Government Inefficiency May Be A Feature

This tweet got me thinking…

Operating a for-profit business makes it more likely that your business will make decisions to profit-maximize. As a result:

  • You may not be operating equitably—you will offer priority service or allegiance to those who will maximize your profit
  • You may not choose the services that help people the most…you’ll offer the services that generate the most profit

One of the (valid) criticisms of government-provided services is that they’re often inefficient. (e.g., $30K toilets, $1000 hammers, bureaucratic mess) But maybe that’s a FEATURE. That is, by NOT being focused on financial efficiency, the government’s priority is on quality, or equality, or ubiquity.

(And, beyond that, of course, not-for-profit status can be conferred by the government, to businesses that can operate somewhat efficiently, but without working against the goals set forth in the preamble to the Declaration of Independence.)

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