Archive for June 3rd, 2009

POWER: How Pros Make Fools of Amateurs II

Posted by Bob on August 13, 2006 at 8:07 pm

In case you think what I said below is something new that Reagan couldn’t know about, I refer you to the BBC programs, “Yes, Minister” and “Yes, Prime Minister.” The latter is MUCH better thant he former, and I would start with that. It is also hilarious.

It has always been known that the Civil Service rules Britain by a very simple tactic. When a new Government is elected, the Prime Minister is only allowed to appoint the HEADS of departments. So the titular head of a department is single person, a member of parliament, who fills the office at the very top of hte departmental pyramid. Even his personal aide is a member of the permanent civil service, whom the Civil Service appoints.

Unless you have tendency to stare vacantly and drool, you know what the result is. Within a month, the so-called head of the department is an absolute robot in the hands of Britain’s real government, the Civil Service.

That happens to be the exact reason that America’s Civil Service system had to keep compromising with congressmen who had been there a long time and allow the president to appoint, not only cabinet members as department heads, but a thousand others. That was why I and others like me were up thereinthe office next to the head of hte civil service. In Britain it would have been a Permanent Civil Servant.

When a department head in Britain decides to do something silly, his aides decide whether they want to encourage him or not. There are no Wet Blankets like Ole Bob sitting right there in the next office.

If the permanent civil service can’t have one of their own sitting there, the next best thing is to have a group of total amateurs around the boss. Reagan gave them that.

As I say, the proof of the pudding is that this rank amateur managed to be almost unique in trying something so dumb that he failed Senate confirmation for exactly the same job in the second Reagan Administration.

Where was I? I had taken a career job as writer for the Voice of America. His only professional had left.

In fact, he had said earlier that if he had known my background as a government pro, he would never have taken me on in the first place. He would have made Reagan withdraw the nomination because I was one of the Evil Alligators.

He lost his Alligator and he lost his job.

Shrewd, man, Shrewd!

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