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Bureaucracy

Definition: A system where important decisions are taken by state officials rather than by elected representatives.
Number of Quotes: 20

A memorandum is written not to inform the reader but to protect the writer.
Dean Acheson

Poor fellow, he suffers from files.
Aneurin Bevan

Bureaucracy is the epoxy that greases the wheels of progress.
James Boren

Guidelines for bureaucrats: (1) When in charge, ponder. (2) When in trouble, delegate. (3) When in doubt, mumble.
James Boren

The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday - but never jam today.
Lewis Carroll

Administrative purpose usually outruns the facts. Indeed the administrative official's ardor for facts usually begins when he wants to change the facts!
Mary Parker Follett

The real problem for any government coming to power is to control the civil servants. They will all explain why it is quite impossible to do things other than the way they are currently done.
Milton Friedman

What is a committee? A group of the unwilling, picked from the unfit, to do the unnecessary.
Richard Harkness

There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind ... Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn't, but if he was sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn't have to; but if he didn't want to he was sane and had to.
Joseph Heller

A committee is a thing which takes a week to do what one good man can do in an hour.
Elbert Hubbard

We have a very simple, clear organization. It's very easy to know who has authority for what, who has responsibility for what. There's no politics about it, they're virtually politics-free organizations.
Steve Jobs

Officials are highly educated but one-sided; in his own department an official can grasp whole trains of thought from a single word, but let him have something from another department explained to him ... he won't understand a word of it.
Franz Kafka

It is a characteristic of committee discussions and decisions that every member has a vivid recollection of them and that every member's recollection differs violently from every other member's recollection.
Jonathan Lynn

An administrator in a bureaucratic world is a man who can feel big by merging his non-entity with an abstraction. A real person in touch with real things inspires terror in him.
Marshall McLuhan

Generally, large companies are so inwardly directed that staff memorandums about growing bureaucracy get more attention than the dwindling competitive advantage of being big in the first place. David, who has a life, needn't use a slingshot. Goliath, who doesn't, is too busy reading office memos.
Nicholas Negroponte

Bureaucratic time ... slower than geologic time but more expensive than time spent with Madame Claude's girls in Paris.
P. J. O'Rourke

Government proposes, bureaucracy disposes. And the bureaucracy must dispose of government proposals by dumping them on us.
P. J. O'Rourke

I come from an environment where, if you see a snake, you kill it. At General Motors, if you see a snake, the first thing you do is hire a consultant on snakes.
Ross Perot

In a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence ... in time every post tends to be occupied by an employee who is incompetent to carry out its duties ... Work is accomplished by those employees who have not yet reached their level of incompetence.
Laurence J. Peter

However many people complain about the red tape, it would be sheer illusion to think for a moment that continuous administrative work can be carried out except by means of officials working in offices ... The choice is only that between bureaucracy and dilettantism in the field of administration.
Max Weber

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