- - Wednesday, October 18, 2017


The Times notes correctly that President Trump’s administration is dismantling great chunks of the Obama regulatory regime of executive orders and bureaucratic dictates, some unconstitutional (“Trump dismantles Obama’s ‘imperial’ presidency, rescinds dubious orders,” Web, Oct. 16). This is a great start, yet it’s just the prelude to a far more ambitious effort to roll back the administrative state.

Last March, Mr. Trump ordered Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney to propose a plan to eliminate or consolidate Washington’s bureaucracies. The proliferation of uncontrollable agencies has been an ongoing problem from the past century of government centralization, reaching breaking point with President Obama’s takeover of the health-care and financial sectors.

Mr. Mulvaney’s government-wide reform plan will be unveiled with the White House FY2019 budget in February 2018. Mr. Trump and Mr. Mulvaney are not known for small-ball thinking. If Mr. Mulvaney’s plan is consistent with the president’s order, whole agencies, including cabinet-level departments, will be on the chopping block.

Previous reorganization plans, like the Hoover Commissions under Presidents Truman and Eisenhower, aimed at making administrative government “better.” They did not stop the long-term explosion of bureaucracy because they thought the growth of government was an imperative of history. The coming reorganization plan should transcend its predecessors.

The administrative state by its very nature imposes government by trained scientific experts over the whole of society, thereby displacing the American Idea of natural rights and popular consent. Federal agents direct our families, businesses, work, schools, churches and the rest of civil society toward the Progressives’ statist ideal. Congress should fast-track Mr. Mulvaney’s plan in order to emancipate Americans from the chains of the administrative state and allow our people to fulfill their potential in freedom.



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