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Government by the people

In the Economy page article "Eyeing Clintonomics: Jimmy Carter Redux?," Oct. 16, the author addresses the cost of governmental programs. Today people look to government to solve all of their problems, but in most cases, this is the least efficient way to handle it.

I recall reports of a large family housed in motel rooms under a state emergency assistance program. For about half the cost, a more suitable home could have been rented, but regulations prohibited using the funds for rent assistance. The result: The family was stuck in less suitable housing at twice the price.

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The public is asking the government to solve the economic crisis, to make American businesses more competitive, to reduce the trade deficit, to improve the environment, to improve education. What is needed is for workers to strive for greater productivity and quality in their work; for consumers to give attention to where and how products are made; and what effect their use has on the environment. We need to solve the problems we face and not expect the government to do what is really our responsibility. Wendy Joy Spille, Princeton, N.J.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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