What Stops Us from Getting Things Done and What to Do about It

Author: Cass R. Sunstein

Subject: sludge; nudge; paperwork; paperwork burden; Paperwork Reduction Act; Sludge Audits; Life Admin; Administrative Burden; Pamela Herd; Donald Moynihan; Elizabeth Emens;

Publisher: MIT Press


What Stops Us from Getting Things Done and What to Do about It ebook cover
How we became so burdened by red tape and unnecessary paperwork, and why we must do better.
We've all had to fight our way through administrative sludge—filling out complicated online forms, mailing in paperwork, standing in line at the motor vehicle registry. This kind of red tape is a nuisance, but, as Cass Sunstein shows in Sludge, it can also also impair health, reduce growth, entrench poverty, and exacerbate inequality. Confronted by sludge, people just give up—and lose a promised outcome: a visa, a job, a permit, an educational opportunity, necessary medical help. In this lively and entertaining look at the terribleness of sludge, Sunstein explains what we can do to reduce it.
Because of sludge, Sunstein, explains, too many people don't receive benefits to which they are entitled. Sludge even prevents many people from exercising their constitutional rights—when, for example, barriers to voting in an election are too high. (A Sludge Reduction Act would be...