Trevor Manuel Thinks Government Is The ‘Engine Room’ of The Economy

“Planning Minister Trevor Manuel yesterday listed fixing the public service as the first step towards prosperity, saying no economic policy would achieve the desired results if the “engine room” did not work,” reports Business Day.

At a summit in East London, Manuel said:

“If we don’t get these things right, if we don’t fix the public service … however many plans we have to build roads, the Industrial Policy Action Plan and everything else will not work.

“(If) we don’t get teachers to teach our children … we don’t get the skills set right, we will fail as a nation. So the clarion call from the planning commission is: let us fix the engine room. And I think as we fix the engine room and know it is working, a lot of the other issues will just fall into place.”

If all private industry ceased operating tomorrow and stopped paying taxes immediately, how would the government be an “engine room” of growth? The government is a parasite. When its host dies, the parasite will die too (unless it finds a new host).

In this relationship, the host is the private sector, and the government is the parasite.

All government and the “public service” can do is to take money away from the real engine room of the economy, and spend it less efficiently than the private sector would’ve. Government can’t possibly “grow” an economy. In fact the exact opposite is true. The more government spends and takes away from the private sector, the less productive and wealthy the economy can potentially be.

The public service is supposed to be the grease that keeps the engine running smoothly. Manuel’s comments shows you just how arrogant and clueless he is about how the world really works.