What does the United States government do well?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by jpgr15, Sep 25, 2015.

  1. jpgr15 macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I'm posing a simple and honest question here. Who can name something the United States government actually does well and efficiently?

    I sit here trying to think of something and I just can't. Curious what everyone else's thoughts are on the subject.
     
  2. APlotdevice macrumors 68040

    APlotdevice

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  3. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

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    #3
    The FAA has done a pretty good job of helping to make our aviation industry the safest means of travel in the world.
     
  4. jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    I was thinking more along the lines of things the private sector could do vs the government but I suppose you are within the parameters of my original question.
     
  5. jpgr15, Sep 25, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2015

    jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    I can get behind that - I have yet to feel unsafe which of course is wonderful. Some things seem less than efficient with the FAA though - e.g. the amount of time it took to authorize the use of electronic devices during taxi, takeoff, and landing when many had said for years that the devices pose no safety risk.
     
  6. APlotdevice macrumors 68040

    APlotdevice

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    Ah. Well in that case: Build and fund infrastructure. All the highways, power lines, and pipes running through our nation were laid down with the help of tax payer dollars. The private sector does not have the money or resources to build on such scale.
     
  7. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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  8. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

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  9. jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Can't really make that sort of condition on the question as often times bills/agencies/programs/laws/whatever start out with the best of intentions.
     
  10. bradl macrumors 68040

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    Yep.. by extending our ATC to the point of pure mental and physical exhaustion, using very outdated technology while not proving that the new technology they want to go to is ready for primetime...

    However, they are very well adept in delaying things. For example, they were supposed to start implementing the filing of flight plans using the ICAO format (which the rest of the world uses)... a week before starting it, they've delayed the implementation until late next year or 2017 at the earliest.

    BL.
     
  11. jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Yet we cut funding.
     
  12. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    What does that have to do with your original question?

    What private enterprise could have endured the years of expense developing the program that our government achieved?
     
  13. APlotdevice macrumors 68040

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    As great of an achievement as landing on the moon was, lets face it: It was a contest between the US and the USSR.
     
  14. jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    Not arguing your example, no need to be so defensive. Just pointing out that something we have done well isn't much of a priority anymore.
     
  15. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #15
    This one's a bit iffy. To paraphrase Plot, the government is great at implementing, because it can work on a scale far greater than any private business. But when it comes to innovation, government is far too inflexible, too political, and too stodgy to make any gains on that front. This is where the private sector excels. The best government can do here is enable them by funding more blue sky research, and eventually play a part in implementing the innovations the private sector comes up with.

    In the case of space exploration, if you want a space program that's maybe okay eventually, you go to the government, let them control it from top to bottom, hope they don't change their minds come next election cycle. If you want something faster, better, and cheaper, you hit up some of the geniuses working in the private sector. They'll build the rockets, the means, and the programs, which the government can them implement and standardize.
     
  16. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    Okay. Want another?

    Welfare.

    What private enterprise would undertake serving the assisting the poor and needy?

    Let's see that turned into a business plan.
     
  17. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    #17
    Keep the military-industrial complex rolling in it.
    Keep their population ignorant of the global political situation

    End of what they do well.
     
  18. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    The private sector will always become involved. That doesn't change the fact that without the government prioritizing resources, no private business could have sustained the commitment that required years of expense and loss without a viable profit.

    I mentioned welfare as my second example. Does it matter that people shop at private stores and not government stores? At some point there will always be a need for the private sector. But again, that doesn't change the fact that without government resources, there is no viable private alternative that could solve the problem on a national scale.
     
  19. jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    Not sure why you're so defensive and argumentative. Looking to have a discussion, not an argument but I'm not going to take the bait. Have a good evening.
     
  20. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    o_O If you think this is defensive and argumentative, you might be a little taken aback by some of the discussions that take place around here.
     
  21. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    #21
    Granted, NASA did great things, but i think the question was "what does the government DO well" vs. "What DID the government do well". Since the space race is no longer in vogue, their budget has been slashed severely.

    NASA's funding is a tiny, tiny portion of the US budget. If NASA and other advanced research agencies in the US got even 5 percent of the military budget we'd probably be on Mars buy now.
     
  22. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #22
    The United States Federal Government does a whole host of things extremely well. In a way, literally, no other Government - elected or otherwise, on the face of the earth - does.

    Why was it that it was US Government officials finally uncovered Volkswagen's cheating on emissions standards. Why was it that US Justice Department prosecutors secured indictments of corrupt FIFA officials. Why is it that US FAA teams are brought in to investigate air crashes around the world.

    The answer to those questions is that here in the United States we maintain the correct balance between elected representation and professional regulation. The correct balance between an independent Judiciary and democratically-elected lawmakers. The correct balance between engineering, science, and bureaucracy - and a free press, free speech, and free association of the citizenry.

    Its not always pretty. There are frequently loud, and vigorous, arguments between those various actors. But it ensures that a;; stakeholders get a fair hearing. That no stone is left unturned in the search for truth, for justice, and for the best possible solution to our most pressing problems.
     
  23. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #23
    Toxic waste clean up.
     
  24. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    Border security.

    Develop the business plan that makes a profit from it.

    I can't think of how to manage that.
     
  25. jpgr15 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    Haha fair enough. Hard to read tone through forum posts, my apologies if I misinterpreted. I'm just so used to every one of these discussions turning so heated.
     

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