I know, you're thinking I'm going to put up the Keith Olbermann video of the first half of the 25 most corrupt politicians. You're right, but that's just the appetizer.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) comes out annually with a list of the most corrupt states. Their standard is the number of convictions for public corruption cases per capita. Not the total number of cases, nor convictions, but per 100,000 people. So you'd think that Illinois would rate pretty highly. No, they're number 18.
The winner? North Dakota. I'm not making this up; you can see the map here. Louisiana came in number 2.
Here's the fun part. I found out that the list came out today while reading the Anchorage Daily News.What makes it fun is that the article I was reading noted that:
Per capita is a fancy Latin term for "there aren't nearly as many political crooks in Alaska as New York but there are a whole heckuva lot fewer people overall so it's worse."The article then went on to say:
As I said before, Alaska finished second. We are the AVIS of political hanky panky.
Third, they're THIRD. I went searching for state-by-state literacy rates, but it turns out there are no nationwide stats. So I went with High School graduation rates. Let's just say there's a reason Alaska should invest more on reading and aritmetic, and less on Spunky-family travel.
Before The Sopranos, there was this expression "I got a guy in Jersey." The expression still stands. Probably, you get the inference. This DOJ listing comes out every year, and one year, the day it came out, I was in Jersey on business. At lunch a bunch of us were discussing the fact that that year, Jersey was number six. The people around the table were, and I'm going to put this gently, somewhat miffed. They were convinced there was more corruption in Jersey. More criminals. Finally, one of the guys said "Hey, they're talking convictions, not criminals. What we really have here are better lawyers." Everyone got happy.