Dr. Parag Khanna, a leading global strategist, CNN Global Contributor, and author of Technocracy in America: Rise of the Info-State, writes that America needs a change. He says the American people no longer trust their government and the only way to restore trust is for Americans to learn from countries such as Switzerland. According to Dr. Khanna, the best form of government for the 21st century is a technocracy, which is a government led by experts and/or panels of experts. Therefore, he says the United States needs to do three things to fix itself:
- The United States needs to move to a seven-member presidency. Instead of having one President, the United States would be governed by a committee of seven presidents;
- The United States needs to abolish what Dr. Khanna calls an ineffective Senate and replace it with an Assembly of Governors. Under his plan, each state would have two governors who would jointly govern their state as well as represent their state in Washington; and
- The United States needs to build dignity back into civil service jobs by putting quality people – not friends, relatives, and people owed favors – in civil service positions.
Dr. Khanna’s technocracy idea is very similar to Donald Trump’s campaign promises of placing the most qualified people in key government positions. Unfortunately, with such block headed nominations and confirmations as Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education, it is obvious the Trump Administration either has no intention of making good on that campaign promise, or they have yet to get a handle on quality control. However, to be fair, I seriously doubt Dr. Khanna’s technocracy idea would fair any better.
When it comes to quality control, more people involved in key governing positions and equity in hiring would not necessarily equate to fixing what ails America. Seven presidents, two governors in each state, and government hiring void of nepotism and political favors might sound good, but would it work in the United States? It’s doubtful. Increasing the number of presidents and governors would do little more than guarantee nothing ever got done, and promoting hiring practices void of nepotism and discrimination would send shock waves from Washington, D.C. to Pumpkin Patch, Mississippi. Simply put, Dr. Khanna’s technocracy idea would not work in the United States!
Technocracy will not work in this country for three basic reasons:
- Technocracy Idea #1: Seven presidents govern by committee:
Reason it will not work: Most everyone knows there is one thing a committee does well – NOTHING! We can’t get things done with one President, so why would anyone believe seven people with seven separate agendas could possibly make things better?
- Technocracy Idea #2: The Governors Assembly:
Reason it will not work: The reason this will not work is basically the same as #1. Can you imagine having two Phil Bryants in Jackson, Mississippi? How about a Democrat and Republican governor sharing the governorship? The Good Lord is struggling to help us with a single Republican governor. Can you imagine the mess there would be if we had a Democrat and Republican in office at the same time?
- Technocracy Idea #3: Do away with nepotism and favors in civil service hiring:
Reason it will not work: Point #3 makes some sense, but America is a nation of strokers – you stroke mine and I’ll stroke yours, so it is doubtful Dr. Khanna’s third idea would work any better than what we have now. We are too deep into giving and receiving favors to stop anytime soon!
Whether Dr. Khanna’s ideas would work is something we will probably never know. Americans are too wrapped up in themselves and personal agendas to risk changing anything before they receive what they feel they are entitled; therefore, the cycle will continue. However, it is nice to see someone calmly offer solutions rather than screaming for change between obscenities and name calling.
©Jack Linton, March 24, 2017