An academic study of public corruption from 1976 to 2008 found that Mississippi was the nation's most corrupt state, followed by Louisiana, Tennessee, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Alabama, Alaska, South Dakota, Kentucky, Florida, Oklahoma, New York, Ohio, North Dakota, and South Carolina.

Any state more corrupt than Illinois—who's seen four of its last seven governors go to prison—is on a whole other level of corrupt. So it figures it would be three southern Republican strongholds.

The flip side should be no surprise, either, with Oregon kicking off the list of least corrupt states, followed by Washington, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Vermont, Utah, New Hampshire, Colorado, and Kansas.

Maybe the reason Republicans distrust government is because they're the ones (typically) pillaging the government?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Hey Texas doesn't top the list! (35+ / 0-)

    No Texas bashing for this reason at least.  

    Our politicians aren't corrupt, they are just immoral (or amoral).

    "The most dangerous worldview, is the worldview of those who have not viewed the world." Alexander von Humboldt

    by TX Freethinker on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:06:08 AM PDT

  •  Proud to have lived in three of them (7+ / 0-)

    Utah
    Colorado
    Washington
    (in that order)

    I'm sure New Mexico is somewhere near the upper middle of the list with Susanna Martinez (the next Sarah Pailin in the gov's chair.

    New Mexico: Not really new. Not really Mexico.

    by newmexicobear on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:07:41 AM PDT

  •  If Kentucky wouldn't have made their (11+ / 0-)

    list I would have known immediately the study was bogus.

    Another reason for Kentuckians to proudly proclaim, "Thank god for Mississippi."

  •  typically red states are also (22+ / 0-)

    the highest in poverty, unemployment...
    and the lowest in job creation and health insurance.

    even my state of PA (typically a blue state) is now getting a credit downgrade because of our red idiot republican governor and his budget failure.

    new jersey (solidly blue) has one of, if not the, lowest number of job creation and unemployment is well above the national.
    this is all because of the policies of the christie administration.

    not to mention wisconsin or michigan or florida.

    put a red governor in a blue (even purple) state...
    and just watch the mess they make.

    every adult is responsible for every child

    by ridemybike on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:12:11 AM PDT

  •  Notable that NJ doesn't make the top 10 (17+ / 0-)

    even with Christie in there spewing payola like an uncontrolled fire-hose.

    Which tells you just how BAD these red states are that Christie isn't even a blip on their corruption thermometer.

    To be honest, a good chunk of NJ's reputation for corruption is left-over from the days of corrupted unions and big mafia.

    "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

    by nosleep4u on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:14:22 AM PDT

  •  Notably missing from the corrupt list (4+ / 0-)

    is New Jersey, and it was corrupt long before Christie.

  •  The Ted Stevens conviction was vacated (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lorell, llywrch

    when "gross prosecutorial misconduct" was revealed in his case.

    There are better poster boys for corruption than him.

    •  that was a nice favor from bush cronies (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ichibon, ditsylilg, FaithChatham

      This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

      by certainot on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:21:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No, it was Eric Holder who moved to dismiss (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FaithChatham, lorell, waiono, methylin

        the indictment against Stevens.

        •  wasn't that after the fact? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FaithChatham

          was he going to push for retrial?

          bush/rove filled the JD with graduates of the fundy colleges and  advanced their cronies while they were in- they were doing that trial

          This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

          by certainot on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:57:58 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  After what fact? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            llywrch, FaithChatham

            The jury found Stevens guilty.  That was during the Bush administration.

            During the Obama administration, before Stevens was sentenced, it was found that the prosecution had withheld exculpatory evidence and presented false evidence.

            Under Holder, the "JD" moved to dismiss the indictment "with prejudice" which means they had no intention of retrying it.

            The judge did that and the judge declared the conviction void.

            Special counsel report:

            "The investigation and prosecution of U.S. Senator Ted Stevens were permeated by the systematic concealment of significant exculpatory evidence which would have independently corroborated Senator Stevens’s defense and his testimony, and seriously damaged the testimony and credibility of the government’s key witness."

            https://s3.amazonaws.com/...

            •  Under the GWB Administration (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              certainot

              there were Federal Prosecutors who competed like there were notches on their belts for convictions even when there were no crimes. I saw a brain damaged mother of three boys divorced from a pediphoile plead guilty to a crime she didn't commit because they assured her that they'd find her guilty and keep trying until they sent her out to an out-of-state federal prison.

            •  so you need to imagine that (0+ / 0-)

              THEY WANTED TO DO THIS

              were permeated by the systematic concealment of significant exculpatory evidence which would have independently corroborated Senator Stevens’s defense and his testimony, and seriously damaged the testimony and credibility of the government’s key witness."
              is it hard to imagine that the bush rove doj would purposefully fuck things up? really?

              This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

              by certainot on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:01:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Dude got an airport named after him while he was (0+ / 0-)

      still alive. I mean, who does that?

      Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about. Mark Twain

      by Deathtongue on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:52:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  White states? (5+ / 0-)

    What do you mean by saying that the states that are most corrupt are also mostly white?

