Bad Government Is Forever

When government makes a mistake, it is essentially permanent.

Every day some variant of the question "why are we still debating this?" passes through my mind, usually in response to some government mandate that made no sense even on the day it was first implemented and whose continued enforcement takes it into the realm of the surreal.

Then I remember that we STILL cannot repeal Daylight Saving Time, first implemented in 1942 – as a "temporary" measure (natch).

When government makes a mistake, it is essentially permanent. (To be fair, the courts are an exception; at least they have a formal process of review and bad rulings sometimes do get overturned.) What other organized human endeavor can operate under this principle, I wonder? Market forces kill off even storied businesses with regularity. Bad software (my business) definitely gets put into production, but eventually it becomes unsupportable, and has to be rewritten. Even the bottoms of boats have to be stripped of barnacles.

But not bad government. Bad government is forever. The bad just piles up and up and up. And strangely enough, the only way to be really rid of it all is to be on the losing side of a war.  

The winners of the war not only get the bad policies, they get them redoubled, even tripled. The losers get to start over.

"A strange game. The only winning move is not to play. How about a nice game of chess?"

Image Credit: "Day 47/365 - Dead Tree Graveyard" by Kevin H. is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0


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