Reader Note: Check back at 8:15 or so for the Housing report.
Since there has been so much press lately about the alt.left and far.left crazies (like AoC with her ‘borrowed from Canada’ New Green Deal) how about we come up with something a bit more far-reaching and positive?
By the way, Swing-state households would lose at least $70G within first year of Green New Deal, study finds. Don’t bother with facts, though, this is about demogoguery not positive outcomes…which is our point.
As we view things, through a series of P&L’s and data stacks, the US is in process of failing. We’ll skip the long discussion from old Business major books on how SDLC runs its course in software, something mirroed in government (just like it does with any other “product”. But we can begin by wondering what the Founders would have done differently had modern management science existed when America was framed…
What’s missing from American Foundations is a performance-based scoring system. Voting was supposed to be that, but it has been subverted for a long time, now.
While it’s Business 201 that “What Gets Measured Gets Done…” there’s little evidence of this being applied in modern American government. Except in some really specialized cases, such as TSA. At the macro (high-level management view) TSA is a responsive unit of government in that their root cause for existence is to keep terrorists off airplanes and away from airports.
Ergo, since there hasn’t been another 9/11, they’re doing OK so far. We trust you saw where T.S.A. Finds Missile Launcher in Man’s Bag at Baltimore Airport? How’s that for finding rat in Baltimore, huh?
But let’s focus on excellence of individual cities and states. There isn’t much. Some are doing well, others so-so, and many are doing poorly.
Which gets us to the conundrum: Should States with low performance scores be allowed to carry the same voting weight nationally in congress as states with good performance scores?
The purpose of the Electoral College was to keep the American Middle/rural areas in a balanced relationship with the (crazier) big population states.
Is it time to ask the verboten?
Can States Be Scored?
The simple answer is yes, of course they can. But the arguments break out when we start talking about specifics. What scores well in New York, might not play in Kansas. So we need to come up with metrics that make sense.
We’ve always used money as a metric because it’s universal and tends, at least at some levels, to accrue from hard work.
Management Science would dictate we implment measurable, repeatable metrics in order to “score” states fairly. This reduces to “What are people getting for their monies paid in taxes and fees?”
We would expect the efficiency of things like state transportation departments would vary daccording to geography. Mississippi ought to have good roads because it’s flat and there’s not too much weather-related highway work (save occasional floods) compared to Colorado which has every climate imaginable and tons of spectacular cliff-hanging mountain highways, particularly if you work your way north out of Durango through their high country.
Obviously, scoring would need to be weighted to yield an apples to apples comparison.
Then there’s the matter of operating in concert with Federal laws.
Take illegal aliens, for example: Should California be scored well for complying with Federal laws on immigration objectives? Likely not. Utah? Maybe so. But, you see how this goes. Too much variance on core policy sets the stage for another un-civil war.
State affordability? There would need to be measures to determine total tax burdens for things like sales, gas, and property taxes. See? One of the major screw-ups of the Founders comes into view.
Government was always intended to be a pay-as-you-go proposition. Those who generated value (and paid taxes) got to vote back when.
Today, not only States but also the Nation itself, have abandoned balanced budgeting. Meanwhile, the true problem (compound interest) makes the eventual failure of America a near certainty. It’s just when does the money-watering-down become a revolutionary’s cry.
Our “poster child” for a failing state is Illinois. Compound Interest will kill the state because of outlandish pension obligations. Each kick down the road raises costs. This is a free lunch state. Not that the workers who’ve retired don’t deserve something reasonable & a fair shgake – they do. But they also deserve government that understands money better. Instead, they’re suffering municipal and state pension issues because of giveaways and largess…mostly democrat, I’d add.
The bottom line – and what causes us to think in these terms and ask such a Big Picture question – is that Compound Interest is something we need to address sooner than latger. When we ask it, though, another Big Problem must be addressed, too: Who Should Govern? High-performance states or losers? This is a non-trivial problem.
Should we be governed by population-heavy states of cry-babies who turn everyone into victims:? Or, should leadership come from the the sober-minded, hard-working, goods-producing states that comply with Federal laws best and have measureable results?
Right now, the radicalizing of America is well-underway. And you can see how the rift is leaving a “hole in the middle” with stories like “2020 Democrats keep shifting left. Moderates fret they’ll shift even further at next debate.”
