Social Security computer boondoggle proves conservatives' point [Letter]

Is anyone surprised that after six years and $300 million, the Social Security Administration computers are not close to working ("Social Security computer system still not working after six years," July 24). The distaste that conservatives have for big government is not just a philosophical bent and not just a fear of the arbitrary wielding of government power. It is a reflection that big government does not work — that the larger it becomes, the more expensive and inefficient it becomes.

The evidence is all around us — whether it is Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Veterans' Administration, the Social Security Administration, the IRS, the U.S. Postal Service — or any of the other countless government agencies that have time and again failed in whatever might have been their original mission because they have become bloated caricatures of themselves far more interested in feeding their bloat than doing a job.

There is a lot of talk of streamlining government, of simplifying a ridiculously confused and confusing tax code, but it is, unfortunately, nothing but talk. One can only hope that eventually people will come to recognize that government is the problem, not a source of solutions.

Thomas F. McDonough, Towson

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