Table of Contents
Indeed, it is vital to come up with a favorable disclosure of the mental operation of a majority of the current politicians (Riordon, 1963). As a result, George Washington Plunkitt, one of the Tammany leaders during the Fifteenth Assembly district, comes up with his views in writing. This paper aims at answering questions regarding various issues in the book titled Honest Graft.
In most cases, people complain that a majority of the Tammany men become rich due to graft. However, people do not think of coming up with a clear differentiation between honest and dishonest graft. Indeed, there are significant differences between them, despite the fact that, most people become rich by getting involved in politics. The reason that brings in the difference between honest and dishonest graft is clear with the example of George Washington claiming. “…I’m gettin’ richer every day, but I’ve not gone in for dishonest graft...” (Riordin, Chapter 1) This is a clear indication that there exists honest graft, and he is an example of how honest graft works. Honest graft involves identification of opportunities and trying as much as possible to go for them. On the other hand, dishonest graft involves ignoring an opportunity with an intention of grabbing what other people decided to explore. In addition, honest graft is all about individuals, who are capable of guessing right, as they enjoy their foresight fruits. On the other hand, dishonest graft involves individuals, who cannot guess right, thus, end up stealing from the treasury or public offices.
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George Washington Plunkitt rightly states that most of the successful politicians do not drink. “I want to add that no matter how well you learn to play the political game, you won’t make a lastin’ success of it if you’re a drinkin’ man.” (Riordin, Chapter 19). It is evident that politicians always meet individuals from different backgrounds. This issue contributes significantly to meeting of various individuals capable of casting their votes to an individual of their choice. As a result, politicians in most cases do not have any problem interacting with individuals, who drink and those, who do not. Indeed, individuals from various backgrounds cast their votes, but in order to become politically successful, it is not a brilliant idea to drink liquor.
According to Plunkitt, political party bosses play a significant role even in democratic parties. Despite the fact that democratic parties depend on votes from the public, political party bosses assist political aspirants to get votes from the public. In addition, political party bosses have a task of advising young politicians to come up with a suitable decision and appropriate communication language that can facilitate earning votes. Although a political party leader will not force the public to cast their votes to an individual of their own choice, their approach to the public is paramount. In most cases, young politicians make mistakes when they think that by being orators they will earn votes from the public. They should understand that it is essential to emulate footsteps of public figures in politics, because it is easy to count on their votes. “The Democratic party should say in the first plank of its platform.” (Riordin, Chapter 22)
It is not true for Plunkitt and his crowd to state that they are patriotic, because it is an enormous challenge to interest young men without giving them an office to work (Riordon, 1963). Currently, there are over ten thousand strong offices, but there are no more than hundred of them employing youths. Most of the offices state that they are not willing to employ individuals, who earlier worked for the Tammany ticket. Few years ago, individuals were patriotic, because they were working for the Tammany ticket, but on the realization that they were not going to get positions in public offices, the aspect of patriotism became forgotten. Riordin claims:
I know more than one young man in past years who worked for the ticket and was just overflowin’ with patriotism, but when he was knocked out by the civil service humbug he got to hate his country and became an Anarchist. (Chapter 3)
As a result, it is worth nothing that such individuals where not patriotic.
Indeed, the idea of reform is noble. However, the reformers in the mid and late 1800’s were not able to “clean up” the government and politics, because it is a fact that a majority of reformers do not last in politics. A reformer is capable of initiating change for a while, but can come down suddenly like a rocket. This is what happened to the early reformers; they incorporated change of “cleaning up” the government politics for a short time and felt down. It is worth nothing that the past politics is far much different from the politics now, because many reputable politicians have joined the reform union (Riordon, 1963). As a result, when they try to bring changes in politics reform is noticeable, as they are capable of staying in reform team longer. "The Citizens’ Union has lasted a little bit longer than the reform crowd that went before them, but that’s because they learned a thing or two from us..” (Riordin, Chapter 4) This is true, because currently individuals trying to “clean up” the government and politics have experience due to the long-term relationship with influential reformers.
Politics play a significant role in society. However, it is essential for politicians to conduct themselves in a way acceptable to the entire society. According to Riordin, he has worked hard to address questionable issue to a majority of individuals in the society.