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Bureaucratic Responsibility and Democratic Governance

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In chapter five of Ethics by John Rohr he discusses main points he developed in the book To Run a Constitution. He talked about the reason the project for integrating constitutional studies into Public Administration curriculum would be beneficial.

The first reason is that administrators take an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States and they should be very familiar what this document means. Because of the oath it requires the administrator to actually make decision according to what the Constitution says and not just on how they feel professionally or personally on an issue. The second reason for the project was attitudinal. There was no solution found but it was to help the students to understand the value of their work and problems they may encounter. It stresses achievement and performance through efficiency and effectiveness. The final reason was professional. The project offered to courses which were Constitutional Foundations in Public Administration and Constitutional Themes in Public Administration. The course was design to not look at the Constitution as document that was just understood but a document that needed to be interpret but instead attention was drawn to how administrators interpreted the Constitution.

In chapter six Rohr suggest that main reason for financial disclosure is to detect and deter conflicts of interest. In the case of City of Carmel-by-the-sea v. Young the supreme Court of California it upheld the constitutional statue that required all public officials to disclose all investments over ten-thousand dollars. The court actually helps balance the state interest and privacy of the public officials and found that the disclosure requirements were unconstitutional. It was to widely open because it required disclosures that were not related to the public official's employment. There are good reason for having such limits but the over unnecessary severity of these requirements will force some good people not to seek government for employment.

The escalating tendency of forcing public officials to disclose more about their private financial lives is suggesting that this is the only place corruption exist. A lack of concerned for privacy would be more dangerous in administrative personnel who deal with the public more than officials who are elected. The public interest would not be well served if they were totally completely insensitive to the needs of the public. Rohr suggest that financial disclosure must not encourage government personnel the idea that privacy is only important to those who have something to hide. The law on disclosure would suggest that the public demands that we prevent corruption in those who govern.



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