Proactive vs Reactive Leadership

The American federal government is reactive.

A “day late and a dollar short” might be appropriate if our government were no so willing to lavish problems with piles of cash. And if that doesn’t work (and it so rarely does) they throw more money at the problem. That might be a good policy from the standpoint of the corporate fat cats, but it doesn’t do much for us taxpayers.

The vast majority of the legislation passed by our Congress is to handle problems already arisen. Very little is ever done as a preventative measure before things go wrong. That would be a proactive approach and our leaders do not seem to understand what that might mean. Take the case of Katrina: the Bureau in charge of Emergency Management did not manage anything. After Katrina hit, they started wheels in motion to do a “recovery”… mainly by throwing money at the problem (resulting in the usual misuse of millions of dollars… hey, but what’s new?).

Now, what if we had not had all of eggs in one basket (i.e. the Federal coffers) and the states had the use of their own funds and administered their own local programs, since they know better what they need instead of the multiple bumbling layers of bureaucracy in Washington? Heck, there may not have even been a disaster. The locals would not have been waiting for the Feds to decide what should be done but would have had plans in place. New Orleans now has plans in place, but what are the odds it will hit there next time? Are we going to see the next disaster befall Tallahassee? Or Charlestown? Or San Francisco? The problem is that we do not know in advance where it will hit, and having all our resources trapped in the mire of red tape in Washington is not going to do our localities any good. Not any good at all.

Originally, the states were supposed to take care of local issues and the Federal Government was to handle affairs for the union the states; as a singular face to the world and as a conduit for affairs between the states. Unfortunately, the states and their rights got lost in the shuffle when Lincoln pirated freedom away from them – the Union (translation: enslaved populace) must be preserved… Rubbish!

I would suppose about 99% of the legislation belched out of Congress is of the reactionary sort, attempting to solve problems already arisen. And the other 1%? Not proactive, I am afraid. That last 1% is the plethora of ornamental laws like “the official aquatic lifeform of the nation” or what sporting events should begin with the national anthem.

I would prefer a government that lived within budget and with a proactionary posture.

And the states’ rights (and funds) given back to the states!


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