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Bureaucracy AP Government

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Mary Beverly

on 9 February 2017

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Transcript of Bureaucracy AP Government

The Bureaucracy
1. power flows from top down
2. experts rather than amateurs perform jobs
3. entrance and promotion is based on ability rather than “who you know”
4. all clients are treated impartially.
A professional corp of unelected officials organized in a pyramid hierarchy, functioning under impersonal uniform rules and regulations
What is a bureaucracy?
So what does that mean?
Where is the bureaucracy mentioned
in the Constitution?
Article II, Section 2, of the Constitution gives the president the power to appoint “all other officers of the United States, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for.”
Article II, Section 3, states that the president “shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed, and shall commission all the officers of the United States.”
Myths
Americans dislike bureaucrats.
Bureaucracies are growing bigger each year.
Most federal bureaucrats work in Washington, D.C.
Bureaucracies are ineffective, inefficient, and always mired in red tape.
Realities
Americans are generally satisfied with bureaucrats.
Federal bureaucracy is not getting bigger.
Only about 12 percent of bureaucrats live in Washington DC
Bureaucracies are not any more inefficient than private corporations.
Who They Are

Most demographically representative part of gov't

JOBS
Hatch Act: prohibits government employees from active participation in partisan politics
(May engage in political activities while off duty, but cannot run for partisan elective offices or solicit contributions from the public)
Patronage: job given for political reasons (aka spoils system)
“to the victors belong the spoils” – Andrew Jackson
Civil Service: system of hiring and promotion based on merit created by the Pendleton Civil Service Act (1883)
Merit Principle: entrance exams and promotion ratings to find people with talent and skill
Senior Executive Service: an elite cadre of about 9,000 federal employees who are mostly career officials
Office of Personnel Management: the federal office in charge of most of the government’s hiring
General Schedule (GS) rating: ranges from GS 1 to 18 and determines salary
The Plum Book
-Lists of very top jobs available for Presidential appointment
-Some plum jobs (ambassadorships) are patronage.
-Their most important trait is transience.
“government of strangers”
Independent Regulatory Commissions

Independent Regulatory Commission: responsible for making and enforcing rules to protect public interest.

-Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
-Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
-Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

-Headed by a commission of 5-10 people

- Rule making is an important function watched by interest groups and citizens alike


The Cabinet

- Each has its own budget, staff, and policy areas
-Real work of a department is done in the bureaus, which divides the work into more specialized areas (also called service, office, administration, etc)
- 14 of the 15 Cabinet departments headed by a secretary
- Department of Justice headed by Attorney General
- Status as a cabinet department can be controversial
Gov't
Corp


Provide services like private companies and typically charge for them
-Postal Service (largest) and Amtrak
Independent Executive
Agency
Agencies that don’t fit in anywhere else.
Examples:
-General Services Administration (GSA)-NASA
Implementation
What is implementation?
-Translating the goals of a policy into an operating program

It includes:
-Creating a policy
-Translating policy into rules
-Coordinating resources to achieve the goals
Why the Best-Laid Plans Sometimes Flunk the Implementation Test
1. Program Design
2. Lack of Clarity
Congressional laws can be ambiguous and imprecise.



4. Administrative Routine
- Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) bring uniform rules.
- It is often difficult to change the routines.
3. Lack of Resources
May not have enough people
Many different types of resources are needed: personnel, training, supplies, and equipment
5. Administrative Discretion
- On the other hand sometimes street-level bureaucrats have discretion and authority to select among various responses.
.
6. Fragmentation
- Some policies are spread among several agencies.
- Some agencies have different rules for the same policy.
The Voting Rights Act of 1965
-Had a clear, concise goal
-Clear implementation
-Those carrying out law had authority and vigor to do so.
- Movement in 80s to “reinvent government”
- Gov't hires private contractors
(Spend about 400 billion a year)
-Theory is competition will result in better service at lower costs
-Not always open to competition
-Leads to less public scrutiny
Privatization
Regulation: use of governmental authority to control or change some practice in the private sector
-Federal agencies check, verify, and inspect many of the products and services we take for granted.

Bureaucracies as Regulators
All regulation contains these elements:
A grant of power and set of directions from Congress
A set of rules and guidelines by the regulatory agency itself
Some means of enforcing compliance with congressional goals and agency regulations
Gov’t regulation of the economy and society has grown in recent decades. (Budget and rules have increased as well)
All regulation contains these elements:
A grant of power and set of directions from Congress
A set of rules and guidelines by the regulatory agency itself
Some means of enforcing compliance with congressional goals and agency regulations
Gov’t regulation of the economy and society has grown in recent decades. (Budget and rules have increased as well)
All regulation contains these elements:
- A grant of power and directions from Congress
- A set of rules and guidelines by the agency
- Some means of enforcing compliance
Gov’t regulation of the economy and society has grown in recent decades.
Deregulation: the lifting of restrictions on business, industry, and professional activities
How can Presidents Try to Control the Bureaucracy?
- Appoint the right people
- Issue executive orders
-Alter an agency’s budget
-Reorganize an agency
Creation of Department of Homeland Security
How can Congress Try to Control the Bureaucracy?
-Influence appointment of agency heads
Senate confirms presidential nominees
-Alter an agency’s budget
-Hold oversight hearings
-Rewrite legislation or make it more detailed
Iron Triangles: a mutually dependent relationship between agencies, interest groups, and congressional committees/subcommittees (AKA subgovernments)


Iron Triangles
Focus on more than one policy
Benefit more people than iron triangles

Ex- all those involved with environmental protection
Issue Networks
Someone who “blows the whistle” on a gross governmental inefficiency or illegal actions

1978 Civil Service Reform Act prohibits reprisals against whistleblowers by their superiors
Whistleblowers
1976- Government in the Sunshine Act
required that all multi headed federal agencies hold meetings regularly in public session
Sunshine Laws
Literally translates as
rule by desks
Full transcript