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The "Necessary and Proper Clause," formally drafted as Clause 18 of Article 1 of the U.S. Constitution and also known as the elastic clause, is one of the most powerful and important clauses in the Constitution. Clauses 1–17 of Article 1 enumerate all of the powers that the government has over the legislation of the country. Clause 18 gives Congress the ability to create structures organizing the government, and to write new legislation to support the explicit powers enumerated in Clauses 1–17.
Article I, Section 8, Clause 18 allows the Government of the United States to:
"make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this constitution."
The definitions of "necessary," "proper," and "carrying into execution" have all been debated since the words were written during the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787. There is a strong possibility that it was kept purposefully vague.
In general, the main purpose of this "elastic" clause, also known as the "sweeping" or "general clause," is to give Congress the flexibility to get the other 17 enumerated powers achieved. Congress is limited in its power over the American people to only those powers specifically written into the Constitution, such as determine who can be a citizen, collect taxes, establish post offices, and set up a judiciary. The existence of that list of powers implies that Congress can make laws necessary to ensure that those powers can be carried out. Clause 18 makes that explicit.
For example, the government could not collect taxes, which power is enumerated as Clause 1 in Article 1, Section 8, without passing a law to create a tax-collecting agency, which is not enumerated. Clause 18 has been used for all sorts of federal actions including requiring integration in the states—for instance, whether a National Bank can be created (implied in Clause 2), to Obamacare and the ability of states to legalize the growing and distribution of marijuana (both Clause 3).
In addition, the elastic clause allows the Congress to create the hierarchical structure to enact the other 17 clauses: to build a lower court (Clause 9), to set up an organized militia (Clause 15), and to organize a post office distribution method (Clause 7).
originally posted by: Havamal
a reply to: Edumakated
I have personally testified on several occasion to the House Ways and Means committee on behalf of the Agency I worked for at the time. Mostly it was about cost, schedule, and scope for large projects. What do you mean that there is no oversight? Do not elected federal representatives count as "accountability?"
Don’t confuse bureaucracy and military. We can have a good defensive ability without infinite agencies growing like a cancer killing our nation.
originally posted by: Blue Shift
Everybody thinks government is too big until they get robbed or China starts talking tough.
When have you ever seen government audit an agency, state the agency is ineffective, and then shut said agency down?
Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (in the Department of Agriculture) (ASCS)
Replaced in 1994 with the Farm Service Agency.
Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA)
Board of Economic Warfare (BEW)
Board of Tea Appeals
Abolished in 1996
Bureau of Arms Control (in the Department of State)
Replaced September 13, 2005, by the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation
Bureau of Nonproliferation (in the Department of State)
Replaced September 13, 2005, by the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation
Bureau of Verification and Compliance (in the Department of State)
Replaced February 1, 2000 by the Bureau of Verification, Compliance, and Implementation
Committee on Public Information (CPI)
Department of War existed from August 7, 1789 until September 18, 1947 and renamed the United States Department of Defense in 1949.
Farmers Home Administration
Replaced in 1994 with the Farm Service Agency.
Farm Security Administration (FSA)
Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA or Fannie Mae)
Fannie Mae was partially privatized in 1968; its government administered portion was renamed the Government National Mortgage Association (Ginnie Mae); see Department of Housing and Urban Development, above
Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA)
Renamed Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services; see Department of Health and Human Services, above
Student Loan Marketing Association (SLMA or Sallie Mae)
Sallie Mae has been fully privatized and is no longer administered by the federal government.
Foreign Economic Administration (FEA)
Federal Theatre Project (FTP)
General Accounting Office (GAO)
Renamed "Government Accountability Office" in 2004; see #Legislative Branch, above.
Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC)
Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS)
Now the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS)
National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA)
U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey
Renamed U.S. National Geodetic Survey
Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (OCIAA)
Office of Technology Assessment (OTA)
Congress closed the OTA in 2004.
Office of War Information (OWI)
Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC)
Resettlement Administration (RA)
Turned into Farm Security Administration in 1937.
United States Information Agency (USIA)
United States Life-Saving Service
Merged with the Revenue Cutter Service to create the United States Coast Guard
Veterans Administration (VA)
Became a cabinet department in 1988; see United States Department of Veterans Affairs, above.
