Friday, July 10, 2009

Why we don't trust government

Criticism of government is very biased and unfair. When we talk about government we each recall what we’ve experienced or have been told by others about ANY foolish (to us) governmental action. If a local zoning board does something weird, that’s filed away as a typical government way of operating. The same for every questionable local, county, state or national governmental act we come across.

We accumulate ALL these in a file we could call “government foul ups”

But consider how we view private sector mistakes. If we order an appliance from Sears and it doesn’t work properly, we don’t blame capitalism or the whole appliance industry, we blame Sears. The same for every other less than positive experience or relationship we have with numerous private sector providers. The individual private sector provider associated with a problem is the only one blamed.

The bottom line is that we only blame industry for specific difficulties we experience with specific providers. But, we accumulate our grievances against any level of government and develop an attitude that ALL government is therefore always messed up.

Think about this. If we accumulated all our complaints against individual private sector operators into one complaint file called “capitalism screw ups” we would be down on capitalism as a whole and not just the providers of poor products or services.

It’s the same with our political views. Congress has very low approval ratings and yet we continue to re-elect our local congressman (or woman) at around a 95% rate. We listen to much criticism about congress and legislation which we accumulate into our grievance against government but hear little about how our representative voted on many of the same things we don’t like about government.

So, take a minute to think about what government has done during the last year or two that you can directly relate to how your personal life has been impacted. I’ll bet it’s a short list.

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