Quick fixes by "morally outraged" politicians make headlines and give the illusion that they're fixing problems. However, too often they don't understand the system in play. Their much publicized "solution" ends up resulting in unintended consequences equally serious or worse.
Here's a wonderful example (unless you are one of the stranded) of such a "quick fix" reaction. In the "Unintended Consequences of the Passenger Bill of Rights" Chris Manno, an Airline Pilot, describes how and why Congress's solution is creating more severe problems for travelers. He lives in the system and has a better understanding of it.
I suspect, by the way, that no one making or passing the law thought to talk to those closest to the problem (e.g., airline employees) to get their ideas and input.
Mark Graban expounds further on the phenomena of quick fixes in his post, "No Quick Fixes for Complex Problems." He gives other examples of a "quick fix but the wrong fix". The examples range from the Government in the United Kingdom trying to shorten the patient wait in the A&E (accident and emergency) waiting rooms by an arbitrary law, to individual Mississippi river towns trying to stop flooding in their town without considering the impact on the rest of river.
Quick fixes and simple fixes to complex problems are always suspect!
Here's quick fix: Maybe we ought to require that all elected officials take a systems thinking course. How can we expect them to make good decisions on the incredibly complex issues they face without training? Of course there's still always the politics.....