The article analyses the role of the regulatory agencies within the Italian institutional system, with a particular concern to their relationship with political bodies. The discussion stems from some methodological weaknesses of the law studies on the issue. They are probably among the main causes for the imperfection of the law proposals that recently addressed the problem in Italy. Starting from a vision of the very first roots of the democratic system based upon a Popperian methodological framework, the article points out the role of bureaucratic agents, introduces the distinction among "implemental" and "adaptive" bureaucracies and analyses the issue of the efficient choice the political power has to make between the two kinds of agents. Finally, the paper outlines the question of the consistency between the degree of delegation and the level of control.