Thursday, March 19, 2009

The best and brightest

Jennifer Rubin makes a great point -- if the government can't even manage the bonus fiasco, how can we trust them to manage our health care industry or a cap and trade setup?
The AIG mess revolves around a very simple issue: could the government have stopped the bonuses prospectively? This was such a vexing matter that it has now engulfed the entire administration and all of Congress, and served as fodder in an election two weeks away. But how much more complicated is cap-and-trade regulation and taxation for the entire economy? The AIG bonus issue is child’s play compared to devising a universal health care system that is simultaneously going to expand coverage, improve care, reduce cost, protect privacy, and digitize all our medical information. We’re just supposed to have faith in the Employee Free Choice Act’s phalanx of government arbitrators who will set wages, benefits, and working conditions in every newly organized factory and workplace in America.

The lesson from AIG is that the entire premise of the Obama administration — we know better — is fundamentally flawed. The Obama team can’t effectively manage a single troubled company without getting itself and the whole country tied up in knots. The notion that we should invest the federal government with authority to control vast swatches of the economy can now be seen for what it is: madness. We should consider ourselves lucky that the public is getting a glimpse of its government in action on a (relatively speaking) low-dollar item of limited consequences.

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