The Longest Now

Transparency and accountability
Wednesday September 06th 2006, 3:17 am
Filed under: chain-gang

Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) is one graft-happy congressman.  Of course as any Tammany lad could tell you, graft is only natural…   Stevens is the only actively blocking a recent bill supporting strong transparency of the use of government funds — as I understand it, the bill mandates that any project or organization that receives funds would have an entry on a website that specified the purpose and dates of the funds.

Stevens placed an anonymous hold on the bill ‘for [indefinite] consideration‘, in accordance with Senate procedures, but a call to other Senators to deny they had been responsible for the block quickly winnowed the field of potential blockers.

The idea that not having this level of basic transparency is an option — something to debate seriously — is almost as embarrassing as the idea that some of the pork handed out around the US (including the $200M+ bridge Sen. Stevens snagged last year, and the Big Dig many times over) is allowed to continue — over active opposition by members of these bodies pointing out the waste involved.  A system built on social censure and acquiescense as much as formal rules is only as good as its second-bravest member.

As for Stevens? Well, my father liked to say of such people, “By the time a man is forty, he is responsible for his face.  This man does not have a good face.”

Transparency and accountability …

No Comments so far
Leave a comment

Leave a comment
Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Bad Behavior has blocked 464 access attempts in the last 7 days.