EDITOR’S NOTE: Misrepresenting Budgets is Fraud. Unless you’re in Elected Office. Then it Gets you Re-Elected
“A public office is a public trust”—common saying, but do we really believe it?
The American Founders did. Most of them agreed that public officials should be held at least to the standards imposed on private trustees and other fiduciaries—maybe even higher standards, since government officials can do more damage than private fiduciaries. (A fiduciary—from Latin words meaning “confidence” and “faith”— is someone entrusted with the property or affairs of another.) The Founders often referred to public officials as the “trustees,” “agents,” “guardians,” or “servants” of the public. (In those days the legal term “servant” referred to an employee in a job not involving a lot of discretion.)
But in modern America public officials are not held to anywhere near the legal standards imposed on private trustees and other fiduciaries. The corporate corruption some on the Left justifiably complain about pales by comparison to common political behavior.Details