Corruption In Bell, California
December 24, 2010, 06:30 AM
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Walter Olson writes

"You’ve probably seen the ongoing scandal about how local officials used the southern California city of Bell to enrich themselves at taxpayer expense. A Los Angeles Times investigation finds that the city was milking small tradespeople too: “Legal experts point to a lack of due process and judicial oversight in hundreds of ‘civil compromises,’ in which plumbers, carpet cleaners and bottle-gatherers paid up to $1,000 for alleged code violations.”

What you won't be reading much in the press is that Bell is a small Hispanic town, (90.9 % Hispanic) with a Hispanic mayor and a largely Hispanic city council, which has been largely arrested. That makes the shakedowns of the local small businesses very familiar—it's the traditional corruption that the Mexicans call la mordida, which translates as "little bite" in English, and means that a citizen can't do anything without paying off an official. One thing that immigrants who come to America for a "better life" are coming for is to escape this system. But if they all come at once, it's coming with them.