Useful Tips

How to Address a Letter to a Government Official (US and Canada)


Americans see pervasive corruption as the second largest US problem, right after unemployment. It is difficult to disagree with them: while the heavy external debt of the United States is increasing every week, the government shows its complete inability to somehow control the growing budget expenditures. If things do not change in the foreseeable future, corruption could lead America to a full-blown economic catastrophe.

At the same time, even though corruption is an integral part of American culture - as evidenced, for example, by numerous Hollywood films about unprincipled politicians and corrupt police officers - American society has not developed effective methods of fighting corruption. Even the institution of “civilized corruption,” lobbyism, did not help reduce the number of abuses in the distribution of budgetary resources.

Americans are embarrassed by their corruption. To see this, it’s enough to look at a tiny article on corruption on the English-language Wikipedia: not a single serious incident is listed there, and the article itself was even proposed by the community for deletion. Perhaps, for this reason, there is still no complete and up-to-date list of corruption scandals in the USA.

Corruption in the financial sector

The most widespread corruption scandals are connected with the US Federal Reserve, public debt, investment funds and other places where you can rewrite astronomical amounts of money from one account to another with a click of a button.

The representative of the Fed can not report for a trillion dollars

In the video you can see how the chief Fed inspector Coleman mumbles helplessly in court, trying in vain to find at least some answer to a direct question. Quote from the video:

- What about the trillion-plus dollars that have replenished the Fed's balance sheet since last September? Have you done any investigations about this?
“We ... now we ... and ... We are doing a review, sort of an investigation.” We do a fairly detailed review where all programs and their risks are considered.
“I understood that, but we are talking about a story that has been going on for 8 months.” Have you come to any conclusions regarding the increase in the Fed balance by a trillion-plus dollars since last September?
- No, there are no conclusions yet.
- Ahh ... well ... We are now reviewing ... and umm ...
“It is clear, but you are the chief inspector, and my specific question is:“ Do you know who received the trillion-plus dollars that replenished the Fed's balance sheet from last September? ”Do you know who received them?
- I dont know. We have not yet reached this particular issue in our review.

This situation developed two years later. The clumsily dismissed Fed inspector was quietly fired. Congressman Alan Grayson, asking uncomfortable questions, lost the next election. The investigation has completely stalled.

Corruption among federal officials

The total number of federal officials in the United States is more than two million people and is constantly growing. In terms of per capita, this is about twice as much as in Russia.

Senate seat sale

The Illinois Governor was caught trying to sell the Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama.

Federal credit cards

Almost half of federal credit card purchases (used for government purchases) are fraudulent. Officials spend budget money on gambling, closing their loans, underwear and anything else, including jewelry and vacations in Hawaii.

4 million dollars to move tables

The Securities Commission in Washington spent $ 3.9 million to move furniture in its office.

Bribe for meeting with Bush

The former president of Malaysia said that he had to pay $ 1.2 million for the opportunity to see George Bush in 2002.

Judicial Corruption

Judges for bribes put teenagers in jail

Two American judges have been convicted of harsh sentences for teenagers. As it turned out, he did it for bribes from the owners of private prisons who were interested in new “clients” for their “business”. In total, judges received more than two million dollars in bribes. Also, with their active participation, the state juvenile prison was closed.

Health Corruption

The total amount of corruption in the US healthcare sector is estimated at $ 60 billion annually. This money is spent on the treatment of healthy people, fraudulent supplies of equipment and the like fraud. At the same time, medical personnel are united to steal budget money into huge influential criminal organizations.

Military Corruption

The constant conduct of aggressive wars, the consistent robbery of oil countries, the deployment of military bases around the world and the largest military budget in the world open up huge spaces for the US military to steal and cut budget money.

Haliburton uprated military

It turned out that the Haliburton Corporation provided services to the US military at obviously inflated prices. So, for example, washing one bag of uniform cost $ 100. Also, prices for food and energy were inflated. The total contract between the corporation and the Pentagon at the time of the investigation was $ 13 billion.

Golf courses

December 2012 According to an article in InOSMI, the Pentagon has 234 golf courses on the balance sheet around the world, including golf courses in Guantanamo, Iraq, Guam, Diego Garcia, Saudi Arabia. Some golf enthusiasts believe that the best golf courses in the United States do not belong to commercial enterprises, but to the country's Air Force. The Pentagon’s total annual golf spending has not been disclosed. For those who don't like golf, the Pentagon contains an exclusive ski resort in Bavaria.

