This book exposes the reality that our twentieth-century government is no match for twenty-first-century problems and proposes a solution.
In this timely and compelling book, Donald F. Kettl demonstrates how the process of governance has fallen out of sync with the problems the government is trying to solve. Pick almost any recent domestic concern—waging a war, protecting our food supply and borders, providing health-care coverage for an aging population or relief after a devastating hurricane—and the standard response is to outsource most of the core tasks to thousands of independent contractors. The government foots the bill, but this strategy provides neither leadership nor accountability. Without anyone in charge, who can formulate innovative solutions to the increasingly complex problems the government faces? Kettl has answers, explaining with precision and clarity how a twenty-first century government must function in order to provide real solutions to the policy problems that face the United States.