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Paul Hankins

As someone who has recently returned from hurricane response (in the Keys this time) and a veteran of emergency response on many levels, I applaud your analysis.

However, I'm not convinced that governance capacity has been overwhelmed, as you suggest, more than it has been over-reaching. I think we have become accustomed to the notion that nothing can involve bad news lest it be seen as a failure. Hurricane responses are good petri dishes for that theory. In that world, bad news is everywhere, yet we pretend all will be good and it just takes time and perseverance for life to move on. In fact, its bad news - really bad news - and government's job should be to mitigate the badness.

Media plays a role, to be sure, for their ratings quests shine bright lights on incompetence, but for such short periods that the incompetence never gets adequately addressed, instead labeling the subject of said bright-light-shining either a 'success' or 'failure'. And there is a lot of mundane good (and bad Im sure) happening outside those bright lights.

The corrosion of governance you refer to is a symptom of our success in my view. We forget the cost to make and sustain the juggernaut of our success - instead we like to think it can be sustained on its own without the continuing influx of resources necessary to keep it going.

Just an unfiltered thought after reading your more-thoughtful post.

Vernon L. Smith

This governance infrastructure failure is why I have proposed experimenting with the privatization of interstate highways. The idea would be to begin where there are competing alternatives. They surely would become electronically controlled toll roads; permit autobahns, innovative use of right-way, self-driving vehicles; would compete with air travel on shorter routes. No public money would be at risk. Public roads might benefit from the results of the experiments

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Here's a link to my past blogging (and discussions involving me) at: New APPS.


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