"It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters."
-- DANIEL WEBSTER
Well-managed government never relies on laws or ordinances, but upon the personal qualities of those who govern. The process of government is always secondary to the will of those who direct that process. Consequently, the most important element of government is the method by which leaders are chosen.
Through an open voting system, it is a privilege of a free society to be guaranteed the inalienable right of electing a governing body to represent it. It is nothing to be taken lightly. The key to what is voted for is a perceptive review of the candidates and issues. It is an opportunity and right to be heard.
Careful thought and consideration about whom or what we are voting for is the trick to selecting among what is presented on the ballot. Far too often, the murkiness of disingenuous statements goes further than misinformation and is actually deceitful.
An honest, ethical and committed stewardship of what the nation's Founding Fathers established is justified.
Political spin seems to be a time-honored tradition in American politics, and it is a type of discourse that likely will continue. Unfortunately, some political movements feel a need to go far beyond that. Spin campaigns that distort and deceitfully misinform while vying for the people's trust are never acceptable.
Although electing national leadership is vitally important, I have a bias that the government closest to the people is the form of government that best serves them.
That means my city and county.
Basic community-oriented services are best provided by local governments with the expectation of meritorious service by their representatives -- people we know, neighbors whose children attend the same schools ours do, who drive through our neighborhoods and eat at the same restaurants we do.
Day to day and dollar for dollar, I'd put my money on my local government to be most responsive, most efficient and most likely to have my interest at heart.
Exercising the right to be heard by voting in the upcoming elections is fundamental. It needs to be done with an understanding of the issues and an awareness of the campaigns.
Elimination of that which distorts and deceitfully misinforms to gain your vote will provide a government that meets the high expectation of integrity.
Steve Curtis has worked as a business consultant and communication specialist. He is currently mayor of Layton. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.