We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Friday, September 2. 2011
Final summertime poll for 2011: If you had the power, what Federal Depts or agencies would you get rid of?
Some Maggie's Farm readers have the feeling that Federal government in the US has been a gigantic sponge of money and power for over 100 years, to the point that we view Washington, DC almost like an imperial city (albeit with the consent of the governed), with an arrogant subculture which is oblivious to the views of huge regions of the country.
People nowadays clearly look to the Feds to meet their wants and to supply their needs far more than to their states or localities. However, the further governance is from the people they serve, the less responsive it is to the views of states and localities. Thus, for example, people in
In the process, the Federal government has nurtured and fertilized gigantic constituencies with financial and/or power stakes in every detail of everything it undertakes. This is quite convenient for the constituencies - one-stop shopping instead of bothering with all of those messy states with their knuckle-dragging realtor and liquor store-owner legislatures and their back-woods governors.
Power and authority, unlike money and wealth, is a zero-sum game. Any authority or power which accrues centrally is lost by the individual, the localities, and the states (see Obamacare).
So, to get to today's poll question, if you were King For A Day, which Federal departments and agencies would you abolish to return the responsibilities, powers, monies, and choices to the individual, the localities, or to the states?
I'll start it off: The US Department of Education (what the heck does the federal government have to do with education, which is/was a local matter? We remember why - Jimmy Carter promised to create it to get the support of the teachers' union. Has American education improved since then? I'd say it has gotten worse as the power has moved from the PTA and local school boards, to
My second candidate: Fannie Mae (this quasi-governmental, highly political agency threw a giant wrench into the gears of the world economy. Many predicted what would happen, but nobody cared.)
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Department of Labor
As long as you are polling readers for ideas, how about asking for ways to increase taxes that hits liberals and Democrats hardest? You know, since they like government spending so much. Then we can funnel the best ideas to budget negotiators.
Can't tax people who don't like to work and would prefer to collect from the government.
In all honesty, the "wealthy" like Buffett who are saying they NEED to be taxed more could do us all a favor and JUST PAY MORE. You're allowed to, for God's sake! So do it. Put your money where your mouth is, idiot. If you do that first, I'll take you seriously. Meanwhile, you're just taking us for fools.
Where would they put his money? More govenment spending, of course.
Sites as diverse as HotAir, HuffPo, and BusinessInsider report that Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway owes as much as $1 billion in taxes dating back to 2002. So he could start there.
Let's see - whatever department is going to handle Obamacare, for one. Is that Health?
Dept of Ed - absolutely gone. Decentralize and let states set their own goals and guidelines. The Feds should only set minimum standards of schooling.
EPA - I'm not a supporter of the government overseeing everything, each state should decide what its own limitations are and if people like living in a toxic swamp, let them. It's a choice. The best argument I ever heard against living under electric wires had NOTHING to do with Low Frequency Electrical Fields, but had to do the unsightliness of having a tower in your backyard. If you don't mind the tower, and you want to live under it - go right ahead (LFEs are a crock of BS, anyway, just like "cancer clusters", which take ALL kinds of cancers and lump them together into ONE. Not to mention that clustering of certain diseases is perfectly normal behavior....nothing ever conforms to 'average').
You know - I could go on and on. Frankly, I'd pull almost all the departments down, and restructure them all or eliminate them if I could.
Transportation - gone.
IRS - institute flat taxes with limited loopholes. 3/4 of the staff gone immediately.
Interior should stay, but scaled back. Why are we paying to keep museums open? If people don't go and aren't willing to pay for them, close them. I'll gladly pay $20 to visit a Museum rather than being asked to "donate" something in order to supplement whatever tax monies it might be receiving.
The Arts - no government grants for art. No government free housing for artists (we have a huge complex for free housing here in NYC....but I'm not an artist so I can't get in).
Dept of Education
Dept of Energy
Dept of Labor
Dept of Agriculture
Dept of Public Safety
Dept of Transportation
Dept of Child and Family Services
Dept of Homeland Security (at least massively downsize it)
IRS (replace income tax with nat'l sales tax, eliminate corp tax)
Some of what these agencies do would be shifted to other depts such as what the Dept of Energy does for nuclear weapons should be given to the DoD
Most of what these agencies should be shelved.
There's probably more but that's where I'd start.
You would get a much shorter answer asking which I would keep.
