Crisis Management in the Age of Bureaucrats

A crisis is ongoing. A European country is currently under occupation by an expansionist Russian tyranny with designs on gradually reestablishing the Soviet empire. This country has clearly become the front and focal point in a war between an increasingly totalitarian regime — which, lest we forget, is led by a former apparatchik of the Soviet Union itself, a man who has frequently shown himself to be utterly without scruples or the capacity for remorse regarding the use of brutally uncivilized tactics for suppressing populations. And the only hope for salvaging the small nation seeking to survive and defend itself against this Russian tyrant’s aggression, which in turn means the only hope of summarily rejecting his advances against the civilized West, is for the nations of the West to undermine Vladimir Putin’s actions right now.

And the men and woman charged with carrying out this most delicate but essential task — essential if Western civilization is worth defending, at any rate — are bureaucrats. Diplomats, speechwriters, policy negotiators, glorified desk jockeys. The result, naturally, is what we see: A bizarre, almost comical disjunction between the life-and-death urgency of real events and the quibbling policy parsing of the office workers. A bureaucrat, no matter how high and mighty his job title, is essentially a person whose natural and well-trained response to all new information is to say to himself, with decisive efficiency, “I shall put this file on the right hand corner of my desk. When I have accumulated ten of these files, I shall move them over to the left hand side.”

Lord help us.

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