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POLS 3440 Lecture Notes September - November.

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Political Science
POLS 3440
Geoff Stevens

September 6 2012TransparencyGovernment needs to show transparency AccountabilityWho do you blame Who gets the credit AnswerabilityWhos answerable Make sure whoever is accountable is answerable to their public and electors Ie police political parties4 or 5 posts during discussionsShort essaysno research footnotes September 11 2012Corruption OverviewTransparency and Accountability Public protection against corruption in government rests on two principles 1TransparencyOpen Governmentlet the people see everything that ministers members and public servants are doingAccess to Information Act is one of the tools of open governmentSo is Parliament itself including the Question Period 2 AccountabilityIt has two elements Answerability and Enforcement o Answerabilitymeans someone takes responsibility when things go wrong or accepts credit when things go right o Enforcementtakes many formslaws regulations of what they can and cant do code of conduct or ethics and so on Corruption is not exclusive to any country oWhat is considered corrupt in one society or culture is not necessarily seen as corrupt in a different society or culture o Underthetable payments might be regarded as bribery in Canada but to businessmen in other countries such payments may simply be one of the costs of doing businessand they build those costs into the price of their products Airbus o Ex Airbus was a large purchase by federal gov in 88 Mulroney gov spent 13 billion for these planes The deal no one knew was that Schreiber got a fixed fee for every airbus air canada bought air canada bought 32 airbuses and he collect 63 million dollars Air canada paid half a million more for the airbus than needed The connection was never made Someone got the money and it was never accounted for Mulroney only admits to take 3 payments from Schrieber and Schrieber says he gave him 3 installments of 100 thousand cash Mulroney said he only got 75 thousand Suspicion is Mulroney didnt pay taxes on this money He made a voluntary disclosure on the payment to the governmentFor ordinary citizens in these countries a small gift may be the way to obtain access to public services to move to the head of the queue Telephone service in Paris boarding passes at Beijing airportCorruption is not exclusive to any political partyConservatives Pacific Scandal Munsinger AirbusLiberals Beauharnois scandal RCMPFLQ scandal Sponsorship scandalNDP Bingogate BC NDP using funds from charity bingo to fund party operations NDP Premier Harcourt resignedSeptember 13 2012 Corruption DefinitionsCorruption can beTheftof money goods or services by a person in a position of public trustFraudcontracts improperly awarded payments made or received for services not rendered Sponsorship program o Fraud is another name for theft fraud is more common o Example early 1990s Saskatchewan 13 Conservative provincial MLAs were charged with dicerting 850000 in public funds meant for office expenses to their personal use Some went to jail See Ethics and the Principles of Democracy by Greene and Shugarman in Unit 1 of course reader BriberyThe dishonest inducement of a public official to act in someones favour by a payment or other inducements Baroud and Gibbs see Unit 1 reading o In other words bribery involves offering or accepting illegal payment of money goods or services in exchange for favours rendered or promisedAccepting an advantage or benefit John Baxter Allen casehospitality free travel hockey tickets hotel accommodation lavish meals etc Similar to bribery but less blatantInfluence Peddlinghiring a third party to influence decisionmakers For example paying a Member of Parliament to influence cabinet ministers or senior bureaucrats Michel Cogger cases Rahim JafferKickbacksillegal payments made or accepted in return for contracts or other government business sponsorship programTollgatingthe systematic application of kickbacks Often a predetermined percentage of the dollar value of a contract is paid by a contractor or supplier to the persons or persons who got himher the contracto At one time tollgating was a common practice in the booze businessAbuse or Breach of Trustuse of ones public position for personal or political advantageLying and Perjuryo Vietnam Iraqlied to the American people as to why they were there how it was going how many people were dying and what was going onConflictofinterest SelfDealingoccurs when elected representatives or public officials put themselves in a position where they or their families may receive a private benefit from decisions they take in their public capacity o a conflictofinterest may be real Sinclair Stevens or it may simply be apparent Paul Martin and Canada Steamship Lines o Real or apparent conflictofinterest should be avoidedSelling AppointmentsAccepting payment in exchange for a public officeo Most notorious recent case 2008 Illinois Governor Rod R Blagojevich charged with attempting to sell the US Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama when he was elected President Blagojevich was removed from office and ultimately convicted of lying to FBI agents Other charges including bribery are pendingPatronageusing public funds or public positions to reward ones friends of political supports for services rendered or anticipated Senator Norman Atkins Doug Finley o Variations of PatronageNepotism family MPs hiring relativesCronyism pals Mila Mulroneys hairdresser Rinaldo Canonico to the board of the Federal Business Development Bank a Crown agency o Patronage can be corrupt even illegal Sponsorship scandal o Patronage can be relatively kind legal agents liquor store clerks road crewsSeptember 18 2012 Corruption is the most precedent corruption in CanadaFavouritism takes the place of merit Political leaders with the power to appoint people should not be confused with patronage The Senate is a different matter It is the Mount Everest of patronageMackenzie King named 103 senators 102 were Liberals Since 2006 Prime Minister Stephen Harper has appointed 53 senators o All are Conservative o All have pledged to support the Conservative governments program o All have agreed to resign after serving for 8 yearsA Senate appointment is a reward for services rendered or anticipatedSenate appointments like those to many boards and commissions are definitely patronage but they do not constitute corruptionunless of course someone pays for a seat which has been rumoured from time to time but never proved
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