Senior Contributor
Posts: 612
Registered: ‎04-09-2013

Of rent seeking enterprises & government shutdowns

[ Edited ]

A rent seeking enterprise: def. Any endeavor that raises the costs of a product or service without also increasing the value of the object or service itself. Example: Mafia protection insurance.


An unintended benefit (or danger) of a long term government shutdown is that it may well expose several of our federal agencies as common rent seeking enterprises.


For example, the longer the shutdown goes without the services of say, our US Dept of Education, the more and more people may begin to recognize how little benefit is gained from Jimmy Carter’s 1980 cabinet cookie he gave to the teacher unions.


Anyone familiar with our pubic education system already knows this, but if the US Dept of Education were to remain closed permanently, it would not change a single lesson plan or alter the established curriculum for all of the high schools in small town Iowa or for the rest of American schools as well. The buses would run on time. The kids would still show up school. The AP exams would still be taken in May. The teachers & administrators would get paid on time. The college applications would still be going out. In short, life would go on splendidly with or without the meager services of a federal education agency. 


Eventually, however, someone in Iowa or elsewhere might get around to asking just how much money are we all paying for these so called education experts in Washington DC? The answer will surprise many. On the other hand, it may also prove to be the first step in finally killing a 39 year federal agency that has always been politically parasitic in nature and rent seeking by definition.