QotD: Civilization Edition

Civilization is not inherited; it has to be learned and earned by each generation anew; if the transmission should be interrupted for one century, civilization would die, and we should be savages again.  —  Will and Ariel Durant

 I don’t think it takes a century. Just a couple of generations.


Just ran into this over at Quora.  Had to share.  Or run around screaming. The question asked was “Why is the US Federal Government incompetent?” Just read this answer:

US federal government programs are NOT incompetent. They are UNDERFUNDED.

What I mean is this. When the government first initiates a new program—any program—the program has to be written into legislation. That’s how it gets funded in the Congressional budget. Normally, when a new program begins, it’s given the funding (or most of it) that was estimated it would need to run the program. But every Congressional budget cycle thereafter has a tendency to trim the budget.

The problem is that the program’s charter is defined by law, which means the program’s management doesn’t have the ability to cut back services to match the cut they received in the budget. The program is still expected to perform all of the services they’re required to by law. It’s not like a private corporation that can make cuts in products or services until they become profitable. The government programs have to perform all of the services they are chartered to perform, UNLESS they are specifically given reprieve in the law. This does happen sometimes.

So as the budgets get trimmed year after year, these government programs will INEVITABLY become dysfunctional. They can no longer perform their services with the funding they receive. That’s why federal programs are so challenging.

The answer to this would be to require Congress to cut services as they cut the budget. This is happening more frequently these days, but it hasn’t always been the case.

(Bold my emphasis. ALLCAPS and italics, his.)

“Be thankful we’re not getting all the government we’re paying for.” – Will Rogers. Only in Washington, D.C. is a 5% increase in a budget a “cut” when that program or department expected a 10% increase.

But this is how too many in the voting public THINK. This guy? “Campaigned (his) ass off for Bernie, from New York to Las Vegas.”

My shocked face is worn out.