  •  Whats with the white part? (10+ / 0-)

    Seriously, seem just a bit over the top.  The list of "Least" corrupt states - Washington, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Vermont, Utah, New Hampshire, Colorado, and Kansas - include some lily white places.  I don't think Vermont is less corrupt because it is 95.3% white.  I think they just don't tolerate corruption.  I don't think the demographics of Louisiana are why they are at the top of the list either.  Huey Long is one of my political heroes but he was corrupt with a capital C.  

    It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

    by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:21:15 AM PDT

    •  See my comment above (0+ / 0-)

      -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)! Follow on Twitter @dopper0189

      by dopper0189 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:35:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Disagree completely (4+ / 0-)

        Pop culture is full of stories of small town corruption - evil sherif, dual speed traps, etc.  Dukes of Hazard, My Cousin Vinnie, Doc Hollywood, etc.  Small town corruption is just as big a deal unless you happen to live in New York, LA, Chicago, etc.  

        It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

        by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:44:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Pop culture yes, political news no (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FaithChatham, Odysseus

          Far more national political news (as well as local news) focuses on big city corruption than on small town corruption. Some of this of course is do size.

          I guess the closest analogy is how drug use is portrayed. All evidence (polling, hospital visits, rehab, etc) shows that whites and blacks use drug use equally. But you always see urban drug markets on TV, also jails are full of minority drug abusers. Pop culture of course show both whites and blacks  using/abusing drugs, the news is heavily tilted towards minority drug use.

          -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)! Follow on Twitter @dopper0189

          by dopper0189 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 11:29:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Hey, I'm for East Texas and (0+ / 0-)

          we habitually had more people vote for one County Commissioner that actually lived in the precinct!  When introducing another candidate to folks in that area they'd tell us that "We know he's a crook, but he's our crook. He fills in the pot holes in the road and in our drive way with County road crews when we call him!" I won't even begin to venture into the practices of more than one East Texas Sheriff!

    •  Part of it is ethnic as well. Whites don't all (4+ / 0-)

      come from the same value system.  States like Iowa and Minnesota are Scandinavian and German which tend to be obsessively following the letter of the law types.  Doesn't make us better people just means we obey the law and therefore by definition are not corrupt.  

      •  I'm not sure I like where you're going with this. (0+ / 0-)

        So there are ethnicities that are more ok with breaking the law?

        Please, enlighten us....

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:49:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Is that not what kos was implying? (4+ / 0-)
          So there are ethnicities that are more ok with breaking the law?
          Or is it OK to imply such things about white people, but not others?
          •  No, that's not what kos said. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            FaithChatham

            Markos stated a fact, that demographically speaking, the states that score at the top of the list are also predominated populated by white people. That is a fact the census will prove. (Or  fact check it and if he's wrong, tell him so ).

            This?

            Minnesota are Scandinavian and German which tend to be obsessively following the letter of the law types
            I'd like some to prove it to me. More important, I'd like someone to explain to me the point the commenter made in his subject line
            Whites don't all come from the same value system
            and prove THAT to me.

            There is fact. There is opinion. You may think kos found certain facts relevant here (he saw a correlation) and you don't.

            But it's not the same thing as tossing around unfounded (and bigoted) opinions. If we are going to be reality based, we at least have to agree on what reality is.

            © grover


            So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

            by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:24:23 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  EVERY state in the US (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Prognosticator, FaithChatham

              is predominately populated by white people, no?

              So what is the point of the statement?

            •  you do know the Demographics of the US right? (4+ / 0-)

              You could just as easily say "half of the voters in the most corrupt states are women" or "least corrupt state predominately white."

              In only 4 states - Texas, California, New Mexico and Hawaii - are whites not a majority.  That means that there is a 92% chance that a corrupt - or not corrupt state is "mostly white.

              It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

              by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:34:19 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The corruption of government can't be directly (0+ / 0-)

                tied to racial % of population. One would have to filter for political participation per racial segment to get reliable data.

              •  Tell Markos. Not me. (0+ / 0-)

                I didn't say I agreed with the correlation he drew.

                I demanded facts instead of opinion that sounded pretty dang bigoted to me.

                That particular commenter that I responded to gets furious in other diaries when feeling that s/he has been on the receiving end of bigotry. I agree in those situations. So I'm supposed to turn away when s/he does the same thing here?

                Nope....

                Bigotry is wrong. It always is.

                If Markos is wrong, call him on it. He's a man; he can handle it.

                © grover


                So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

                by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 11:42:09 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I do tell people that a lot of (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  llywrch, ksuwildkat

                  "old white people" will have to die out before Arlington, TX stops voting down public transit. Since I'm not young and pretty pale, I get away with it. It's a fact, though that the voting bloc that has opposed every transit plan that has been presented here since the 1960s are white Republican voters. As long as they have a car, they don't want those "buses" stinking up "our town." When I ran for City Council I purposely rode Handitran to as many events as possible. When another candidate said she "didn't want buses here because it would bring the wrong people to our town." I responded: "Look around. We're already here!"

