A line from Notorious New Jersey that I’ve been thinking about since last week’s corruption sweep: Jon Blackwell noted that when the governor asked residents to suggest new slogan for the state back in 2006, someone proposed “Most of Our Elected Officials Have Not Been Indicted.” How long would that one have been true even if it hadn’t lost to “New Jersey, Come See for Yourself”?
July 29, 2009
‘Most of Our Elected Officials Have Not Been Indicted’ – The Slogan New Jersey May Have Rejected Too Soon – Late Night With Jan Harayda
July 28, 2009
‘One of the Cardinal Rules of New Jersey Politics Is, There’s No Such Thing As a Private Conversation’ — James McGreevey in ‘The Confession’ — Late Night With Jan Harayda
Update, 9:50 p.m. July 29: Jack Shaw’s autopsy is “inconclusive” pending more toxicology reports.
The New Jersey corruption scandal has deepened with the apparent suicide of Jack Shaw, a Jersey City political consultant who was among 44 people charged Thursday in a federal probe aided by a real-estate developer-turned-informant who wore a wire.
James McGreevey, the former New Jersey governor, wrote about the ubiquitous threat of taped conversations in the state in his memoir, The Confession (HarperCollins, 2008), written with David France, and his comments still apply. McGreevey said:
“One of the cardinal rules of New Jersey politics is, there’s no such thing as a private conversation. Governor [Brendan] Byrne once told me this, as though imparting a philosophical truth from the ages. ‘Somewhere along the line,’ he said, ‘you are going to be taped by someone wearing a wire.’ This is why so many political meetings start with a big bear hug – a New Jersey pat down among friends.”
McGreevey’s memoir has problems well documented by the reviewers and op-ed page columnists who wrote about the book when it appeared in 2008, but The Confession also has many quotes like this one that help to put the latest scandal in context.
(c) 2009 Janice Harayda. All rights reserved.