Bureaucracy and Bureaucrats Essay

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Bureaucracy and Bureaucrats

Americans depend on government bureaucracies to accomplish most of what we expect from government, and we are oftentimes critical of a bureaucracy’s handling of its responsibilities. Bureaucracy is essential for carrying out the tasks of government. As government bureaucracies grew in the twentieth century, new management techniques sought to promote greater efficiency. The reorganization of the government to create the Department of Homeland Security and the Bush administration’s simultaneous push to contract out jobs to private employers raises the question as to whether the government or the private sector can best manage our national security. Ironically, the criticism of the bureaucracy may be a product
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Congress has delegated a significant amount of authority to the federal bureaucracy by granting the agencies the power to draft federal regulations (rule making) and to adjudicate conflicts over these regulations.
Presidents use the rule-making power of bureaucracies to shape policy.
Before 1883, bureaucrats were political appointees—the product of the spoils system.
The Civil Service Act of 1883 created the merit system by requiring that appointees to public office be qualified for the job, thereby ending the spoils system.
The Organization of the Executive Branch

I. What are the agencies that make up the Executive Branch?

The federal bureaucracy consists of the Cabinet departments, independent agencies, government corporations, and independent regulatory commissions.
The Cabinet departments are usually headed by a secretary (the Department of Justice is headed by the Attorney General), but it is the bureau level that has the responsibility for interacting with the public.
Independent agencies exist outside the structure of the Cabinet departments and carry out functions that are too costly for the private sector such as NASA.
Government corporations (the U.S. Postal Service and Amtrak) are designed to run like a business and, we hope, generate a profit.
Independent regulatory commissions regulate some aspect
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