                  •  Selfish generation (0+ / 0-)

                    Sorry but a lot of "greatest" and their Boomer spawn are incredibly selfish.  "Got mine" seems to bee their motto.  And oh look, the kids of boomers are right there with them.  

                    Public school?  Evil (never mind they all got free public education

                    Public transportation?  NO!  I don't want to pay for "those people."

                    Public Parks?  Sell them off, put a gate, charge a fee.

                    Cant wait for them to die off.

                    It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

                    by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 02:12:39 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  OMG get yourself some Garrison Keillor (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              FaithChatham, TakeSake

              He built an entire career on doing comedy about the differences between German Catholics and Norwegian and Swedish Lutherans.  But you wouldn't get the humor so it would a total waste of time.

              •  Ah yes, it was just a joke. (0+ / 0-)

                © grover


                So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

                by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 11:48:19 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Power corrupts...whites have all the power. (0+ / 0-)

            Absolute power corrupts...absolutely.

            We are not powerless!! "Activism is the rent I pay for living on this planet."– Alice Walker

            by nocynicism on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 12:02:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  In the DFW area most power in the Democratic (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ksuwildkat

              party is concentrated in Senator Royce West's district. Those that show up to vote and stick together are much more "powerful" than those who are fragmented and /or disengaged.  Despite the preponderance of money being in the Northern Sectors of the City, whenever Statewide Candidates come to speak at Democratic Senatorial Conventions, they hit Senator West's district and bypass most of them in the Northern part of the city because the voters are concentrated more heavily in Senator West's district. Power is relative. In Texas Latino's outnumber Blacks and Anglos but they don't show up as regularly to vote and participate in the system. Therefore, they have less "power". It isn't how many people of a group reproduces in a geographic area that counts; it's what those people do that equates to political clout and power.

            •  Tell that to Latinos in LA (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Choco8

              Funny thing happened in LA when Latinos started outnumbering African Americans - the African Americans in power used the same tricks to maintain power that whites had used against them.  I promise you, the corrupting power of power knows no race.  

              It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

              by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 02:17:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah sure (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          greenbell, Choco8, llywrch, FaithChatham

          As an ethnic Californian, I don't believe in stop signs.  They are "pause" signs.  On the other hand, red lights are red lights.  I move to Colorado and apparently red means "Stop if you feel like it" while $%^%# stop signs mean "stop and think about life for a bit."

          Germans  - break a law, go to jail.  Steal a penny, jail and public scorn.  Sex?  What ever.

          Italy - break a law, get the law changed.  Steal a penny, get mocked for not stealing more.  Sex scandal - BURN!!!

          French - break a law, slap on the wrist (and maybe a few broken bones), sex scandal, mocked of getting caught, wear bad clothes or eat bad food - THE HORROR!!

          Don't get me started on the Middle East…..

          Yes, different ethnicities have different views of breaking different laws.  

          It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

          by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:08:52 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  An "ethnic Californian"?? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            FaithChatham, ksuwildkat

            Hahahaha!!!!

            Best thing I've read today.  

            I'm going to leave this diary on this high note.

            Thanks for the laugh.

            I'm going to think of you when I enjoy my carne asada and fish tacos on 4th of July -- likely with a nice Chianti -- because that's,  of course, exactly what we ethnic Californians do!

            Have a great holiday!

            © grover


            So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

            by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:30:47 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  :) (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Choco8, FaithChatham

              I have put "Californian" in the "other" ethnic block of more than one form.  Some parts of the Army have no sense of humor.  Can't stand Texans but I totally get where they are coming from and support claiming "Texan" as an ethnicity.  

              California - its not a state, its a state of mind.  

              It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

              by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:48:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I'd say "prioritize" what laws to observe most (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ksuwildkat

            often!

        •  scotch-irish (0+ / 0-)

          my people

          An ambulance can only go so fast - Neil Young

          by mightymouse on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:38:08 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  The point is this (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FaithChatham, greenbell, ksuwildkat

          Not to say Germans & Scandinavians aren't immune to corruption, but there is a great deal of emphasis put in both cultures on following the letter of laws/rules/conventions while ignoring the spirit.

          For example, in Germany there is the common image of civil servants spending their work hours reading the newspaper.  Of course, the same civil servants are punctually at their desks at 8:00 am where they remain until 5:00 pm. (Although the actual hours have changed in recent years.) They are following the rules.

          Which is why Germans do not take bribes. Of course, I expect a large number of Germans are eager to accept "gifts" from friends; the secret is all in knowing the proper way to befriend a given public official so she/he will accept offered gifts, who will (of course) provide desired favors for their friends.

          This doesn't mean most Germans are happy about civil servants receiving "gifts" from "friends". But the way this is practiced just makes it as difficult to successfully prosecute in German courts as charges of corruption are in certain US courts. ("How can we be absolutely sure that this is corruption, as opposed two actual friends exchanging tokens of friendship?")