Health and Human Services, EPA, ATF, Energy, Labor, NLRB, Commerce (minus the Patent Office), Agriculture, Interior (except the Parks), Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Housing Finance Agency, Housing Finance Agency.
Privatize or sell the Post Office and Amtrak.
That's a start. Once the number of federal civilian employees is trimmed from 2 million + down to a few hundred thousand, it will be manageable.
1. Education- already stated here
5. Energy- Scale back by 30%. $25B/year, and we don't have alternative fuels.
6. Labor- Cut back by 75%
African Development Foundation
Agricultural Marketing Service
Amtrak Reform Council
Bipartisan Commission on Entitlement and Tax Reform
Board of Directors of the Hope for Homeowners Program
Child Support Enforcement Office
Children and Families Administration
Christopher Columbus Quincentenary Jubilee Commission
Civil Liberties Public Education Fund Board
Civil Rights Commission
Commission of Fine Arts
Commission on Agricultural Workers
Commission on Education of the Deaf
Commission on Minority Business Development
Commission on the Ukraine Famine
ugh, I can't go on right now
Scrap the Constitution, and return to The Articles of Confederation.
I pulled a few off the list of federal agencies and departments (http://www.usa.gov/directory/federal/index.shtml) ....but not many:
• Access Board
• Administration for Native Americans
• Administration on Aging (AoA)
• Administration on Developmental Disabilities
• Administrative Committee of the Federal Register
• Administrative Conference of the United States
• Advisory Council on Historic Preservation
• African Development Foundation
• Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
• Agency for International Development
• Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
• Agricultural Marketing Service
• Agricultural Research Service
• Agriculture Department
• Air and Radiation Hotline
• Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (Treasury)
• Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Bureau (Justice)
• American Battle Monuments Commission
• AmeriCorps Recruiting
• AMTRAK (National Railroad Passenger Corporation)
• Antitrust Division
• Appalachian Regional Commission
• Architect of the Capitol
• Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board)
• Archives (National Archives and Records Administration)
• Arctic Research Commission
• Armed Forces Retirement Home
• Arms Control and International Security
• Army Corps of Engineers
• Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Interagency Coordinating Committee
• Atlantic Fleet Forces Command
• Bankruptcy Courts
• Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation
• Bonneville Power Administration
• Botanic Garden
• Broadcasting Board of Governors (Voice of America, Radio|TV Marti and more)
• Bureau of Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade (Treasury)
• Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (Justice)
• Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
• Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection
• Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA)
• Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA)
• Bureau of Industry and Security
• Bureau of International Labor Affairs
• Bureau of Justice Statistics
• Bureau of Labor Statistics
• Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
• Bureau of Prisons
• Bureau of Public Debt
• Bureau of Reclamation
• Bureau of the Engraving and Printing
• Bureau of the Public Debt
• Bureau of Transportation Statistics
• Capitol Visitor Center
• Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
• Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
• Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)
• Central Command (CENTCOM)
• Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
• Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board
• Chief Acquisition Officers Council
• Chief Financial Officers Council
• Chief Human Capital Officers Council
• Chief Information Officers Council
• Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee
• Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
• Civilian Radioactive Waste Management
• Commerce Department
• Commission on Civil Rights
• Commission on Fine Arts
• Commission on International Religious Freedom
• Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission)
• Committee for Purchase from People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled
• Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements
• Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States
• Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS)
• Community Planning and Development
• Compliance, Office of
• Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US CERT)
• Constitution Center
• Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
• Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
• Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
• Corporation for National and Community Service
• Corps of Engineers
• Council of Economic Advisers
• Council on Environmental Quality
• Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
• Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
• Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims
• Court of Federal Claims
• Court of International Trade
• Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia
• Defense Acquisition University
• Defense Commissary Agency
• Defense Field Activities
• Defense Finance and Accounting Services (DFAS)
• Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA)
• Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)
• Defense Legal Services Agency
• Defense Logistics Agency (DLA)
• Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board
• Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA)
• Defense Security Service (DSS)
• Defense Technical Information Center
• Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA)
• Delaware River Basin Commission
• Denali Commission
• Department of Agriculture (USDA)
• Department of Commerce (DOC)
• Department of Defense Inspector General
• Department of Education (ED)
• Department of Energy (DOE)
• Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
• Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
• Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
• Department of Labor (DOL)
• Department of the Interior (DOI)
• Department of the Treasury
