Front-Loading and Political Engineering

Front-loading occurs when someone over promises something. Say a teenager wants a new stereo system and he tells his parents that if they get it for him he will do more odd jobs around the house without questions. He tells them that the stereo system is the best out there and just went on sale. His parents finally agree to buy him the system (which actually was not discounted) but after their son gets it home all he does is sit in his room listening to music. Their son isn’t doing any of his chores now! He over promised in order to get his stereo system. Politicians often front-load, which is something that most voters do not like. So instead of front-loading some politicians use political engineering.

Suppose a politician wants to begin a new project but it will be a bit pricy for some. So he tells many different people what his project is but doesn’t give them the whole cost of the project- he just shows them a fraction of what it would cost in order to get their support. Soon many people are on board with the politician’s idea because what they’ve seen is reasonable. In the end the project used much more money than what the politician’s supporters thought it would cost.

To me, front-loading and political engineering both seem like very deceptive processes to manipulate people. If only politicians would be more truthful and accept the fact that they can’t always get what they want.

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