Over the weekend I made lasagna for the first time. It was fun — mixing everything up and laying down all the layers. Only problem was, as I was putting the finishing touches of cheese on top, I realized that I had skipped a layer of pasta. I couldn’t exactly go back in and shove noodles underneath the meat and sauce and cheese… oops.
This put me in mind of an article I read at the beginning of this month in the Sawyer County Record: Three-legged stool can’t stand on only two.
In it, David Thompson writes:
“Open government is a three-legged stool.
It takes open meetings.
It takes open records.
It takes public notices.
Any of the three being absent you don’t really have open government.”
I like the image of an open and transparent government supporting itself by BEING an open and transparent government. And this is where my dinner-time analogy falls apart — the lasagna tasted fine without that layer of pasta, but government can never be transparent if it’s missing access to records, public meetings or public notices.