• Department of Transportation (DOT)
• Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)
• Director of National Intelligence, Office of
• Domestic Policy Council
• Drug Enforcement Administration
• Economic Adjustment Office
• Economic Analysis, Bureau of
• Economic Development Administration
• Economic Research Service
• Economic, Business and Agricultural Affairs
• Economics and Statistics Administration
• Education Department
• Election Assistance Commission
• Elementary and Secondary Education, Office of
• Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)
• Employment and Training Administration
• Endangered Species Committee
• Energy Department
• Energy Information Administration
• English Language Acquisition Office
• Environmental Management (Energy Department)
• Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
• Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
• European Command
• Executive Office for Immigration Review
• Export-Import Bank of the United States
• Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO)
• Farm Credit Administration
• Farm Service Agency
• Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board
• Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
• Federal Bureau of Prisons
• Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
• Federal Consulting Group
• Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)
• Federal Election Commission
• Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
• Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
• Federal Executive Boards
• Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council
• Federal Financing Bank
• Federal Geographic Data Committee
• Federal Highway Administration
• Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac)
• Federal Housing Finance Agency
• Federal Interagency Committee for the Management of Noxious and Exotic Weeds
• Federal Interagency Committee on Education
• Federal Interagency Council on Statistical Policy
• Federal Judicial Center
• Federal Labor Relations Authority
• Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer
• Federal Law Enforcement Training Center
• Federal Library and Information Center Committee
• Federal Maritime Commission
• Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service
• Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission
• Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)
• Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae)
• Federal Railroad Administration
• Federal Reserve System
• Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board
• Federal Student Aid Information Center
• Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
• Federal Transit Administration
• Financial Management Service (Treasury Department)
• Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, National Commission
• Fish and Wildlife Service
• Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
• Food Safety and Inspection Service
• Foreign Agricultural Service
• Foreign Claims Settlement Commission
• Forest Service
• Fossil Energy
• Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board
• General Services Administration (GSA)
• Geological Survey
• Global Affairs (State Department)
• Government Ethics, Office of
• Government National Mortgage Association
• Government Printing Office (GPO)
• Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration
• Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation
• Health and Human Services Department
• Health Resources and Services Administration
• Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Control Office
• Helsinki Commission (Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe)
• Holocaust Memorial Museum
• Homeland Security Department
• House Organizations, Commissions, and Task Forces
• Housing Office (HUD)
• Illinois and Michigan Canal National Heritage Corridor Commission
• Immigration and Customs Enforcement
• Indian Affairs, Bureau of
• Indian Arts and Crafts Board
• Indian Health Service
• Industrial College of the Armed Forces
• Industry and Security, Bureau of
• Information Resource Management College
• Information Resources Center
• Innovation and Improvement Office
• Inspectors General
• Institute of Education Sciences
• Institute of Museum and Library Services
• Institute of Peace
• Inter-American Foundation
• Interagency Alternative Dispute Resolution Working Group
• Interagency Council on Homelessness
• Interior Department
• Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
• International Labor Affairs, Bureau of
• International Trade Administration (ITA)
• International Trade Commission
• James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation
• Japan-United States Friendship Commission
• Job Corps
• John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
• Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries
• Joint Chiefs of Staff
• Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies
• Joint Fire Science Program
• Joint Forces Command
• Joint Forces Staff College
• Joint Military Intelligence College
• Judicial Circuit Courts of Appeal
• Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation
• Justice Programs, Office of
• Justice Statistics, Bureau of
• Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of
• Labor Department (DOL)
• Labor Statistics, Bureau of
• Land Management, Bureau of
• Legal Services Corporation
• Marine Mammal Commission
• Maritime Administration
• Marketing and Regulatory Programs (Agriculture Department)
• Mediation and Concitiation Service, Office of
• Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission
• Medicare Payment Advisory Commission
• Merit Systems Protection Board
• Migratory Bird Conservation Commission
• Military Postal Service Agency
• Millennium Challenge Corporation
• Mine Safety and Health Administration
• Minority Business Development Agency
• Missile Defense Agency (MDA)
• Mississippi River Commission
• Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation
• Multifamily Housing Office
• National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
• National Agricultural Statistics Service
• National AIDS Policy Office
• National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)
• National Bipartisan Commission on the Future of Medicare
• National Capital Planning Commission
• National Cemetery Administration (NCA)
• National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform
