Unintended Consequences

In a class a few years back, I read about the American Indian's way of governing and providing leadership to the tribe. Many people think that there was a rigid hierarchy of Chiefs in charge. In some cases that may have been the case in wartime, but many tribes were led by a tribal council during normal times. You were selected to sit at the council and where you sat dictated the information you provided. Those that sat North of the campfire were responsible for the future. Those that sat south of the fire were the keeper of the past. Those east of the fire looked at the problems from the heart and those west of the fire looked at what work it would take.

I think someone in congress should be appointed to the position of Keeper of the Unintended Consequences(KUC). That person, or panel should be responsible for writing down what they expected to happen and what did happen. This KUC Czar would sit south of the campfire and provide some measure of truth past results to the process.

For Example - Not many of us today remember the Roosevelt Administration and the myriad of problems they tried to solve during the Depression. How many different organizations were created to get and keep the economy moving forward. I couldn't even begin to write down the initials of the organizations then created and later killed as the wartime economy finally brought back prosperity. Even Ike warned us that there was an evil in the industry that would keep us at the gate into war for gain. Back in the 60's and 70's we had guns and butter as the Democrats tried to fight the war in Vietnam and build the infrastructure in the black neighborhoods. Millions of dollars went into the building of Housing areas to give the cities livable homes at affordable prices. Would you care to guess what happened to these projects? How many of you would like to live in any of the "Martin Luther King" projects? Are there any near you left today? Would you care to read what is said about the success of housing given to people with no prospect of owning the property? How about the Clinton Administration's move to allow below prime loans be made to offer the same home ownership example? What happened to the Banks when they were allowed to dabble in the home loan game? What happened to the Banking industry when they were allowed to take huge profits and then sell the loans to Fannie May? What happened to our Government oversight for the past 8 years where those people making bad loans were also allowed to take huge profits from the businesses as they circled the toilet bowls? I can't wait to see what the future says about the Stimulus Bill.

I am not saying that everything done by our government was bad. I am saying that it appears that a lot of of our legislators have no memory of what was done and the unintended consequences. A lot of people have gone to Washington and come home a lot richer than they were when they went there. That is an unintended consequence that I'm sure they don't want us to know about.

Oh by the way, this morning a re-run of "West Wing" was on and in that segment, Jimmy Smitts portrayed a congressman running for the Presidency against "Hawkeye" Alan Alda. Alan played a crusty old senator that opposed the health Care reform platform presented by Smitts. The same old tired arguments presented there were the same one's we read about today. We can't afford to do everything and we can't afford to do nothing.

I think a Czar of Unintended consequences would have a fun time helping us look at ourselves. At least the old saying of "You do what you did and you will get what you got" will be more visible.


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