Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ethical Choices

I have been active in gathering signatures on my petition and therefore amiss at my blogging. As we near the end of the petitioning process it's time to turn my energies in other directions: fund-raising and platform development.

Last night I attended a small meeting where I was able to hear Patrick Collins' first hand assessment on Election and Ethical Reform in Illinois. At the end of the evening the candidates for office were invited to speak briefly.

I was amazed by what a reform candidate said, which I will paraphrase here.

As a college professor in poltical science I have both the expertise and time to run a potentially winning campaign. My campaign manager recently asked what I would do if Mike Madigan came to me and said you've got a viable campaign. If you back off on the reformer's zeal, I'll put $100,000 in your war chest. Now remember that's not a quote. It's a paraphrase.

The candidate then noted how tempting it was to take the money, acknowledging that using the money to win meant he could champion other causes, such as education, transportation, and taxation. He admitted that he didn't know what he would do.

Didn't know? What kind of "reformer" sells his platform for $100,000? It is as simple as that. Until we learn that the slippery slope is greased with $100,000 from Madigan office, we will never change the system. It will, instead, continue to change us.

We need to eschew politic$-a$-u$ual and embrace clearly articulated platforms, easily read solutions, and old-fashioned meet the voter campaigning.