In her compelling 2007 book, Mother Earth and Uncle Sam: How Pollution and Hollow Government Hurt Our Kids, published by the University of Texas Press, Professor Rena Steinzor highlights the ways in which the United States government has failed to protect children from harm caused by toxic chemicals. She believes these failures – driven by willful under-funding, excessive and misguided use of cost/benefit analysis, distortion of science, and devolution of regulatory authority – have produced a situation in which serious harms that could be readily reduced or eliminated are instead allowed to persist.
Regulation is frequently less successful than it could be, largely because the allocation of authority to regulatory institutions, and the relationships between them, are misunderstood. As a result, attempts to create new regulatory programs or mend under-performing ones are often poorly designed. In their new book, Reorganizing Government: A Functional and Dimensional Framework, Alejandro Camacho and Robert Glicksman explain how past approaches have failed to appreciate the full diversity of alternative approaches to organizing governmental authority.