Billion Dollar ECSS Broken

The $ 1 billion Expeditionary Combat Support System (ECSS) turned out to be completely ineffective.

The Pentagon General Controller believes that in general, the Ministry of Defense has several more similar software development contracts. They are $ 8 billion higher than the initial bids and 13 years behind the implementation schedule.

Actually, it was difficult to expect a different result: the US Air Force did not even begin to develop requirements for the program. They just gave the money to the contractor and said "do us well."

Of course, the firm that won the tender to create the program generously allocated significant amounts to support American politicians.

13 billion aid to Iraq wasted

$ 13 billion aimed at rebuilding Iraq was either stolen or wasted. The US Department of Defense cannot report another 8 billion dollars - it spent it somewhere, but does not know where.

2.4 billion dollars for unnecessary aircraft

The Pentagon has spent $ 2.4 billion on 10 jets that it does not need and which it will not use.

Arabs "deceived" the Pentagon for $ 14 billion

Arab suppliers supplied the Pentagon with equipment at ten times higher prices. For example, the Pentagon paid $ 80 for parts of sewer pipes worth one and a half dollars, and $ 900 for each switch worth $ 7.5. The total volume of such saw contracts amounted to at least 14 billion dollars.

Engineers received kickbacks

Military engineers held contracts through a gasket company registered in Alaska, thereby significantly overstating the price of contracts. Fraud surfaced in 2011 when they tried to master in this way the next amount - $ 780 million.

Corruption in other departments

The Interior Ministry discovered 34 billion dollars of dubious contracts

Auditors found that the US Department of Homeland Security contracts for $ 34 billion featured "significant waste, fraud, and abuse."

The Minister made an expensive repair in the bathroom at the state expense

Repairs were made in 2007 for the Minister of the Interior, Dirk Kemptorn. Repair cost 222 thousand dollars. One refrigerator in the bathroom pulled in $ 3’500. (link)

2.5 billion dollars on the Internet went nowhere

The Ministry of Agriculture acknowledged that the $ 2.5 billion spent on developing broadband Internet access was spent largely ineffectively, for example, on allocating money to areas that were already fully covered by fast Internet.

Border guards helped illegal migrants

In San Diego caught two employees of the service to combat illegal migration. Directly in their official car, they transported illegal immigrants from Mexico to the United States. At the same time, one of those caught was the face of the local government in television reports.

"Economic" routers for 22 thousand dollars

“Economical” routers from CISCO were purchased for schools in West Virginia at $ 22’600 per unit: while the vast majority of schools would have had enough models costing a hundred times less. The total amount of the contract was $ 24 million.

Red Cross Official Fights Overweight From Donations

The scheme is simple and rather boring, according to investigators: "The current account was drawn up in the name of Leggio (the financial director of the New York branch of the Red Cross - the heroine of the news. Approx. Expert), so she could cash out any amounts without the knowledge of higher structures." That is, I simply used a card with funds, as my own, every couple of days. For 4 years, $ 274 thousand came, and she was able to compensate only $ 9.5 thousand. At the same time, you can analyze the cost of a carefree life in New York.

Corruption during construction and restoration

New York City Underground Tunnel Rise

During the construction of the tunnel for the eastern subway of New York, its cost increased from 3 billion to 8.4 billion dollars. The total length of the tunnel is only 3.2 kilometers, however, work ongoing since 1998 is planned to be completed only in 2019. Unless, of course, the deadlines for the delivery of the object are moved again, as it was several times earlier.

Hurricane Katrina: $ 2 Billion Abuse

About $ 2 billion was spent in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Auditors also said that the data of 900,000 emergency recipients are not verified and are likely to be fakes or duplicates. This is more than a third of the total number of beneficiaries.

Hello, !

Hello, !

The fact of user registration on RIA Novosti websites indicates his agreement with these rules.

The user undertakes by his actions not to violate the current legislation of the Russian Federation.

The user agrees to speak respectfully towards other participants in the discussion, readers and persons appearing in the materials.

Comments are published only in Russian.

User comments are posted without prior editing.

