Government by Bureaucrats Or Congress Is Irrelevant
Article 1, section 1 of the constitution reads, ”All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a
Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” That is
the way our constitution starts and it somehow seems important that this is the very first statement of the
constitution. Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution states, “Congress shall have the Power… To make
For many years those two statements were considered to be a limitation upon any other departments or
agencies and prevented any one else from passing laws. The reason that all of the agencies and
departments that have been created by our Congress can function as independent governments
exercising the functions of the executive, legislative and judicial is because of the Whitman v. American
Trucking Assoc. Inc ruling from the Supreme Court. That ruling empowered agencies within our federal
government to issue rules that had the effect of laws and then determine if the laws are being met
(judging) and then assessing fines or judgments.
Now all that these agencies need to do is to write rules and have them published in the Federal Register
(which grows by around 77,000 pages each year) and with that legislative power they also can judge and
exercise the functions of the executive branch of government.
Our presidents have also assumed legislative powers through the use of Executive Orders and “signing
statements” and so our Congress has given up much of its powers and turned those powers over to
Now our unelected bureaucrats can exercise the legislative power that was originally given to the
Congress. Those unelected bureaucrats can not be removed for incompetence by the electorate and so
we now have a different government than was given to us by our constitution.
One of our founding fathers, James Madison, in The Federalist No. 47, states,
“The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of
one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the
very definition of tyranny.”
And indeed there are many instances which will be cited hereafter where that is the case. Our
bureaucrats now make more laws than our Congress and are not responsible to our citizens for their
actions. They also exercise judicial and executive responsibilities as well. We are being governed by
those bureaucrats and that is much of the reason for our problems.
We have several departments and over 300 agencies that write laws. . Congress does not review them,
discuss or debate them nor vote on them. We have laws written by bureaucrats which are as “legal” as
any laws passed by Congress. In addition, those bureaucrats can judge whether their rules are being
followed and assess fines and penalties to those they believe are not in compliance. Those fined are
permitted to sue to reverse the rulings. Thus, our citizens and businesses are forced to fight against the
government rules issued by these bureaucrats.
During the Bush Administration the Federal Register has climbed by more than 10,000 pages bringing
the total to over 78,000 pages. The number of regulatory personnel has increased by 66,000 and that
total number is now 241,000. Much to our sorrow they are working and writing laws that interfere with
our lives and freedoms. A recent report on the pay of the government employees would lead us to
calculate that those additional bureaucrats added around $66 billion to the government’s payroll and
there would naturally be additional offices, desks, phones and insurance for each of them. Do you really
believe that the value they added to our country is worth that? In fact, they probably do more harm than
They add tremendous amounts to our government expenses and also huge amounts to the costs of our
businesses. In many cases their removal would be appropriate and in other cases the functions they
perform and regulate should be done by the states for each state is somewhat different from the others.