A couple of items that caught my eye from today's Remarks by President Obama on Contracting:
* We will stop outsourcing services that should be performed by the government and open up the contracting process to small businesses.
Outsourcing services has been a tool that companies have long-employed to contain costs. Usually when they look at what can or should be outsourced, they try to define what their core compentencies are. It's not always possible, but desirable to outsource as much of your non-core work as possible, while keeping your core compentencies in-house.
Trying to line up government and businesses (or families around the kitchen table) often leads to inapt comparisons. However, in this situation I think it would be valid to ask Mr. Obama how he plans to define those services that "should" be performed by the government. In his view, what are the core compentencies of the federal government?
* Now, none of this will be easy. We'll have to end old ways of doing business. We'll have to take on entrenched special interests.
Ah yes, Mr. Obama will mount his trusty steed and once again sally forth to battle those "entrenched special interests." In this case, special interests being defense contractors who donate money to campaigns and lobby government to try to win business.
Which is of course completely different from labor unions who donate money to campaigns and lobby to have more services performed by the government. Said services performed by government employees who more often than not just happen to be dues paying members of these same unions. The difference is completely clear, isn't it?