Saga Blago diagnosis in one sentence
Wednesday, December 7, 2011 at 01:59pm 9 Comments
And so it ends. 14 years, which means just under 12 to serve.
As long-time readers know, I’ve followed Saga Blago almost since the beginning of this blog. It was my first and longest lasting blog obsession.
I take no joy in the sentence, although it does seem roughly appropriate.
As does this comment by the Judge during the sentencing, which pretty much diagnoses the entire Saga Blago:
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.
SO when do we get to Jesse Jackson Jr. ?
This isn’t over.
They’re still going after J cubed.
There’s also the matter of the tapes that haven’t been released yet – some of which supposedly have Obama and his chief flunkies on them.
I have to say that I have some sympathy for Blago for the first time. Fourteen years is a heavy sentence for what was mostly trying to shake down campaign contributions, plus a lot of loose bravado in phone calls tapped by the feds. And it took two trials and two juries to convict him. Yes, I do make a distinction between a corrupt pol seeking campaign money and a corrupt pol seeking to enrich himself.
Two very big political scandals that ended in federal trials occur to me as benchmarks against which to measure Blago’s largely unsuccessful scheming.
— Abscam — In this late 1979s FBI sting, agents posed as representatives of an Arab “sheik” who wanted various favors in Washington. Members of Congress were videotaped making deals to provide those favors in exchange for cash — which they were taped stuffing into their pockets.
Ultimately, five Members of the House and one Senator were convicted on various federal bribery and corruption charges but none served more than three years in prison (one served eight months and several 13 months).
— NYC kickbacks — Around the same time, the Democratic Party Bosses of The Bronx and Queens, Stanley Friedman and Donald Manes, were engaged in an extensive, prolonged series of kickback schemes in which they exchanged such favors as support to companies seeking cable franchises and contractors seeking major deals with the city. This involved millions paid Friedman and Manes, typically through bags of cash. Manes took envelopes stuffed with cash in the men’s room of Queens Borough Hall.
Manes killed himself but Friedman was tried and convicted — but served only four years in the slammer.
It does not diminish the seriousness of Blago’s offenses to say that the crimes of the Abscam defendants and Friedman and Manes were orders of magnitude worse.
I think Blago’s heavy sentence is largely related to his insistence on innocence and obliging thd government to put on two trials.
Blago and Jackson are small potatos. This is all a cover-up of bigger fish. You have to keep in mind the total corruption of Chicago and the obama machine to understand this is a tale told by two idiots. These two are sacrifical lambs. Not totally innocent but certanly not as guilty others.
It’s too bad he wasn’t in California. Otherwise, he’d be out of prison in 3 days.
I say it’s inappropriate – It’s not enough.
Unless he gave up some biggies in political circles, then he’s getting off easy.
No prosecutor lets a central figure off without them giving full cooperation. (With or without a plea bargain) And in my opinion he got off.
[…] Blagojevich got caught and punished but the people of Illinois and America will continue to be “victimized by corruption” because Barack Obama remains at large. The corruptions continue to afflict. From the Rezko House to the White House, the corruptions paved the way: “Charity Rorie, a mother of four, sat in her Mishawaka, Ind., kitchen, stunned that her name appeared on a 2008 Democratic presidential primary petition for then-candidate Barack Obama. […]
I’ve forgotten now – was he convicted in a state of federal court? I’d hate the idea of him doing his time in the relative country club of a federal prison. But an Illinois state pen full of the best and brightest off the streets of Chicago? Heh, heh, heh.
… state OR federal court?