Shrinking the Size of Our Government Would Be Incredible Easy
Don’t Let Anyone Tell You Differently
Ask yourself, when you vote in the next election, what is it you really want? Do you want incremental change for the better, or would you really prefer for our bloated, over-regulated, and corrupt government to be stripped down and rebuilt, restaffed, and rededicated to put public service first and to reaffirm a dedication to constitutional rule? We have been incrementally sliding into totalitarianism for generations. Are you really prepared to wait (and make your children wait) through generations to incrementally get back to what our constitution guaranteed us in the first place?
If not, then you need to be sufficiently open-minded to consider some bold initiatives – the kind your next-door neighbor smirks at and says, “it’ll never happen.” He could be right, but Paul Revere’s neighbors probably smirked at him too…
We need a revolution in our thinking, Just Imagine a world where almost everyone could afford to own a home, send a child (or, two) to college, carry high-quality healthcare coverage, fully fund a lucrative retirement fund, and have enough income left over to enjoy eating out, pursue hobbies, etc. Imagine a world where you could do all of this in a one-income family… Would this be a world worth fighting for? Without violating the spirit of the United States Constitution, we could have all of this now.
StressFreeBill’s Newsletter is published twice a week. We are currently publishing a series of ‘Big Ideas’ that can dramatically improve our lives. We previously published how we could replace our income tax code. Today we will discuss a simple and realistic way to dramatically reduce the size of our federal government.
Also in previous issues, we published a series describing the various factions of the new Ruling Class that is attempting to solidify total control of our country. You can revisit those issues HERE.
For those of us who grew up in the business world, we understand incentives. Marketing executives stay up all night trying to figure out how to get people to buy more of product XYZ. In the retail world, discounts and coupons are quite common. In the B2B (Business to Business) world, volume discounts are the name of the game, and in the Direct Sales universe commissions and recognition are powerful tools. These are all extremely effective ways of motivating behavior. It should be noted that none of these pathways require the person we are trying to influence to be altruistic – we are always encouraging people to do what is in their own best self-interest. You would think this would be obvious – that you wouldn’t need to explain it to anybody… but there is a class of Americans who seem totally oblivious to this reality.
Unfortunately, these people seem to gravitate to politics and public service. They apparently have no clue how to really motivate or incentivize behavior that promotes the common good (or, maybe benefiting the common good isn’t their priority? Nah, that can’t be right. Could it?)
From tax structure to our major bureaucracies, the built-in incentives our politicians have set up benefit the Ruling Class, not the American people.
For example, at the end of each fiscal year, government departments/bureaucracies need to submit a new budget request for the coming year. Every department head wants to increase their own prestige, power, and salary and the easiest path to do this is to increase the size and budget of their department. After all, a person who manages 500 people is more valuable than someone who only manages 100, right? So, needless to say, budget requests always increase in size (never shrink). A problem, however, is that many of these departments already have more money than they know what to do with, but at the end of the year, if they show a surplus, they’ll never get a budget increase approved… so, what do they do?
They waste it. They spend it on frivolous things. Every once in a while, the press will report on a $3 million government grant to determine if lack of sleep causes workers to be more prone to making mistakes (or, some such idiocy). Have you ever wondered how such stupidity and waste could actually exist? Smart managers have learned to spread this waste throughout the year so it doesn’t become so obvious and the best way to hide the excess is to hire unnecessary employees. So, all the incentives are for the government to grow and waste your money.
What if we reversed these incentives? What if we made it more prestigious and financially rewarding to a department head to make their division more efficient? (You know, like in a business?)
The Ruling Class Bureaucracy will squeal to high heaven if you make such a proposal. They will accuse you of being naïve (or, stupid). They will bully you and declare you obviously don’t understand how things work. They will lie, dismiss you, and attack you both personally and professionally (and probably call you a racist, for good measure).
So, how do we dramatically (and, relatively quickly) reduce the Federal Budget by 30%? We offer a commission (we’ll call it a bonus pool) to all managers who reduce the size of their divisions while still fulfilling Congressionally mandated responsibilities. We can bonus them 50% of the savings!
Incentives work best when they are simple, easily understandable by everyone, the results are transparent, and the rewards are quick and abundant.
Here’s an example of how this would work…
Manager A heads a government division of 5,000 employees and a $2 Billion annual budget. We develop a formula so that all managers at all levels can participate in the bonus (for simplicity, I will not discuss the details of the bonus structure here, but I will be glad to get into the weeds on it in the comments section).
At the end of the fiscal year, Manager A sits down in front of a special Congressional Committee to testify to the maintaining of essential services while justifying the creation of a $500 Million surplus.
Assuming the Congressional Committee signs off, half of the surplus ($250 Million) is designated to the Bonus Pool and split (according to the formula) by the division’s managers.
You might be thinking, “Some of those managers might make $millions!” I would answer, ‘Yes, so what?’ Every dollar paid out in bonus is matched by a dollar of savings to the taxpayer (and two dollars of savings every year after the first). Some of those managers (hopefully a lot) might become so rich they retire. This is a good thing (don’t you think our government bureaucracies are bloated and top-heavy anyway?). I’m sure there would be a number of bureaucrats waiting in the wings, chomping at the bit, for their turn to be a part of the bonus pool.
By the way, remember the FairTax we were talking about in a previous issue? That national sales tax would incentivize our Congressional Committee to ratify these savings. I would anticipate legislators fighting to get on a committee where they could claim they saved the taxpayer $0.11 on their sales tax next year (or, whatever amount).
The bottom line is, this would work. Incentivizing people to do what is in their best interest always works. Detractors will come up with all kinds of criticisms or fancy-sounding reasons this would be a bad idea, but I guarantee you none of those reasons are worse than an out-of-control bureaucracy and spiraling government spending.
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