|Photo by Fuzzy Gerdes|
One of the jurors justified their decision by making the analogy that if someone talks about robbing a bank over and over again then they intend on robbing a bank, so in their eyes Blogojevich was guilty. Charming, but guilty. That's complete bullshit. We talk about stuff we'd never do all the time. If we could get convicted for saying something over and over again then 80% of the population would be in jail for thinking about murdering their boss. Ludicrous.
If anything I've come to view Rod as a slightly clueless and hugely egotistical guy. He thought he deserved something political in return for a political favor. That's not exactly unusual. And yes, people will pipe up that's just exactly one of the main things that's wrong with our government today -- there's too much wheeling and dealing without actually taking into account the public good -- but I posit the best way to deal with that is by throwing the bums out of office. If they get caught taking bribes for their favors then yes, by all means, convict the bums. But if they just talk about it a whole lot, and curse just as much as your next door neighbor (or lover, or mother, or priest) does then I say you just put someone else in their place and see if they can do any better.
But you know what you don't do? Gleefully convict a man, drag his family screaming behind a herd of ravenous media Nightmares and then rub your hands whilst drooling over the huge sentence he's going to have to serve for his actions in office. For letting the people down. For talking big but ultimately doing nothing.
Is Rod Blagojevich a somewhat embarrassing buffoon? Yes. And we put him into office. But were his actions so terrible he deserves to quite possibly spend the next ten plus years in prison?