War Production Board (WPB)
Works Progress Administration (WPA)
American Relief Administration (7 P)
Defunct federal law enforcement agencies of the United States (1 C, 21 P)
Defunct independent agencies of the United States government (3 C, 14 P)
Defunct Agencies of the Executive Office of the President (3 P)
Former United States Executive Departments (2 C, 8 P)
Freedmen's Bureau (2 C, 11 P)
Defunct United States intelligence agencies (2 C, 24 P)
Manhattan Project (6 C, 23 P)
National Recovery Administration (15 P)
Federal Power Commission (10 P)
Public Works Administration (3 C, 5 P)
Reconstruction Finance Corporation (1 C, 15 P)
United States Revenue Cutter Service (2 C, 7 P)
United States Life-Saving Service (2 C, 3 P)
United States Railroad Administration (3 C, 8 P)
United States Sanitary Commission (1 C, 10 P)
Works Progress Administration (9 C, 32 P)
Agencies of the United States government during World War I (2 P)
Agencies of the United States government during World War II (2 C, 29 P)[/ex
ACTION (U.S. government agency)
Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service
Federal Alcohol Administration
Atomic Energy Commission's Historical Advisory Committee
Board of Economic Warfare
U.S. Office of Education
Bureau of Efficiency
Bureau of Labor Standards
Bureau of the Public Debt
California Land Act of 1851
Chief Clerk (United States Department of State)
United States Civil Service Commission
Civil Service Retirement System
Office of Civilian Defense
Committee on Public Information
Office of the Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs
Council on Wage and Price Stability
United States Customs Service
Defense Homes Corporation
Defense Production Administration
Economic Cooperation Administration
Economic Stabilization Agency
Bureau of Entomology
Federal Aviation Commission
Federal Civil Defense Administration
Federal Civil Defense Authority
Federal Oil Conservation Board
Federal Security Agency
Federal Works Agency
Financial Management Service
Foreign Economic Administration
General Land Office
List of commissioners of the General Land Office
Heritage Conservation and Recreation Service
Housing and Home Finance Agency
Immigration and Naturalization Service
Interagency GPS Executive Board
Joint United States Public Affairs Office
United States Life-Saving Service
List of defunct or renamed United States federal agencies
List of lifesaving stations in Michigan
Bureau of Marine Inspection and Navigation
United States Maritime Commission
United States Metric Board
Mining Enforcement and Safety Administration
Mutual Security Agency
Federal Bureau of Narcotics
National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics
National Commission for Employment Policy
National Council on Educational Research
National Defense Mediation Board
National Inventors Council
National Production Authority
National Security Resources Board
National Wage Stabilization Board
Bureau of Navigation
Bureau of Navigation and Steamboat Inspection
Nixon Family Assistance Plan (1969)
Office of Censorship
Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization
Office of Civil Defense
Office of Defense Mobilization
Office of Economic Opportunity
Office of Economic Stabilization
Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight
Office of Independent Inventor Programs
Office of Policy Coordination
Office of Production Management
Office of Strategic Influence
Office of Technology Assessment
Office of the Supervising Architect for the U.S. Treasury
Office of the United States Nuclear Waste Negotiator
Office of War Mobilization
Pay Board and Price Commission
President's Organization for Unemployment Relief
Office of Price Administration
Bureau of Prohibition
Public Works Administration
Federal Radio Commission
Reconstruction Finance Corporation
Register of the Treasury
SelectUSA Investment Summit
United States Shipping Board
Emergency Fleet Corporation
Solid Fuels Administration for War
Southern Claims Commission
Steamboat Inspection Service
Subsistence Homesteads Division
Surplus Property Board
TLC (TV network)
Training Within Industry
United States Travel and Tourism Administration
Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs
United States Bureau of Mines
United States Department of Justice War Division
United States Federal Maritime Board
United States Food Administration
United States Geological and Geographical Survey of the Territories
United States Grazing Service
United States Information Agency
United States Revenue Cutter Service
Wage Stabilization Board
War Bureau of Consultants
War Finance Corporation
War Food Administration
War Industries Board
United States Office of War Information
War Manpower Commission
War Production Board
War Research Service
Works Progress Administrationedit on 22-6-2021 by Havamal because: (no reason given)edit on 22-6-2021 by Havamal because: (no reason given)edit on 22-6-2021 by Havamal because: (no reason given)[/editbySource
In the second Clinton-Gore term, we began to focus on transforming the culture in major agencies with the most public contact to be more results-oriented, performance-based, and customer-focused. We used technology and new approaches in employees� roles as key levers. We also created a network of results-oriented partnerships across agency lines with states and local governments, and changed the relations between regulatory agencies and business.
