Frederick C. Mosher and Others, Watergate: Implications for Responsible Government, 1974
Thesis: This chapter deals with the interest in the quality of government institutions and the need to have a government that is competent and dependable to its citizens. This article talks about the causes that led to the Watergate scandal and how these types of scandals can be avoided in future and how we should ensure that the government engages in activities that are transparent and credible all for the good of its citizens. During the past decades, there were several corruption practices with the use of government powers and resources for personal gain, use of government personnel and resources for partisan interests like political campaigns and the politicization of the career services.
“On the other hand, one may observe that most of the perpetrators and directors of Watergate misdeeds were reputedly honest and upright persons before they entered the political campaign and/or the administration.”
“Watergate is thus both an aberration and an extension of earlier trends. It may also be a culmination of some if not all of those trends.”
“The administrative climate was, to some extent, a product of the political climate: aggressive efforts were made to use administrative machinery to carry out political and policy ends, and growing frustration and exasperation developed over alleged bureaucratic impediments.”
This article is very important in that it talks about some of the scandals that have engulfed the American public and how these scandals should be avoided in future. It also explains to us the events that led to the Watergate scandal how it affected all of us and how it could have been avoided. This article is very educative and teaches us the importance of having a credible and competent government that operates transparently since this boosts the public’s confidence on the affairs of such a government.
Dennis F. Thompson. The Possibility of Administrative Ethics, 1985
Thesis: This article talks about administrative ethics, where it arises from and the possibility to achieve it in our public administration. Administrative ethics comprises of the use of moral principles to conduct the officials in organizations. It talks about the need for administrators to be ethically neutral and not to exercise any independent moral judgment but to affect the orders of their principles.
“The ethic of neutrality does not deny that administrators often must use their own judgment in formulation of policy. But their aim should always be to discover what policy other people (usually elected officials) intend or would intend; or in the case of conflicting directives to interpret legally or constitutionally who has the authority to determine policy.”
“A variation of ethic neutrality gives some scope for individual moral judgment until the decision or policy is final”
“Even if one thinks that civil disobedience is justifiable, one may not agree that official disobedience is warranted.”
This article is very important in the sense that it talks about the possibility of achieving administrative ethics in our public sector. It shows us how individuals should respect when they act in ways that grossly affect other peoples. This article is very educative on administrative ethics and the importance of ethical neutrality in public administration.