      •  I saw a map once that showed the ethnic groups (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        llywrch, ksuwildkat

        That have populated this country and I was surprised to see that the overwhelming ethnic group was German.  I thought  the Irish (my heritage) would have been a major group but it wasn't Germans were the biggest group by far.

        We are not powerless!! "Activism is the rent I pay for living on this planet."– Alice Walker

        by nocynicism on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 11:59:51 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  50 million Germans mostly settled in the midwest (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FaithChatham, llywrch, ksuwildkat

          That's huge!  Like you, most people don't know that!  Probably because after two world wars Germans weren't so into bragging about their cultural heritage but it hugely impacts the culture of the Midwest in nuanced ways.  It influences why these areas are often swing states because they're progressive on some issues and conservative on others.  

    •  White people are notoriously known to be corrupt (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Choco8, ksuwildkat, mightymouse

      Be careful when dealing with them.

      Hillary does not have the benefit of a glib tongue.

      by The Dead Man on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:37:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  LOLfended (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Choco8, grover, The Dead Man, macamma

        I LOL…then got offended…then LOLed at being offended

        It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

        by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:47:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Sigh. It's true (0+ / 0-)

        All groups of people have their quota of assholes, regardless of race, religion, sexual preference, or handedness.

        •  I resent your implication that "handedness" (0+ / 0-)

          is a source of corruption.  Being left handed myself, that makes me one of the few who are actually in their right mind.  So being in my right mind, I can't possibly be corrupt.  As for Midwest Germans and Scandinavians, I'm exactly that.  I'm exactly half German and half Scandinavian who was born in Minnesota.  I'd expect that us German/Scandinavians are maybe better at hiding our tendency to be corrupt or being corrupted by power.  I know I'm the least corrupt person I know and I'll bet you the dollar I got from my protection racket that I could never be corrupted by power.  But I could be wrong :)

          "War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength", George Orwell, "1984" -7.63 -5.95

          by dangoch on Sat Jul 05, 2014 at 01:07:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Interested until I clicked through... (14+ / 0-)

    They base their corruption rankings only on how many corruption convictions there are.  Just from this, the "more corrupt" states could actually be the states that are best at ferreting out and convicting corrupt public officials.  Or, put another way, the way to become the "least corrupt" state in this study is to never convict anybody for corruption, regardless of how egregious their actions are.  Absurd.

    •  Yup (6+ / 0-)

      And then there is Kansas.  I guess its not corruption when you pass laws that help you and your friends but otherwise don't take any bribes or kickbacks.  Doesnt change that what is going on is morally disgusting.  As I said above, Huey Long is one of my political heroes but he was "corrupt."  He just happened to use his powers to help everyone….along with himself.  Thats my kind of corruption.  

      It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

      by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:26:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree (4+ / 0-)

        with what you say about KS just codifying the corruption; i.e., it's not "corruption" if the law you just passed says it's not (for further examples of this, see SCOTUS).

        But also, look at the years researched - 1976-2008.  KS didn't get to really rockin' and rollin' with the republican corruption until Obama was elected President and Brownback installed his government of Opus Dei and evangelical prosperity gospel believers.  Mix those religious sub-sects, fold in an enormous amount of Koch money, delete the needs and personhoods of the "common man," as per recipe instructions of ALEC, and you have one horribly unholy corrupt cake.

        No, AFAIC, this study is worthless, simply because it doesn't capture the years after the unspoken coup this country and so many of our states suffered when SCOTUS installed Bush/Cheney as president. The only thing this study shows is deep, endemic corruption such as one would find in political machines of old.

        That does differentiate it from today's corruption ala RWNJ.  They're nothing if not "in your face - what are ya gonna do about it - go such an egg - ha!" kind of corruption.

    •  This seems to have been addressed. (5+ / 0-)
      Regarding the second concern, table 2 shows that these corruption indexes are not statistically related to the degree of federal prosecution, degree of law enforcement/slackness, or court resources. If the numbers of convictions were simply the result of prosecutors’ capacities, law enforcement/slackness, or court resources, the corruption indexes should be significantly correlated with at least one of the following variables: work hours of U.S. attorneys divided by state population (or by the number of public employees), number of federal judges per citizen (or per public employee), amount of district courts’ caseloads per judge, or the amount of pending rates per judge. However, the table shows that none of these factors has a statistically significant association with our corruption convictions measure. The results imply that judicial resources, U.S. attorneys’ workloads, and enforcement/slackness do not determine the corruption conviction measure substantially. This provides confidence in the relevance and validity of our proxy variable for corruption.
      You may agree or disagree with whether or not those variables are adequate, but they do address the issue.
      •  Enforcement priorities (5+ / 0-)

        The only test for correlations with federal judicial resources in a given state.   I.e., whether the public corruption convictions depend on whether a given state has a relative large or relatively small US Attorney's office.

        Their tests would not pick up on whether two US Attorney's offices of the same size put the same priority on corruption prosecutions.  We know that priorities vary across offices.  Right now, for example, the US Atty for Western Washington and the US Atty for Eastern Washington put very different levels of emphasis on marijuana:  W. Washington is reasonably OK with the state's legalization; E. Washington is trying to thwart in every way they can.

