Las Vegas Sun

October 17, 2017

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Letter to the editor:

A conservative who favors government?

It’s always difficult to get through one of conservative commentator David Brooks’ columns, but from a recent commentary I managed to piece together something very interesting from his nearly indecipherable blather: Brooks admits that government is necessary.

To quote him directly, “You can cram all the nongovernmental organizations you want into a country, but if there is no rule of law and if the ruling class is predatory, your achievements won’t add up to much.”

That’s right, all you no-government-is-good-government conservatives, it’s an admission by one of your own that government — and by that, he means good, honest and open government — is the basis for advancing society.

I’m sure Brooks slipped up. He’ll surely deny that was what he meant.

Brooks loves to generalize, and in this generalization he was talking about such nongovernmental organizations as the Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders or churches, not private enterprises.

But it’s true, private enterprise depends on government more than any other nongovernmental organization. Without government, there is no system for land ownership, no legally binding contracts, no open trade. Business will stop growing and wither.

Brooks is a big-government conservative. I wonder if he realizes it.

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