You’ll be hard pressed to find a better group of scholars than those at the Cato Institute. I’ve learned a ton speaking with Chris Edwards, director of tax policy studies and editor of www.DownsizingGovernment.org (a treasure trove of information you can use to win the argument with your misguided friends). Chris expands on the failure of government for you here:
I recently came across “The Sickness of Government,” (PDF) a 1969 essay by famed management theorist Peter Drucker. It is strikingly relevant to the problems we see in Washington today from Obamacare, to farm programs, to IRS abuse, to NSA spying. Unlike, say, Ayn Rand–who at the time was writing about government from the standpoint of individual freedom–Drucker was writing from the practical perspective that Big Government simply wasn’t working.
Here are some excerpts from Drucker, but his whole essay is worth reading:
“Government surely has never been more prominent than today. The most despotic government of 1900 would not have dared probe into the private affairs of its citizens as income tax collectors now do routinely in the freest society. Even the tsar’s secret police did not go in for the security investigations we now take for granted.”
“For seventy years or so – from the 1890’s to the 1960’s – mankind, especially in the developed countries, was hypnotized by government. We were in love with it and saw no limits to its abilities, or to its good intentions.”
Chris Edwards discusses government waste on FOX’s Special Report w/ Bret Baier