As a cost-cutting measure, the Jackson County Commissioners are considering hiring a staff attorney. Government attorneys are cool because they usually defend government against those who pay the attorney’s fees willingly or not. They also get involved in intergovernmental lawsuits, which are a superb use of taxpayer dollars.

Anyhoo, an argument made in favor of hiring a staff attorney illustrates the usual reason government approvals are multi-tiered. If the people don’t like it, you tell them, “Oh, this is just preliminary and not binding.” You keep doing that until you reach an arbitrary point where you either say, “It’s a done deal. This is just housekeeping,” or, “We’ve had so much support at every level, it would be a shame to pull out with so much invested.”