Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Cue Card Libertarianism: PARKINSON'S LAW

Formulated by C. Northcote Parkinson in his book of the same name, Parkinson's Law claims to explain and quantify the inexorable tendency of bureaucracy to expand, with the expansion powered by two inexorable forces:
1. An official wants to multiply subordinates, not rivals.
2. Officials make work for each other.
As a result, “any government bureaucracy will grow at between 5.17 and 6.56 per cent, irrespective of any variation in the amount of work (if any) to be done.”

Parkinson's bureaucrats lack imagination. Since 1999, New Zealand's bureaucracy has grown at more than three times this rate, helping to increase annual govt spending by more than $20 billion more than the figure in 1999.

As Phil Rennie from the Center for Independent Studies has shown, that spending binge is greater even than a comparable blow-out under Muldoon's Prime Ministerial reign, and then as now the deluge of taxpayers' money bought no improvement at all in government services.

This is part of a continuing series explaining the concepts and terms used by New Zealand's libertarians, originally published in The Free Radical in 1993. The 'Introduction' to the series is here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

1. Commenters are welcome and invited.
2. All comments are moderated. Off-topic grandstanding, spam, and gibberish will be ignored. Tu quoque will be moderated.
3. Read the post before you comment. Challenge facts, but don't simply ignore them.
4. Use a name. If it's important enough to say, it's important enough to put a name to.
5. Above all: Act with honour. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.