Gary Aldrich

Watching the developing courageous and romantic story of two young people brave enough go undercover and discover the truth can distract us from seeing the obvious.

By following the unfolding story of ACORN, one has enough information to conclude that there is a pattern of bad conduct embedded in the culture of those who associate themselves with an organization that claims to be interested in the good of the community. They have cloaked themselves with the official documents of state corporation papers, and an extensive review by the Internal Revenue Service to enable nonprofit status.

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It is neither here nor there as to why the IRS has not investigated ACORN to determine if they are deserving of the special status that allows many people to make unlimited contributions and obtain tax deductions. Such an organization is required to file an IRS form “990” which is supposed to contain accurate information about the financial strength of the organization, along with other important data, such as officers and board members, and what these individuals are paid. The 990 should be available with a simple Google search to get us started on our inquiry.

Without looking, I can imagine the numbers have been “fudged,” along with the other various high crimes and misdemeanors that plague this organized crime, a wolf in community organization clothing.

I was an FBI Agent for 26 years and before my final posting at the White House, I enjoyed a rich career devoted to prosecution of organized crime. The federal laws were modified and strengthened in the years of Richard Nixon to enable the FBI to go after the Mafia. One tremendous new law, called Racketeer Influenced and Corruption Organization, or RICO as it became known, allowed many new techniques of prosecution to be used to reign in what was believed to be an out of control criminal element in our society.

RICO worked. Over the course of decades, the use of the RICO laws dismantled most of the biggest Mafia families. Many of these insidious criminals went to jail, some for life. Among other tools, RICO made it possible to connect the leaders of Mafia families with crimes being committed at the street level. The idea was that the head of the family knew of the illegal activity and in fact promoted it, even if they did not attend every meeting where the conspiracy was set into motion.