Thursday, January 28, 2010

the cost of government-- and just trying to get a question answered

Debbie Harbeson in the Jeff/NA News-Tribune...

It was a simple question. I only wanted to know the cost of two recent mailings I received from a couple of state government employees who claim to represent me....I did not get an answer to my question. Oh, I received responses; they just didn’t answer the question. Maybe that’s all I can expect from politicians.

The first? oversized postcard from State Rep. Paul Robertson...I e-mailed him to inquire about the cost of mailing the postcard. He responded to me very quickly and told me it costs 44 cents to mail a postcard. I replied explaining more clearly that I wanted to know the entire cost which would include design and production, as well as the number of postcards mailed.

Time passed with no answer, so I sent another request and this time an assistant replied, who said he was waiting on an answer from the publications office. More time passed and I sent another request reminding them of my inquiry.

Later that day, I noticed someone from a state government computer did an Internet search and found my Web site, which led to my blog, which led to this person checking out the blog’s archives. This happened minutes after resending my request.

Oddly enough, I haven’t received any response since. I wonder why....

The second...

...a mailing from my state senator, Jim Lewis....As frustrating as my experience was with experience with Lewis was even worse.

I’m only trying to find out the cost of a product I’m paying for. If I received such a nonanswer when asking a private business a similar question, like the actual interest rate being paid on a loan, the Attorney General would be on their case faster than these people were out on the Internet checking me out.

I guess they don’t really have any incentive to answer this question though. It’s not like they are helping a constituent in a manner that’s going to help them gain the benefit they value most: A vote....


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