Gigantic, top-down national bureaucracy continuously trying to do more things for more people, basically monopolizing government functions and hindering efficiency and innovation while accumulating monstrous amounts of debt? Bad idea.

Individual states controlling more of their own respective destinies and competing for residents, thereby driving efficiency and innovation in policy decisions and management? Smart idea.

It’s a shame (to say the least) that so much of what could get done via federalism in the United States has instead been overtaken by the clutches of the federal government — an alternative that will appear especially poignant as we decide what to do with the abundant energy reserves recently made available through new technologies. Case in point, via USA Today:

What should be done with the nation’s new oil and gas riches?