The only thing worse than being able to say, "my boss won't let me," is having to acknowledge, "my boss will let me."
Over the last fifty years, the amount of headroom offered to white collar workers has dramatically increased. Piece work and time clocks have been replaced with self-policing and keep-your-own-calendar in many organizations. It's entirely possible to do very little, very often, particularly in a big company.
When we say, "my boss won't let me," what we're often saying is, "my boss wants great results, but she's not willing to let me take initiative without responsibility."
I'd be shocked if any smart boss took a different approach. Who's going to give you authority without responsibility?
Just about everyone I meet has far more ability to move up and to make an impact than it's easy or comfortable to admit. Once you do admit it, of course, you have to do something about it.