Thoughts on what people want from government

I’ve always made a joke about how I know the secret of what people want from the government.  It is this:

“The people want the most for the least”

If this principle could be maintained for everyone, then, noone would be unhappy. 

I think, though, that there is truth to this joke.  It is true that if the government did the most without demanding or requiring things from people then people would be happier with the government.  The problem, of course, is that this cannot be maintained.  The government will demand something from the people somewhere along the line, be it taxes or submission or what have you.  Not only that, this does not cut evenly across the whole population.  Someone somewhere will be shortcutted or taken advantage of by the government.  Someone will feel shafted.  In addition, the government can’t possibly give everyone what they want, nor can it do it evenly across the population.  Someone will feel shortcutted or deprived somewhere.  Because this principle cannot be maintained, there is always something that upsets someone.

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