Actually, I think it takes a pretty significant lack of perception to *not*
see the services provided by the Federal gov't every day. Direct services
I've used in the past two months include:
* stable currency
* interstate highways
* air traffic control
* national parks
* government research facilities
Of course, then there are technologies which were heavily subsidized by the
federal government -- such as email and the Internet.
More pervasive, and perhaps with greater direct effects, are the entire
realm of benefits we've received from federal regulations -- things like
cleaner water, dramatic reduction of toxic sites, regulated financial
Truly our government is less than perfect, and I too have been dismayed by
the huge opportunity cost we're paying over this investigation -- costs like
the inability to deal with many significant problems our society still
faces, like hunger and housing problems in one of the world's richest
countries, part of the world's richest ever civilization. Or global
warming, or preventing nuclear proliferation due to the disintegration of
Russia, or preventing further genocide in Africa.
But, despite its flaws, the Federal gov't still is, by all historical
measures, a remarkably efficient, and citizen-oriented government.