If there is one word that sticks out, its “competitiveness.” I can’t tell you how many times I heard it (I’m sure someone, somewhere did the math), and it carried many forms. I was glad to see some discussion of a global marketplace and trade without a reference to jobs going overseas. Kudos for callling on Congress to accept your budget with 140 program cuts saving $14 billion – no doubt a result of the President’s Performance Assessment Rating Tool — which Congress has ignored each of the last four years. The numbers would have actually added up to something if Congress followed the recommendations, however, well we know the end of the story. What was missing, however, was opening up federal jobs to competition from the private sector to drive efficiencies and deliver savings.
Geoffrey Segal is the director of privatization and government reform at Reason Foundation, a nonprofit think tank advancing free minds and free markets. He is also editor of Reason's Privatization Watch.