Why are New Jersey politicians so corrupt?

With corruption charges likely to be filed against a sitting U.S. Senator from New Jersey, Yahoo News puts forth five explanations for how we got to be the Soprano State.  They mostly got it wrong – the reasons not the conclusion.

1. New Jersey has a lot of government – as many places do and normally more eyes watching translates into less corruption.  The problem in New Jersey is that most politicians go through the same process to get elected: accept bribes for campaign ads from people who expect to be repaid.

2. New Jersey’s political culture has become desensitized to bad behavior out of necessity. Politicians might rationalize away their corrupt acts but most people would see through the lies…..if they were told about them.  All those politicians stealing money get away with it because media outlets who occasionally cover their actions concentrate on the ceremonial to maintain both readership and legal ad revenue.

3. New Jersey is wedged between two big cities: New York and Philadelphia.  How many freeholder ads run on New York or Philadelphia stations? 

4. New Jersey has an unusually strong governorship compared to the chief executives of the other 49 states. Which simply means that when there are good ones (Byrne, Kean?) it works better than when we have bad ones (pretty much everybody after).

5. Most of New Jersey’s public officials are people of ordinary means who spend their time rubbing elbows with some very well-off donors. True enough but people of ordinary means often have more scruples than those who may have compromised some principles in order to become very well-off.

There is one main reason for the culture of corruption in New Jersey and I realized it in May of 2013 when I laid out before the Local Finance Board details of corrupt practices to no avail.

6. Nobody in a position to curb the corruption has any incentive to do so which is primarily the reason they attained that position.

8 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by javagold on March 11, 2015 at 10:51 am

    Because they all are on the purple team. Its only the stupid sheep who believe in the Red team vs. Blue team BS. Stop handing them your money !!! Just stop paying. SO SIMPLE !!!!! But very few have the guts to do it.


  2. Posted by Anonymous on March 11, 2015 at 10:52 am

    They are corrupt because most people just like TL love to complain but take no action. I suppose they feel its a lost cause, exactly what the politicians want and thrive on,


    • Posted by Tough Love on March 11, 2015 at 11:30 am

      Since you’re a Public Sector worker/retiree, istn’t that what you want … no action ?


      • Posted by Anonymous on March 11, 2015 at 1:09 pm

        I want what you want, honest government and politicians, we know that isnt gonna happen, at least we can agree on that.


        • Posted by Tough Love on March 11, 2015 at 2:19 pm

          Well, I don’t EXPECT to get truly ……”honest government and politicians” … but I’m certainly trying to educate anyone who will listen, as to the current financial “mugging” being perpetrated upon Private Sector taxpayers by the Public Sector Unions/workers (and ENABLED by our Union BOUGHT-OFF elected officials).

          PERHAPS enough taxpayers will wise up, and PERHAPS elected officials will get the message ………..


        • Posted by Tough Love on March 11, 2015 at 2:42 pm

          Quoting Anonymous … “I want what you want….” ,,,,,,,,,,

          Oh really ? In a comment that YOU posted to Mr. Bury’s recent post titled “CF11: Conclusion” you said the following:
          “return all employee contributions over time”

          LOL…Yeah,ok that sounds really good- NOT!!!!- Are you gonna calculate whatever interest could have been gained and compounded over the years if it had been in a 401K and return that money too??

          Wonder how whiners & crybabies like Tough Love would act if their 401K balances were stripped just to their contributions and returned to them with a “well, we tried” apology.

          No, I don’t think we agree at all, and I’m quite sure you (or a family member) are now (or will be) in line for one of NJ’s overstuffed pensions and the “Platinum+” retiree healthcare package.

          Be assured that I will continue trying to make those a WHOLE LOT smaller.


  3. Posted by bpaterson on March 11, 2015 at 10:52 am

    missed the big ones: lack of solid accountability; political boss system; and officials family/relative/friends on the payroll so those “in control” have leverage over the officials in govt; plus some of what java says=ignorant electorate just looking for entitlements and free programs while those who pay aren’t the ones receiving all the programs and money


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