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Tuesday, April 3, 2012
The Seven Rules of Bureaucracy
By Panos Prevedouros PhD @ 9:14 PM :: 8104 Views :: Education K-12, Hawaii State Government, Rail

by Panos Prevedouros, FixOahu 

The Seven Rules of Bureaucracy by Lloyd S. Pettegrew and Carol A. Vance presents an insightful and succinct list of routine actions by "successful" bureaucracies. Their article provides many examples. Most of these are directly applicable to the education and traffic congestion problems in Hawaii. Both come with huge bureaucracies that lie about the issues and maintain poor performance.

Although politicians of all colors and persuasions have used these one time or another, the rules also read like the manifesto of a major political party in the US, don't they?

  1. Maintain the problem at all costs! The problem is the basis of power, perks, privileges, and security.
  2. Use crisis and perceived crisis to increase your power and control. Force 11th-hour decisions, threaten the loss of options and opportunities, and limit the opposition’s opportunity to review and critique.
  3. If there are not enough crises, manufacture them, even from nature, where none exist.
  4. Control the flow and release of information while feigning openness. Deny, delay, obfuscate, spin, and lie.
  5. Maximize public-relations exposure by creating a cover story that appeals to the universal need to help people.
  6. Create vested support groups by distributing concentrated benefits and/or entitlements to these special interests, while distributing the costs broadly to one’s political opponents.
  7. Demonize the truth tellers who have the temerity to say, “The emperor has no clothes.”

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