The articles on this website aren’t from a professional person who has had a lifelong involvement in politics at any level. No degrees in politics are held, no special certifications, no government job to give me an inside look at how government runs, nothing. I can’t tell you that if you read these articles that you will be an expert in all to know about the various roles in government, budgeting, law making, etc. All I can tell you is that I did my best to read up and research about government and offer you what I learned to do with as you wish. The way I research is studying these roles from questions I had and tried to find the answer to them on my own.
“But, Katie, why not just ask people in government?”
I’m glad you asked that! This has been the biggest obstacle the last two years in my trying to figure out the black and white truth of the matter concerning government. Why? Because I realized from the moment our mayor and finance officer responded to my concerns I presented to them that I wasn’t going to get a straight answer. When I approached one person with a question, I got a totally different answer than someone else I asked as well. It was mind-numbing frustration to say the least. I felt like I was being lead around by the nose on purpose in order to not get a straight answer how things were supposed to be handled by our local government and I couldn’t trust anyone to give me a solid answer based on the law.
On the other side of it, I learned that many people in government don’t know the full scope and essence of their jobs. For my entire life, I was lead to believe that government officials are THE people to go to with government questions about taxes, how things SHOULD be done, how a city SHOULD be managed, how a mayor SHOULD do his job, etc. That reality came crashing down when a person I’ve known for a long time pulled me aside one day amidst my venting all my frustration on the matter and they said, “Katie, you need to stop being so hard on them about this.” I was shocked and asked why to which they replied, “Because you know more than they do.” I refused to believe that and said, “What?! I don’t know ANYTHING!” And they said, “Yeah, and you still know more than they do.”
This isn’t meaning to say that everyone in government are scumbags full of corruption and deceit. Absolutely NOT. There’s many good people in government, but the key there is who is training them and who do they go to for questions. I noticed that many government entities or departments (or even municipalities and counties) are at a high risk of living in their own bubble of people and those same people go through the revolving door of being voted into various government roles, taking different jobs, and above all, training. I noticed that they tend to train each other or depend on the same person/association to train them and answer their questions. The best example is our city council being trained by the city attorney on how to do their jobs. Isn’t that a conflict of interest? Doesn’t that cause vulnerabilities by allowing one person that much power and people on the council don’t seek people outside of their bubble to talk to to ensure they fully understand their job? Why doesn’t the attorney encourage them to read the ordinance that pertain to their job? Or even the state law? Why not make it a requirement and really talk about it all? Why not hire a person to come in and give a presentation on the matter but they’re from another state and have vast, objective experience? Wouldn’t that serve everyone better?
There’s many good people in government with good hearts and intentions, but here, what I’m offering is a different way to approach learning these roles: ask questions and let’s see if we can learn the full scope of these roles according to what our local ordinances, by-laws, policies, and state law say. And with any luck, I can find good presentations on YouTube we can watch and learn from as well. When there’s a person that I know and fully trust to shoot straight with me who also has vast experience in government, I guarantee you that I will ask them all the questions I can to learn all I can from them and share it with you. And you glean whatever you like from what I found and put together into an article along with my thoughts.
By doing so, I hope we can get around the typical habits of politicians and learn how our government SHOULD be run, how we SHOULD be represented, how our tax dollars SHOULD be managed, how we CAN get involved, find answers, and run for seats in government, and how we SHOULD exercise our Constitutional rights in every way.