- External Security sub-divided into two categories: diplomacy and defense. This function deals with external challenges and opportunities, that is, "foreign policies" and all of the resources, processes, and tools for successfully meeting the challenges and opportunities. It would encompass the current Department of Defense, Department of State, and Department of Veterans Affairs.
- Internal Security (Law enforcement). This function deals with ensuring the safety of US citizens and organizations within the borders of the United States. This function would encompass The Department of Justice, The Department of Homeland Security (minus the intelligence gathering functions), The Transportation Security Administration, DEA, customs, and others. In fact, this organization may be sub-divided into border security and internal law enforcement.
- Intelligence Gathering function's mission is understanding the goals, objectives, strategies and tactics of competitors and allies in the global environment. This function would encompass the CIA, the NRO, the NSA, and others.
In point of fact, setting standards reduces the cost to economic organizations, that is, it creates value. For example, setting a standard gauge for railroads greatly reduced the need to "trans-ship" between rail lines as was done before the Civil War in the United States--thus reducing the cost and creating capacity value. Some of this added value should pay for the setting, enforcing, and otherwise maintaining these laws and standards. That is the real reason for taxes. Beyond that, these taxes can pay for a significant portion of what I termed the Infrastructure (discussed next).
The Standards Department (function) is at the intersection of Policy Management and many technical, financial, and socio-cultural disciplines. Traditionally, each of the regulatory functions has been grouped with the federal organization that is supporting the functional discipline. Whereas in this organizational structure, departments that currently have both regulatory and mission-based functions, the regulatory functions would be spilt between the Standards Department and the Mission-based function to the Infrastructure Department to ensure minimum conflict of interest.
One of the mission statements embedded in the vision statement for the United States (the Preamble to the US Constitution) is to "promote the general welfare". This mission statement for "general welfare" is "squishy", that is, there is no clear definition for this requirement--it's wide open to interpretation--and therefore, there is no way to measure when the US Federal Government is achieving this mission.
Consequently, politicians have interpreted the mission of Infrastructure to suite their constituency. Prior to the first term of Franklin D. Roosevelt, the "general welfare", this term was interpreted in a fairly narrow sense. However, Roosevelt greatly broaden the definition to include a "safety net". President Johnson extended it much, much further through "entitlement". These lost sight of the fact that the infrastructure government supports is paid out of the value created by the use of standards (as briefly discussed above). Taxing beyond that value to additional "benefits" for the "public good" is risky in that it can destroy the economic engine. While improvement in the physical infrastructure and skill base (education) can be considered as real governmental investment, many of the entitlements are really expensive non-value added items. Even though they help the people they serve, if they bring the economy to a near halt, are they worth it? I will write more about this connundrum in future posts--and it is the most difficult question in government.
The Infrastructure Department (function) encompasses Department of Interior, The Department of Education, The Department of Housing and Urban Development, The Department of Energy, the Social Security Administration, NIH, NASA, NSF, The Postal Service (which is mandated by the Constitution), and many more.
In addition to the three major functions of the executive branch there are some "headquarters" control functions that the executive branch of US Federal Government requires to operate. These functions include strategic planning, resource management, mission alignment, and auditing functions. This would encompass functions like OMB and IRS (part of resource management), and others.
In nature there are many examples of the swarming behavior within groups. Ants, bees, and wolf packs are prime examples. Wolf Packs tend to work separately to identify the weakest member of a herd, then swarm to kill the animal. Consequently, while one wolf would stand little chance of killing a bull elk, there is almost a guarantee that a pack will. Likewise, the white blood cells in an animal will swarm to fight an infection.
This same tactic should be used by the executive branch of the US Governement for efforts supporting a major strategy or mission change. The executive branch would create tigger teams, or task forces. If the effort is sufficiently important, the team lead could have a seat at the cabinet table for the duration of the project as an advisor, or a member--but only for a limited period.