The author never actually specifies how to "fix" what he calls the transparency trap -- probably because he suspects his readership isn't ready for the call for dictatorship yet.
My favorite paragraph:
By the International Monetary Fund’s reckoning, American government spent about 40.65 percent of the national output in 2012. That’s somewhat, but not radically, less than what Germany’s government spent (44.93 percent), only slightly less than what Canada’s spent (42.02 percent), and more than either Australia (36.4 percent) or New Zealand (34.24 percent) spent. These raw numbers overstate the difference between the United States and other countries, however. The U.S. government tends to route its subsidies through the tax code—with child tax credits and deductions for state and local taxes—rather than by issuing mother’s allowances and aid to local governments, as other countries do. This mode of doing business makes both spending and taxes look lower in the United States, even when the country is doing nearly the exact same thing as its European counterparts.
I can say it over and over, and naturally only a very few people will read this Atlantic column -- the US **IS** spending money at European levels and beyond -- we are close to them in actual spending and when you add in our various tax "credits" (like "earned income credit" ... fill out your taxes and get a giant payment that is called a "refund" even when you paid in little or nothing) we largely EXCEED THEM!
So "liberals" actually loathe transparency -- especially when they are in power. We are spending like drunken sailors but not getting the "results" they somehow "expect", so the best solution is to hide the poor results!
'via Blog this'