Governments on a Collision Course

Governments in industrial countries the world over are on a collision course. In the past fifty years, they have increased spending dramatically so that it has reached almost ludicrous levels. Most of this spending has gone into creating a myriad of government programs. Each of these programs then takes on a life of its own, growing and constantly demanding yet more money to maintain its existence. This movement towards larger government seems almost irreversible, as it is a direct result of the manner in which government itself is constructed.
Most politicians and bureaucrats operate under one very simple although dreadfully misinformed theory, more money is the solution to any and all problems. This theory is so pervasive within government circles, that the amount of funds that a bureaucrat controls is directly related to his or her status. In other words, bureaucrats have a vested interest in constantly spending more of your money. Once a program has been established, its primary goal becomes spending every last penny that has been allocated to it. If the organization fails at such a simple task, rather than being rewarded for spending your money wisely, the director will receive a pay cut as his operation is scaled down and his budget reduced in the following years.
In contrast, if the director spends even more of your money than he was originally allowed, he will get a pay raise and promotion. Politicians will assume that obviously his organization must be up to some good as it spent so much money in the preceding year. It will then be expanded and given yet more money to spend in the following year. Thus, by following this simple little pattern, the bureaucrats of the world can assure themselves a steady stream of promotions and advancements as the organization that they work for slowly mushrooms underneath them. Whether or not the organization actually does anything useful becomes secondary to whether or not it can continue to expand and receive yet more funding.
Today, politics is regarded by those too lazy to work for a living as an easy way out. Politics is simply a profession and politicians speak of their careers as if the voting public does not even exist. Some of the worst crooks inhabit the US Congress. They have failed their office miserably. Where else can someone write 532 bad checks for over US $800,000 and not go to jail? It seems that most politicians of the day are only interested in the prestige of office. Furthermore, even when they do get the boot, they will not necessarily undergo a drop in living standards. Most former politicians take to lobbying, an industry in which they are able to earn even more money than when they were in office. Peddling influence and former political clout have paid for many mansions in and around such cities as Strasbourg, Brussels, Bonn, Geneva, Paris and of course the old standby, Washington, District of Columbia.