That's really an impossible distinction. A purely academic idea, as you are prone to do.
I'd like to think the difference between civil law and common law; positive rights and negative rights is more than purely academic distinction. Governments can mix the concepts until the governing principle is so convoluted that virtually no one can identify the dominant characteristic, but the distinctions are still more practical than academic.
The EPA seems to fit the convoluted description. It is a gutless wonder, in some ways, removed just enough from the checks and balances of electoral populism to make it a nuisance. From another perspective, it is an organization that does whatever it pleases within the legislative jurisdiction created for it by Congress. Periodically, Congress and the Office of the Executive beat it into submission using their diminished powers.
I understand that the EPA has legitimate functions, but that's all anyone has ever argued. It's role as an independent agency is not rooted in any governing principle. It's benefits of its independence are nearly impossible to ascertain. No one questions whether the red-blue political wrangling between Congress and the White House led to a compromise that diminished voter sovereignty.