This part of the paper discloses by an example what interventionist economic policies look like.
Body: Research Findings.
This part of the paper discusses the active social policies and interventionist economic behavior and how they promote effectiveness, responsibility and accountability on the part of government
It covers the key elements of the entire paper in a brief format.
It presents a condensed form of the paper and reaffirms the inference made from the research findings.
Benefits if Socially Active and Economically Interventionist Public Policies
The social and economic conditions in the world have changed a great deal. The turn of the twenty first century has come with a number of challenges in nearly every area of life leading to total uncertainty as to what tomorrow holds. The most recent phenomenon in the field of world economics generally and in finance specifically has shown how dynamic conditions can be and how unreliable most of the institutional mechanisms we have in place can let us down. The global financial meltdown was indeed prove that what we have in place is not foolproof and we need to do more if we are to be spared the agony of rapid breakdown of systems especially in the economy. Governments around the world tried their best to control the damage by employing various means. We were able to witness pragmatic and confident approaches by governments of the United States of America as well as Britain whereby key companies were given financial cushioning so as to avoid devastating effects on the economies of these countries. Major banks such as the Bank of England in Britain and giant hedge fund managing companies such as Goldman Sachs got support from the governments of Britain and the United States respectively so as to give them the financial strength required to withstand the storm.
Government action in moments of uncertainty such as the scenario captured in the above case is what is called interventionist action (Craig & Craig, 2000, p308). The view of the government by this is that of a by-stander who only comes in to assist get out of the mud after a fall. The issue of whether this interventionist character by the government as well as the adoption of active social policies can make the government more effective, responsible and accountable can only be answered after a careful observation of the outcome on both the public and the government itself after these policies have been implemented. This is the point this research paper seeks to establish.
The Findings: Ways of government intervention and the benefits realized
As a starting point, it is very possible for the government to be an active participant in the social processes of the country. For instance, the government through its administrative officers can be proactive in ensuring that there is obedience to the law pertaining to sexuality. Undertakings such as marriage can be taken seriously and people who have not attained the age of maturity are restrained from getting married with the end result of reducing the number of divorces that take place within the society. With this kind of intervention, the government is able to establish itself as an active partner in the social life of the country. How does this make the government more effective, responsible and accountable?
Effectiveness, responsibility and accountability can be attained by the above socially active policy by the government through the active participation of the government officials in the implementation of the policy. In the process of reaching out to young people and guiding them on issues of sexuality, it means all sectors of the government that are concerned with the issue or policy in question will be called to action. With the requirement to get the job done, the officials will have to come up with effective mechanisms of service and this will call for responsibility on all the concerned parties as well as accountability since those who will not have gotten their share of the job done will be held responsible for failure. This is not the same case when the government is a passive observer in the social process.
From the dimension of active social policies, the government has another avenue of participation through the promotion of cultural and political freedoms. The citizens can be given support in the process of trying to express themselves either politically or culturally and any move by any section of society to limit or curtail these freedoms can be prevented or stopped by the government. If the government does these things, the citizens get more confidence in questioning whatever that is happening around them and they get to know when their rights have been abused.
Governments can get effectiveness, responsibility and accountability by engaging in the above activities through the behavior they will have fostered or promoted in the citizens. Having learnt that they have rights and no one has a right to rake them from them, the citizens will be out and ready to challenge and question any controversial move by their government. The questioning will in turn mean that the government must be prepared in all its actions so as to be able to deal with an awaked public. In this way, it becomes more effective in attending to the needs of the people whereby responsibility is upheld given that failure to get it right means someone is going to be in trouble due to the fact that one must be held accountable
Leaving the above a side, economic interventionism by the government can come by way of taxation.Here,the government can get into the system and put in place a certain tax that will have a certain strategic impact on the group of people or businesses being taxed. Through its officers, the taxation regulation can be implemented and the collected revenue is put to use within the system by providing services that are needed by the population. This is a clear way in which the government can intervene economically. Does this form of intervention foster effectiveness, responsibility and accountability in the government?
In a democracy, taxation as a mean of economic intervention creates a suspicious relationship between the government and the people. It is not always easy to convince the population that they need to part with their money in the form of taxes. But when they do, the interest they develop in trying to see how well the tax money is used rises dramatically. They always want to ensure that the collected money is not misused by government officials who are fond of paying themselves large sums of money as the people go without the crucial services that are supposed to be paid for using the tax money. The government being aware of this, it assumes the position of a student who likes making noise in class but when a teacher enters the classroom, he keeps quiet, knowing that someone is watching him. The government, therefore knowing that a watchful public eye is on its back, is highly likely to put up mechanisms of ensuring that the collected taxes are used in the best possible way. Thus the element of effectiveness comes in whereby the methods used to solve problems are properly designed. The officers of the government are advised to be more responsible when dealing with public resources and everyone becomes accountable due to a watchful citizenry.
Another economically interventionist policy that can be adopted by the government is the regulation of financial institutions such as banks and managers of hedge funds. The government can set the mark for interest rates on loans from banks and monitor the investment policies adopted by the various firms that manage funds such as pensions. This form of intervention makes the government assume heavy responsibility in the economic setup and brings it to the reality that the buck stops with it. This means that the government that has put up these policies must defend its economy by ensuring that it is alert at all times and it s policies are followed by these institutions adequately .This type of watchfulness by government is what we describe as responsibility and it makes the government more effective as well as more accountable to the people (Eden & Molot, 1993, p 238-239).
This research paper proves the assertion that the government can become more effective, responsible and accountable by adopting socially active and economically interventionist policies.First is the implementation of some social policies that will keep government officials on their toes thus increasing effectiveness, responsibility and accountability. Then the empowerment of the citizens can encourage more scrutiny by the people on the government and this can also increase effectivenss, responsibility and accountability.Ecenomically, intervention through taxation will foster responsibility in spending public money thus promoting effectiveness and accountability while the regulatory duties will make the government be alert all the time leading to increased responsibility (Pagoulatos, 2003, p 173).
Socially active and economically interventionist policies are beneficial to both the government and the people. The participation in the social debate by the government makes its officials responsible and effective as well as informed as a means of being ready to deal with the concerns of the citizens.Economically, the government is bound to be responsible and therefore effective and accountable as it spends the money collected from the citizens as tax. There is always a backlash effect on the government if it does not spend the public money in economically sound ways. The government also regulates financial policies that would otherwise hurt a cross section of the citizens if left to market forces. This regulation makes the government come to terms with its enormous responsibility as far as protecting the national economic interest is concerned as well as shielding the individual economic interests of the citizens.