Shocker: Democrats Using Soros-Funded Fargo Forum Report As Support For “Ethics” Agenda
A while back Fargo Forum reporter Teri Finneman wrote a report on behalf of the Center for Public Integrity (a left-wing think tank with ties to George Soros) claiming that North Dakota was one of the most corrupt states in the nation.
The least corrupt state in the nation? New Jersey, according to the ridiculous standards they applied.
What the report measured wasn’t actual incidents of ethical violations, which apparently would have made too much sense, but rather the lack of certain policies which liberals believe promote ethical government. Thinks like legislative ethics panels, etc., etc. New Jersey has these things, and so was deemed not-so-corrupt. North Dakota doesn’t have these things, so was deemed corrupt.
Forget that when measured by actual instances of corruption, New Jersey has a lot and North Dakota almost doesn’t have any at all. That doesn’t serve the narrative.
Now, not surprisingly, Democrats in the state are making hay with this report. And isn’t that interesting? A liberal group hires a supposedly objective media outlet to promote a report which is turn used by Democrat politicians to further their agenda.
“I think people look at (the CPI report) and it’s embarrassing,” state Rep. Corey Mock (D – Grand Forks) told The Huffington Post. “When you have an independent study and a USA Today article calling North Dakota the most corrupt state, it was shocking. You’d expect New Jersey or Illinois to be that. The CPI study was an eye-opener.”
Rep. Mock introduced legislation in North Dakota’s last session that would have created an ethics panel in the state legislature. It was voted down, and for good reason.
I know Rep. Mock, and I’d like to think that he’s not so stupid as to believe that North Dakota is more corrupt than New Jersey. He knows better, but the truth doesn’t fit the narrative Democrats are trying to create here in North Dakota, which is a lot of nonsense about a “culture of corruption.”
The proposals Democrats would put into place, such as the creation of a legislative ethics panel, might sound appealing until you realize that the existence of such panels in Congress and in states like New Jersey and Illinois do little to curb corruption there. In fact, North Dakota’s own Senator Kent Conrad was exonerated by a congressional ethics panel from wrong-doing in the now infamous VIP loan scandal.
Honest observers know full well that Conrad was hip-deep in that scandal, but he escaped accountability because an ethics panel in Congress let him off the hook. Because that’s what these political panels are for. If they’re not being used for political vendettas and witch hunts, they’re being used by the politicians to cover up for one another.
Some would have us believe that layering on more bureaucracy on top of the governemnt’s existing bureaucracy would promote more ethical government. That’s hardly the case. In truth, we need only two things for ethical government.
1) Absolute transparency when it comes to the finances and actions of our leaders and
2) An electorate willing to vote out leaders who act unethically.
Politicians won’t hold themselves accountable, and they’ll use any apparatus set up for the purpose of “ethics” to promote their own interests rather than ethics. If we want ethical leadership, we need an informed and engaged electorate.Tags: corey mock, ethics, fargo forum, North Dakota News, teri finneman