Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Touching at the root of the problem.

Sebastian, in his post on the rumored Holder nomination, references the last Democrat AG with
...Ruby Ridge was at the end of the Bush I presidency, and that would seem to be correct. But I would note that it doesn’t appear Janet Reno did much housecleaning to get rid of the people who concocted the unlawful rules of engagement.
which obliquely illuminates the bigger problem: The explosive growth of federal agencies since the 1930s has left a government whose interface with the people is largely conducted through a swarm of unelected, virtually unfireable bureaucrats that sail along on their pre-charted courses no matter how various elections may try to re-trim the sails of the ship of state.

9 comments:

OrangeNeckInNY said...

Hope & Change, my ass. Seeming more and more like Ignorance & Regression

wv: "whemphip"

TBeck said...

Yeah, Special Agent Lon Horiuchi claimed that his shot that blew Vicki Weaver's head off was accidental, that he had been aiming for Randy.

So, what did the Bureau do with such an unreliable shooter? They made him a sniper instructor at Quantico, of course!

Old NFO said...

Peter Principle in action- Get 'em out of the way... how? Promote their dumb asses... sigh... Wake me up when it's 2012

hehe- WV- supect

Sebastian said...

It's a rather difficult problem. On one hand, if you don't have civil service protections, all the federal bureaucracies tend to end up run by cronies, with little or no real competence at what they are doing.

On the other hand, without civil service protection, it would be virtually impossible to use government as a tool to accomplish anything, because there would be little or no continuity between administrations.

I tend to think the government does way too much. A lot more than it did when the idea of civil service protections was originally debated. But for the functions that I think it should be doing, I think it should do those competently. I can't really say for sure that civil service protection is necessarily bad, but if it made it impossible to have an effective government, I think I might prefer that to what we're facing today.

Crucis said...

You want scary? Read "A State of Disobedience" by Tom Kratman. It's about armed federal agencies and a President gone wild with power.

The book includes the setup of charging the previous Republican president and putting him in prison. Anyone watched the news lately about the dems investigating Bush once he's out of office, or the Texas DA who indicted Cheney?

The book may have more truth than we realize.

Anonymous said...

I think civil service was a good idea with horrible unintended consequences that we are now suffering.

At least with the spoils system it was possible for a new broom to sweep clean; the bureacracy was at least indirectly accountable to voters.

Now the bureaucracy is accountable to NO ONE, because most civil service employees can't be fired.

What type of people tend to gravitate to civil service jobs? People who believe the government should have ever-more power over citizens' lives.

So the inexorable loss of freedom continues apace, regardless of who occupies the White House.

--mariner

mts said...

That's the problem with agencies. They have the power to fine, the power to jail, and a lot of times you can't take their rulings to court. They don't even have to give a clear explanation for why. Ask Howard Stern vs. the FCC. And they're not answerable to the elected officials, much less the voters.

I'm not fan of Stern at all, but the fact that 1) they ganked a million out of him, 2) they couldn't tell him exactly where he went wrong, and 3) they couldn't give him firm guidelines to keep out of trouble in the future gives me a pretty good definition of dictatorial power.

I keep looking for the section of the Constitution that refers to the care and feeding of federal agencies, but I must not have a complete copy.

Brian J. said...

Forget the millions in money, just remain ignorant of how many federal agencies actually arm their agents to help enforcement.

For your own sanity.

And don't consider a situation where you might try to back out of your driveway after a disagreement with a Social Security inspector or something, where suddenly Joe Guaranteed Federal Pension fears for his life.

DirtCrashr said...

For an example of a Civil Service run completely, totally, and thoroughly amok - a society that took the notion and embedded it so deeply that it resulted in a kind of economic and bureaucratic paralysis, look at India. The British Civil Service system they left to the country was exploited and extrapolated as far as humanly and imaginably possible to the point of such ossification it makes the movie Brazil look benign and quaint.