Decentralization for What?

"Decentralization for What?" The Public Interest, Spring 1968.


I began this essay by suggesting that, at this time and this place, bureaucratic nightmares might not be the worst imaginable nightmares. I also believe that, if by some miracle these bureaucracies did not now exist, we should have to invent them, as an indispensable mechanism of racial integration. Come to think of it, if we did invent them, and gave them a fancy over-all title (Office for Professional Equality?) , we should probably flatter ourselves on having taken a great stride forward to the Great Society. Decentralizing these bureaucracies remains a valid and important long-term objective. But in these times, under these circumstances, it is precisely the wrong objective.

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