Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Is business more efficient than government?

You may have wondered tha. More likely, you have assumed that the answer is "no" and gone on with your life. But wait! This question is really, really, really important.

At the risk of sounding rude, I must say that the idea of business being more efficient than government is without any factual basis, as far as most of us know. I did a brief search online for relevant research. In the short time I was willing to spend I couldn't come up with much.

That kinda makes me wonder two things. Am i really lazy? Does anyone who believes that the government is less efficient than business have any facts to support this belief. My guess is they have even less information than I gleaned from the two Web sites that I visited over the weekend. Here they are in case you were curious:


Probably the idea is based on anecdotes about lazy government buereuacracts played off against the relentless drive to innovate and compte that allegedly characterizes the private sector. (BTW I doubt that even one lone economist would say that this is an accurate picture of the United States economy. Just ask one!)

I guess that is enough said about the flimsy factual basis for the idea that the private sector is more efficient than government. But, sociologically speaking it really doesn't matter what the facts indicate. It matters what people think both about the existence of facts and about their interpretation.

At the risk of digressing wildly I just have to pause here and point out one more little thing: The facts never speak for themselves. If you have ever been taught this in a college class I feel you have a moral duty to go and demand a refund!!!!

Next Time: What are the social consequences of this belief? We shall see!


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