Government actions define all the permits, registrations, consents, orders, judgments, filings, notices, declarations, written interpretations, exemptions, and licenses, among others required by a government to use, occupy, or operate a property in a particular area (Anomaly, 2015). Simply put, government action is the intervention by any government, especially in the interest of the financial market, to inhibit common market inequalities through taxation, subsidies, and regulations. The action promotes general economic performance and fairness towards the citizens (Anomaly, 2015). Primarily, government actions maximize social welfare through intervention in the different ways mentioned above. Government action impacts different people’s lives in different ways. The various government branches address various issues differently in the best interest of both the people and the government.
Effects of Government Action on the People
Government action seeks to ensure fairness of social welfare. History shows that people’s operations and daily running of activities are affected in different ways whenever the government takes an interest. The actions of an authorizing institution affect people in terms of input and output and the benefits the people will enjoy in different aspects. Effects include market performance, movement, people’s freedom, and interaction, among other factors.
Government Action on Economic Performance
Economic performance is one of the best ways to determine the strength of a nation. People play a critical role in the performance of a country’s economy through the different businesses and economic activities they participate in for sustenance. Unlike in the free markets, government action significantly impacts the functioning and performance of the markets in a controlled economy. Government action defines the different laws that affect the market outcomes, including the participation of people in various economic activities. However, different principles occur in some unanticipated ways subverting the intention of whatever policies the government has passed. The common examples of such tenets include price floors, price ceilings, and tax incidences.
The principles have a direct impact on the way the people will operate. On July 24, 2009, the US passed the Fair Labor Standards Act that had provisions for the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018). This means that employees were always tied to ensure that they stuck onto the constitutional requirements of minimum wage. Government actions define some of the typical price ceilings that include rent controls in some places. Having legal maximum prices means people are tied from exceeding agreed amounts on commodities or services, thereby protecting citizens from exploitation by some devious businesses people. Tax is another area the government controls the behavior of people. In a 1913 Act during the Sixteenth Amendment, the US government mandated and defined tax eligibility and rates (Jensen, 2004). Several amendments to the tax laws have sought to promote equality of different people on all levels.
Response to Pandemics, Wars, Epidemics, and War on Terror and Drugs
Recent occurrences as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic have shown how strong and effective government action can affect the behavior and actions of people. 1918-1919 Spanish Flu pandemic might as well be a déjà vu of the Coronavirus pandemic (Bergquist et al., 2020). Governments worldwide were tasked to protect their citizens by minimizing the spread of the diseases that resulted in cruel deaths. Government action came in through the different safety measures the government set up to protect against further distance. 2020 to early 2021 saw a massive institution and implementation of curfews, lockdowns, and cessations of movements (WHO, 2020). Social distancing, wearing masks in public places, cleaning of hands, and a ban on all social gatherings are examples of the government’s actions to ensure containment of further spread. With vaccine research and development ongoing, the government persuaded the citizens to be ready to take vaccination for their safety.
All the actions taken by the government for containment purposes made an impact on people. Unlike 2019 and backward, when people were free to interact and move around, cessation of movements created obstacles to free movement in 2020. There were restrictions on participation in business activities, entertainment, political rallies, schooling, and sports, among other activities.
Wars, floods, and tornadoes, among others, are typical epidemics that may require government action. World War II, the Vietnam War, the Iraq War, and the Afghanistan War are some examples of wars where the US instituted government action to recruit soldiers for battle (Herbert et al., 2013). In the past, inscription into the military was mandatory for the US youth to help fight various national wars. In times of natural epidemics like floods and earthquakes, it is common for the government to evacuate people to safer places, notwithstanding the significance of the affected areas to the people. Such actions cause disruption of normal life, making people adopt new ways. People have no option in such situations but to bend to the will of the government.
The war on terror and drugs is another field where government action plays a prominent role in people’s behavior. The aftermath of the September 11 is an example of how the government can set a crackdown on terrorists. The government came up with strict and tight security measures to protect American citizens. The war on drugs led to Former President Trump instituting the construction of the Mexican Border Wall to curb the influx of drugs into the US. There have been other crackdowns of drugs like the anti-doping measures, protection of underage, and lawsuits and instigations against drug sellers in the US to curb the seepage of drugs across the border (Brienen & Rosen, 2015). As a result, the US today enjoys tight security systems, especially in public places, and always has the means to flush out drug dealers.
