Who wants to talk about government accountability when there are more pressing issues like “Why Women Teachers are Having Sex With Young Boys”?
That’s the title of a new book written by a North Idaho Pachyderm Club member and the subject of a June 12 meeting in Coeur d’Alene, according to the Spokesman-Review online.
An excerpt from the book says there’s a liberal and a conservative way to explain why teachers have sex with students. The liberal way says it’s a manifestation of human biology while the conservative way says it’s Obama’s fault.
It was just one of the many things that distracted us from the most important news of the week – something that took place back on Feb. 26.
That’s the date Rep. John Rusche (D-Lewiston) introduced a bill that would have established an inspector general position, which would have handled whistleblower complaints and initiated investigations against state government agencies.
You’re probably thinking, “Hmm, Idaho is very conservative; conservatives deeply distrust the government; an office that investigates the government would probably get wide support.”
The actual stream of consciousness that was provided by Reps. Joe Palmer, Pete Nielsen, and Ken Andrus during the hearing went like this, “We distrust the government so much we don’t want to create more government even if its purpose is to investigate the government.”
Just to clarify: a more transparent, incrementally bigger government is worse than a more opaque, incrementally smaller government.
The bill eventually died before getting a full committee hearing.
Three months later, we’re discovering that the Idaho State Police has about as much accountability as your average FIFA official.
That revelation came after it was learned that the ISP has a policy of destroying drafts of reports, a sharp contrast to the Ada County Sheriff’s Office and the Boise Police Department, which track changes of report drafts.
The worry with destroying drafts is a police officer could alter the findings of a report in order to cover up for another officer, which is alleged in a 2011 traffic accident between an on-duty cop who was on a high-speed car chase and a citizen who was killed in the crash.
It’s a disconcerting policy that lived in obscurity until it was brought into the light through a lawsuit filed by an ISP Trooper.
If Rouche’s bill had passed, the state would soon have a single entity that could investigate complaints without the formality and deterrence of litigation. Unfortunately, the bill didn’t even get a full committee hearing.
By the way, Rusche introduced the bill in response to the botched Idaho Education Network broadband contract, which cost the state more than $8 million. If the Idaho Legislature doesn’t care about hemorrhaging money, it’s hard to imagine it will care about a reporting system that tempts police corruption.
Oh well. Who needs government accountability anyway?