Discuss public interest, administrative responsibility and some of the recent ethical obligations confronting public administrators in their day to day decision making. Also examine the recent trend in propagating government functions and discuss if it posses any dilemma for the attainment of public interest. Be sure to use relevant examples to illustrate your point. Public interest can be defined as the people’s general welfare and well being something in which the populace as a whole has a stake.
There are many instances where public interest affects us, what comes to mind is how the City of Philadelphia government established a Municipal Wireless Network (OWN) to provide affordable, reliable and high-speed internet access. On a small scale this is where the interest of the public was surely at hand and in establishing a OWN it was a “win-win” situation for all; the city received funding through the private sector with no costs to citizens and it provided high-speed internet access for those that didn’t.
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Administrative responsibility is the behavior of a public administrators to array out their just and moral obligations of their office or position in performing their job to the best of their ability. Administrative responsibility also involves ethics, meaning doing what’s right, not only for the public administrator, for the citizens also, it also means doing what’s right when no one else is looking. Which leads me to the case study “Torture and Public Policy” where abuse, torture and deaths of detainees at the hands of U. S. Personnel at ABA Grain and other detention centers around the world occurred.
I feel that if clear cut directions in administering interrogation static were clear and concise could of precluded some of the abuse, however, that’s not to say that there would of been no abuse, however, I feel it would of been less. All concerned in the torture and abuse of detainees was the responsibility of all, from the top down and from the bottom to the top; all had a responsibility to obey the rules of the Geneva Convention, as it was the detainees rights. In reading the case study, most ignored their responsibility, some didn’t understand their responsibility.
As military members, we are made aware, that if an order or directive isn’t understood, o need to get further clarification, however, as I mentioned before, responsibility was ignored or misunderstood. Ethics plays a huge role in society, it ranges from ethics in religion, politics, health care, prevarication of education, sports, taxes, to name a few and the list goes on and on. Ethics is defined as study of morality’s effect on conduct: the study of moral standards and how they affect conduct or in a plural sense as code of morality: a system of moral principles governing the appropriate conduct for a person or group.
As the indicated in the text book, “Leading Hinkler in public administration long ago recognized the critical issues of government ultimately involved moral choices. The definitive policy decisions made by public officials of the have at their base conflicting ethical issues, such as whether to give precedence to the public interest or to the narrow demands of profession, department, bureau or clientele. ” In Arizona illegal immigration is a hot topic, the Sheriff of Mauricio County has taken his stand on the subject.
Some question his motives as ethical and some as unethical. In situations where he deems that there are illegal aliens working t an establishment, he sends in Deputies to harbor the illegal aliens and deport them and many Hispanics feel that his intentions are unethical, in that Hispanics are the only illegal aliens in the county and they feel that he goes out of his Way in trying to deport Hispanic illegal aliens. Also back in April Of this year Governor Jan Brewer of Arizona signed the nation’s toughest bill on illegal immigration into law.
Its aim is to identify, prosecute and deport illegal immigrants, in which the law would make the failure to carry immigration documents a crime and give the police broad power to detain anyone suspected of being in the country illegally. Now once can ask are these instances racially motivated or non-racially motivated and are they ethically and morally just. Many state and local governments are leaning towards propagating government functions in an effort to save money and have been doing so since the asses. It is believed that these private companies can provide a service cheaper, faster and manage a public service more efficient.
However, I beg to differ, in doing so, feel that in doing so the private company is more concern with making a dollar, instead of having the public interest at heart. I can honestly attest to this, in that working for the government, the Internal Revenue Service, has a private security service provide Security Guard service and have witness some of the ill fates of having security services privatized. For instance, I witnessed where my Manager was verbally abused by a taxpayer in the presence of the “so called” Security Guard, did I mentioned he works for a private company, and did nothing, except watch the taxpayer go through her tirade.
There have been numerous instances where the supposedly trained Security Guard has asked how to perform their job. So, you see, from this small aspect of dealing with privatized security, that it’s not worth it in the long run. However, I will say that all the guards are bad, some are quite actually good at what they do and have a sense Of moral ethics Of doing what’s right, not only for the employees in our office, but for the taxpayer that visits our offices.
Can propagating government functions work? Feel they can, but it merely depends on which functions you want to privatized; a janitorial services to clean government facilities, sure, however, measures must be put in place to screen companies ND applicants and ensure they have the government interest at heart, meaning ensuring the company used is reputable as well as its employees and that both are screened through an extensive screening process before selection/employment.