Big savings from federal agencies that don’t work


To the Editor:

At this time our Congress is working to find ways to reduce federal spending, so that government spending is not so much more than the government’s income.

Let’s look at some easy ways to reduce federal spending, by looking at whole federal departments and what they are supposed to do.

The Department of Energy is one. If you go to their website, they show what their goals were to be: 1) transform our nation’s energy into clean energy, and 2) encourage scientific and engineering research to accomplish this.

These are noble goals, but why does the government need to encourage these goals? Let us look at a different kind of technology: computers. Was there a federal agency ensuring that personal computers got developed, became smaller, faster, and cost-efficient? No, private businesses did this all by themselves.We all want cleaner, more efficient energy. But is wanting it, or spending more federal money to develop it, going to make it happen?

The Department of Energy has been around since 1977. Has energy become better in any way in the 34 years since then? If photovoltaic cells or windmills are good alternative ways to produce energy, private investors will see the merit and create ways to make these energy systems work. We don’t need the Department of Energy to do this for us. Let the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which preceded the Department of Energy, resume its mandate to regulate the nuclear power industry, and let’s scrap the rest of the Department of Energy.

How about the Department of Education? It’s been around since 1979. For those that graduated from high school and college before this date: Do you believe American education is better now than when we went to school? The federal government is too far from the problem to do any good in education. Let’s abolish the Department of Education and let the states solve the problems of education: They know what the problems are and can do something about it.

Finally, let’s look at the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This cabinet position was created in 1965. Here is HUD’s mission statement: “HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities, and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business.” Can you see this department doing anything to assist Dukes County in any of these ways?

I’m sorry, but I see a lot of waste going on in Washington. We could have a much more efficient federal government. Let’s help our federal representatives to see how easy it could be to reduce the waste of our government.

Jim OsbornVineyard Haven

The writer is a staff member of the production department of The Times.