What do you call it when a leader replaces fact with fiction or purposely directs tax revenue toward the politically well connected? Some may call that politics, I call it distortion; and America deserves better than leaders who distort.
Problem: We cannot effectively address our national challenges when the very people tasked with leading us through them are distorting markets and blurring the lines between fact and fiction.
Solution: Less complexity in public policy will help turn an apathetic base of citizens into watchdogs that hold poor public servants accountable.
The use of distortion in politics is not new. What is new, however, is the persistence of distortions even as we enter a new knowledge economy. Today, we can more easily access fact. We can more easily share and analyze data. We have at our finger tips new reports, published from both governmental and non governmental accountability watchdog groups, that highlight waste, fraud and abuse. We have fact checking websites that point out the lies and half truths. And yet, even in the face of all this data that shows the dangers of distortion, distortion persists.
The motivation to distort might seem innate, and even natural in politics, but we should tolerate it, not when the very future of this nation and the prosperity of future generations is at risk.
Distortions that benefit subsets of Americans and the politically well connected need to go. That means it's time to refresh the tax code and refresh the budget. To ensure we get quality public servants it is also time we refresh the congress and make it less hospitable to poor public servants who distort and serve subsets of Americans.
Distortion is keeping quality leaders out of politics. Why would quality leaders step up when they have to operate in a system of politics so tainted, so distorted. Why would quality leaders step up when success requires raising large sums of money from the same special interest groups impacted by their vote. Distortion and politics as usual is not working, and America deserves better.
Distortion introduces complexity; the more complexity the more apathetic and disconnected voters become. That's the problem right there. Politicians prefer an apathetic base of voters. The more apathetic we are, the less voters around to hold them accountable. With few around to hold elected leaders accountable, poor public servants prosper.