Daniel W. Drezner

The virtues of Commerce

Props to my colleague David Rothkopf for this concise description of the Department of Commerce:  The Commerce Department is a bureaucratic hodge-podge held together by those old Washington stand-bys of inertia, habit, and the self-interests of Congressional appropriators. Oh, and neglect. And ignorance. Not only do most Americans not know what the Commerce Department does ...

Props to my colleague David Rothkopf for this concise description of the Department of Commerce: 

The Commerce Department is a bureaucratic hodge-podge held together by those old Washington stand-bys of inertia, habit, and the self-interests of Congressional appropriators. Oh, and neglect. And ignorance. Not only do most Americans not know what the Commerce Department does — its various missions are so diffuse most people who work there don’t know all that it does.

David is being modest, however.  As near as I can figure, the Commerce Department does perform one task exceptionally well — it allow people to step up from foreign policy middleweights to heavyweights. 

Prior to being at Commerce, these people are working in the think tank trenches struggling to get their op-eds placed in the Washington Post.  After being at Commerce, these people are jetting to Davos, writing august tomes for Knopf, pulling down medium five figures for speeches, popping up on Sunday morning talk shows, and becoming Deans at the Yale School of Management.   

Not that I’m bitter about this or anything. 

 Twitter: @dandrezner

Trending Now Sponsored Links by Taboola

By Taboola

More from Foreign Policy

By Taboola