We published an article on June 3 in which we explained how bureaucracies are fundamentally flawed:
Unlike a business, a bureaucracy is not directly funded by the people it purports to serve. The Virginia DMV, for example, doesn’t “earn” more or less money based on how many people walk through its doors and utilize its services.
Thus, bureaucrats have very little incentive to produce a good product or service, or manage their funds responsibly. This means that no matter how well a bureaucracy is managed, it will always tend towards corruption and poor service.
The most recent IRS scandal in which that austere institution somehow lost two years’ worth of emails perfectly exemplifies such corruption and incompetence.
For those who aren’t familiar with the story, the IRS claims to have lost thousands of emails pertaining to the investigation into the agency’s targeting of Tea Party organizations and other groups. They say the emails were lost when former agency manager Lois Lerner’s hard drive crashed. They’ve been searching for the emails on other IRS employees’ computers, but it’s difficult to know.
Only two conclusions can be drawn from this fiasco, both of which are equally condemning and equally predictable.