In my quest to downsize the government, I’ve been looking at the Department of Labor budget recently. My vision is to cut federal spending to create a freer and more prosperous society. James Madison’s vision was for a federal government of “few and defined” powers.
I’ve discovered that the Secretary of Labor, Hilda Solis, has a different vision. In her budgets, on her speaking podiums, and in her strategic plans, she says that her “vision” for federal action is “Good Jobs for Everyone!”
She doesn’t just want open labor markets so that people can pursue their own careers. No, she wants the 17,000 administrators in her department to find a good job for every single American. “Good Jobs for Everyone . . . will guide everything we do here at the department,” she says.
That’s lovely, but where does she get the legal authority for it? Article 1, Section 8 in the Constitution allows the federal government to coin money, establish a patent system, and maintain a navy, but it doesn’t say anything about “good jobs for everyone.”
I suppose worrying about constitutional authority is passé. Political leaders today want to think big. So in the spirit of Secretary Solis, here are some ideas for other cabinet secretaries needing a new and exciting vision:
- Secretary of Agriculture: Soaring crop prices for all farmers!
- Secretary of Commerce: Huge profits for every business!
- Secretary of Defense: More wars and fat contracts for all weapons makers!
- Secretary of Education: Straight As for all students!
- Secretary of Energy: Windmills for every family!
- Secretary of Health and Human Services: Huge portions but slim waists for all!
- Secretary of Housing: Granite countertops and Jacuzzis for every home!
- Secretary of Justice: Lawsuits for all accidents!
- Secretary of Transportation: High-speed subway trains for every village!
- Secretary of the Treasury: More IRS agents because someone has to pay for all this!