"The Ronan Report" provides insight about the activities at the Western Maryland Health System in Cumberland, Maryland, and about the changes taking place in healthcare today from a CEO's perspective.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

What's Good for the Goose is Good for the Gander

The title of my blog is a saying that I used to hear from my mother all of the time. What it means is what is good for one is good for the other; usually referring to men and women. The origin of the saying is the same sauce is good for both the goose as well as the gander (the male).  For today's blog, it's related to politicians and everyone else. 

I have to complete a financial disclosure form for the State Ethics Commission for my position as a college board member. I have to disclose any potential conflicts of interest, family members who are employed by the College, financial transactions, business interests, gifts received or real estate holdings. I have no problem in completing such an application annually. My issue is with politicians, who I am sure have to complete a similar application whether for the State or the Federal Government. How is it that they complete it, but many are in violation of it? Whether their violations are through influence peddling, buying access to politicians, ignoring laws related to lobbying or advancing legislation that brings them some advantage or blocking legislation that  runs contrary to their interests, it happens everyday as a means of doing business. Yet, if I did it, I could be fined or even jailed in my role as a college trustee. 

The latest to strike a nerve for me is the group Organizing for Action that is reportedly selling access to the President. What is interesting is that the reports are coming from the NY Times and the Washington Post, normally not critical of the President, and any his affiliated organizations.  Although denied by the White House, donors are reporting that they have given $500,000 for quarterly meetings with the President. This initiative is a way around campaign finance laws and needs to be examined.  In Maryland, I have blogged in the past about the ability of those in leadership positions who are trial lawyers in the Senate being able to block any initiatives related to tort reform.  In any other venue, that's a conflict of interest, but not in politics.  Where are the ethics or the accountability in government and where have our leaders gone?  Disturbing to say to least.

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