Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Spot The Conspirator! Guess His Political Affiliation And Win A Free Ice Cube!

This one's easy.

Let's start with Dan Joling of the Associated Press via the Seattle Times:

Ex-Alaska lawmaker convicted of bribery, conspiracy
ANCHORAGE — Former Alaska state Rep. Tom Anderson was convicted of conspiracy and bribery Monday by a federal jury.

Anderson, 39, was charged with conspiring to take money he thought was coming from a private prison firm, Cornell Industries. The money was supplied by the FBI through an informant working for Cornell who secretly recorded his conversations with Anderson and a co-conspirator, former municipal lobbyist Bill Bobrick.

"I'm devastated," Anderson said after the trial. He said he planned to appeal.

"I think the prosecution has criminalized being a legislator over the last year," Anderson said. "I think I fell victim to that."
Sure you did, Tom. You're a victim, that's for sure.

Hey, isn't that a Rovian talking point? Who else talks about the "criminalization" of politics? It's something you hear from people who think (or wish us to think) that because they're in politics, therefore none of the laws apply to them. It doesn't sound like a very convincing defense to me. But then I think for a living.

And in any case, Tom Anderson was not just a legislator. He was on the Finance Subcommittee for Corrections, and therefore in a position to cut some serious ice for a private prison firm in the Alaska State Legislature. Dan Joling didn't mention that, but you can find such information easily with The Google. In any case, it's tough to see how somebody with such an education could be "devastated" by this conviction, after
"The evidence spoke for itself," said juror Jody Canet on Monday afternoon. "The prosecution did a very good job of presenting its case and the evidence."

Anderson was ordered by Judge John Sedwick to surrender his passport. Sedwick scheduled sentencing for 8:30 a.m. Oct. 2.

The case was prosecuted by lawyers from the Public Integrity Section of the U.S. Department of Justice. They referred reporters to the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.
Dan Joling has more details over in Seattle. But even if you read the whole article, you won't find any mention of a political party. I thought that was kind of strange. Did you?

The same thing happens if you visit Tom Anderson's website, where you can read fascinating details about the convicted conspirator. For example, Tom Anderson is married with four kids and you can find out all their names if you're interested. He was born and raised in Anchorage, lived there all his life, at least so far; he''ll turn 40 on August 4th. He's got a B.A. in Political Science and an M.A. in Public Administration, both from the University of Anchorage, and a Juris Doctorate from Hamline School of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota. Not too bad. But it's gonna be hard for Tom Anderson to convince anybody he didn't understand what was going on in the courtroom, and that he would soon be toast.

You can find out from Tom Anderson's web page that he was elected to the Alaska House in 2002 and 2004, but his page hasn't been updated since the spring of 2006, and you have to look elsewhere to find out a few more things.

For instance, Wikipedia reports that Tom Anderson continued to work as a "Public & Government Affairs Consultant" even while he was a member of the Alaska state legislature. Also that his re-election bid in 2006 was unsuccessful.

By then Tom Anderson was in deep hot water, having been named as one of the 11-member "Corrupt Bastards Club", whose slimy ways had come to the attention of a federal corruption investigation that started in 2004.

So if Tom Anderson is "devastated", it's not because he didn't see any of this coming ... unless, of course, he deeply believed that because he had been elected to public office, therefore the law didn't apply to him. Or else his personal "devastation" is just another talking point.

At any rate, he's now a convicted conspirator, and whenever you run into people who talk about tin-foil hats or call you "a conspiracy nut" or they tell you that conspiracies are unlikely, or they tell you that conspiracies don't really happen, or (my personal favorite) they tell you they "don't believe in conspiracies" ... now, when any of that happens, all you have to do is remind people of Tom Anderson, former Alaska State Legislator, now convicted conspirator.

That's the easy part.

Now for the slightly harder part. Guess which party Tom Anderson represented?

Guess which party all the corrupt bastards represented?

Even the governor!

Did you say ... Republican?

Here, have an ice cube.

It's ok, I've got plenty.

But yeah, that was pretty easy, wasn't it?