Updated: Apr 19, 2020
Can the Federal government solve any of the major problems of our time? I suggest probably not.
Why is the conversation about the difficulties our country now faces along with the solutions to those problems broken before it begins?
The answer --- they all focus on the federal government as the source of the solution to each and every problem the country faces. In my humble judgement that view could not be more thoroughly in error in its assumptions, and therefore must also be ineffective in its proposed solutions. As I view the landscape it seems clear to me that the intrusion of the federal government into each problem area is the root cause of the very problem itself. That is not to say only the federal government creates problems. In fact, every element of government has that characteristic, I believe, but the larger the government entity the greater the opportunity to create rather than solve problems, so the federal government has the greatest capability. So, placing the federal government in position to solve any problem is the equivalent of solving the problem of foxes in the henhouse by assigning more foxes to oversee the henhouse.
Why would the federal government be the source of ever greater disparity in distribution of wealth, ridiculously expensive medical care, and catastrophically poor public educational systems? My answer: Because all government is by its nature ignorant and corrupt. That is not to say that all people in government are ignorant and corrupt, although some certainly are one or both, but government itself is naturally prone to ignorance and corruption. And the more powerful the government the greater it’s potential for ignorance and corruption. If that is true, our current federal government may have now achieved an unprecedented level of overwhelming ignorance and corruption.
A passing look at the rank partisan discord that has eliminated even the most minimal, effective operation of the federal government in recent years would seem to prove that point. A specific example, though, might be helpful as well. To that I turn to the late and great “No Child Left Behind” (NCLB) program, introduced at the end of the second term of the last President Bush. From what I know of Ex-President Bush and his family I believe that the NCLB program was put in place with the best possible intentions. Its basic difficulty, however, was that it assumed the federal government could be used as the solution to one of the nation’s greatest problems, a failing K-12 government education system. It quickly became ignorant because the bureaucrats who control public education assumed control of the new program and developed programming that resulted in abject failure of the system. The conversations I have had with teachers forced to implement the NCLB program immediately recognized the massive mistakes in educational systems and processes mandated by that program. It was immediately doomed to failure by the ignorance educational bureaucrats brought to the table. Government corruption was also evident from the outset as those same educational bureaucrats recognized the opportunity to use the new program as a powerful platform to further promote a particular political ideology in the educational environment. The immediate and lasting result of the NCLB program: Increased federal intervention into the K-12 public education systems, and an even greater loss of educational quality and success.
There is not a single federal government program that, in my judgement, operates efficiently and effectively without negative intentional and/or unintentional results. The notion that the solution to any problem facing this country is greater involvement of the federal government is, therefore, foolish at the very least and absolutely disastrous at the worst. So, to expect the federal government to solve our difficulties with medical care, as one example, is ridiculous. Their intervention into medical care has created the mess we now have. Did the arrival of the Affordable Care Act reduce costs of medical care as promised? Did the Affordable Care Act improve access to and quality of medical care for any significant portion of the population? My answer to both questions is a resounding NO!!! In fact, that intrusion into our country’s medical care system has been an unmitigated failure for the country. The only real solution is to remove the federal government from every aspect of medical care. As far as I can tell no one in Washington D.C. suggests that (except perhaps Rand Paul), as it would result in an immense loss of power in the Capital along with an abandonment of a batch of the most lucrative associations D.C. politicians have with the huge organizations that provide medical care and pharmaceuticals. In other words, if the federal government did not have immense control over medical care and everything associated with it, federal government officials and their minions would lose a treasure trove of financial support for their campaigns, the ability to funnel massive numbers of dollars to their friends, and the opportunity to enrich themselves. The result is current medical care systems defined by ignorance and corruption. For the reasons just stated I do not expect the appropriate, logical approach to any substantial issue of our time, as every major issue has at its base exactly the same factors, gross mismanagement based on ignorance and corruption that benefits only those who are in positions of greatest power.
The founders of our country clearly understood the problems associated with government. I believe they were fully aware of the tendency for ignorance and corruption and placed limits on the federal government in particular to limit its reach. As those constraints are continually, further relaxed our country suffers more and more the effects of government delving too deeply into education, business, medical services, and all other functions of society.
If Donald Trump would have asked me for input about what should be the key feature of his Presidency I would have replied, “Return of Power to the States”. Our country has no future, except for continued rot and deterioration, if the reach of the federal government, characterized by rampant ignorance and corruption that permeates every office, is not immensely reduced. That is not, or course, the current direction in our country. We continue to assign more and more foxes with ever greater power to manage more and more henhouses. And guess which part of the populace are foxes and which part are the hens.
Previous: Herd Mentality – A Study in Human Nature