Bureaucrats are choking growth and society

The number of bureaucrats hanging off productive enterprises is choking growth and society. For example, this graph shows the rise of bureaucracy in US health care (“physicians” are “doctors”), from Antony Davies via Isaac Morehouse:


A similar thing happened in universities and schools over the same period. Furthermore, the administrators determine who gets to do what and what everyone gets paid, and over the decades the administrators end up with most of the high-paying and secure jobs while not doing the actual work the organization is charged with doing. So the people who do the actual work end up being bossed around and feeling less appreciated.

Naturally the cost of delivering services to the customer goes way up, to pay for all those bureaucrats. So of course this bureaucratic sclerosis tends to occur mainly in public institutions, or in private industry that is protected from competition.

Australia’s scientific body, the CSIRO, is a case in point. Once it was a body entirely staffed by scientists and a few secretaries, and it was well respected. Over time more full time administrators got hired, especially from the 1980s. Soon administrators ran the place, more numerous than actual scientists, and getting the bulk of the well paid positions. Power shifted. Scientists are now paid little considering they have PhDs, and they have short, insecure tenure (many tradesmen earn more with better job security). The head of the CSIRO before the current one was even a merchant banker, with no pretense that a science background mattered. Science? Any fool can do “science.” CSIRO’s reputation has suffered greatly, regarded both as research-for-hire and the employer of last resort if you are a scientist.