This Washington Post Column, “A Transparently Terrific Bill,” though it comes from a source with which I usually don’t agree one hundred percent (The American Enterprise Institute), contains some really excellent reasoning.
The main focus of the piece is a bill that would require that government spending be publicly reported, so that corruption, waste, and fraud can all be exposed and dealt with. Just because I think paying taxes is one of the duties of citizenship doesn’t mean I think it’s a good idea to waste money.
My favorite part:
The idea of a transparency website — replete with search engines that include subcontractors — was born in May 2005 at a hearing on U.S. efforts to combat malaria. Officials from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) squirmed as Coburn revealed that 93% of the agency’s 2004 funding to eradicate malaria had been spent on administrative and advice-giving services.
A transparency website–what a good idea. Of course, the column reports that the contractors who receive lucrative government contracts do not like the bill one bit. Sadly for them, this nation exists for the people, not the contractors, and the people have the right to know where their money is going.
Let’s hope the bill passes.