• National Council on Disability (NCD)
• National Counterintelligence Executive, Office of
• National Credit Union Administration
• National Defense University
• National Drug Intelligence Center
• National Economic Council
• National Endowment for the Arts
• National Endowment for the Humanities
• National Gallery of Art
• National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
• National Guard
• National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
• National Indian Gaming Commission
• National Institute of Food and Agriculture
• National Institute of Justice
• National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
• National Institutes of Health (NIH)
• National Interagency Fire Center
• National Labor Relations Board
• National Laboratories (Energy Department)
• National Marine Fisheries Service
• National Mediation Board
• National Nuclear Security Administration
• National Ocean Service
• National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
• National Park Foundation
• National Park Service
• National Railroad Passenger Corporation (AMTRAK)
• National Reconnaissance Office
• National Science Foundation
• National Security Agency (NSA)
• National Security Council
• National Technical Information Service
• National Telecommunications and Information Administration
• National Transportation Safety Board
• National War College
• National Weather Service (NOAA)
• Natural Resources Conservation Service
• Northern Command
• Northwest Power Planning Council
• Nuclear Energy, Science and Technology
• Nuclear Regulatory Commission
• Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board
• Oak Ridge National Laboratory
• Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission
• Office for Civil Rights, Department of Education
• Office of Compliance
• Office of Disability Employment Policy
• Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE)
• Office of Government Ethics
• Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
• Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
• Office of Mediation and Concitiation Service
• Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP)
• Office of Personnel Management (OPM)
• Office of Refugee Resettlement
• Office of Science and Technology Policy
• Office of Scientific and Technical Information
• Office of Special Counsel
• Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC)
• Office of the Director of National Intelligence
• Office of the Pardon Attorney
• Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS)
• Open World Leadership Center
• Overseas Private Investment Corporation
• Pacific Command
• Pardon Attorney, Office of
• Parole Commission (Justice Department)
• Peace Corps
• Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC)
• Pentagon Force Protection Agency
• Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
• Policy Development and Research
• Political Affairs (State Department)
• Postal Regulatory Commission
• Postal Service
• Power Administrations
• President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports
• Presidio Trust
• Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office
• Public and Indian Housing
• Public Debt, Bureau of
• Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs (State Department)
• Radio and TV Marti (Español)
• Radio Free Asia (RFA)
• Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)
• Railroad Retirement Board (RRB)
• Reclamation, Bureau of
• Refugee Resettlement, Office of
• Regulatory Information Service Center
• Rehabilitation Services Administration (Education Department)
• Research and Innovative Technology Administration
• Research, Education and Economics (Agriculture Department)
• Risk Management Agency (Agriculture Department)
• Rural Business and Cooperative Programs
• Rural Development
• Rural Housing Service
• Rural Utilities Service
• Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation
• Science and Technology Policy, Office of
• Science Office (Energy Department)
• Scientific and Technical Information, Office of
• Secret Service
• Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
• Selective Service System (SSS)
• Small Business Administration (SBA)
• Social Security Administration (SSA)
• Social Security Advisory Board
• Southeastern Power Administration
• Southern Command
• Southwestern Power Administration
• Special Forces Operations Command
• State Justice Institute
• Stennis Center for Public Service
• Strategic Command
• Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
• Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement
• Surface Transportation Board
• Susquehanna River Basin Commission
• Tax Court
• Taxpayer Advocacy Panel
• Tennessee Valley Authority
• Trade and Development Agency
• Transportation Command
• Transportation Department
• Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
• Transportation Statistics, Bureau of
• Treasury Department
• TRICARE Management
• Trustee Program (Justice Department)
• U.S. Access Board
• U.S. Capitol Visitor Center
• U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
• U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)
• U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC)
• U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
• U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
• U.S. International Trade Commission
• U.S. Military Academy, West Point
• U.S. Mission to the United Nations
• U.S. National Central Bureau - Interpol (Justice Department)
• U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
• U.S. Sentencing Commission
• U.S. Trade and Development Agency
• U.S. Trade Representative
• Unified Combatant Commands (Defense Department)
• Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
• United States Mint
• Veterans Affairs Department (VA)
• Veterans Benefits Administration
• Veterans Day National Committee
• Veterans' Employment and Training Service
• Vietnam Educational Foundation
• Voice of America (VOA)
• Washington Headquarters Services
• Weather Service
• West Point (Army)
• Western Area Power Administration
• White House Commission on Presidential Scholars
• White House Commission on the National Moment of Remembrance
• White House Office of Administration
• Women's Bureau (Labor Department)
• Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
That is a depressing list. I'm mostly shocked at how surprised I was that the list kept going and going... I shoulda known.
