Government Reform

The GAO's Transition Wishlist


The Government Accountability Office has released its list of "urgent policy concerns…[that] are critical and time sensitive and require prioritized federal action." The list, presumably in descending order of importance is as follows: 

    • oversight of financial institutions and markets,
    • U.S. efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan,
    • protecting the homeland,
    • undisciplined defense spending,
    • improving the U.S. image abroad,
    • finalizing plans for the 2010 Census,
    • caring for service members,
    • preparing for public health emergencies,
    • revamping oversight of food safety,
    • restructuring the approach to surface transportation,
    • retirement of the Space Shuttle,
    • ensuring an effective transition to digital TV, and
    • rebuilding military readiness.

More information here.

I can follow the GAO, which is absolutely one of the most useful resources for journalists and small-government devotees of all professions, through first four. But then I think they start getting a bit lost in the weeds (and not simply because caring for service members and rebuilding military readiness should probably be folded into numbers two through four into a single bullet point about totally revamping about half of all discretionary government spending). I just don't see how the retirement of the Space Shuttle makes it onto the list. Can't we just ignore it until it goes away?