How Much Justice Was Sold in Fort Lauderdale Last Week ?

We may never know. But eventually, maybe our friends who live in the western half of the United States will learn. Exactly 24 of their attorneys general partied up at the Ritz Carlton (formerly the St. Regis) on Fort Lauderdale Beach, flocking for a conference strewn with corporate sponsors.

The organizer, called the Conference of Western Attorneys General would have you believe that lobbyists and corporate sponsors would spend between $3,000 and $30,000 apiece purely for the satisfaction that they helped pay for a seminars. It's just so reassuring to know that the top legal authority in his or her state was informed about water rights, for example, an issue of grave concern to energy company sponsors, who would never pollute. Or that attorneys general are equipped to tackle money laundering in their state, because God forbid the corporate sponsors in the banking industry would profit from something so unseemly.

Other corporate citizens who ponied up cash for access education: Wal-Mart, tobacco companies, and drug makers. Guilty conscience, guys?

-- Thomas Francis

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