Letter to the editor
Following is a response to an FCW.com poll question that asked: "Do you feel that e-government programs are less a priority in your agency?"
Define priority. If one means that resources have been allocated, positions filled and dollars spent, then it's a priority. Whether the right thing is being done for the right reason is a different question.
We are in an age when managers are exclusively engaged in self-aggrandizement, and when public employees aren't any less productive than their private counterparts — they just aren't being directed to do the right things.
As corrupt as it may be, accountability and responsibility are lost in the noise of excessive ineffectiveness. A contemptible air of plausible deniability now exists, as seen in the managing of the American Indian trust fund.
Everything's political, not technical, and it's not a question of business acumen. It's a perversion where the system is inherently monopolistic and being tasked to change from the inside.
It's a pervasive downward spiral, rich in both paradox and irony, and there is no end in sight. With the absence external corrective forces, there is no self-adjusting mechanism. During good times and bad, the system carries on. Guided neither by profit nor excellence, one can expect — at best — competence. It takes a lot of something to strive for and accept just mediocrity.
Do (I) feel that e-government programs are less a priority in (my) agency? It's a more a question of motive not motivation.
Jim Mauroff Federal Aviation Administration