To the Editor,

The role of government today is hotly debated. Liberals often lean towards “more government” while conservatives make the claim that they’re the party of “small government”— history does not substantiate either statement.

Many who oppose “big government” do so because they claim government is inefficient, corrupt and inhibits growth. These people believe our nation is best served by handing certain functions over to the private sector and ultimately removing government altogether.  I have never understood those who see the government as the enemy yet see big business as the answer. (Be honest, you’ve heard Medicare and Social Security mentioned repeatedly as the next to be “privatized” even recent local discussions about privatizing the county jail.)

My questions:

• What makes government inefficient and corrupt? POLITICIANS the most common answer.

• What makes politicians inefficient and corrupt? Special interests and big money.

• What controls the special interests and big money, which makes these politicians, and in turn our government, inefficient and corrupt?  (Tricky? not really.) Wealthy donors and big business.

Advocates of “small government” claim that our economic prosperity is best served by giving more power to those who already have the power (the wealthy and big business). How can our best chance to return to prosperity be giving unchecked (unregulated) power over to the very same people/big business which by using their money to buy influence have made our government corrupt and inefficient?

Is it not a logical conclusion that if big business and the wealthy were allowed to sidestep government altogether they would become even more corrupt? I say yes, without government regulations, these people and businesses would have the flood gates opened to do whatever they wanted, when they wanted and how they wanted. After all, isn’t that why they pump so much money into government in the first place?  To buy influence with politicians which will support policies that benefit them? Just look at the revered oil companies and the death grip they have on our daily lives.

One last question: Is it unrealistic of the voting public to expect their elected officials to act in the best interest of the citizenry and not be swayed by the dollars thrown at them by rich individuals, special interests and big business?

Ruth Mauldin,

Red Oak