Cost Is No Object for government, and power is what is sought. Why does the federal government squander hundreds of billions of tax dollars year after year?
Seeking to understand politicians and bureaucrats on the basis of private-sector decision-making models are doomed to failure. Efforts to “fix” government by ending specific boondoggles are quixotic crusades. Government will continue to be profoundly wasteful because that is how politicians maximize their power-a subject that interests politicians far more than do federal audit reports.
“Political language . . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind,” observed George Orwell. Professor Ruth Grant wrote that “hypocrisy and politics are inextricably connected on account of the peculiar character of political relationships.”
Since government relies on coercion to secure submission to its edicts, politics is largely the exercise of deception regarding the intended use of coercion.
The benevolence of government rarely transcends the venality of politics. Paternalism seeks to generate mass happiness by forcibly sacrificing as many people and groups as necessary to the Greater Good. And who defines the Greater Good? The same people who benefit from maximizing the sacrifices.
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