Its major accomplishments included:
Ending the Era of Big Government
Reduced the size of federal civilian workforce by 426,200 positions between January 1993 and September 2000.1 Thirteen of 14 departments reduced in size; Justice grew because of Administration�s fight against crime and drugs. The government workforce was for the first time the smallest it had been since the Eisenhower Administration.
Action on more than two-thirds of NPR recommendations resulted in savings of more than $136 billion.
Cut government the right way by eliminating what wasn�t needed � bloated headquarters, layers of managers, outdated field offices, obsolete red tape and rules. For example, cut 78,000 managers governmentwide and some layers by late 1999.
Cut 640,000 pages of internal agency rules (equivalent to 125 cases of copy paper).
Closed nearly 2,000 obsolete field offices and eliminated 250 programs and agencies, like the Tea-Tasters Board, the Bureau of Mines, and wool and mohair subsidies.
Procurement reform led to the expanded use of credit cards for small item purchases, saving about $250 million a year in processing costs.
Changing Government to be More Results- and Performance-Oriented
Made the government more results oriented � developed the first annual performance reports required under the Results Act, created networks and cross-agency partnerships for results, and advocated the use of balanced measures to drive individual performance incentives.
Recommended legislation adopted by Congress that included delinquent debt reform. financial standards, grant reform, the use of credit cards to pay taxes and more. President Clinton signed more than 90 NPR-related bills and 50 Presidential directives.
Fixed long-standing management challenges in specific agencies, including in the Federal Emergency Management Administration, Internal Revenue Service, the disability program in Social Security Administration, the Patent and Trademark Office, the Office of Student Financial Assistance, and the Federal Aviation Administration�s air traffic control operations.
Serving People Better
By 1997, about 570 federal organizations had committed to more than 4,000 customer service standards, embedding a recognition that government does in fact have customers. By 2000, 80 percent of managers saw service goals aimed at meeting customer expectations, up from 36 percent in 1992.
By 2000, 30 agencies were measuring satisfaction with their services via a third party with international standing. Comparison with private sector was close and narrowed between 1999 and 2000. Agencies have committed to expanding to over 100 customer segments in 2001.
Agencies working together (the Bureau of Land Management�s Trading Posts with the Forest Service; Customs and INS international airport clearance efforts, community level service kiosks).
Expanded the use of Internet gateways sites allowing one-stop transactions and more than 1,000 on-line forms, such as IRS electronic filing in 2000 by more than 32 million Americans. More than a dozen cross-agency sites serve populations such as students, seniors, businesses, and state-local employees.
Worked with agencies and communities to create hassle-free communities in 13 states to provide one-stop service delivery and encouraged agencies to have public conversations with America to learn first-hand the needs of their customers. Agencies sponsored hundreds of such forums.
As part of the Administration�s welfare reform initiative, President Clinton in March 1997 charged federal agencies with setting a good example for the private sector by hiring former welfare recipients. He asked NPR to lead this initiative. NPR worked with agencies to set a goal of 10,000 hired over a three-year period. By the end of 2000, agencies had hired 50,330.
Changing the Way Government Works with Businesses
The use of regulatory partnerships has become the preferred approach for getting results. NPR worked with five key regulatory agencies (EPA, FDA, FSIS, OSHA and FAA) to pilot new approaches, to deploy information technology, and to do a better job measuring what matters�namely their impact on their mission (e.g. clean air) as opposed to historical process measures (e.g. the number of tickets written for regulatory violations). As a result, food-borne illness, toxic emissions, and worker injury rates are dropping. And the regulated community has better information and tools to help with compliance.
