US Federal Government - It's Not Perfect, But Should We Expect More?

Wednesday, August 8, 2012
There sure are a lot of people criticizing the United State's Federal Government. They say things such as; the Federal Government is wasteful, corrupt, incompetent, and inefficient. And whereas, one could say with such a huge blob of bureaucracy one is bound to find some inefficiencies, waste, corruption, and incompetence right? Sure that makes sense, nothing is perfect, not you, your family, not your company, and not your closest friends either.

Not long ago, I was debating this with an acquaintance who stated; "There are holes in the system." Well, indeed, there always will be, it is the nature of complex systems and Murphy will always exploit the weaknesses. My acquaintance also noted; "There are both right and wrong policies. Good and bad policies." Yes, and it would be hard to argue with that either. And when it comes to incompetence, yes, there are "Competent officials and incompetent officials."

Surely, I think we all accept that, or should at least be honest with ourselves on those points. Likewise there are corrupted and less-than-corrupt officials, at all levels of the bureaucracy. Now, my acquaintance asks a most dubious question, one not often asked; "The question is; are the scales tipped in the wrong direction?"

Okay so, that is one way consider it, however, I'd like to form a different question, as I am not so comfortable with where the answers to this question takes us. You see, since historically political decisions lead to unintended consequences, shouldn't government be smaller, making fewer decisions, therefore they'd have fewer messes to clean-up. Further, if government makes a mess, why would we put our faith in their ability to fix it?

Let's discuss one more inquiry in this thought of the day, shall we? "Is there more wrong, bad and incompetence than right, good and competence?"

Once again, I'd like to state that maybe that is the wrong question to ask as well, because, maybe the system is not working because it's gotten off track;

1.) Revolving Door of Politicians, Bureaucrats, regulators, government lawyers going to work for those who work to abuse the system, using those insider connections.

2.) Abuses of privileges of all three branches of government, over stepping their checks and balances. Legislating from the bench, obscure executive orders, DOJ witch hunts of other branches, legislators interfering in regulatory investigations, etc. etc.

3.) A pay-to-play government, for lobbyists, corporations, unions - without the ability for a citizen or small businesses to express their concerns.

If the system of checks-and-balances has been corrupted, then in reality it does not exist, without it, the natural human tendencies will rear their ugly heads early and often. Some might say that it's because "democracy is messy" as Obama said in his State of the Union Address. No, I'd say that Chicago Mafia style dirty politics is messy, and it's no way to run the greatest nation in the history of mankind.

"This is not a perfect world we live in!"

No, it's not, but that doesn't mean it can't be, or that we can't do better with our Federal Government than we have in past periods. Indeed, I hope you will please consider all this.

By Lance Winslow