The spellbinding mock history of the Department of Agriculture's most secretive and vital agency.
The little-known USDA Agency of Invasive Species—founded by President and humble peanut farmer Jimmy Carter—would like to reassure you that they rank among the most effective and cost-efficient offices within the sprawling federal bureaucracy. For decades, under Administrative Director Adam Humphrey and his “strategic disengagement” approach, the Agency has epitomized vigilance against the clear and present danger of noxious weeds. Humphrey’s record of triumphant inertia faces only two obstacles. The first is reality; the second is the loud critic who dares to question the magic behind the Agency’s success: Nicholas Bader. Formerly known as President Reagan’s “bloody right hand,” Bader is on an obsessive quest to trim the fat from the federal budget.
Full of oddball characters who shed light on the daily operations of Beltway minions, The Weed Agency showcases a world in which federal budgets balloon every year, where a career can be built upon the skill of rationalizing astronomical expenses, and where the word "accountability" sends roars of laughter through DC office buildings. That’s life inside the federal Agency of Invasive Species… and it may sound suspiciously similar to your reality.
National Review columnist Geraghty offers a satire of bureaucratic life in the nation's capital. Readers meet a cast of Washington players whose first interest is in creation, survival, and aggressive expansion of the obscure USDA Agency of Invasive Species, founded by President Jimmy Carter. No, this book has nothing to do with marijuana. The underlying premise, as the author explains, is that "gargantuan, ever-growing, ever-less-accountable, impossible-to-uproot federal bureaucracy is actually the sleeper issue of our time. It's at the heart of the conservative critique of modern government." Some imagined encounters with a zany Newt Gingrich, teacher-hero Caleb Gunning Lyon, and a posturing Darrell Issa are hilarious. Geraghty thinks of the book as a cautionary tale of federal expansion and entropy. Regarding talented newcomers with new ideas, he writes: "no one is really interested in utilizing their energy, their drive, their enthusiasm." Instead, the status quo is "the Permanent Bureaucracy vs. Everyone Else." Political animals suspicious of statism will enjoy this book, while fearing for the future of government.