William E. Schluter, a former New Jersey State Senator, who also served as Vice Chair of the State Ethics Commission, has written a nonfiction book on political corruption, entitled Soft Corruption: How Ethical Misconduct Undermines Good Government and What to do About It. The book which is soon to be published, provides a fascinating account of the often invisible decisions that lead to ethical misconduct (and that nevertheless impact the public). The author’s experiences and strategies in combating misconduct over his 40-year political career are described in explicit detail.
Senator Schluter’s book examines ethical corruption involving: campaign money, lobbying, conflicts of interest, patronage abuse, and electoral manipulation, all of which contribute directly and indirectly to the undeniable dysfunction seen today at both national and state levels of government. These are not merely innocuous situations often dismissed with: “That’s politics!”. Instead, these misdeeds significantly influence public policy outcomes of government, thereby affecting the quality of education, healthcare, transportation, social services, fiscal management, and other functions.
The author’s first-hand experience provides him with unique insights to recommend a specific and comprehensive plan of reform – one that engages public citizens and can be applied to all states. Soft Corruption is not a standard political science tome. Rather, it has been humanized by using ample case studies drawn from the author’s experience as a reform advocate- including his 21 years in the New Jersey legislature.
Watch William Schluter’s Book Talk at Rutger’s Univerity on March 7, 2017:
Watch Senator William Schluter’s Remarks: