If not government, then who can fix it?
Yes we can
Let’s begin with the question, are voters satisfied with their representation in government?
S & P was like a third party evaluator of government, confirming what Americans can see for themselves, government is dysfunctional. We voters sent a mixed bag of uncollaborative and in many cases unqualified people to represent us.
Yet, we expect people to have sufficient ability and loyalty to the Constitution and to voters to at least try to work together to get our business accomplished. They didn’t do that, and some representatives stated clearly they had no intention of doing that.
As for the “fix,” the President of the United States is responsible for not just a vision and value statement, but substantial details for “how to” produce specific “outcomes.”
When I analyzed the President’s agenda and how he stated outcomes, I wrote in my book, Smart Data, Enterprise Performance Optimization Strategy that his articulation was grossly flawed.
“`We dug a very deep hole for ourselves. There were a lot of bad decisions that were made. We are cleaning up that mess. It's going to be sort of full of fits and starts, in terms of getting the mess cleaned up, but it's going to get cleaned up. And we are going to recover, and we are going to emerge more prosperous, more unified, and I think more protected from systemic risk," said President Obama.” – from Smart Data.
“Observing a new administration, President Obama advances a shift in government spending priorities that should result in a new definition of outcomes.
President Obama’s Stated Outcomes:
Alternative energy production doubled in three years.
75% of federal buildings modernized and improved
2 million American homes made energy efficient
100% of all medical records computerized
Schools equipped as 21st Century classrooms
Broadband access expanded
Science, research and technology invested in to advance medical breakthroughs, new discoveries, new industries
Not intending to be critical, but this list can be improved with more crispness added by applying smart data thinking.
Smarter Outcomes from Smarter Data:
The U. S. A. will achieve energy independence by date certain by the following means in specified percentage allocation
The U. S. A. economy will achieve full employment at specified % of unemployment by date certain
The U. S. A. will increase manufacturing capability and produce more goods made in America by specified amount by industry type with specified consumption and export targets
The U. S. A. will be a specified percentage secure at the borders with specified percent reduction in illegal immigration and specified deportation of illegal aliens
The U. S. A. will have the military capacity to fight and win specified threats at specified levels with superiority
The U. S. A. will ensure access to healthcare of equal to or greater quality (than today) to all Americans at specified expense and in specified mix of public and private healthcare capacity
The U. S. A. will invest specified amounts in specified fields of research and development for the purpose of achieving specified goals and objectives
The U. S. A. will reduce greenhouse gases by specified amount in specified time frame
Now, you may say, these lists require a lot more data to be specific. That is exactly correct. Let’s take just one subject from Obama’s list and compare it to the same subject with smart data thinking applied.
‘Alternative energy production doubled in three years,’ is from the Obama plan. If alternative energy production is minuscule today compared with the demand, doubling it in three years may be insignificant or may be much less than what is needed in rate and volume of production to make a difference from which we all realize benefit.
Is not the desired outcome for the U. S. A. to achieve energy independence by a date certain by the various alternatives and allocated in specified percentages? Should not the quantities be based on known demand and facts about alternative development and availability, as well as competition?
Pressing for data facts and meaning is a part of the smart data strategy that begins with how the executive defines the outcomes.”"
“Poll: Majority of public has lost faith in government ability to fix economy
By Jon Cohen, Wednesday, August 10, 3:34 PM
Barely one in four Americans has confidence that the federal government has the ability to fix economic problems, and most share Standard & Poor’s indictment of the country’s policy-making process, according to a new Washington Post poll.
The spreading lack of confidence is matched by an upsurge in dissatisfaction with the country’s political system and a widespread sense that S&P’s characterization of U.S. policy-making as increasingly “less stable, less effective and less predictable” is a fair one.
The results have sharp edges for both Republicans and Democrats, as record numbers say they’re interested in new congressional representation when the November 2012 elections roll around.
When it comes to economic issues, the erosion in public trust is deep: Just 26 percent now have even some faith the government can actually solve problems. Confidence is down 21 percentage points from October 2010, and less than half its 2002 levels.
One big issue is public concern that the government is failing to address major problems. More than seven in 10 Americans say the federal government is “mostly focused on the wrong things,” a sentiment that is also sharply higher than it was last fall. The notion that the government has misplaced priorities is shared by majorities across party lines, but the agreement ends there.
Two-thirds of Republicans who see the government as focused on the wrong things say President Obama and the Democrats are to blame, while nearly as many Democrats point the finger at the GOP. Among independents, a plurality – 43 percent – volunteer that both sides are at fault.
It all adds up to growing disillusionment with the system itself.
Fully 78 percent of those polled are unhappy with the country’s political system, up significantly from two years ago. Now, nearly half — 45 percent — are “very dissatisfied.” Dissatisfaction crosses party lines, with intense unhappiness peaking among independents, more than half of whom report being very dissatisfied.
It might be little surprise then that 71 percent see S&P’s political analysis in its downgrade announcement — lambasting the country’s policy-making process — as accurate. Fewer, 52 percent, say the downgrade was a fair read on the country’s financial situation.
Bolstering the public’s rough assessment of the political system are sliding ratings for both Obama and congressional Republicans when it comes to making the right decisions for the country’s economic future. Confidence in Obama is down double-digits from January, and confidence in congressional Republicans, already lower, has been sliced in half.
The fall-off for both parties parallels the big drop in confidence the government can fix economic problems even when it decides to do so. On that front, the number expressing no confidence at all nearly doubled since October 2010. About half of political independents now say “none” when asked about their confidence here, more than double the proportion saying so in the fall.
Despite metastasizing dissatisfaction, 77 percent of Americans agree with the statement “whatever its faults, the United States still has the best system of government in the world.” That number is unmoved from October 2010.
Polling manager Peyton M. Craighill and polling analyst Scott Clement contributed to this report.”
The American Reinvestment and Recovery Plan – By the Numbers, http://www.whitehouse.gov/assets/documents/recovery_plan_metrics_report_508.pdf