When a government that was supposed to be limited in its powers begins sticking its nose farther and farther into its citizen’s lives and businesses everything becomes political. What happens when the country becomes more politicized?
- People stop seeing money as something they earn through productive labor that belongs to them and see it as something the government allows you to keep, or that the government gives you.
- Bureaucrats have increasing power and influence over our lives.
- Businesses, which should be worrying about how to make products and provide services that people want to buy, start worrying about what the government is going to do to them next (taxes, regulations, mandates, etc.).
- People begin to believe the absurd statement by government officials that “we will (or can, or must) create jobs.” Government does NOT create jobs, unless they are non-wealth producing government jobs that suck more money out of the private sector, thus reducing the ability for the private sector to create wealth producing jobs.
- People stop believing in themselves and start believing that it is government that will help them.
- Being a victim becomes a good thing because that status calls for help from the government.
- People stop thinking in terms of unity and begin thinking in terms of separation because special interest groups can gain political influence.
- Exaggeration, misrepresentation, and even outright lies in service of a political agenda become tolerated.
- People and businesses are forced to put time, energy, and money into lobbying and trying to gain political influence instead of putting that time, energy, and money into something productive.
- Bigger, richer, and more established businesses can achieve political crony status to protect them from more creative, more agile, and more dynamic competition.
- Creativity is stifled because bureaucrats don’t know what to do with something new.
- And, last on this partial list, from my book The Tamarack Conspiracy, in a scene where one of the characters is lamenting the change in his status from being a research engineer to becoming a bureaucrat because the private sector is dying and the only hope for earning a decent wage is working for the government… “What is left but to suck up?”
Two blog posts I read yesterday illustrate the phenomenon of government sticking their nose in where it doesn’t belong. The first, from Theoptimisticonservative, is about a business having to be more concerned about what a bureaucrat might do to their business than just engaging in their work. The other, from Ed Morrisey at Hot Air, is about politicians using bureaucracy to preserve their power by limiting your freedom.