Pick a place where there's lots of poverty and misery, and you also find lots of corruption. No amount of aid spending does anything in failed states and failed cities.
We've been incessantly lectured on how Puerto Rico's mess is somehow our fault. It's not.
It comes down to a culture of corruption. That's why politicians are being arrested afterward. Just like they were in New Orleans. Just like they should be in Chicago and Detroit. There's always money for those at the top.
Even as Puerto Rico’s residents were bracing for painful austerity measures, the bankrupt commonwealth spent $245,000 on a bulletproof Chevrolet Suburban to shuttle around Governor Ricardo Rossello.
A receipt shared on Twitter showed a base price of $86,950 for the Chevrolet Suburban "Premier," with black interior and exterior and "client preferred wheels." The armoring package and additional equipment added $126,650, and the "CEO Lite Luxury Interior Conversion" another $58,950. But the final price was offset by a $27,550 "special discount," according to the receipt, which was dated Feb. 23.
Rossello said he authorized his team to consider new options for transportation after determining that its fleet didn’t meet security standards. But he said he wasn’t briefed on the vehicle choice or price. He said the item caught his attention last week.
Ricardo Rossello came by the job honestly. His dad was the governor of Puerto Rico. (Before you laugh, the same is true of the current governor of California and the head of Canada's government.)
So by all means, more aid money for Puerto Rico. It's bound to go to all sorts of good uses. Most of it will never reach the people it's intended for.