There is good government when those who are near are made happy, and when those who are afar are attracted.
—Confucius, The Wisdom of Confucius
The frequent association of the words “government” and “bureaucracy” reflects the popular notion that governments are slow, inept, unresponsive, wasteful, and, yes, bureaucratic.
From a Lean perspective, governments have a value problem in the eyes of the public they serve, and the classic signs of muda are hard to miss. Who would willingly pay to fill out a lengthy form for renewing a driver’s license, for a complex yearlong approval process ...