Mismanaging America The Rise of the Anti-Analytic Presidency Synopsis
Is the federal government inept? Walter Williams says yes. Thanks to Ronald Reagan's ill-conceived cutbacks, reliable policy advice is no longer available to the president. The result has been the S&L bailout, the HUD scandal - mismanagement on an unprecedented scale. In this book Willims aims to show how Reagan, the first truly anti-analytic president, decimated the ranks of policy analysts and special information experts in the name of trimming back big government. Williams sets the stage and provides programme notes that explain both the crucial role of advisors and policy analysts in presidential policy making and where the system has gone wrong. Governments succeed or fail on information, analysis, and advice , Williams writes, but the system that provides our information analysis has been gutted . In Mismanaging America he not only reveals the linkage between the US ailing policy process and the anaemic, inept government that created the S&L and HUD scandals, but proposes urgently needed reforms to fight America's decline.
Mismanaging America The Rise of the Anti-Analytic Presidency Press Reviews
This is an incisive original analysis of an important issue. --Fred I. Greenstein, author of Evolution of the Modern Presidency The issues examined here--the emergence of technically trained, professional policy advisers, the proper role of such advisers, and the consequences of presidential failure to seek and use such advisers effectively--are of major importance to American governance. Others have examined pieces of the puzzle, but until now no one has explored it in this depth, using the methodology of repeated confidential--and very candid--interviews with actual participants in the policy process. --Harry S. Havens, author of The Evolution of the General Accounting Office A forceful response to those scholars who question the capacity of presidents to be organizational managers or policy analysts. --Peri E. Arnold, author of Making the Managerial Presidency This book introduces policy analysis as a significant, but hitherto ignored, variable in the debate about presidential staffing. . . . Williams's 'guiding propositions' for structuring and staffing the Executive Office of the President represent the most detailed and thoughtful blueprint for the role and function of the presidential staff since Brownlow. --John Hart, author of The Presidential Branch, writing in Policy Currents An invaluable contribution to the study of the presidency. . . . Williams's critique of President Reagan--whom he labels an anti-analytic president--is devastating. --John W. Sloan, author of Eisenhower and the Management of Prosperity What is unique to Williams's analysis is that he brings together examples of mismanagement during the Reagan years and connects that administration's failures to a larger pattern--the increasing tendency of recent presidents to be either 'anti-government' or 'anti-bureaucracy' and thus insufficiently attentive to the organizational and analytical dimensions of policy-making. --American Review of Public Administration