The government should provide services. In regards to which level, the state level should be providing services to its inhabitants, but that is not to let the federal government off the hook. The local governments are essentially to small to provide, and they are usually reliable on the state government for services and resources. The federal government shouldn’t possess all the services. “Without adequate and independent financial resources, or some guarantee of adequate resources at each level of government, the federal structure will not operate as a truly federal structure. (76) However, if the state is struggling with funds, the federal government can, and should, provide for the states.
I believe both the states and citizens should pay for services rendered, depending on the service. I say depending on the service, because most “are the responsibility of state and local governments.” (79) At the very least, the states should make it to where everyone has the ability to pay, and that is by paying as well. Services that are more of a concern in certain areas, such as Trump’s Wall, should tax those in that area. This can get unfair, however. A fraction of individuals in the specific area might not be a fan or supporter of the wall. If possible, the pro-wall individuals can pay for those services, but it is probably best left to the states with assistance of the federal level. There are services that should be held as a “right of civilization.” The constitution is all about emphasizing equality. That includes services, regardless of a level’s financial status. Police, firefighters, law, and health services should be available to all.
All services should not be privatized, that includes the military. Privatization is often the go to because more money is going in the pocket of the government. “Governments at all levels are just desperate to balance their budgets, and they’re grasping at privatization as a panacea.” (Kim, 2010) This is incredibly risky. Governments are playing risk vs. reward. “You’re taking the risk of the unknown and dumping that on your supplier.” (Kim, 2010) Governments are inviting corruption when privatizing. “Problems from poorly conceived contracts can create costs increases that far surpass the costs of in-house services, and if there’s shoddy contract oversight, a government is vulnerable to corruption and profiteering.” (Kim, 2010) The ultimate risk is that privatization can put governments into deeper debt.
I believe the federal government should have the power to require states and localities to provide services for individuals. To repeat the idea in my first paragraph, I say this to maintain a balanced level of authority and power. Without that, we truly don’t act as a federalist system. Ultimately, the federal level maintains the upmost authority, but should not be to the point where we are running a federal level dominant system.
Stephens, G. R., & Wikstrom, N. (2007). American Intergovernmental Relations: A
Fragmented Federal Polity.
Kim, A. (2010). The Pros and Cons of Privatizing Government Functions. Retrieved January 29, 2021, from https://www.governing.com/archive/pros-cons-privatizing-government-functions.html