The user's commentary can be edited or blocked during the posting process if he:

  • promotes hatred, discrimination on racial, ethnic, sexual, religious, social grounds, contains insults, threats against other users, specific individuals or organizations, infringes on the rights of minorities, violates the rights of minors, causes them any harm,
  • calls for a violent change in the constitutional system of the Russian Federation
  • defames the honor and dignity of others or undermines their business reputation,
  • distributes personal data of third parties without their consent,
  • pursues commercial purposes, contains spam, advertising information or links to other network resources containing such information,
  • has obscene content, contains foul language and its derivatives,
  • is a part of the action, in which a large number of comments with identical or similar content (“flash mob”) are received,
  • the author abuses writing a large number of low-content messages ("flood"),
  • the meaning of the text is difficult or impossible to grasp
  • the text is written in Russian using the Latin alphabet,
  • the text is wholly or predominantly in capital letters,
  • the text is not broken down into sentences.

If the commenting rules are violated three times, users will be transferred to the preliminary editing group for a period of one week.

If you repeatedly violate the rules of commenting, the ability of the user to leave comments can be blocked.

Please write correctly - comments that show disrespect for the Russian language, intentional neglect of its rules and norms may be blocked regardless of the content.

Method 1 Write a letter to the official

  1. 1 Decide who you should contact. This will help determine exactly what your problem is. Thus, you can narrow down the list of those with whom you should contact. If you suspect that your neighbor is a threat to the state, you should probably contact the Department of Homeland Security. And if your park is in poor condition, you could send a letter to the Parks and Recreation Department of your city.
  2. 2 Find the address.
    • Find the government agency website you want to contact online, for example, you could find the address of your US Senator.
    • Look for the address in the old fashioned way. Leadership Directories, Inc. (LDI) provides high-quality contact information for government officials as well as various public and private organizations. These Yellow Pages can be found in most libraries.
  3. 3 Follow proper etiquette. In the list below, you will find how to contact various government officials in a letter. Be sure to start your letter of greeting and end it with a courtesy formula.
    • Know which headings require a last name. If this letter contains only one addressee (for example, the President of the United States or the President of the Supreme Court), there is no need to use the name of the official when you address him or her. If the letter is sent to an organization where there are several such people, for example, to the senator, then you must indicate his name.
  4. 4 Follow the instructions for the official letter for formatting assistance.

Method 8 Former US President

Honorable [Name and Surname] [Office Address]

  1. 1
    • Greetings: Dear Mr. [Surname]: How to address the former President depends on two things:
      • If he or she has not performed other duties, starting from leaving the office, you should use duties that were performed only before The presidency. For example, Bill Clinton - "Governor Clinton." Barack Obama will someday be referred to as "Senator Obama."
      • If he or she has performed other duties, starting from leaving the office, you should use this heading. For example, former President Taft became the President of the Supreme Court Taft.
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,

Method 10 House Speaker

Venerable [Name and Surname] House Speaker Washington, D.C. 20515

  1. 1
    • Greeting: Dear Speaker:
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,

=== Member of the House of Representatives

Honorable [First and Last Name] US House of Representatives House Office BuildingWashington, D.C. 20515

  1. 1
    • Greetings: Dear Sir (Madam) [Surname]
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,

Method 16 Prime Minister (Canada)

Honorable [First and Last Name], P.C., M.P. Canadian Prime Minister Office of the Prime Minister Ottawa, Ontario K1a 0A2

  1. 1
    • Greetings: Dear Sir [Madame]: or Dear Sir (Madam) Prime Minister: or Dear Prime Minister:
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,

Method 19 Chief Justice of Canada

Honorable [First Name and Surname], P.C. Chief Justice of Canada Supreme Court Building Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0J1

  1. 1
    • Salutation: Sir (Madame): or Dear Sir (Madame): or Dear Sir (Madam) Chief Justice:
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,

Method 21 Prime Minister of the Province

Venerable [Name and Surname], M.L.A. (for Ontario use M.P.P., for Quebec use M.N.A., for Newfoundland and Labrador use M.H.A.) Prime Minister of the Province [Name] (for Quebec - Prime Minister of the Province of Quebec) [Office Address]

  1. 1
    • Greetings: Dear Sir (Madame): or My Dear Prime Minister: or Dear Sir (Madam) [Surname]
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,

Method 22 Members of Canadian Provincial Governments - Executive Council

Venerable [Name and Surname], M.L.A. (for Ontario, use M.P.P., for Quebec, use M.N.A., for Newfoundland and Labrador, use M.H.A.) [Office Address]

  1. 1
    • Salutation: Dear Sir (Madame):
    • Polite conclusion: Sincerely yours,