“The 2012 Republican Platform is a statement of who we are and what we believe as a Party and our vision for a stronger and freer America.”

So says the first sentence in the platform guiding Republicans this election season. While party platforms are often forgotten, they do indicate the values political parties promote.

In the case of Republicans, “private” — as in private sector, private stewardship and private ownership — is the value that frequently emerges from platform planks on federal policies. Private is the opposite of public and public implies government, so what would the platform mean for federal programs and employees?

Here’s a look at some of the planks, which like much of the platform, focus on the Republican goal of making government smaller.

One interesting plank for a party that will nominate Donald Trump, the self-declared “law and order” presidential candidate, calls for cutting the number of federal crimes.

But let’s begin with federal employees who implement all U.S. government programs.

The section on “Modernizing the Federal Civil Service,” says that “the federal workforce bears great responsibilities and sometimes wields tremendous power, especially when Congress delegates to it the execution of complicated and far-reaching legislation.”

The next sentence combines a nod of appreciation to federal workers, but with a twist: “We recognize the dedication of federal workers and the difficulty of their thankless task of implementing poorly drafted or open-ended legislation.”

Like many of the planks, this one recycles proposals that have been around for a long time, including the call to cut the federal workforce by 10 percent. The platform does not offer specific plans for compensation, but does say that pay and benefits should “reflect those of the private sector.… The federal pay system should be sufficiently flexible to acknowledge and reward those who dare to innovate, reduce overhead, optimize processes, and expedite paperwork.”

The platform raises an old canard, saying that “delinquency in paying taxes … has been too common in some segments of the civil service.” The fact is the tax delinquency rate for federal civilian employees is less than 4 percent, meaning 96 percent of them are not delinquent. For taxpayers generally, the delinquency rate is twice as high.

While Republicans have tried and failed to pass legislation that would punish tax delinquent federal staffers, Congress did approve a bill last year against awarding grants and contracts to companies and individuals who are seriously behind.

Here are few other items from the Republican platform:

Reforming prisons: In keeping with their drive for a smaller government, Republicans want fewer federal offenses, saying the number jumped almost 50 percent from the early 1980s to 2008. “Federal criminal law should focus on acts by federal employees or acts committed on federal property — and leave the rest to the States. Then Congress should withdraw from federal departments and agencies the power to criminalize behavior.”

Reforming the Transportation Security Administration (TSA): “The American people have already delivered their verdict on the Transportation Security Administration: its procedures — and much of its personnel — need to be changed. It is now a massive bureaucracy of 65,000 employees who seem to be accountable to no one for the way they treat travelers. We call for the private sector to take over airport screening wherever feasible and look toward the development of security systems that can replace the personal violation of frisking.”

TSA, however, has estimated that private sector screeners cost up to 9 percent more than federal screeners. The platform provides no evidence that private screeners, who are employed at some airports, are better than government employees.

Privatizing federal lands: “Congress should reconsider whether parts of the federal government’s enormous landholdings and control of water in the West could be better used for ranching, mining, or forestry through private ownership.… All efforts should be made to make federal lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service available for harvesting.”

The Center for Western Priorities called attempts to transfer public lands to private ownership or the states “an affront to our heritage and to the collaborative spirit needed to manage our lands and resources wisely for this and future generations.”

“Restructuring” the U.S. Postal Service: “Congress should explore a greater role for private enterprise in appropriate aspects of the mail-processing system.” Like similar proposals, this would be vigorously fought by postal unions.

Supporting veterans: The platform claims that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has an “adversarial” relationship with veterans and must be more responsive in advocating for them. “To that end we will consider a fundamental change in structure to make the regional directors of the Department presidential appointees rather than careerists.… If private insurance companies can deal with car wrecks and hurricanes within weeks or months, it is inexplicable that the federal government takes, on average, a year to process a veteran’s claim.”

The platform does not mention the high marks that veterans often give VA health care, although there have been corrupt practices related to the coverup of long patient wait times.

“The times call for trustworthy leadership,” says the platform. Unfortunately for Republicans, the latest Washington Post/ABC News poll says just 39 percent of those polled chose Trump when asked “who is more honest and trustworthy” — Trump or Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee.

Fortunately for Republicans, Clinton scored just as low.