Preventing conflicts of interest

Regarding “Release the Returns,” April 27: Mr. Morse raises concerns about President Trump’s lack of transparency and conflict of interest–a news item raised almost daily. It is noteworthy that at the time of the birth of our nation, Alexander Hamilton, our first secretary of treasury, recognized the devastating impact on the public’s faith and trust in government when elected and appointed government officials benefit financially from their decisions and actions and, consequently, he divested himself from all fiduciary connections, including his thriving legal practice.

Unfortunately, not everyone elected or appointed to government positions designed to serve the public good has been as ethically devoted to his or her office. Over the decades, citizens have experienced and complained about many forms of corruption from public officials, including other presidents, but perhaps none that rivals, at least in frequency of complaints, what has occurred during the past few months.

Corruption in government has been so extensive as to have generated its own lingo (“payola”) and sign language (rubbing one’s index finger and thumb) which have evolved as near-universal expressions of one form of corrupt political involvement. Also, worldwide we observe governments rise and fall as a result of public servants’ corruption. Perhaps the flow of the enormous sums of money for political…

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