Government Waste Thrives In Darkness, by Thomas W. Smith

The only way people can get truly and rightfully outraged by how much money the government spends and wastes (but I repeat myself) is if they know the actual numbers. From Thomas W. Smith at realclearpolitics.com:

In the last 20 years, our country’s national debt has exploded. In 2001, when George W. Bush took office, the national debt was $5.8 trillion. It took around 225 years — booms, busts, depressions, wars, etc. — to amass that much national debt. In just eight years, Bush and a compliant Congress doubled the number to $11.7 trillion. In Barack Obama’s two terms, another $8.6 trillion was added. During the past four years, Donald Trump and Congress fought many battles, but not over this: In that time, America’s future was mortgaged to the tune of another $6.7 trillion. Today, the national debt is around $27 trillion, a four-fold increase in the last two decades. That doesn’t count unfunded mandates. And there is no end in sight.

Whenever human beings gather to accomplish a task, any task, without strong and effective oversight, a natural evolution takes place. Whether it be in business, academia, philanthropy, or government, every activity morphs from the original goal to self-aggrandizement. In government, this process is particularly toxic. There are no profits, let alone a profit motive. No concern with productivity. No incentive to turn off the proverbial lights. No measure of success. No motivation to end counterproductive activities.

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