Thursday, May 05, 2005

Fair and Balanced Reporting by Echidne

It is time for me to stop being a lefty propagandist and to adopt the mature approach of the mainstream media to events in this world. For instance, the way to address ethics violations is to show that both sides are equally guilty. So here I go:

First, John Kerry paid parking tickets and Red Sox tickets from his campaign funds! The scoundrel! Here are the details:

Sen. John F. Kerry tapped campaign funds for Red Sox tickets and to pay nearly $300 in overdue Boston parking tickets in March, records show.
Kerry's Senate campaign committee wrote a $287 check to the City of Boston Parking Clerk on March 31, 2005. The Bay State senator listed ``travel expense'' as the purpose for the expenditure.
Kerry leased a car for campaign-related travel in Massachusetts that was cited for about a half-dozen parking tickets in Boston.
Most of the tickets were issued in October and November 2003 and not paid until more than 15 months later in March 2005 after accruing penalty fees.
``They were leftover tickets we only found out about when we closed out the lease,'' Kerry spokeswoman Jenny Backus said. ``The car was used for the Senate campaign by staffers and volunteers.''
Kerry, meanwhile, used presidential campaign funds for a $3,150 tab for Boston Red Sox tickets in July when he threw out the first pitch at Fenway Park before the Democratic National Convention.
A Federal Election Commission spokesman said congressmen are entitled to pay for parking tickets and other expenses from their campaign funds as long as they were ``campaign-related.''

Aren't you glad that we didn't elect this unethical man to run our country?

Second, the Republicans do it, too, of course:

American officials rushing to start small building projects in a large swath of Iraq in 2003 and 2004 did not keep required records on the spending of $89.4 million in cash and cannot account at all for another $7.2 million, a federal watchdog reported yesterday.

Most of the poorly documented spending appeared to involve incompetence or haste, but in some cases the auditors said they suspected theft. "We found indications of fraud," said the report by Stuart W. Bowen Jr., the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction. Some cases were referred to a criminal investigations unit of the inspector general's office.
The report also noted that two field agents finished their contracts and left Iraq with apparent cash surpluses of $777,000 and $715,000. The money has not been located.

In one of those cases, the report said, the manager closed the agent's account with a paper transfer of $777,000 to a different office without ascertaining where the money went. "This appears to be an attempt to remove outstanding balances by simply washing accounts," it said.

See? It all balances out.