        •  Good point. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FaithChatham

          But, I don't see how you can quantify office priorities.  In particular, it seems to me that having the state capitol in Olympia under the Western District of Washington US Attorney’s office would force it to handle a higher proportion of state corruption cases, even considering the higher west side population.

    •  Well, this still is America, (0+ / 0-)

      With the presumption of innocence thing and all that .

      Seriously, what's a better metric for measuring? In politics, people are always saying their competition is corrupt.  So allegations aren't really enough.

      We don't have a functioning core of journalists to investigate, so that whole area doesn't seem useful.

      What do you suggest ?

      © grover


      So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

      by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:00:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Excellent point. (0+ / 0-)

      When there is the widest spread corruption, few convictions occur because the corrupt control the court and legislative systems.  Only those who value ethics bother to prosecute let alone convict!

  •  republican = corrupt .... and a few other things (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FaithChatham

    This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

    by certainot on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:23:04 AM PDT

    •  LOL (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      certainot, grover, Odysseus

      I started to post a rebuttal to say that it was unfair to paint all Republicans with the same brush because there were still some who were in the mold of Bob Dole but…….I couldn't think of one.  Orin Hatch is the best I can come up with.  He might be wrong on a lot of things but I have never know him to be corrupt.  Of course if he were in any state besides Utah he would probably get primaried called an appeaser.  I think I Pat Roberts probably fits too though he has some sweet real estate deals that probably disqualify him too.  

      So for future reference Republican = Corrupt (Except Orin Hatch!)

      It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

      by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:32:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Heh. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ksuwildkat, Odysseus

        You haven't been paying attention:

        ... Hatch did three things that helped him survive in conservative Utah – lessons that likely will be heeded by others in office labeled “RINO” (Republican in Name Only) by tea partiers looking to challenge voting records and what are seen as the sins of incumbency:
        http://m.csmonitor.com/...

        The guy basically called him a sellout and an appeaser.

        :)

        But I generally agree with you.

        © grover


        So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

        by grover on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:08:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  HOLY CRAP! (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          grover, FaithChatham

          Ive had a chance to interact with both Hatch and Roberts because of their role on the Intelligence Committee.  Privately they are very pragmatic.  I would call them "guys I would have a beer with" but neither drinks!

          It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

          by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:16:45 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  i use it as an epithet more and more (0+ / 0-)

        BTW, went on a road trip to wildcat game (buffs) - great time- but did you know the wildcat logo's on three limbaugh stations?

        https://sites.google.com/...

        This is a list of 76 universities for Rush Limbaugh that endorse global warming denial, racism, sexism, and GOP lies by broadcasting sports on over 170 Limbaugh radio stations.

        by certainot on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:09:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FaithChatham, certainot

          Glad you enjoyed Manhattan.  Haven't gotten up to Boulder yet but might this year (Daughter goes to UMASS, they play CU this year).

          Don't know what KSU can do about the radio thing.  There are only so many stations and if you want to reach all of Kansas its a small list.  Lots of Dittoheads between Leavenworth and Goodland.  On a positive note, he is not going to survive on Kansas listeners so killing him off in other places will kill him in Kansas.  I have written three letters to sponsors as part of Flush Rush and gotten positive feedback form all of them.  K-State as an institution doesnt support his views but sadly more than one student does.  

          It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

          by ksuwildkat on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:24:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  There's Walter Jones, from NC (0+ / 0-)

        Not that I agree with his political views to more than a limited extent -- he is opposed to abortion & LGBT rights -- but from what I've read about him he is ethically driven, & far from being a Kochbot. In fact, were I stranded by a broken-down car far from home & for some reason limited to only calling Republican members of Congress for help (ugh, what a repulsive thought) he'd be one of the few I'd call.

  •  Definitely no surprise to me because... (5+ / 0-)

    I've lived almost my entire life in two of the most politically corrupt states of all time:  Kentucky and Ohio.

    Kentucky has former governor Ernie Fletcher, former congresscritter Anne Northup, former ag commissioner and UK Wildcats basketball player Richie Farmer, a local politician by the name of Dan Seum who is a real piece of work, and Mitch "The Bitch" McConnell.  All Republicans.  Big shocker there.

    Ohio is seemingly on a different level of corruption.  The corruption runs through both parties, and the corruption borders on evil.  Former governor Bob Taft II, former secretary of state and vote rigging king Ken Blackwell, current secretary of state Jon Husted, former congresscritters Bob Ney and Jim Traficant, and The Boner.

