The most powerful simple machine in government is the wedge. First, Bush demanded that the executive branch be given new powers to handle personnel issues in the Department of Homeland Security. There was a huge fight over it, and in the end a compromise was reached that still ended up giving more power to the executive branch. Now Donald Rumsfeld is asking for those same powers and more in the Department of Defense, based on the existing wedge. This illustrates why there are big fights in Washington over seemingly small issues.