I'd keep the military and whatever part of an agency is responsible for roads and infrastructure. Put the military in charge of the borders. Maybe keep the mint...maybe, because it would be kind of nice to let folks barter for what they need. It would sure make it clear who contributes to society and who doesn't.
After looking at that list, I'm going for a beer. ( Office of Thrift Supervision?)
And there my friend - you have the proof of the problem.
Does anyone, ANYONE, in the upper "management" of the Fed from the POTUS to the Speaker to the Senate to the Congress have ANY idea that these agencies exist or ANY idea as to what it is they do before they create, vote on and fund a new one?
Talk about overlap and waste, band-aid on band-aid. I wonder if anyone in the federal government even looks at their own website.
We keep making new laws and agencies instead of researching whether or not we already have that law or agency and whether or not it is cost effective and serving it's purpose or simply existing - ZOMBIElike.
EPA, EPA, EPA and Energy. But Obama apparently told the EPA to dump the ozone rules today. That's huge!
In no particular order:
ED., EPA, HUD, Labor, DEA, ATF, anything to do with the UN, IRS, the list could go on.
Essentially, everything that the gov't gets involved with goes wrong. A good example is the War on Drugs.
Also, recall that the recent financial mess (blamed on the banks) began with community organizers, the Community Reinvestment Act, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
A good reference book on the whole gov. is P. J. O'Rourke's, "A Parliament of Whores."
Additionally, what does it cost us to maintain congress every year? I have heard $1,000,000.00 per sen./rep. per year.
A while back, a cousins' wife toured DC and parts of the capitol. She said that the senatorial offices reminded her of Versailles.
What are we getting for our expenditures?
Want to make a video game of this? Take out a department and see the ups and downs of what transpires. Sounds like fun.
I'm think that if, after almost five years in power (dem congress)and 3 years in power (obama) the problem this country is facing has only gotten worse, and is ONLY the fault of the republicans......we could actually do without a congress and potus. Are those considered government agencies?
Every list ought to start with ATF. Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms ought to be the name of convenience store chain, not a federal agency.
I also especially loathe:
DEA, EPA, Fish & Wildlife Service (revoke CITES and the plumage laws passed at the same time as the drug laws. Bird species have had a century to recover.), Education, Energy, Transportation (Imagine non-federally regulated automobiles. Contact Morris Garages in Oxford, England and order built anything you want).
I mean really guys - eliminate all government departments? Jeezum pete - While I consider myself a Rational Anarchist, some of you go WAY beyond anarchy into chaos. :>)
Seriously, there isn't too much in terms of Cabinet positions that you could eliminate - other than Homeland Security and Education, the rest of the Cabinet positions have a function to perform in modern society. Are some of you seriously proposing to eliminate Transportation and leave airline and airport policy up to the individual states? That's an example, but I think you can see what I'm getting at.
The problem is within the individual Cabinet departments - the various "Offices" of this, that and everything else under the sun, moon and stars. Mission creep is what you are really wanting to discuss, not the elimination of various Cabinet agencies.
However, we all have our fantasies as to how we would run things so I guess it is a useful exercise. Here's mine.
1 - Create a Department of Science and Technology by moving all Agencies and "Office of's" into this - combine those which are duplicates. That would mean NASA, NOAA, NWS, Fisheries and Wildlife, etc. Move the EPA into this Department and place it under the direct control of a Secretary. Reduce the EPA's impact by eliminating those departments what duplicate others.
2 - Eliminate the Department of Homeland Security completely and move those departments and agencies back where originally were. The only exception would be the USCG. I would elevate the USCG to a full military status in the Department of Defense equal to the others, but with a different mission - mainly border security, air security and other security matters that are directly related to maritime ports of entry, cargo and other border security missions and of course their critical search and rescue missions.
(I would also make the Navy a Department of the United Stated Marine Corps, but that is a whole different discussion).
Oh and eliminate all zombies from the face of the Earth - somebody had to say it.
#12--Zombies would perform a useful function if they could be trained to eat only politicians and bureaucrats. The apparently insurmountable problem is that zombies like to eat brains, and politicians and bureaucrats usually don't have any.
