Obama Consolidating Business-Promotion Agencies

A blog about business and economics.
Jan. 13 2012 1:42 PM

Obama Consolidating Business-Promotion Agencies

I have a passion for not-very-consequential government reorganization schemes, so I was glad to see the president announce one today. Specifically, he's fed up with the fact that "currently, there are six major departments and agencies that focus primarily on business and trade in the federal government." In response, he wants to consolidate the Small Business Administration, the US Trade Representative, the Export-Import Bank, the US Trade and Development Agency, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation with what they're calling the Commerce Department's "core business and trade functions" (which I think means not the Census Bureau) into a single "into one department, with one website, one phone number, one mission: helping American businesses succeed."

This is not, in truth, that big a deal but it's probably a good idea that should, at a minimum, make it easier for people to know where to go for what.

Advertisement

My personal pet reorganization project has to do with consolidating the DEA, the FBI, the Secret Service, and possibly a few other federal policing agencies into one big law enforcement unit. That way you wouldn't have this weird constituency for over-investment in the drug war, artificial separation between counterfeiting and other aspects of organized crime, etc. It's not as on message regarding the economic recovery, but possibly more consequential.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.

TODAY IN SLATE

Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore

And schools are getting worried.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

The XX Factor

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.

Politics

Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

Why a Sketch of Chelsea Manning Is Stirring Up Controversy

How Worried Should Poland, the Baltic States, and Georgia Be About a Russian Invasion?

Trending News Channel
Sept. 19 2014 1:11 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 20 2014 11:13 AM -30-
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
  Life
Quora
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 21 2014 12:43 PM Watch Rachel Dratch and Tina Fey Do a Second City Sketch in 1997
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 21 2014 8:00 AM An Astronaut’s Guided Video Tour of Earth
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.