Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:
“I could end the deficit in 5 minutes,” he told CNBC. “You just
pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more
than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible
When I came across this, I thought about our ethics course. Here is a classic example of allowing values to dictate decision-making as opposed to doing what is ethical. The value of supporting constituents and their spending agendas, and thereby remaining in office, localizes priorities and outweighs the duty to provide leadership that is considerate of the entire country. In no other job, that I can think of, are the governing body/employees allowed to be so absent accountability…and the absence of accountability promotes an imbalance and abuse of power.
Perhaps a new ethical framework could emerge to contextualize the ethics within political leadership…we could just call it “the exact opposite of categorical imperative” framework.