Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Graduate School

While touring the information booths in the exhibit hall of the National Conference of State Legislatures annual meeting in Boston last week I stopped by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Graduate School booth. The Graduate School describes itself as follows:

Welcome to the Graduate School, USDA! We are a non-appropriated fund instrumentality (NAFI) government entity created 85 years ago by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide adult continuing education. Our mission is to develop people and to make government more efficient and effective.

Now first of all -- what the hell is an NAFI and more importantly how many of these "government entities" have been created? Beyond that though let me tell you about my conversation at the Graduate School's information booth. I specifically asked them if they teach any rural studies/agriculture courses since of course the Graduate School is a function of the U.S. Department of AGRICULTURE (USDA) !!! As it turns out the Graduate School teaches ZERO agriculture courses.

If the USDA truly wanted to "make government more efficient and effective" then they would start with their own department by first dissolving the Graduate School for numerous reasons including:

  • They don't teach agriculture courses.
  • Since we also have a US Department of EDUCATION (USDE) perhaps the USDE should provide this "educational function" known as the Graduate School although I want the USDE dissolved with its operating budget divided among the fifty state governments in a clear victory for states' rights.
  • If any government entity wants people to learn how to "make government more efficient and effective" than they should simply meet with my friends at Citizens Against Government Waste (www.cagw.org) and Reason Foundation (www.reason.org)

But enough of the heavy stuff in terms of promoting the need for smaller government -- let me end this posting with a joke:

JOKE: "Two USDA bureaucrats are having lunch and one of the bureaucrats starts weeping. His colleague then leans over to ask, 'what is bothering you today............?' to which the first bureaucrat replied, 'My farmer died today..........."

The government tree needs some pruning.


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