Ethics for Government Bureaucrats Analytical Essay by Nicky

A review and analysis of two chapters from the work, "Public Service, Ethics, and Constitutional Practice" by John A. Rohr.
# 151221 | 1,183 words | 0 sources | 2012 | US
Published on May 30, 2012 in Literature (American) , Public Administration (General)

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The paper focuses on the chapters "Ethics for Bureaucrats" and "The Problem of Professional Ethics" from the book "Public Service, Ethics, and Constitutional Practice". The paper discusses how this work addresses the need for unelected civil servants to develop a responsive code of professional ethics to guide their work and ensure that they behave in a democratic fashion, obeying the will of the people as well as fulfilling their professional duties. The paper provides both an anlysis and a critique of these two chapters.


From the Paper:

"First of all, what are bureaucrats? Bureaucrats are policy makers who are neither elected nor appointed. This method of selection is supposed to isolate them from political pressures when they make decisions, so they serve the interests of the people and their office. Their insulation from the electoral process has had both positive and negative effects. The professional nature of bureaucracy means that individuals who move up through the civil service learn with experience over time, and provide stability to the current regime (3). Democrats and Republicans may come and go, but the essential character and makeup of the civil service remains. The existence of the civil service also ensures that during a change of administration, there is some human continuity between past and present governments.
"The current exam-based method of selecting civil servants was originally designed to reduce the influence of patronage, and was a response to Jacksonian-era corruption. It also reflected 19th century notions of governing as a 'science.' Civil servants were supposed to have demonstrated their ability to master the knowledge and science of government, in a way that transcended partisanship. However, simply because bureaucrats are isolated from the electoral process does not mean they are isolated from the political process, contrary to the notion of the 'neutral' bureaucrat (4)."

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