Why don't they fix that?

A common bit of conversation I run into in social gatherings, whether at the fitness club, the local watering hole, or even over a meal, revolves around something that isn't happening the way someone wants. The most often heard rhetorical questions sound something along the lines of "Why doesn't **insert government body here** fix that?".

My first thoughts on questions like these and often my response to the person asking is to inquire whether government should be fixing the issue. Secondarily I'll consider whether government could fix the problem. Further, if government can solve the problem is it the most effective way or are there more efficient ways?

I won't go into the conversation here over what government should or should not be doing, as I've found that to be a near religious experience for many. One that will ruin many a dinner.

On the assumption that we decide collectively that government should be responsible for solving an item or perhaps improving or providing a service. Is there a more efficient and economical way to achieve results?

The trend for the last couple decades has been toward centralization of government. More policies are set at the federal level with accountability requiring more submissions and bureaucratic levels.

This monolithic approach fails on multiple counts. The most obvious being the one solution for all concept. For all the recent talk about supporting diversity from our politician their actions on making everyone fit a federal mold belies their true beliefs.

It also fails the efficiency and economic models. Adding layers to actions does not benefit the public. It increases cost while reducing productivity. Each layer above the service provision or project reduces the economics of delivery.

The reduction of efficiency means less can be delivered. It also means those layers of government administrators will lead fruitless unmeaning lives.

The solution for government success for things the government should succeed at doing is to be local.