In 1996, agencies eliminated more than 16,000 pages of unnecessary federal regulations affecting businesses.
Agencies also rewrote another 31,000 pages into understandable, plain language. This initiative spread to a broad segment of the federal workforce, with more than one-third recognizing it as an important initiative. Customers of agencies and programs, such as the Small Business Administration, the Security and Exchange Commission, and Medicare, have recognized the change.
Changing the Way Government Works With Communities
Used partnerships and networks to achieve results and streamline services via five initiatives:
The Oregon Option piloted joint federal-state-local efforts in three policy areas: child health, workforce development, and family stability.
Reducing gun violence in 10 cities working together in a SafeCities network with a range of federal partners. Included the development of a gun violence injury tracking system.
Implementation of the 1998 Workforce Investment Act via a network of more than 2,000 one-stop job centers, a website with 1,000 useful links for workers, streamlined planning, measurement, and cost sharing efforts, and a local 21st century skills community network among 20 communities and federal partners.
A network of 13 communities and states, along with 70 associate communities and federal partners in a Boost 4 Kids network focused on improving child well-being in part by insuring children.
Afterschool network to ensure children have access to appropriate supervision after school. In 2000, resource fairs were conducted in 50 communities and networks of providers and users were created.
Transforming Access to Government Through Technology
Worked to help create FirstGov � a one-stop website www.firstgov.gov for government information, transactions, program results, and e-mail feedback to public officials � with connections to 27 million web pages and about 1,000 forms and services.
Catalyzed the creation of more than a dozen Internet gateway websites to serve specific populations of users, such as students, workers, disabled, business, state-local, recreation users.
Catalyzed the creation of kiosks offering touch screens for one-stop services in 36 communities traditionally under-served by the Internet. Piloted by GSA, more are under development by other agencies, and private businesses.
Catalyzed the use of mapping and other geographic information as an organizing tool for achieving cross-agency, intergovernmental policy results and accountability in public safety, smart growth, and responsive citizen services. For example, catalyzed a joint 17-agency agreement with North Carolina after the 1999 Hurricane Floyd to ensure better public safety information in the future. Also supported the Census�s American Community Survey to provide more performance information to policymakers outside the decennial census.
Making the Federal Government a Better Place to Work
Recognized frontline employees for their reinvention innovations. More than 68,000 employees on 1,378 teams received Vice President Gore�s Hammer Award. Together, they not only improved government operations but also saved or put to better use more than $53 billion.
Empowered front-line employees to better do their jobs. NPR chartered more than 350 reinvention labs to pilot new ways of doing business. President Clinton also directed agencies to streamline the granting of waivers from their own internal regulations so frontline operating units could better serve their customers.
Streamlined some administrative silliness. About 41 percent of employees said sign-in sheets and time cards had been eliminated and statutory changes have allowed paperless travel arrangements and vouchers, saving millions in administrative costs.
Increased employee understanding of what constitutes good performance from 26 to 31 percent. Embedded continued change by requiring that SES bonuses be based on demonstrated improvements in business results, customer satisfaction, and employee feedback.
Expanded initiatives to create a family-friendly workplace. Sixty-five percent of employees rated the federal government as a family-friendly workplace.
850 labor-management partnerships were sponsored by agencies, covering 66 percent of bargaining unit employees.
Governmentwide employee surveys between 1998 and 2000 showed that employees who felt their organizations actively promoted reinvention were twice as satisfied with their jobs than those employees who did not believe reinvention was a priority in their organizations.
Overall, accomplishments like these have been important steps in restoring trust and faith in the government by improving the delivery of service to the public. After a 30-year decline, public trust in the federal government is finally increasing. When last measured by the University of Michigan in 1998, the public's trust in government had nearly doubled within a four-year period to 40 percent. While this cannot be totally attributed to the results of reinvention, NPR believes reinvention has made an important contribution in raising the public's trust in the government and creating a better workplace for federal employees.
January 12, 2001edit on 22-6-2021 by Havamal because: (no reason given)extra DIV