[I]ndividuals within the bureaucratic structure often possess wide discretionary powers to lay down rules of procedure, allocate the funds among the competing demands, or develop standards for performance.
MD: This reveals an obvious flaw in bureaucratic structures. It reveals an obvious reason why governments and their bureaucracy are not the way to address issues.
In each case, the bureaucrat who makes the decision will be motivated to some extent by his own private cost and private benefits rather than those of Congress or those which might be genuinely defined as public interest.
MD: Actually it’s much worse than stated here. Special interests now actively pursue positions in bureaucracies (being subsidized by their special interest) to further those special interests. They become an “attachment” to an existing government … and eventually take it over from within.
Bureaucrats are themselves no different from anyone else, and they will act so as to preserve and to advance their own career prospects.
MD: Actually they are very different from anyone else. They are under-skilled, competitive yet incapable of competing, and they are power hungry. It takes a special personality with a defect to be a government worker. Anyone given a choice of work in the private sector or public sector will choose the private sector … unless they are power hungry.
Hence, unless these prospects are tied directly to the public interest, the inherent inefficiency in bureaucratic process will tend to dissipate, at least to some degree, almost any collective effort to achieve social betterment.
MD: The “public interest” can never be ascertained. All that acting in the public interest does is to declare some individuals as being outside the public domain. Every action taken in one person’s interest is an action against another person’s interest.