Jan 29, 2009

Mapping Political Corruption

Cleveland and NE Ohio have a corruption scandal brewing. The local newspaper, The Plain Dealer, is reporting the corruption story while at the same time it is in the process of downsizing.

Below is an early effort to map the corruption mess by a group of citizen journalists. This map reveals a process we see often in today's corruption cases -- the indirect quid pro quo. An indirect quid pro quo moves the influencer (Dean Saliveras) away from the final target of influence (Ohio Liquor Control Board), via long paths of multiple intermediaries.  Follow the arrows to see the path of influence.

The indirect quid pro quo results in plausible deniability for the influencer because there is no direct connection to the target of influence. The data to create this map is taken directly from this published Plain Dealer article.


  1. I am sad to see you have not gotten any comments on the Cuyahoga County corruption. The day of the raids was a happy one for us. A big sigh and "It's about time". If I thought God would honor my prayer, I would pray for Eliot Ness to walk out of Lakeview Cemetery and lend a hand.

    It would be interesting to add this map to one constructed around the Medical Mart/Convention Center controversy. There might be some interesting relationships that show up. The MM is a county project that has raised red flags, mostly around choosing the site and the suspicious financing provided by the taxpayer and private management without goals or oversight deal. What taxpayer wants to give away a public building w/o any strings?

    I lived in Chicagoland before moving here. Missed the place on occasion but now the politics here has caught up. Makes the paper worth reading.

  2. I find this interesting, can you tell me more about what is happening in Cuyahoga County? (Cleveland right?)

    I'm a sucker for flowcharts, FMEAs, Diagrams, etc... :)

  3. SG10001000,

    For more on this corruption case see "the ongoing investigation" link above and the local citizen effort -- "Map the Mess."