Perhaps if Rhode Island were bigger, the larger pool of public-official talent made available would make such stupidities as the outrageous state investment in 38 Studios less likely. Also helpful would be if we in the media didn't make politics so unalluring for intelligent and civic-minded people to enter that too much space is left for stupid and/or corrupt people to fill. The low level 0f knowledge and intelligence of too many elected officials in Rhode Island has always struck me as a far bigger problem than out-and-out corruption, of which, yes, there's plenty in all states, including Massachusetts and Connecticut. In the RISDIC scandal, in 38 Studios and some other Ocean State outrages, there have been various forms of corruption (felonies or more minor) but stupidity, wishful thinking and not necessarily criminal taking care of pals were the biggest culprits.
Meanwhile, I have often thought that we should consider abolishing the state and splitting the land between the Bay State and the Nutmeg State, thus reducing the pathologies associated with too much political intimacy.