I recently got into a discussion with someone who purports to be for free markets who stated that the administrative state–and the decrease of public employees in such–was not necessarily a “conservative” act.

Here Ken Masugi shows why this is wrong and contrary to the IDEA of our country:

The short answer is that since Reagan, 16 years of Democratic presidents plus 12 years of Bush Republican presidents have solidified the hold of the administrative state over America. This coup against republican government is the subject of Trump’s ire and the popular anger that propelled his unlikely election.

Often misleadingly described as the “fourth, unelected branch” of government or the bureaucracy, the administrative state is instead a regime change that grips all three branches, especially the elected ones, and the people as well. It reduces the Congress to its financier and makes the executive branch its protector and enforcer. The judiciary is as often its collaborator as its corrector.

Moreover, the administrative state’s reach goes beyond the government. It embraces and enhances the media, political consultants, the professions (especially the legal establishment), academia, and identity groups. These all legitimate each other while strengthening the administrative state.

The administrative state thereby forms a majority faction—to use James Madison’s term for a majority opposed to the common good—that has ruled America since the Reagan years. Whatever the disagreements within it, this majority faction has sanctioned reckless wars abroad, open borders at home, and a globalist economy that has favored some parts of the country over others.