Critics of letters to the editor are legitimate, but they should not criticize what the letter doesn't say, as David Altenbach's recent criticism of my letter does.
He said that I "apparently" think "unfettered government control of every aspect of our lives is the answer to every problem ..." I really said the opposite, that the government is inherently more fettered than business since we can control it with our vote.
Nor did I say it was the total or only answer to all problems, but when our "unfettered" corporate finance system plunged us into the worst recession in history, government was the solution then.
Mr. Altenbach says that "all" government does is "collect taxes and spend money," obviously an oversimplification. Our tax revenue allows the government to perform vital functions that private enterprise can't or won't do, such as building/maintaining infrastructure, regulating commerce, and educating our children. One vital government function: protecting the powerless against abuses by the powerful.
Never miss a local story.
My critic also said that I "denounce" charter schools. I didn't denounce all of them, some do perform well, but on the whole they are more costly, have less oversight, and devalue teachers.
Faults of "trickle down economics, " which Mr. Altenbach defends, are so well known that it is unnecessary to justify criticism of it.
And "free" enterprise is not "free," it uses, even writes laws that benefit it, and uses government largesse whenever possible.
The biggest welfare queens in history, fossil fuel companies, receive billions in government subsidies every year, even though they are the most profitable companies in the history of the world.
I don't condemn business, but someone must rein in its worst excesses, as only government can.