Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Personal Experiences: Why We Must Limit Government

As my readers may know, I am a federal employee. I am fortunate to work in one of the best run parts of the federal government. We have had pay for performance for over twenty years, well before any other part of the government. Even the sub-units of our organization post financial results, managers are judged on their profit and loss (although we are required to break even as an organization.) Our employees are mostly well educated and most of them work very hard; there are always many cars in the parking lot at the end of working hours.

In spite of this, we are still inefficient compared to the commercial sector. We are mired in red tape and it hurts our ability to perform our work, and I think we are among the best in the federal sector. K.T. explains the difficulty of working for the feds in an excellent post with comments worth reading as well.

Government employees operate under more regulations than any of them [other regulated industries]. If you don't believe me, stop by any government agency and check out their contracts department. That's where the money gets distributed to businesses to do work. That's where stimulus meets employment.
. . .
Increased government intervention means, at the micro level, more people will spend more time following the rules like the ones laid out in the Department of Interior site linked above.
. . .
The progressive faith in government is built entirely on a foundation of ignorance. It sounds like a good idea to intervene, but in real life it fails because the government wastes people's time. Wasted time reduces economic output. It's as simple as that.

And the coup de grĂ¢ce, from his comments.
It's not that government employees are stupid, lazy or wasteful, it's that government, by proper design, is inefficient and wasteful. It should be doing as little as possible.

Dean chimes in:
I'm in the initial stages of my DAU training [acquisition training] and after each session, my head hurts.

It hurts from tons and tons of good intent.
The whole article is worth a read.

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