(This is a current extract from the Patterns of Power Repository.  An archived copy of this page is held at http://www.patternsofpower.org/edition02/6332.htm)

The population is entitled to expect that politicians are competent:

·      Politicians should ensure that public services are competently run.

·      A government is responsible for setting the levels of government spend and taxation, to provide the services and benefits it has promised (  A competent team meets its forecasts and avoids creating economic problems. 

Politicians don’t require deeply specialised skills – they can call upon those who do – but they need more knowledge than the average ‘man in the street' so that they can competently perform their role as intermediaries between the population and the specialists.

© PatternsofPower.org, 2014