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Shut down unneeded bureaucracy, for budget’s sake.
March 03, 2011
Subscribers Newsletter

Shut Down Unneeded Bureaucracy.

Vic Biorseth, Thursday, March 03, 2011

We have already recommended eliminating the Department of Education, in the Shut Down the Dept of Education page on this site. But that’s just a beginning point. If America is ever to be returned to some sort of fiscal sanity, we need to look at every single big-league government department in existence. Granted, we are never going to get free of all bureaucracy, and we cannot shut down all government departments and expect no adverse repercussions. It would be stupid, perhaps to the point of being suicidal, to shut down, for instance, Defense, or State, or Treasury.

That is not to say that whole departments could not be cut, or that significant portions of even Defense, State or Treasury could not be cut. No department should be immune to close examination for what it is doing, why it is doing it, and what it is spending to do it. Our federal government is simply out of control, and that needs to change. I submit that there is not a federal department that cannot be significantly reduced, if not eliminated. The biggest American bureaucracies are all organized under the Executive branch; let’s look at them. Here’s a list.

  1. US Dept of Agriculture (USDA)
  2. US Dept of Commerce (DOC)
  3. US Dept of Defense (DOD)
  4. US Dept of Education (ED)
  5. US Dept of Energy (DOE)
  6. US Dept of Health and Human Services (HHS)
  7. US Dept of Homeland Security (DHS)
  8. US Dept of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
  9. US Dept of Justice (DOJ)
  10. US Dept of Labor (DOL)
  11. Dept of State (DOS)
  12. US Dept of the Interior (DOI)
  13. US Dept of the Treasury (Treasury)
  14. US Dept of Transportation (DOT)
  15. US Dept of Veterans Affairs (VA)
As I look at each of these vast government bureaucracies and what they do, I get a sense of an attempt at systemizing everything; to take natural free market functions and make them part of a contrived and controlled system, planned, controlled and directed by government. Sometimes application of a carefully orchestrated system may be good, as in preparation for or execution of a war. However, some areas of human activity are just better off left to their own natural tendencies, and would be worse off for systemization.

As we have already seen, education is just such an area. It functioned far more effectively before the DOE existed than after. Before, we had an abundance of willing teachers, and parents were free to either educate their own children or put them in the hands of a trusted educator, for a fee. As soon as all of that became systemized, regulated and bureaucratized, the school system began producing little dummies with diplomas, and the downward trend continues.

Just like health care. Before health Insurance domination of the health care market, health care was widely available and cheap. After health insurance domination of the market place, it became radically more expensive, radically more complex for both doctors and patients, and more regulated, and, most importantly, more limited. This was particularly true after the un-holy quasi-marriage of the health insurance industry to the government. I submit that the more man tries to make the world or any little part of it perfect and more fair by submitting it to some contrived system of operation, the more he screws it up. Perfection is not of this world, but the next.

Nature has already provided a “system” for all areas of normal free human economic activity. The entrepreneur knows, or will soon learn, the price of his goods or services are subject to competition as well as the laws of supply and demand. The farmer knows that too, and he also knows, or will soon learn, that such things as crop rotation, soil and water conservation, etc., are vitally important to successful farming. The employer knows, or will soon learn, that wages, benefits and treatment of workers is a competitive thing among other employers, and subject to the laws of supply and demand of workers. And workers know that too. Everyone is free to choose. History has proven, again and again, that those movements toward government control of these areas of human activity always end badly.

  1. Regarding the US Dept of Agriculture (USDA) –
    Agriculture is not listed under Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution, so why is the US government concerning itself with agriculture? Did America not have any agriculture, and was it not doing well, before we had a USDA? Does American agriculture need the US government to continue to exist and operate?

    I don’t think so. See the department function details at the linked page below.

    Argument to cut USDA, in whole or in part.
    Is agriculture the proper constitutional work the federal government is supposed to be doing?

  2. Regarding the US Dept of Commerce (DOC) –


Construction Zone - work continues at this point - stay tuned


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