Editorial: Corruption

POSTED: 01/27/12 2:37 PM

There is never a shortage of stories about corruption – here or elsewhere, but hard proof is seldom readily available. The Dutch Freedom Party considers St. Maarten a pirate’s nest, but now the Vatican of all places is (again) in the limelight as a hotbed of corruption and nepotism. That’s not a rumor, the information is based on letters written by archbishop Vigano, the Vatican’s former Lt. Governor.
The letters became public in an Italian TV broadcast. And what did the Vatican do? It acknowledged that the letters were authentic, but it regretted that they had become public.
Vigano’s letters date back to 2009. That’s hardly three years ago, so the corruption trail in the Catholic state must still be fresh.

According to the Vatican however, there is nothing wrong anymore. Things are now done according to Mr. Vigano’s correct and transparent way of operating.
It feels a bit like reading reports by the General audit chamber of the former Netherlands Antilles; they were always full of wrongdoings, but they were always published so long after the fact that politicians claimed with a straight face that the problem had been solved – until the next audit showed that this was actually not the case.
In this respect, the Vatican and St. Maarten are not all that different.

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