Saturday, January 21, 2012

Public Policy or Politico Policy?

How does one define public policy and what in the world does the “public” have to do with “public policy”?

Public policy eludes to grass root, spontaneous order/emergent order policy that the public demands. Nay, nay. Public policy doesn’t exist. On the other hand, politico policy does in fact exist. The vast majority of “policy” appears, and is due to, the "vision" of a group of politicos and/or appears due to special interests through politico enablers. Stated alternatively, public policy eludes to the plans of the many whereas, in reality, politico policy is the plans of the few.

Political science, at the end of the day, is the altruistic notion that a well informed voter, a voter completely abreast of all issues, votes for the best political candidate that in turns makes public policy decisions in the public’s best interest. Politicos desperately want the public to believe this fairy tale. Does one perpetuate such nonsense -or- does one explain public choice theory which examines special interests, politico enablers of special interests, crony capitalism, and economic rent seeking of taxpayer dollars. That is to say, public choice theory examines how politicos through the mechanism of government build constituency through taxpayer dollars. -Or- as defined by James M. Buchanan of George Mason University: public choice theory is politics without the romance.

Does one really add insight using the phrase "public policy"? -Or- is insight gained with the use of the phrase “politico policy”?

Is it public policy that awards E. Gordon Gee, president of The Ohio State University, over $1,500,000 per year in compensation? -Or- is it politico policy that awards such compensation? Is it public policy to award Solyndra millions of dollars in the form of taxpayer financed subsidies or is it politico policy that awards such monies? Is it public policy that causes the existence of lobbyists or is it politico policy that causes the existence? Does a firm receive tax subsidies to locate in a particular state due to public policy or politico policy? (1)



(1) College Presidents' Salaries, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 02/03/2010


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