Let the Government do your Thinking

Government Dog

Government is basically a mental abstraction. Consider:

When living in a society, you have to make communal decisions. The number of such decisions grows exponentially with the number of people, since every subgroup potentially has to cooperate1.

For a society of any scale (e.g. larger than 20), it’s impossible for everyone to make all the decisions related to living together. That’s why governments get created.

The purpose of government is to amortize mental energy. Everything your government does follows from that purpose.

The implications are vital to understanding your government’s role in your life. You are letting someone else do the thinking for you, and this is a good thing. You have only so much mental bandwidth, and it is insufficient to the task of making every decision the government makes, even if you were to devote your life to it.

1 While (2n – n) is an overestimate, the order is certainly exponential. If it had no tools to simplify the task, a society of 266 people would have about as many groups making decisions as the number of atoms in the universe.

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