In the early 1990s, the Republican party swept into Congressional power as the country grew frustrated with the growing corruption of the Democrats. Prominent among those who lost their moral compasses was Dan Rostenkowski, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. His name was rarely uttered in public after his indictment and subsequent 15 months in prison.
Now, it seems as if half of the GOP is on the verge of being indicted, including bombastic Majority Leader, Tom Delay. (Jonathan Alter’s brief, but interesting piece here: Tom DeLay’s House of Shame – Newsweek National News – MSNBC.com.) Recent events have bolstered two clichés in Washington:
- Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely. -Lord Acton
- Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. -George Santayana
Outside the beltway, I think voters must feel increasingly as I do with regards to voting: Damned if we do, damned if we don’t.