The joys of bureaucracy

Matt Prodger wrote up a cheeky little piece for BBC on the frustrations of waiting in line, getting forms stamped, and the generally enhanced complication of bureaucracy in Serbia. I say cheeky, but, well, it is also entirely truthful. The reason I mention it is that it brought back sweet memories of the classic animated piece by Bruno Bozzetto comparing Italy to the rest of Europe.


Katja R. said...

that little animation was too cute, especially, well all of it!
Anyone who has lived or traveled for any extensive period in the Balkans knows that it's the same everywhere with the stamp for this and the stamp for that!
I commented in the space of the originator of this report, the gentleman over at Kosovareport which is on blogspot that my theory of peace is that peace begins with the ability to lead a normal life free of undue beaurocratic nonsense. The harder it is to go about normal daily business, business itself, and life transitions such as marriage divorce moveing buying or selling land or renting buying or selling a place to live, the more likely war is. The easier these things, the smoother the course of daily life and it's normal transitions, the less likely war is.
The politicians need to be reforming the laws that govern daily life with an eye to lowering the number of stamps and permits people need. This isn't just true of Serbia, it's true of all the states that used to be part of Yugoslavia. Instead the stupid politicians waste all their time on ethnicity, religion, flags and the police and milicija waste their time on people's totally private business. SRAMOTA!

Katja R. said...

oh and they have no idea where any war criminals are in any of those countries. NO ONE needs to keep track of honest citizesns. Only war criminals and terrorists need to be tracked!
Further we are getting more like the Balkans in this regard in the States, without any of the things that make life in the Balkans pleasant and we are loseing a lot of what made life in the States good.

Eric Gordy said...

It's an interesting theory of peace, although I suppose that a person could offer an alternative theory that as long as people are busy standing in line they will not have the time to develop megalomaniacal ideas. My suspicion was always that there is little motivation to do away with confusing and contradictory regulations if they create opportunities for "experts in the rules" to offer their services in finding ways around them. Depending on how well developed this help is, it might be called corruption and it might be called consulting.

Katja R. said...

All you get in line is learning to sleep standing up or varicose veins. Then there's the lost productivity of people in line. Better tho have them out hacking cana con machetes, or occupied with kosidba. That promotes fitness as well.