Big Government, Iraqi Style

by Patrick Appel

Joel Wing delivers the bad news:

The new Maliki administration already has too many ministers and three deputy premiers. Adding three vice presidents who are not necessary and would have no real power would only be for symbolic reasons, and to pay off parties for their support of the new regime. The premier said he wants this government to be professional and competent, but the political maneuvers to finally put it together undermine his pronouncements. The new Maliki coalition will have an excess of positions, just like the old one. Those will be divided amongst the various political and ethnosectarian groups and will be a drain on the national coffers as they offer personal fiefs and patronage systems to the officials who run them.