Letter to the Editor: Candidate’s job raises question of holding office

To the Editor:
Jul 30, 2014

To the Editor: 

Terry Duncan, if elected, will be his boss’ boss. Isn’t that like being your own granddad?  

The voters of District 8 should be aware that, like so many other members of the Wilson County Commission, Terry Duncan is also an employee of the Wilson County government.  It seems to be common practice in Wilson County to stack the commission with people who actually either directly work for the county government, or whose spouse, father or mother, son or daughter work for the county government.  

Isn’t that kind of like letting the inmates run the asylum? Terry Duncan is a probation officer for this county. I wonder if Duncan would approve of the inmates being in charge of the parole board or probation department?  How would that work out for us?

The effect of voting county employees into office on the county commission is the creation of an incredible conflict of interest. How can a commissioner vote on legislation that would increase or decrease his or her pay or increase or decrease the pay of their wife, husband, son, daughter, father or mother? How can they faithfully execute the duties of their office if by doing so they would have to decrease the budget for his or her department, jeopardize their own job or that of a family member, friend or fellow worker, or that could have profound affect on their own daily employment and work environment or that of a family member or fellow co-worker? 
Consider being a supervisor of someone who can vote to fire you. How can anyone in the workplace trust that you will treat them equally and fairly when one among them is not equal?  The commissioner who works beside them Monday through Friday also is their boss’ boss. What could possibly go wrong in that arrangement? 

This is what is going on in this county on a grand scale. Duncan is just another county commissioner who has a personal conflict of interest. That personal conflict of interest exists constantly during his entire term in office. 
Is it legal for employees to also be commissioners in the same government?  Yes. Is it right?  You decide.  Could you supervise your boss? Is that what is called a paradox?  Isn’t it like being your own granddad? Duncan isn’t in a race to be re-elected to District 8, Frank Bush is asking for you to re-elect him, and Frank is the “real” District 8 commissioner. Don’t be deceived by the carefully worded campaign materials. Don’t let someone steal the credit for what Frank Bush has done for District 8 during the past eight years.  

Vote Frank Bush for District 8.

John Bell 

Mt. Juliet

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