Every cabinet level department created in the 20th and 21st centuries.
Some only house 1 or 2 Constitutionally-mandated functions, which can be split out, and many are there just to serve as bagmen for Democrat constituencies.
And, no, I have no problem going back to a Navy Department and a War Department. When we had a War Department, we won wars.
Reboot American algorithm:
1. Shut down the entire Federal Government.
2. President apologizes to the American people.
3. All America reads the Constitution.
4. They read it again.
5. Reopen only the most-critical 25% of agencies.
6. Rehire only 50% of their employees.
7. If government expenditures > revenues, go to 1.
8. People monitor size of government.
If you want to raise taxes on liberals but not others, I propose Taxation by Represenative. The current Tax rates are frozen and and any new income taxes are raised by levying those districts that their US represenative votes for new taxes. This way liberal districts cah have their taxes raises and leave the rest of us alone.
Wow, never thought of that one before. Brilliant!
And it would be wicked interesting to see what happens to housing prices and people moving to other districts. Needs to be some way that once you've voted for a high tax representative, you can't move out from under it too quickly.
There's another way to do it. Download the Federal Budget, you can get it on a spreadsheet.
Take each line item. Your first easy decision is whether to keep it at 100% of funding. Very few will survive that. The next decisions is what level of funding: 80, 50, 25, or 0%.
Your goal, reduce overall to 60%, to match income with spending That means SocSec, Medicare are going to get whacked at 80%. And a whole bunch are going to zero. Anything having to do with a subsidy is zeroed.
Anything going up? Perhaps ICE and Border Patrol, to keep drugs, weapons, and illegal immigrants out. Seal the borders tighter than a bull's *** in fly time.
Once the Federal employees are gone, and whole offices are vacant, and patronage money is not being distributed to the moochers, it will be much easier to remove the enabling legislation.
Anything else? With Medicare whacked, you will have to pass legislation allowing doctors to charge additional co-pays for medical services, perhaps even unlimited copays.
Yes, it's bloody damn heartless, and it sucks the big one, but it has to be done. We are out of other people's money.
Why 80%, and not 90 or 75? Because everything and everybody can absorb a 20% cut, and still keep it going. It's a real belt-tightening, but it can be done.
The other objection to 80% is, all the Department administrators will try to keep all the offices open. To permanently shrink the scope of government, you have to go to 50% or less. At that point, the presidentially-appointed administrators are going to have to make tough calls, and shutter some offices, and descope the tasks of others. And now you know which enabling legislation to rescind.
Let me play the devil's advocate: while you're at it, why not slash your Department of Defense budget in half?
Because the world is dangerous, anbd because protection from danger is the Fed govt's primary job.
Because that is about the only thing Washington is doing that it is supposed to be doing. Take out all of the other senseless immoral waste and the DD budget looks pretty affordable.
Because if you ain't got security, you ain't got squat. My paraphrase of a John Jay quote. I'd like to find out which department is responsible for public service announcements and water board them for about a week.
Get out of the student loan business and sell all the existing loans to banks and other institutions.
I would abolish every federal law, program, and agency established since the end of Reconstruction, defined by Rutherford B. Hayes' crooked election victory over Tilden. I would also roll back Supreme Court precedents to that time, thus killing off the ones in the book "The Dirty Dozen."
Then I'd propose interstate compacts to redo reduced versions of the few worthwhile bills Congress has enacted in that time. For instance, reinstate a food labeling and purity law, but not have an FDA capable of banning any substance. And reinstate a Civil Rights Act but not the federal welfare and education subsidies that came with it.
Many other popular "reforms," though, I'd leave dead. No direct election of Senators. No income tax. No "right" of collective bargaining (unions are no better than any other gangsters). No vote for women (because in my opinion, giving them the vote directly resulted in the last century being the century of nanny-statism in the US). And no war on drugs.
I consider all these changes (except maybe the income tax) no more than getting back the constitutional form of government we're already entitled to.
No votes for women has some interesting consequences - what it actually means is 1 vote per male-headed household. You can bet I'd be lobbying my DH intensely for his vote to be what I want. I suppose women would not have the ability to run for an office for which they couldn't vote themselves...?
An interesting thought experiment. ( I do agree with JDG on the results of women's sufferage!)