Bad Times for Good Ol' Boys: The Oklahoma County Commissioner Scandal

Holloway, Harry, Meyers, Frank S.

Published by University of Oklahoma Press, 1993
ISBN 10: 0806125489 / ISBN 13: 9780806125480
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Synopsis: In the early 1980s one of the worst scandals in the nation hit Oklahoma local government. By 1984, when federal prosecutors announced an end to their work, more than two hundred people had been convicted in sixty counties. Most were county commissioners who had been taking kickbacks paid by suppliers on orders for county road-building supplies.
That corruption could be so wide-spread and long-standing was hard to understand. How could so many "good ol' boys" (usually popular and respected local officials) become so corrupt?
Determined to study the problem, Harry Holloway and Frank S. Meyers sifted through a large body of evidence, conducted a public-opinion survey, and interviewed nearly half of all county commissioners in office following the prosecutions. Their discoveries were two. First, because rural populism had splintered Oklahoma government from top to bottom, commissioners were left with so much money and discretion as to invite abuse. Second, abusers justified their illegal behavior on the basis that they were entitled to their gains.
Local government, the authors argue, is improved but remains vulnerable. Analyzing the national savings and loan scandal, they review prospects for corruption within the state - especially the scheme of education bonds developed within the state in the late 1980s.
The book will interest citizens, academics, and officials at all levels of government who want to understand an Oklahoma scandal of momentous proportions and, even more, to appreciate how political culture and institutions may contribute to corruption. As the authors show, values and institutions democratic in intent may lend themselves to the purposes of corrupt people who rationalize their misdeeds.

About the Author: Harry Holloway is Emeritus Professor of Political Science in the University of Oklahoma.

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Title: Bad Times for Good Ol' Boys: The Oklahoma ...
Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press
Publication Date: 1993
Book Condition: Good
Edition: First Edition.

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Harry Holloway; Frank S. Meyers
Published by Univ of Oklahoma Pr (1993)
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