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/06/30/1310703/-An-Open-Letter-to-Speaker-John-Boehner

    by Da Fireball on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:26:20 AM PDT

  •  Great IL Moments (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Willinois, FaithChatham, Odysseus
    Former Gov. Otto Kerner Jr. was sentenced to three years in prison for bribery and related charges.
    The scandal erupted because Marge Lindheimer Everett, manager of Arlington Park and Washington Park racetracks, deducted the value of the stock she gave on her federal income tax returns under her own theory that bribery was an ordinary and necessary business expense in Illinois.
    Kerner, a Democrat who was governor from 1961 to 1968 and later served as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals, was found guilty in 1973 of bribery, conspiracy, perjury and related charges for taking payoffs from a racetrack operator in exchange for choice racing dates and two expressway exits to funnel fans to the horse races.
    http://www.nbcnews.com/...
  •  I think the study is flawed. (8+ / 0-)

    New York and New Jersey are not on the list. That can't be right.

    I skimmed the study and found the problem -- they only count convictions.

    If your criminals are too slick to get caught, they never show up.

    Take Chris Christie (please). Does anyone think he'll actually be convicted? No. When it gets too hot he'll resign...and not be counted in the statistics.

    •  In Jersey (3+ / 0-)

      Corruption is considered an art form, not criminal activity, it is expected.  Getting caught is the only sin.  

    •  New York is on the list. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FaithChatham

      And, they addressed the issue you find problematic.  I think that they will get a number of convictions in New Jersey.  Maybe not Christie, but he only would count for one.

    •  Rhode Island (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FaithChatham, llywrch

      Ditto Rhode Island.  

      Rhode Island not so long ago had a Supreme Court Chief Justice sent to federal prison because said Chief Justice was connected to the mob.

      Another Chief Justice then went to jail for more penny ante stuff, including embezzling the money from bar exam fees (in RI the State Supreme Court administers the bar exam)!

      Right now the former Speaker of the House for the state is facing indictment, and among insiders in Providence it's widely expected that same investigation is going to take down Congressman David Ciciline as well.  

      Meanwhile, former Providence mayor Buddy Cianci, who was forced out of office not once but twice before on corruption and assault charges, is running for a third stint as mayor -- and is widely expected to win!

      •  It is disappointing when (0+ / 0-)

        people from both major political parties turn a blind eye to corrupt (even criminals) who run for public office and high party positions.  Frequently the track record is in plain sight but those who "choose" choose to ignore and then act "shocked" when their officials get caught with their hands in the "cookie" jar! Sometimes the most corrupt seem to also be exceptionally efficient!

  •  Will Fox News run with this? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FaithChatham

    Just kidding....

  •  Illinois uncovers corruption (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FaithChatham

    Having a robust press and activist movements in Chicago means corruption gets discovered, investigated, and dealt with more often.

    But the most corrupt places are usually smaller towns where the press doesn't bother because they're buddies with the elected officials. It doesn't surprise me to see Mississippi so high on the list.

  •  Tipping point (4+ / 0-)

    When there is massive corruption, getting and keeping a job is usually part of the system as well as keeping one's mouth shut about it.  Being willing to cooperate with the rotten system is the entrance fee. Like the mafia or other systems where a few dominate everyone else they use crime as the lever for their success and fear of the people allowing them to do the crime and not the time.

    •  There is also the matter of self preservation. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LillithMc

      I contacted the new publisher of the newspaper and told what I knew when leaving Longview and never spoke of it to any one again for at least 20 years. Seeing too much and knowing too much isn't a safe thing when there are hit squads masquerading as law enforcement officers!

    •  And that applies (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FaithChatham, LillithMc
      When there is massive corruption, getting and keeping a job is usually part of the system as well as keeping one's mouth shut about it.
      to the highest office of the land. They don't let just anyone into the control room. Only players.
  •  So true!! (5+ / 0-)

    How many arguments with right wingers have I gotten into, that end with "well politicians are just hopeless on both sides"

    No, they're not. Only the ones YOU vote for. Stop being a selfish, hateful, greedy person voting for selfish, hateful, greedy people, and I'll bet you can turn your state around.

    This is the natural evolution of their ideology - every man for himself, be afraid of the other guy 'cuz he's gonna get your cheese, and don't help anybody. That's how they roll, and it will eventually cause their downfall.

    Mediocrity cannot know excellence ~ Sherlock Holmes

    by La Gitane on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:39:40 AM PDT

    •  It takes convincing enough other people (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LillithMc, llywrch, La Gitane, 6412093

      to give money without strings to those who are not greedy, selfish, and corrupt. Not easy. I know. I'm trying to get a substantial number of folks to give money to Democratic challenger for U.S. Congress in Texas so that the Republicans won't control the State's delegation. I'm challenging folks to give the equivalent (not give up coffee because we don't need grouchy dysfunctional Democrats in caffeine withdrawal) of their coffee money a day to three or four Democratic challengers for Texas Congressional seats a month until the General Election. If any of you are game, will welcome contributions to David E. Cozad who is the D challenging good ole Smokey Joe Barton in the Texas US 6th. Yes I know I'm shameless! The hand is out welcoming Act Blue Donations.
      https://secure.actblue.com/...

      I don't mind being shameless. I'm tired of having Republicans control the Texas Congressional Delegation 2R:1D. Because most folks thinks we're too wimpy to band together and move past this, there are no Texas House Districts targeted as Red to Blue by the DCCC. Money only flows out of Texas through the DCCC to other state's races, none comes in!

