"It was obvious to me at the time DHS and Patriot Act (and TSA!) were bad moves. Aside from the fact that amalgamating many inefficient bureaucracies into one multiplies not divides the inefficiencies - efficient government is not an overriding concern of mine - centralizing power to meet a crisis leaves the centralized power available for abuse long after the crisis is forgotten. The chances that a future Democrat administration would disband DHS and repeal Patriot Act were patently zero even at the time. Expand, politicize, and abuse now are the order of the day, and I am not surprised in the least.
Both major parties seem now irredeemably statist. Many Republicans are starting to say the right things once more, but I doubt 51% will trust the party again soon enough to help. Nor should we, on the record. I attended the public signing of the Contract With America, and I watched as it was abandoned by Republican “realists” who seemed to think that absolute power in *their* hands was kinda neat."
One massive bureaucratic layer on top of another group of smaller (not really) ones is the modern method of making government "efficient", i.e. screwing you and me. I hated the idea of DHS the very moment it was announced; and it shattered Bush's small government credentials.