We match this up – as management generalists do – with stories like the Wall St. Journal’s “Federal Borrowing Soars as Deficit Fear Fades…” Couple this with how “Political pressure complicates Fed’s expected rate cut.” We see a broad framework for a fine-tuning of elective government at all levels.
Given that the BoJ holds rates but vows easing if global events hit economy, we’re watching the world for the next day from the sidelines.
While there, we begin to wonder: Instead of being driven by money and minority persuasion blocks, how about we try something really radical? How about we begin to measure great performance of government?
To begin, we could demand that politicians come up with specific, actionable, measurable campaign promises. They’d get “scored” on how they moved those along. Give us a business plan, not a bunch of crap, to vote on. Elect and follow. Generalities and BS are useless as proven time and again.
Because what we have now is obviously not working. We keep falling for the same olde crappe. Demagogue politicians promise the world and then offer nothing but excuses.
If this was a business and we (as voters) ran the HR department, everyone would give us a workplan and if they didn’t stick to that – rather than come up with useless distractions and hot-button language – they get fired and replaced. America needs more, lower barrier, political recall laws.
That’s a far-cry from the Housing data which will be out in a few minutes (check back) but I wanted to toss out this wild-ass idea that not only do we need a representative democracy, but we should also demand the same kind of absolute accountability that any professional manager would of employees, contractors, and even customers.
What gets measured gets done. Either Trump or Pelosi needs to quit yammering about useless crap, table a solid business plan step-by-step to start America moving again.
Everything is a business model. But America’s business model is dated and under attack.
We need Performance-Based Government or the Digital Mob will trash 243-years of project development. Which is exactly where two-bit shills of social are leading. 151 characters at a time.
Individual cities have taken-on this kind of thinking previously and with some success. The Seattle 2000 Commission laid out some measurable results for the city to aim at from back in 1974. (Bill Gates was 19 then…) Although mainly relegated to history, it was that kind of thinking that formed Seattle into a forward-viewing city that spawned companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Adobe and OMG what a list…
Future-directed thinking is key – not the hot lingo nonsense that has enamored today’s young.
If you stand for anything less than performance-based government, you’re an idiot and not a future-shaping American. We don’t need to throw the baby out with the bathwater. But we need to focus more on cleaning up our act and cleaning out old-line politicians.
Not that business is perfect: DealBook Briefing: A Plan to Take on ‘Sociopaths’ in the Boardroom. Like the ones in government, perhaps, too?
Personal Income is Up
Which is hardly surprising:
“Personal income increased $83.6 billion (0.4 percent) in June according to estimates released today by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Disposable personal income (DPI) increased $69.7 billion (0.4 percent) and personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $41.0 billion (0.3 percent).
Real DPI increased 0.3 percent in June and Real PCE increased 0.2 percent. The PCE price index increased 0.1 percent. Excluding food and energy, the PCE price index increased 0.2 percent.
The other big economic story is the Fed meeting which, although it is expected to lower rates a 1/4-percent tomorrow, could tank the market depending how it’s played.
Earlier this morning, the French and German markets were bleeding all over the place, with the DAXI was down 2.03%. We tend not to get too worried about these kind of end-of-month pullbacks since they can be useful entries for long positions IF one thinks there’s still more up-side to go. Your call.
Keep an eye on trade since As Trade Talks Begin, Trump Slams Beijing: “They Always Change The Deal” Market’s don’t like tough negotiations.
War and Precedents
Blocking and Tackling
Bitcoin was stuck around $9,537 this morning.
Possibly Useful Information (PUI)
Put us in for $20: Senator Rand Paul Says He’d Help Fund Ticket to Send Ilhan Omar to Somalia. Make it one way.
Also at the courthouse: Katy Perry’s ‘Dark Horse’ copied Christian rap song, jury rules.
Where’s the Left yelling “Concentration Camps?” Chinese Officials Defend Xinjiang Camps as a ‘Pioneering’ Approach for Fighting Terrorism. They’re rounding up Muslims…
Strange Environmentalism ploy: Mini toiletries to be removed from Holiday Inn owner’s hotels.
And speaking of environmental change: Architecture firm shares concept for boutique hotel partially hanging from 1,982-foot cliff in Norway.
Back in a few with the Housing data and if you don’t come back, drop by tomorrow.