POLB50 Lecture 8: November 1 2012.
Canadian Politics: Part 7: Bureaucracy
Bureaucracy is impartial: the bureaucracy must give the will of the government no matter what
party gets elected.
How do we get impartial? This system is made by the independent public commission which has
the basis of merit rather than patronage. They establish criteria’s to meet the job.
Why do we have this system? Everything is rule basis and rigid. How do we get a democratic
control in the state? We enact a rigid rule basis. Politicians steer while bureaucrats row the
boat. The big desions are made by us and implemented by our bureaucrats
There could be conflict of interest between rowing (non-political but want to pursue politics)
and steering (politician).
Problems with the model: Firstly, Inconsistence what citizens demand in any kind of service
bases. Ex. When you have problem with the telephone company, you talk to a low level
employee to solve your telephone problems. That low level employee has to talk to his boss to
their other boss and so forth. This is not efficient. Citizens want flexibility and efficiency.
Line Departments refers to organization where the top of the system is the cabinet ministers.
They are individually responsible and are appointed by the prime minister. Ex. Immigration,
health Canada etc. Second which are the most senior cabinet minister is a deputy minister