Is Ukraine Really Any More Corrupt than We Are?

Among the talking heads discussing Ukraine, more than a few have said things like "Ukraine is very corrupt.  We don't need to get into that fight" and "We don't have a dog in that fight.   The corruption in Ukraine is massive."

But how corrupt are we?  I don't know much about corruption in Ukraine, but corruption in the United States is a glaring problem that just about every citizen who is paying attention would acknowledge.  Are we any better than Ukraine?  Maybe worse?

It is the nature of corruption in a culture that only a fraction — often a small fraction — of the people are corrupt.  Indeed, if a certain behavior is seen commonly among the people of a culture, it will not be considered corruption.  So if context is taken into account, it would be unfair to call that culture corrupt. 

I contend that the average G.I. Ivan fighting in the rubble in the streets of his own country is probably not corrupt.  I would further contend that the elderly men who did not run for the Polish border, but rather picked up a rifle and joined Ivan in the bunker are not corrupt, either.  In fact, the men in the bunker are pretty brave and straight-up guys who have justly won the hearts of most of the rest of the world.

So let's look at corruption over here.  We have a man in the White House who probably didn't win a fair and honest election to get there.  It is beginning to look as though he may have been bought by the Chi-Coms.  He may also have been bought by some corrupt big shots in Ukraine.  His son's laptop is telling tales.

We have doctors in the alphabet soup federal agencies who have instituted policies that caused the deaths of somewhere just south of half a million people.  People who didn't have to die.  People who could have been saved.  These same doctors in high places have destroyed the credibility of the medical establishment.  We have other doctors who are playing the "go along to get along" game.  They probably don't sleep very well at night.

We have politicians who have risen to the occasion and become petty tyrants.  From these tyrants, we have gotten vaccine mandates forcing people who want to keep their jobs and people who want to serve this country in uniform to be injected with experimental substances that have proven not to be vaccines and are not safe and not effective.   

We have a porous southern border crossed routinely by people smuggling deadly drugs and people who are not even being tested for COVID.  We get this policy from the guy who probably was not actually "elected."

We have an energy industry that not long ago gave us energy independence and is now crushed by the guy who was probably not elected.

We have a farm economy that will pay so much for fertilizer and other agricultural chemicals that ordinary working people will not be able to afford food, should there be any food for them to buy.  This was a foreseeable consequence of shutting down the energy industry. 

We have an auto industry so over-regulated that used cars have gone up 40 percent.  And still our "representatives" pile on the regulations.  The administration wants all cars to be electric, but the batteries catch fire, and we can't put the fires out.  One auto manufacturer advises that owners not park their electric cars near other cars.  How about parking them in garages attached to their homes?  How about underground garages under high-rise office or apartment buildings?  We have people in high places who are worried about the ethics of global warming or other people's refusal to be vaccinated, but they are not worried about the child and slave labor being used to mine the materials needed to make the fancy batteries that catch fire.

We have a media industry that has fed the citizens propaganda instead of news.  And we have a "social media" (what a stupid name) industry that censors the citizens so that freedom of speech and freedom to exchange ideas have become impossible.

We have an education industry that teaches our young children that they can be any "gender" they want.  And that they have 256 to choose from.  These poor children should hurry up and choose because they are taught that in just a few years, the planet will be uninhabitable.  We have college graduates who are no match for the tradesmen they scorn, the same tradesmen who keep the self-centered graduates alive and comfortable.  Many of these college graduates will never pay off their student loans.  They will vote for any politician who says they shouldn't have to.

In a similar vein, we have a Supreme Court that has ruled that the life-giving compound carbon dioxide is a pollutant.

We buy a lot of critical stuff from a communist country that is our sworn enemy.  We have allowed ourselves to get in a position where we depend on that communist country for medical supplies and other critical items.  I suppose you could ask, since we got the virus from them, why shouldn't we buy the medicine and test kits from them as well?  What they buy from us is our politicians.  Is that free trade? 

We have people in high places who gave the Chi-Coms money to run the lab that created the virus. 

And we have a population that is terrified because it's been told by "experts" that it will be killed in large numbers by a disease that is entirely intangible.  The people can't see it, they can't hear it, and they can't feel it.  It is everywhere, they are told, and it infects their fellow humans, who then will probably infect them, and all infected will die a horrible death.  The current version of this terrifying virus is about as dangerous as any annual flu strain, but the people in high places use fear to take away the God-given rights that are "protected" by our Bill of Rights and other parts of the Constitution.  The scare-mongers make good money doing that.  They are well respected in some circles and have lavish budgets with which they bribe people to support their narrative.

So far, the tyrants are winning.  They use fear to motivate, and the public buys their lies at a high cost.  That is corruption of the highest order.  I wonder if Ukraine has anything to compare with it.

So let's talk about fear.  There is nothing wrong with being afraid.  It is a natural emotion.  It gives rise to the fight-or-flight response.  That response has kept the  human race alive for more than a million years.  What we don't tell our people, what we don't teach our children, is that for most people, it's OK to be afraid.  Courage is not about being unafraid; courage is about what you do while you are afraid. 

What an attacking enemy fears most is that the people he is attacking won't run, but will stand and fight.  There will always be people who run.  I don't know what can be done about that, but if most people resolve to fight, there will be a whole lot less corruption in the world.  The bad people in high places who are using us will get their comeuppance. 

G.I. Ivan and the old guys with him in the bunker made from rubble have shown us something.  Sometimes people don't run from the bully.  The Russian dictator thought they would run, but they didn't.  It looks as though there was no plan for that.

Let us salute the guys in the rubble fighting to save their country.  Let us not abandon them to their fate because their enemy has weapons of mass destruction and we are afraid of such weapons.  Let us confront our own fear before we consider appeasement as a solution.  Let us clean up our own corruption. Some will run; it will always be so.  But let the rest know their own fear and then dig in and fight.

Jerry Powlas has been a naval officer, engineer, and publisher and is the author of Red State Rebellion (published under the pen name Joseph L. Bear).  "Everybody should read this book and tell his friends."  He recently moved from a blue state to a red state where nobody wears masks and everybody has guns.

Image via Max Pixel.

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