      •  Thank you (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FaithChatham, La Gitane

        Hard difficult work.

        •  I made the rounds last week (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          llywrch, La Gitane

          at the Texas Democratic Convention with my poster saying Retire Joe Barton in 2014 - Elect Cozad to Congress. I beat the drum for all 29 Democratic Congressional Nominees. Spoke at 7 issues caucuses, ran one and worked 4 Senatorial Caucuses in one day! No one was discussing the math. We (the Cozad for Congress Campaign Committee) spend our dimes on a flyer that laid it out.

           photo DavidECozadFlyerFront620141x_zpsc744cba1.png

          There were no plans by the State Party to present the Congressional Nominees on stage. They decided  finally to allow the Congressional Nominees to step forward and have the MC announce their name and their Congressional District. There was little advance notice so some were not able to make it on stage. Even with the boneheaded obstruction and the governmental shut-down, the State Party still fails to lead in pulling together an effective challenge to the Republican control of the Texas U.S. Congressional Delegation. They allow them to set the Federal Agenda for Texas and to determine what does and does not get Federal funding.  My message is that a few dollars from 5 to 10 thousand donors to these Congressional challengers will do more toward giving them a media budget than the maximum donation from deeper pocketed donors. It will take quantity and this is where Kos  and social media can make the difference.

    •  I think this proves your point (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      defluxion10, LillithMc, La Gitane

       photo Bk5aCvxCYAAPIeD_zpsb82af5c3.jpg

  •  Woot, Illinois! smh (0+ / 0-)

    the woman who is easily irritated

    by chicago minx on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:45:29 AM PDT

  •  We've got Corbett (0+ / 0-)

    here in Pa. and he's pretty damn corrupt.

  •  Rename diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FaithChatham

    The Most Corrupt States (That We Know Of) Are Mostly Red!

    25 states refused the medicare expansion. Christie in NJ. Walker Kochtalker in Wis. Who is REALLY the most corrupt? Tune in tomorrow for the next installment of I Love My Country!

    A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

    by onionjim on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:00:56 AM PDT

  •  the republican flaw (0+ / 0-)

    republican sanctimony is directly proportional to their excuse-making prowess.

    to the extent of their need to project righteousness and superiority, they have to rationalize their abandonment of law/constraint in service of the twin devils of power and wealth.

    their go-to excuse is always:

    "We have to do this bad thing,
    In order to pre-empt the bad thing which-we-just-know the other guys are going to do,
    Because we-just-know we're good and they're bad."

    but it's transparent bullshit, and they keep tripping over their own dicks.

    on the other hand, they mostly get away with it.

    boring, pathetic, how do we fight it?

  •  Massachusetts... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    riprof, mightymouse, FaithChatham, llywrch

    ...has had three or four of our most recent House Speakers go to jail, and we are of course very blue.  Some would argue that one-party rule is the problem.

  •  Former Alabama Governor, (4+ / 0-)

    Don Sielgelman (D) remains in prison.

    It's one of the sleaziest cases of partisan politics in history.

    Rove was terrified of a populist Democrat upsetting the Southern Strategy.

    I never read or REC a diary with an acronym in the title.

    by Nebraska68847Dem on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:37:24 AM PDT

  •  We're number 2! We're number 2! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FaithChatham

    First time in my life I've ever been excited about coming in 2nd place in anything, thanks for this heads-up, kos!

    I'd never thought about this before, but it certainly explains a lot.

    If your State government is steeped in corruption, of course you're going to see corruption in Government at all levels as normal and expected and long for something better... expressed by these citizens in corrupt states as a wish to Secede and form a new and better nation which all the rest of us gape at in befuddlement.


    "I like paying taxes...with them, I buy Civilization"

    by Angie in WA State on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:50:52 AM PDT

    •  Don't celebrate too much (3+ / 0-)

      I live in the neighboring state to the south of you. While I honestly can't remember the last time a public official here was arrested, let alone tried, for corruption, I can't believe it doesn't occur on some level.

      One reason it doesn't appear on the radar is that it's not part of the regional culture to bribe public officials with cash. Anyone trying that would be considered either stupid or an obvious entrapment play by the Feds. On the other hand, a surprising number of state & local employees do find lucrative jobs in the private sector with businesses they had regulatory oversight with. Corporations amazingly receive all sorts of subsidies & tax breaks to set up shop here in Oregon -- or to stay here. And it's not that hard to find examples of backscratching -- this official favors a given business or person that another official favors & return that official favors a business or person that the first favors.

      It all depends, in the end, on how one defines "corruption"

      •  Hi llywrch (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Deathtongue, llywrch

        We had some PDX officials go to prison for taking bribes for parking meter contracts, and state staff went up the river for taking kickbacks on prison food contracts.

        So if Oregon's so clean, I hate to think about whose dirty.

        “The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” ― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

        by 6412093 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 09:55:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I said I honestly couldn't remember (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          6412093

          Because I knew if I wrote "there have not been any", someone would come up with examples of corruption. And I know quite well we're not a state populated by saints & angels.

