Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Government Like Business

Hey, folks, you'd do well to remember situations like this when someone proposes "running government like a business."

Several thoughts:

- Most businesses fail.

- Government purchase of buildings must be waay easier in Cuba.

- The administration is bound to call the forthcoming litigation "frivolous."

- Local (and now national) Republicans endorsed this guy.

- Palin/Nagin 2012! Chocolate Moose Party!

HTs: Leigh C. and American Zombie for additional write-ups and more info.

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5 comments:

Dante said...

Most businesses fail but complete insulation from failure breeds inefficiency and waste. Look at what the USPS has done since the early 80's (last time it received federal funds). Yeah, postage has gone up a lot but they run a really tight ship that is competitive with its peers.

Now compare that with Amtrak. Amtrak makes airlines look like they have their shit together. If Amtrak actually had to worry about things like bottom lines and failure, they may be a competent rail provider. I was shocked when Amtrak did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING after Sept. 11, 2001 when Greyhound was raking in fistfuls of cash from nervous travelers. That was a huge opportunity for Amtrak to put a few sane routes together, slap some sane fees on them, and watch the cash come rolling in. Instead, what should be straightforward rail routes like Atlanta to Dallas cost in the neighborhood of $400 per ticket and they routed you through New Orleans instead of using the rail line that runs straight between the two cities. But that's ok because it's only a 32 hour trip.

I guess my point is that some businesses need to fail, and some government agencies need to prove their worth.

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

All of what you say is true, and there is nothing wrong with running government with a weather eye to solvent finances and return on investment. Matter of fact, that's the government we should be aiming for.

Unfortunately, most politicians who use the "government as business" line govern things a completely different way. They govern like the Wall Street CEO, where the boss can do whatever they want and run the business into the ground while securing big bonuses for friends and insiders.

That's what we have here, and that's what I've seen from most "government as business" types. Bottom line: most businesses have to compete to avoid failure (at least in a perfect system), government does not (politicians do).

Dante said...

"They govern like the Wall Street CEO, where the boss can do whatever they want and run the business into the ground while securing big bonuses for friends and insiders."

I'm confused. What you just described sounds like running the government as a government.

patsbrother said...

Swank new idea: run business like a government!!

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

I'm confused. What you just described sounds like running the government as a government.

Oh, Snap!

That also happens to be the management style I'm taking issue with.