Role of the Different Branches of Government in Instituting Government Action
The Federal Government
The federal government has three arms, which are the Executive (the presidency and over 5 million workers), the Legislature (the Senate and the House of Representatives), and the Judiciary (the Supreme Court and the lower courts). The federal government plays a vital role in the execution of government actions. Some of the common actions reserved for the federal government include regulating interstate and foreign commerce, setting taxes, declaring wars, determining the expenditure, and determining the different national policies) (Hamilton et al., 2009). The Executive works with the legislature in Congress where the members pass Bills that the president can sign into laws that will affect the people accordingly. The president and his advisors must ensure they choose the best laws for the people, even if Congress might decide otherwise, and vice versa. The Supreme Court is responsible for justice and law. The Judiciary, therefore, also has a role to play in the determination of government actions. Different cases have determined the position of the Judiciary, for instance, in the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education case that outlawed racial segregation in public schools, hence changing the approach to racial injustices (Hamilton et al., 2009). The Federal government played different roles in the containment of the pandemic, approach to wars, terror attacks, and seepage of illegal drugs, among other issues.
The State and Local Government
State and local governments have essential functions in the US government, especially in running localized functions like fire, school, police, and health services, licensing of professions, organizing elections for their citizens, planning and paying for roads, and providing water. The state and local governments have a closer relationship with the federal government and Congress. The two governments grant Congress some powers to legislate on public issues through government action, like inscription into wars. The different functions of the state and local governments require closer participation of the people, which means that the policies they pass affect the involvement and activities. The federal government ensures the formulation and execution of the laws, but it is the lower governments that provide the institution and establishment of whatever the federal government has passed (Hamilton et al., 2009). Some corporate governments have what home rule, which is a directive that enables them to change structures and pass laws that the state government cannot interfere with (but must not be in collision with the state government). Such laws help stimulate public response to government action. An instance is pandemic management, where the local governments ensure the people follow the federal government’s rules for effectiveness. The activities of the local and state governments appear in different areas like the school systems, taxation, elections, among other factors that affect people in their daily lives (Hamilton et al., 2009). Therefore, there is a need for a tighter relationship between the different levels of government to ensure there is proper institution and execution of the different government actions and allow people to have some input regarding their interests.
Government action is an essential approach in ensuring fairness and equality of the citizens and the protection of economic interests. There are different ways the government will institute the actions depending on the circumstances that require action. The institution of the government’s actions affects the people in different ways, especially in determining their performance and activities. Some of the ways the US has instituted government action include responses to the different wars and pandemics, war on terrorists and drugs, and management of the economy. Some of the actions might hinder the normal functioning of the citizens for the greater good, for instance, in the example of the Covid-19 containment measures. The different levels of government play different roles in the realization of government actions, with the Federal Government at the top and the State and Local authorities beneath. The elected leaders should ensure they pass the most valuable actions to better people’s lives economically, politically, and socially.
Anomaly, J. (2015). Public goods and government action. Politics, Philosophy and Economics, 14(2), 109–128. https://doi.org/10.1177/1470594X13505414
Bergquist, S., Otten, T., & Sarich, N. (2020). COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. Health Policy and Technology, 9(4), 623–638. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hlpt.2020.08.007
Brienen, M. W., & Rosen, J. D. (2015). New approaches to drug policies: A time for change. New Approaches to Drug Policies: A Time for Change, January 2015, 1–255. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137450999
Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2018). Characteristics of minimum wage workers. http://www.bls.gov/cps/minwage2012.htm
Herbert, P., Noonan, M. P., & Mcdougall, W. a. (2013). American Military History : A Resource for Teachers and Students.
WHO. (2020). Co V I D ‑ 19 Strategy Up Date. Covid-19 Strategy Update, 3(April), 18. https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/covid-strategy-update-14april2020.pdf?sfvrsn=29da3ba0_19