Just when you thought there was no justice left in the world (or hardly any) a Texas jury on Wednesday found ex-House Majority Leader Tom Delay guilty of money laundering.
It took 19 hours but the panel of six men and six women found Delay guilty of conspiring with two associates for going around state law that bars corporate contributions to political campaigns. He faces 5 to 99 years in prison though incredibly the judge could choose probation. In any event Delay intends to appeal his conviction.
Hopefully Delay's conviction will open the door to more prosecutions of other hack politicians and their corporate and special interest backers that have so completely corrupted the political process in their favor.
Today there is so little transparency on who donates to what candidate or his (her) campaign or who is sponsoring the ads of lies and innuendos that voters have little or no idea of what constitutes truth or fiction anymore.
In this latest election cycle the Chamber of Commerce received millions from unknown corporate donors and because the Chamber is a non profit organization it is not required to disclose where the largesse it receives is coming from. The only way this money can be traced is through the tax records of these corporate behemoths that are required by law to list in their tax filings where their expenditures are going.
Then of course the sources of those unscrupulous ads this money sponsors is made further opaque because the sources announced at the end of the ads are often bogus or shell outfits that when tracked just turn out to be a phone or box number.
Plus who's to know whether foreign interests (absolutely illegal under American law) are contributing to these political campaigns. And if their bucks are sent to the Chamber of Commerce we'll never know!
Package all this chicanery with what the Supreme Court did in the "Citizens United" v/s "FEC" case last January where the Court essentially gave corporations license to contribute unlimited amounts to influence political campaigns and only a fool would continue to believe our election process is anything but completely corrupt.
There is however one solution (which this writer has alluded to in his previous writings on this topic and on this site) and that's a Constitutional amendment barring corporate money from political campaigns (thus overturning "Citizens United") while also instituting a citizen funded, public financing method in our election process.
From here it seems there is no other recourse available to address the usurpation by corporate and special interests that are currently corrupting our political process. There is just no other way to put it.
The conviction of Delay just highlights why our current system must be thoroughly overhauled.