Aug 10 2012

Ethics Leads to Government

Ethics is the consideration of what is the right action to take. Ethics must begin with the primary consideration of self, but then rapidly expands outward to include others and groups of others. The primary consideration is for survival, and then moves outward to sustaining survival and then to enhancing survival.

Apply this simple description to groups and it becomes necessary to organize a group for the purpose of survival, and sustaining and enhancing survival. The group organization is called into being by a need and the type of organization and operating procedures of the organization should be driven by that need and the simple consideration of ethical principles. This often requires some form of leadership or governing body to make decisions and set standards for the group.

The basic reason for most governing bodies, or “governments” is to direct efforts and resources for the greater good of the group. This makes government, by its nature, an exercise in ethics. The purpose of the government, when it is formed, is most often to secure freedom and liberty for the group members by providing the best possible defense for the group. As the group grows in size and the system of government ages, the needs and scope of involvement of the government often expand beyond the original basic needs.

Government in simple early forms is usually highly ethical because it is focused entirely on the basic needs of survival. It is when government expands beyond its purpose or becomes more powerful than is actually needed, that it tends to become more unethical and begins to pursue the continuation and expansion of itself instead of first considering the needs of the original group. The government has become a subgroup of the original group and may now consider survival of itself as a higher priority than survival of the original group that formed it.