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Monday, January 23, 2017

Reforming Government Means Fighting Entrenched Bureaucrats

For John, BLUFThe Bureaucrats will fight fiercely.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

And the sub-headline:
Federal workers fume over Trump's vows to freeze hiring and shrink the government.
The source is Politico, by Reporters Nancy Cook and Andrew Restuccia, on 23 January 2017.

This is how it starts out:

President Donald Trump is setting himself up for a messy clash with the country’s 2.1 million federal employees as his administration quietly preps plans to cut the size of the government workforce.

As one of his first acts Monday, Trump signed an executive order freezing most federal hiring.  His team is also fine-tuning plans to shrink several agencies focused on domestic policy, according to sources close to the transition.

Now, the president is about to find out how much power these maligned workers have to slow or even short-circuit his agenda.

Disgruntled employees can leak information to Capitol Hill and the press, and prod inspectors general to probe political appointees.  They can also use the tools of bureaucracy to slow or sandbag policy proposals — moves that can overtly, or passive aggressively, unravel a White House’s best-laid plans.

“The government is a place where it is easier to keep something from getting done, than it is to actually do something,” said Robert Shea, an official in George W. Bush’s Office of Management and Budget.  “All of the work that the new administration wants to get accomplished will depend on the speed and productivity of the federal workforce.”

The thing is, those Civil Service Bureaucrats were going to fight the Trump agenda whether he had issued this Executive Order or not.  Are we confused about this?

If there is going to be change in the Federal Government, and that is what the Voters were voting for when they elected their Electors, then the Bureaucrats are going to have to step aside.  A lot of us don't wish to see the kind of activities that thwarted the Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki (or on a more local level, retired Lieutenant General Julius W Becton, when he became the Superintendent of Washington, DC, schools.

Hat tip to Memeorandum.

Regards  —  Cliff

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