So the debate over big government is more lively than ever. Government involvement in health care, GM, bailouts of banks, the list goes on. Most people don't want that much government involvement (I have no idea why it's not all).
The anger over government involvement is largely misunderstood by the left. We want government, we like government. But to a certain point. Am I happy government keeps up our roads and highways relatively well? Sure. Do I understand that our taxes go towards this, and there needs to be a regulatory agency like the IRS to do it? Of course. Do I understand why government thinks they're the answer to extending health care? Not so fast.
The problem, as my friend alluded to in the previous post, is not that we don't want everyone to have health care. The unspoken problem is that the government is full of incompetents with no real life experience. Look at it. A law degree qualifies Barney Frank to be chairman of the House Financial Service Committee? Sounds more like a job for an MBA. You know, someone that could possibly define finance. And it's not just Barney Frank - why is there no diversity within our political ranks?
And let's face it, the problem doesn't stop there. Incompetence is almost redundant when describing any government figure - have you ever tried to call a government agency? And if you have, have you ever been on hold less than 45 minutes? Of course not. Hell, in Rhode Island you're lucky if you don't get an automated message saying call logs are too high, so just call back later.
But why would the government have the best and the brightest? That's why private industry is so effective. They provide the greatest incentive - money. Within reasonable boundaries, most people will do most things for the right price. And that's what the government lacks. The ability to provide the proper financial incentive to hire the best people. The financial crisis wasn't a result of incompetence in the banking industry, it was a result of overzealous greed, and complex risk taking. And who got the last laugh? Banks made a killing with TARP funds. Goldman Sachs recently settled with the SEC for $550 million. They've already made that money back, and didn't have to admit liability. Who do you think won that one?
Which leads to the question of why government over private industry. If the proper incentives were given, we could reduce dependency on foreign oil, fix social security - we could literally do everything (please pay attention here, IF the proper incentive is provided, and I don't pretend to know what that is, it's above my pay grade).
Which is what confuses me about the recent governor's race in California. Jerry Brown has a proven history of contributing to the rampant debt in CA. Meg Whitman is Ebay. A multi billion dollar company. If you can afford to spend $130 million on a campaign and not sweat it, that's who I want running my state. Debt is the only issue is CA. Period. Everything else is on the back burner until spending is reigned in. Because I don't live there, it will be marginally humorous to watch as Jerry Brown spends his way out of debt (does anyone else find that term a little uncomfortable?).
The problem is that politics fogs logic. Meg Whitman was the only answer to fixing CA. Yet NOW supported Jerry Brown. That bears repeating. The National Organization for Woman supported Jerry Brown. Because why would a former CEO of a billion dollar company be empowering to women? A proven pro choice track record is really what screams "I love women."