The chief lesson learned from the county corruption crisis, which broke into our collective consciousness with a massive FBI raid in the summer of 2008, is that we can never again relax our vigilance over those we elect to govern. Not the voters. Not the criminal investigators. Not the media.Cleveland.com, since then, has dispatched one reporter to cover county government. That reporter is also responsible for covering higher education in Northeast Ohio and gambling. In other words, in Cleveland.com's eyes, sunken with regret over letting this happen once on its watch, the county merits one-third of a full-time job.
And yes, I know, we in the media dropped the ball. The Plain Dealer repeatedly endorsed these criminals, and the news team that I oversaw at the newspaper did not catch the corruption before the FBI did. For all of you who repeatedly note our lapse, I've said before and say it again: We blew it, and I humbly apologize.
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