Ricochet is the best place on the internet to discuss the issues of the day, either through commenting on posts or writing your own for our active and dynamic community in a fully moderated environment. In addition, the Ricochet Audio Network offers over 50 original podcasts with new episodes released every day.
A steady complaint about Donald Trump’s cabinet nominees, often coming from lifelong denizens of Mordor, is that many are openly hostile to the agencies they seek to lead. Rick Perry wanted to abolish the Department of Energy in 2012, but he was chosen to run it. Scott Pruitt repeatedly sued the EPA; Trump picked him to take over the agency. Tom Price at HHS, Betsy DeVos at Education, Ryan Zinke at Interior … the list goes on and on.
In this week’s column for the Arizona Republic, I note how this skepticism toward DC is a feature, not a bug:
When confronted with a problem, Washington is overflowing with people who ask, “How can government fix this?” What the Beltway needs is more people who ask, “Why should government get involved at all?” Many of our problems are better solved by the American people themselves, usually gathered in non-profits, businesses and religious organizations.
Consumers suffered for decades with heavily regulated cab services providing lousy service at high prices. To address this problem, politicians could have created a multibillion-dollar, 1,500-page Affordable Cab Act, but thankfully Uber and Lyft came along on their own. And the less DC interferes with these problem-solvers, the better.
America’s endlessly expanding government needs to be reversed. And if the next administration’s nominees don’t enact a reasonable plan to reduce it, history shows it will collapse on its own, chaotic terms. As economist Herbert Stein said, “Trends that can’t continue, won’t.”
The silly comments are already rolling in, conflating limited government with no government, a popular canard of the left. After centuries of ugly unintended consequences, many voters still cling to their faith that so-called good intentions are more important than effective results.