I find myself today a bit conflicted so far as which way to head on the research question. My topic, as a reminder, is on the relationship between Government, specifically the Defense Department, and Small Business. Originally I had leaned toward taking a look at how effective various Government programs designed to benefit small business were, and if there was anything interesting to glean from that.
However, I’ve become increasingly interested in another aspect of the matter entirely, which is: How effective is Government at spending? We could argue of course that Government is very effective at spending, with trillions of bits of evidence that if there’s anything they know how to do: it’s spend. Yet there are some special eccentricities to the way Government does business. For example, all funds must – for the most part – be spent in the period in which they are allocated, typically one to three years. Can you imagine how you would act, as a consumer, if you knew every dollar you had would evaporate on Dec. 31? Does Government act this way, with every available dollar flying out the window before its expiration? If so, are there effects that can be seen – like increased prices for similar contracts due to increased demand?
I guess these all boil down to – when Government spends, does it “think” like a normal consumer, or does it do something different, entirely? If it has bizarre or irrational actions, are there effects to we, the taxpayers?
That’s a lot of questions to talk about a question.