For the vast majority of planet Earth’s human population, living under a stable, non-corrupt government’s rule is something society is far too accompanied to. Right?
According to Transparency International (TI), an independent, non-profit organization that seeks to gauge and monitor the transparency of governments across the globe, a whopping 85 percent of citizens are ruled by governments that scored below 50 on Transparency International’s annual list of government corruption.
Many English-speaking readers hail from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the United States, and countries across central and northern Europe – the least corrupt countries on TI’s 2017 list – might find this surprising. Government transparency has long been a hallmark of each of these low-corruption societies, something their residents are fortunate to have grown near and dear to over the years.
However, recent happenings in the legislature of the United States and the United Kingdom, coupled with changes in the status quo of politics in both countries over the past few decades, could very well spur a transgression from well-oiled governance.
Despite extensive research that has found the widespread use of fossil fuels to blame for climate change, including phenomena such as global warming and the gradual shrinking of coastlines around the planet, governments have shipped subsidies off to the corporate pocketbooks of fossil fuel companies. Take, for example, an ongoing grant from the United Kingdom’s Parliament of some $7.7 billion in subsidies to various companies whose operations hinge around the mining of fossil fuels and the production of oil and other petrochemical derivatives.
Shouldn’t governments like the United Kingdom’s accept widely-held scientific research and adopt policies that cease the growth of fossil fuel use? Oh, and nix that monstrosity of nearly $8 billion in annual funding to energy companies, too?
This isn’t to say that Donald Trump is a bad United States President, or has acted against the best interested of America at large, though he did speak outwardly against the legitimacy of climate change both during his run for office. Scott Pruitt, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, brought multiple former bigwigs of lobbying organizations onboard the EPA since Trump appointed him in early 2017. Just months ago, the EPA authorized a right-wing media company to put together a “year in review” report on Pruitt’s 2017 calendar year at the EPA.
Where is government transparency going?
Even more, is it right for governments to act against the interests of citizens like Americans and Britains alike have seen in recent years?