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Letter: Don Barnhart
Power corrupts America

Friday, October 12, 2012

Lord Acton (John Dalberg-Acton), British politician and historian said, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Corruption, the abuse of power, tends to grow as government gets larger and more powerful. The Democratic Party and President Obama are gung ho on greatly enlarging the size of the federal government and its involvement in our lives. They say that this growth of government is needed to provide for the people’s needs. But all of history shows the opposite — that as the power of the government grows, the individual loses liberty and importance: It is corruption that is facilitated.

In recent years, as the government has grown, corruption has grown. In its corruption index for 2011, Transparency International, an organization founded to combat corruption, ranked the United States as 24, up from 16 in 2001. (No. 1 is the least corrupt; higher numbers equal more corruption.) We are headed in the wrong direction.

Corruption in the Obama administration has been significant, though not much beyond other administrations. Examples of recent corruption:

1. We heard this year about excessive spending by several agencies on conferences.

2. Which firms received stimulus money to promote green energy seems to have been significantly influenced by who the investors were rather than the merits of the companies business potential. Solyndra is a prime example: even after warnings the loan was very risky, $535 million was loaned and lost by us taxpayers. A main investor was an Obama supporter.

3. In the bailout of Chrysler, President Obama violated established legal rules and gave the UAW (United Auto Workers) financial rewards at the expense of other creditors. It appears the President abused his power to reward political supporters.

4. Recent reports state that 7 of the 10 richest counties are in the Washington, D.C., area. So while the entire nation is struggling with financial decline, areas filled with federal government workers and contractors are raking in the cash.

Increasingly, who you know seems to be more important than how hard you work. I have spoken with many immigrants from Mexico and Central America about why they left their homelands and came to the United States. All said it was to flee corruption. They wanted to be free to be rewarded for who they were and what their talents were, not on who they knew or could bribe.

President Obama wants to enlarge government, to increase its power. Where power concentrates, corruption finds fertile ground to grow. He does not seem to care about the little man, only the powerful.

I am persuaded a vote for Obama is a vote to increase corruption. It is human nature to abuse power. Our founders divided power among the states, federal government and the people. The plan has worked well for 200 years. President Obama wants to fundamentally change that power structure and concentrate most power in Washington to the detriment of our liberty.

Let’s send him home.

Don Barnhart



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