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Scandals have always been a part of the political landscape in America Plunkitt of Tamany Hall by William Riordan explains the scandals of political parties of New York which occurred a century ago George Washington Plunkitt was the leader of Tamany Hall during that time and in his book he talks about plain politics honest and dishonest graft how civil service laws weakened Tamany hall political patronage and even gives practical advice about how to succeed in politics There is a clear distinction between honest and dishonest graft says Plunkitt Honest graft is making money from politics by using political business to your advantage for example Plunkitt sometimes got tipped off about the city planning to buy property for creating parks for example and suddenly Plunkitt purchases the property that the city wants for a cheaper price Now that Plunkitt owns land that the city wants the price of that land has suddenly shot through the roof and to Plunkitts advantage the city buys the land at a much higher price from him and he has gotten richer as a result Now dishonest graft would have made Plunkitt very disgusted Dishonest graft is using political power to get rich such as stealing money from the state treasury blackmailing gamblers or gaining money from extreme political patronage even though Plunkitt believed in some kind of patronage Present day politics still resembles the politics of Tamany Hall One example is politicians getting rich off of political patronage some taking it to the extremes Another example is an abuse of presidential pardons such as Tamany hall favoring people who have supported it financially President Bill Clinton pardoned someone who committed a crime because Mr Clinton received financial
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