Re-wiring government to be innovative.

The oxymoron of government being innovative … 

Government is reactive.  Government takes action only when it is petitioned.  A congressman rarely initiates the legislation process on her whims.  She rather responds to legislation drafted by a constituent.  A judge resolves a conflict only upon a petition brought by a complainant. The executive implements an economic stimulus package or promulgates some rule only upon receiving a request to do so.

Throughout history government has been the spawn not the spawner.  When kinsmen bonded to increase the security around the hunt or to protect permanent dwelling, the resulting security compact and the rules that flowed were put into a binder called government.  Government is not independent of us, but the result of our fears; of our inability to co-exist without considering doing harm to ourselves.

Government or Flying Spaghetti Monster …

I am finding it increasingly amusing how citizen-taxpayers view government as some exogenous variable floating in outer space that embodies human characteristics of love, justice, equity, and what not.  The truth is, government is not a living being but a dumb bot programmed to react to fear, and, if operating effectively, leveraging fear in order to provide to its current ruling factions the leverage they need to maintain political power.  If there is one thing the leading faction must bear in mind is that to maintain power, it must maintain the facade that without government, action taken primarily on the part of the individual is fruitless for the citizen.  Government’s ruling faction must make government look innovative and necessary.

From dumb bot to informed policymaker ….

Given finite resources, government, in order to maintain or increase its faux omniscience must invest as much discretionary and non-discretionary resource into information gathering.  The United States is first and foremost about commerce and trade.  Commerce and trade is driven by private actors, contrary to what the current crop of candidates wish to tell you.  If government is to play any positive role in returns on and to capital, as well as in the increase of commerce and trade, the members of its ruling factions must be ardent students of the “economy” which requires constantly collecting and evaluating information about how the economy is truly constructed and working.

The vision thing …

Along with appreciating vision, members of political factions need to have vision.  Today’s candidates are very good spokesmen for the private sector actors that petition government, but as the United States heads further into the 21st century, members of the ruling factions must be as much engineer as they are marketer.  Members of the ruling factions may have to flip the current script in terms of how they organize government.  Rather than the marketer/salesman being the front man, the front man should be the one with the engineering vision, backed up by surrogate/salesman/marketers who consistently sell the vision.

Communication is a two-way street ….

The tricky part is ensuring that the public is communicating on the same frequency.  The electorate has to be re-wired to think “policy” versus “popularity.”  The public’s view of their government executives, from the President right down to a town mayor, has to be such that they recognize a senior technician who is first and foremost a competent implementer of vision while posing enough swag to get the vote.

Conclusion …

Re-wiring the public’s view will take buy in from the political factions to educate the electorate on critically thinking about the importance of policy, but that come to Jesus moment won’t come to political factions overnight.  That re-wiring of the electorate will have to come from the mass citizenry.  Only then will ruling political factions react.

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