          But you're right. And once you mentioned the parking meter contract scandal, I remembered it quite well. (I don't remember the prison food one, but that's not to say or imply it didn't happen. Just that I didn't hear about it: for one reason or another -- lack of media attention,  distraction by something in my personal life -- I do miss stuff.) I suspect the reason he got caught was that he was simply too obvious & greedy. The smart ones figure out an angle that makes it hard -- if not impossible -- to get caught, & if they do, they complain that the rules are making it difficult for them to do their job effectively.

          I'm not trying to be cynical here, just realistic: there is no way to effectively end any & all corruption. The best we can hope for is to keep its corrosive effects to less than a rounding error in tallying the costs of government.

  •  Bible Belt vs Atheist Belt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    defluxion10

    I am shocked, shocked I tell you, to see several of the "bible belt" states at the top of the most corrupt table. Meanwhile WA & OR, sometimes called the atheist belt, are among the least corrupt.

    To recap: the states that contain a large number of the people that seem to really enjoy telling blue state dwellers that we are not real Americans, lack family values, don't know the value of hard work, etc, etc are actually the corrupt ones.

    On the level I don't think any state is totally clean. People (of all political persuasions) do stupid things. But this is just another statistic that shreds the NeoCon propaganda. Or it would if the corporate media would give it airtime.

  •  You meant red state racism, right? It's OK to say (0+ / 0-)
  •  How come RI isn't in the top 10? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FaithChatham

    I know we're little, but boy are we (they) corrupt.

    As Exhibit A, take Vincent "Buddy" Cianci, making a bid for his third round as mayor of Providence (as an independent this time). He was in the Boston Globe's news quiz last week; the answer was: His first stint [as mayor] ended in 1984 after he was convicted of assault. He was reelected in 1990 but left office again in 2002 to serve four years in prison for racketeering.

    He's got his own very popular radio show, and could well get reelected.

    And he's by far the only one. There's a book forthcoming by H. Philip West, former director of Common Cause RI, called "Secrets and Scandals: Reforming Rhode Island, 1986-2006." I'm looking forward to it.

  •  somel states: blue large cities c/rural redness (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    llywrch
    An academic study of public corruption from 1976 to 2008 found that Mississippi was the nation's most corrupt state, followed by Louisiana, Tennessee, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Alabama, Alaska, South Dakota, Kentucky, Florida, Oklahoma, New York, Ohio, North Dakota, and South Carolina.

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "If we appear to seek the unattainable, then let it be known that we do so to avoid the unimaginable." (@eState4Column5)

    by annieli on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 12:00:52 PM PDT

  •  Not shocked at all. (0+ / 0-)

    This is what greed looks like up close and personal.  And those of us living in those red states pay the price.

    The GOP will destroy anything they can't own.

    by AnnieR on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 12:56:03 PM PDT

  •  "Modern conservatism" (0+ / 0-)

    is little more than projection.

  •  the curse of progressives... (0+ / 0-)

    is being surrounded by people in a modern age who refuse to listen to facts.Republican states are overwhelmingly the poorest, the least educated, and now the most corrupt lol. Who is surprised by this anymore? It is also so damn depressing the Republicans seem to revel, I mean sincerely revel in the idea that they are uninformed, dogmatic, and resistant to facts of all kinds.

    "science, bah I don't need it. it seems fishy to me" they say... While looking at their smartphone, and taking Medical pills for high blood pressure, and insulin for diabetes, while driving in their car, and hearing a jet fly overhead, and wanting to get home soon, so they can watch their satellite cable TV on their flat screen. Yeah... Science sucks Bubba. You don't need it. it has no bearing on your daily life...

  •  However,... (0+ / 0-)

    ...we NYers aren't looking particularly good here at number 12.  Sigh.

    I'm not always political, but when I am I vote Democratic. Stay Democratic, my friends. -The Most Interesting Man in the World

    by boran2 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 05:02:46 PM PDT

  •  IS THERE ANYTHING BAD THAT MISSISSIPPI DOESN'T (0+ / 0-)

    lead the nation in. Seriously, I had this conversation with a friend the other day. I have seen this so many times I just told him "pick something bad and google it, I bet Mississippi leads the nation in it". He picked infant mortality. Guess what the results were.

    Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about. Mark Twain

    by Deathtongue on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 10:56:45 PM PDT

  •  When I left Mississippi (0+ / 0-)

    I stopped my car at the state line and burned rubber across it.

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Sat Jul 05, 2014 at 03:37:27 AM PDT

  •  It should be NY at the top of the list -- by an... (0+ / 0-)

    It should be NY at the top of the list -- by an insurmountable margin -- if actual corruption could be measured effectively. The finance industry only persists as a direct result of its unrivaled ability to corrupt any and all forces that could (in theory) temper the expansion of its avarice. That it was "Occupy" and not "Obliterate" Wall Street, and that the cops protected the Streeters by beating down nonviolent protesters, both testify to the power the all-corrupting finance industry wields over NY.

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