Public Administration

DOIhttp://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9299.1934.tb02364.x
Date01 January 1934
Published date01 January 1934
Public
Administration
By
the
Right
Eon.
STANLEY
BALDWIN,
M.P..
[Being
the address given at the
Inaugural
Meeting
of
the
Institute,
October,
19331
HERE
can,
in
my judgment, be no one here who is at all familiar
T
with the problems of government, central and local, imperial
and international, but rejoices in the existence and work of this Insti-
tute.
It
was born not a moment too soon.
It
has ten years of solid,
unobtrusive work already to
its
credit.
It
is
only
on the threshold
of
the territory which it has to explore and put on the map.
It
was
natural that its creation was regarded with misgiving,
if
not suspicion.
It
is
right that the Civil Service should be jealous
of
its independence,
its
anonymity and
its
aloofness from political controversy.
It
is
characteristic of the British public to
look
askance
at
any deliberate
,
systematic attempt to rationalise our institutions.
To
many the
Civil
Service
is
something mysterious and aloof.
If
it were understood,
it
would cease to be
a
popular target for the more vulgar elements,
political or journalistic.
Your conferences and your Journal have proved conclusively
that there
is
a
vast network
of
administrative operations, conducted
day by day by tens of thousands
of
public servants, touching the life
and labour, the health and happiness, of tens of millions of citizens,
which presents problems of concern to yourselves and of profound
import
to the welfare
of
the State.
I
do not say they are the supreme
or
the ultimate problems; they are subordinate. But
I
could easily
illustrate from the history of states and empires, ancient and modem,
how dependent the State is upon its servants for the sohtion and
the mitigation
of
the problems of government. The Statc is every-
where, but nothing moves
of
itself. Kingdoms can and
do
endure,
and survive for long periods,
a
defective or corrupt administration.
There
is,
as
Adam Smith said,
a
lot
of
ruin in
a
countrv. But iust
as
Napoleon could not have
won
his
and
the Grand Army,
so
the boldest
execute reform,
if
his administrative
3
victories without
ks
marsiia~s
Prime Minister
is
impotent to
machine fails him. There is
A2

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