The White House

in The People's Agents and the Battle to Protect the American Public

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2010 | ISBN: 9780226772028
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226772042 | DOI:
The White House

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This chapter argues that presidents can no longer afford to approach the civil service with suspicion and disdain. Progressive presidents are especially ill served by these dynamics because they are a major factor in demoralizing the civil service, slowing regulation, and making agencies dysfunctional. It explains why the trends toward centralization and politicization cause dysfunction by conflicting with the statutory structure of laws to protect the public health, worker safety, and the environment and by jeopardizing the integrity of policy making in those arenas. It concludes with a critique of the “unitary executive” theory, which is often invoked to justify centralization.

Keywords: civil service; presidents; centralization; politicization; public health; worker safety; environment; policy making; unitary executive theory

Chapter.  9369 words. 

Subjects: Environment and Energy Law

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