by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Whether President Barack Obama realizes it or not, his second term represents a crisis of American self-governance. He is offering a large-scale demonstration that as the federal government grows ever larger, with ever more expansive responsibilities, it becomes increasingly dysfunctional, plagued by a culture of complacency in key agencies with no sign of serious accountability for consequential mistakes.
Obama and his VA secretary, Eric Shinseki, thought the VA was succeeding in reducing the backlog of veterans needing care. On Monday the nation learned that the scale of the much-covered problem was epic: “57,000 veterans have been waiting more than 90 days for an appointment and . . . an additional 64,000 requested medical care but never made it onto VA waiting lists.”
Geraghty follows up with similar examples linked to immigration and Obamacare.
In each of the above cases, the highest level of our government walked around in a self-deluding fog, convinced that everything was fine, until it reached a belated realization that predictable problems had exploded into full-blown crises.
But those are just the highest-profile examples. Almost every day, the inside sections of the newspaper provide new examples of government waste, incompetence, malfeasance, or bureaucratic inertia that would be funny if we weren’t all paying for it. …