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March 04, 2005

If I Ruled The World

Somebody asked me what I'd do if I could reshape the US. I have a bunch of clunky answers.

I think the first thing I would do is something akin to the Napoleonic Code, which is look at law from the bottom up and simplify it all. In the same way that republicans are seeking to flatten the tax code, I would simplify the legal code.

I would open the borders completely, and would go about finding a way to compete in global manufacturing. I would legalize marijuana just to get liberals on my side, and I would tax the hell out of it.

I would replace the History curriculum in public schools and replace it with Constituional studies. I would have high school graduates knowing pretty much everything they need to handle small claims torts.

I would abolish standardized testing, and have English composition requirements for all legal immigrants. I would certify public schools the same way we certify restaurants in California, have a great big letter grade on the front window.

I would establish an extraordinary set of open pricing requirements for all businesses over a certain size, a la Walmart. I would basically take SarbOx to the next level with regard to openness. I would make looking up P&L and Balance Sheet data on every publically traded company as easy as looking up their stock price.

I would push forward to close all Indian reservations and basically change those arrangements for a kind of internal third world zoning.

I would make Imperialism real. Nation building means American expatriates get free land in target nations with the first choice going to military families.

I would crack down on the pharmaceutical industry and set fixed finacial limites on torts for medical malpractice to something like 3x the cost of the procedure. At the same time I would reclassify a large set of elective and experimental procedures as 'play at your own risk'. I would legalize euthanasia and fund hospices.

I would establish a President's Council on Religion and hold regular confabs. I would establish a national monument somewhere in the open West and initiate an American Pilgramage in the spirit of The Long Now.

I would split the Pentagon into the Defense Department and the War Department. I would establish a new International forum to replace the UN under the military auspices of the current permanent Security Council and I would launch a set of joint operations agains narco-nations.

I would launch a huge set of initiatives aimed at bringing Mexicans, Canadians and Americans together.

I would deregulate broadcast media, and tax them to fund a largely expanded C-Span. I would open up several new broadcast frequencies for public use.

I would drill for oil in Alaska, and I would marketize pollution credits in line with my SuperSarbOx.

I would drastically reduce income tax and drastically increase consumption tax and drastically reduce capital gains taxes.

I would push for national housing standards for construction regulations and zoning which make sprawl more difficult, integrates low income housing, and make.

I would make a minimum land area of 100 square miles for any federally 'protected lands'. I would create large incentives for new construction in economically depressed areas if they fit the new standards for the Internal Third & Second Worlds.

My aim would be to simplify American life and increase individual capacity. I would make living in America cheaper. I would encourage immigration and all manner of things that bring us closer to the rest of the world and the rest of the world closer to us. I would create in the US the most sound infrastructure possible and make us all experts at understanding and replicating it.

Posted by mbowen at March 4, 2005 09:12 AM

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