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A Government that Serves?

A good government is one in which the regular person feels entitled to participate on a daily basis, not just on election day, in order to build policy from the ground up that serves our community.

As the election season kicks into full gear, November for Federal and March 2013 for our local government, it’s prudent to take a moment to identify what it is we want from our votes.  As simple as that idea may sound, I wonder why we don’t take the time as a community to discuss this very broad and sweeping idea of government – especially in an era when most people, if you trust polling, express profound dissatisfaction with politicians. 

In real terms, our votes carry significant meaning every time we exercise that right and they should be made with purpose and intention.  That requires that we know, philosophically, just what it is that we want from the people we elect.  In this, I am not just talking about the specifics – a road paved or the preservation of a historical landmark.  Rather, I speak of the purpose of government. 

I have always been enamored by the writings and philosophies of Thomas Jefferson, one of our founding fathers and the author of the Declaration of Independence.  One particular quote is a favorite of mine and I will do my best to paraphrase it here, “the best government is one in which the average citizen is comfortable participating every day, not just election day”. 

That is the government I seek; the one in which real people feel as though their voices have value in city halls and state seats, where solutions, even distasteful ones, are made inclusively in a manner that is palatable to each and every person affected.  Not everybody has to take part in this process or even consider it, but everyone must know that the option is there for all to express their needs in a meaningfully format and our elected officials are always hoping for their participation. 

In short, I hope for a government that serves its people and this is the reason that I have chosen to pursue public office.  I believe that public policy should be built from the ground up in as organic a manner that remains functional and every effort must be made by our representatives to seek out our hopes, our dreams, and our opinions – positive and negative – about the way government is currently working. 

Only when we return to an era in which public officials become steadfast community servants; only when real people feel as though they have been taken seriously, and only when we as a community have all been heard will the tenets of Thomas Jefferson become real and tangible to us in every corner of our lives. 

I am running for Los Angeles City Council in District 11. That covers my own neighborhood of Westchester in addition to Playa Del Rey, Del Rey, Playa Vista, Venice, Mar Vista, Palms, Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, and West LA.  Please feel free to contact me at your convenience.  I look forward to discussing LA’s very bright future with you, both during my effort to win your support and throughout my tenure as your representative, should you grant me that honor.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Eddie Greenberg September 14, 2012 at 02:11 AM
I wish you good luck Odysseus, your values are sound. However unlike Jefferson's time money has entered into the political pantheon. Corruption always a problem has now reached monumental heights. Therefore governments from the local level onward now are serving more special interests, than they are the peoples. Many times the people's interests come 2nd., or they come last; and that is the truth of it. The arms of the law are also controlled by corrupt governments,impeding their detection; as well as the Press. The Press needs advertising to survive and if they don't play ball the government in question will turn off or slow the revenue stream. People are aware of this as never before and that is why they calculate in their votes ,"who is the best of the worst"? Good honest candidates are difficult to recognize in the pre-election spin season.

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