The tumor: How the bureaucratic state threatens our republic

By WND Guest Columnist

By Ed Thompson

In the movie Kindergarten Cop, Arnold Schwarzenegger stands in front a classroom of wild kids and says he has a headache. A kid says, “Maybe it’s a tumor.” And Arnold, in his rich Austrian accent says, “It’s not a tumor.”

Well, I’m here to tell you, that when it comes to the headache caused by the bloated federal government, it is a tumor. A tumor feeding on the entire country.

Even a paper from the Volcker Alliance, a left wing non-profit dedicated to expanding the federal government, had this to say in 2017: “Although Washington’s blended workforce has an imperative role in the nation’s success, it may have grown so large and poorly sorted that it has become a threat to the very liberty it protects. With 7 to 9 million employees, the federal government’s blended workforce may have become too complicated and codependent to control. Most importantly, it may have become so complex that Congress and the president simply cannot know whether this blended workforce puts the right employees in the right place at the right price with the highest performance and fullest accountability.”

In other words, it’s an out-of-control monstrosity. And that’s coming from someone who wants to expand government power.

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Under the Constitution, the president has power to enforce the nation’s laws, command the army and navy, veto laws passed by Congress, protect our borders and oversee relations with foreign nations. In 1790, President George Washington’s administration had only three departments: State, Treasury, and War. There were other offices, too, such as the Office of the Attorney General, who is the lead lawyer for the federal government. But Washington’s administration employed less than 150 people at the time.

As of 2005, the executive branch contained fifteen departments, hundreds of agencies and offices, and many regulatory commissions, employing a total of about 2.7 million people altogether. Departments are offices with responsibility for large areas of the federal government. The fifteen departments are: Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health & Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing & Urban Development, Interior, Justice, Labor, State, Transportation, Treasury, and Veterans Affairs.

Then there are agencies. Agencies are offices that handle specific areas of government, such as the American Battle Monuments Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Federal Aviation Administration. The Federal Aviation Administration, for example, regulates airlines and air traffic in the United States and investigates aircraft accidents. Regulatory commissions are offices that regulate a particular area of the economy. Examples include the Food and Drug Administration, which regulates food and drug safety, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which regulates workplace safety. Regulatory commissions wield tremendous power in their areas of expertise. The FDA, for example, has the final say on what drugs are allowed to reach the shelves of America’s pharmacies and drugstores. There is even an agency whose job is just to keep track of all the agencies. They are failing miserably, by the way.

But the list of federal employees is just the tip of a very large iceberg. For every direct federal employee, there are approximately 10 outside people paid and controlled by the government. And when the bureaucrats realized that outside NGOs could do all the things they were not allowed to do, like censoring speech, those numbers exploded like metastasizing cancer.

Federal Laws
According to best estimates – and estimates are all we have – there are about 4,500 federal crimes in the United States Code, and more than 300,000 federal crimes dispersed throughout federal regulations. The Department of Justice once tried to count the number of federal crimes and failed, ultimately throwing up its hands in frustration and coming up with only a rough estimate.

Imagine, they couldn’t even count them, much less read them all. The truth is that no citizen can know how many federal crimes are out there, all the conduct that those crimes forbid, or even how to find the answers to those questions.

The odds are that every American on any given day is violating at least three federal crime statutes. “Show me the man and I’ll show you the crime.” So said Lavrentiy Beria, Joseph Stalin’s ruthless secret police chief, in the heyday of Soviet oppression. Welcome to Amerika today.

Another byproduct of the growing federal crime list is rampant double jeopardy. If you can’t convict someone at state level, just look through the big book of crimes and you can surely find a federal crime statute to retry them for the same act. Maybe two or three. “Show me the man and I’ll show you the crime” should be the motto of the current DOJ. Just ask Donald Trump.

Much of our executive branch works just like a tumor does, walling itself from the rest of the organism. There are now 17 intelligence agencies that we know of. Many of them are so secret that even the president and Congress don’t know what they are doing. Popular answers to Congressional oversight committees include “I don’t know, not that I’m aware, I can’t recall, that’s classified, and I can’t talk” – about that because it is part of an ongoing investigation. And revealing hidden government crimes means you will now live in Russia or a U.K. prison. Ask Edward Snowden or Julian Assange. So the chances are that what we don’t know will stay that way.

People always say we have to have a big federal government now because there are so many more people now. Let’s do some math. In 1800 there were 200 people in the executive branch. The population of the U.S. was 5 million. Today it is over 300 million. That is 60 times bigger. So we take 200 x 60 and get 12,000. Wait, that can’t be right. That’s not fair, you say. There is a lot more to do now. Okay let’s say there’s ten times as much to do – 12,000 x 10. That is still only 120,000 people. But we have 2.7 million and another 20 million in NGOs all working for the federal government.

See what I mean? Tumor.

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