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By Matt Jarosinski
Frustrated by the obvious deterioration of our legislative process, in the letter to editor, John Donaldson asks: "Don't we deserve better management of the legislative process in this state?"
This crisis is a symptom of a significant systematic change which, I am
afraid, can no longer be reversed. In the past the state lacked an
independent economic base. Its power was limited by the costs which
private individuals could bear. The government was too "small" to
directly run economic activities. The number of economic issues under
consideration of a legislature was limited and legislative system was
adequate to the task.
Today the state legislatures, nationwide, encounter growing landslide of economic issues. Our socialistic government -- republican and democrat -- created his own economic base by running trillion dollar deficits, borrowing trillions abroad and printing money in excess. Such government has become a dominant player in the market. It directly controls and manages many economic activities. The governmental grants allow municipal and state governments to run massive economic programs -- a steady replacement of private enterprise with state economy. This in turn requires more rules and regulations.
A legislative body is ill equipped to micromanage the avalanche of modern economic issues. The economic problems are resolved by people who have no direct expertise in the matters they are called upon to solve, and so, priority is given to the resolution of internal policy issues instead. In this case, the power to influence events is lost and the legislature continues to produce new rules and regulations in the effort to solve the unsolvable. Yet, there is no technique that a political body could use to quickly master the avalanche of specialized data, highly technical in nature. Not surprisingly "... the bills are pasted together and jammed through."
We are obsessed with the idea of big government and refuse to understand that there is a limit to what government should do. We preach individualism and capitalism and practice socialism. The portion of national income being spent by government continues to mount. It produces an erratic and contradictory mélange of economic issues for legislature to deal with. In the end the legislative process must become ineffective and obsolete.
Will it be replaced with autocratic or arbitrary system? It did happen in ancient Greece and in ancient Rome. In modern socialistic countries the problem was "solved" by limiting the role of legislative bodies to a mere spectator.
Jarosinski lives in Waitsfield.