The federal civil service — Obama’s scandalous governing class — shows its true colors.
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The solution isn’t simple and requires a dedication to action for which most political appointees do not think they have the time. The bureaucracy will do its best to keep them so busy they don’t have the time to even think about it. I learned early on that meetings should not be attended unless I, my boss, or his boss called them. If I hadn’t done that, I’d have been trapped in pointless meetings from the morning moment I arrived in the building to the minute I dragged myself out in the evening.
But there’s more, and something just as important. If I had it to do over, I’d have revamped my staff to dispense with all but four of my staff: my indispensable secretary and three who I might have called my Bronx people. They would have been my “implementers.” Their sole job would be to ride herd on the bureaucrats, identifying and blasting roadblocks instantly with all the power of my office behind them. Three retired special operations men I know come to mind. They have the brains, tenacity, loyalty, and the ability to get things done that I admire, and that every political appointee needs.
For all of those who hope to serve in a Republican administration next year, please take heed. It’s not the president’s policies you’ll have to worry about so much as the people under you who are comprehensively committed to delay and obfuscation. Don’t try to change the bureaucrats’ minds or attitudes because you can’t. They know they will be there long after you’re gone.
Think instead about who your arm-twisters will be, and if you hire them — no matter what agency you may end up in — you will not only serve your president well. You may actually get something done.