Political corruption essay
Political corruption has existed throughout the ages and will continue to exist. It’s believed to be most present in positions of power, because of the role money plays in giving people power. However, throughout the years corruption has changed so much that there is no simple definition of corruption.
The broadest, most suitable definition which exists today simply states that corruption is any illegal act performed by a politician to produce results which would have been otherwise impossible. In some cases, government, politicians, and criminals entwine for the sake of amassing money in order to secure their own jobs. This form of corruption was apparent in the mafia’s association with the government in the early 1900’s. Once government involvement takes place, the force foreign to the government gains enough power and evidence against the government that this kind of corruption becomes extremely difficult to stop.
Political corruption, however, is most visible in governments in which an elite, or an elite few, holds absolute power, and keeps the saying “absolute power corrupts absolutely” true to this day. In other cases, dictatorships can be the source of corruption. With absolute power, there is nothing to stop you from abusing your power. Political corruption in dictatorships can easily be seen as a mode of survival in countries that lack the stability for work opportunities. In the world today, countries lacking sufficient law enforcement see superfluous amounts of corruption. In cases of poverty, however, corruption is merely a mode of sustenance. In countries in which there is little to no income, there are very few options that allow for a bearable life without some form of illegality. Often times, ambiguities in laws give way to an opportunity to abuse power This paired with poor law enforcement yields an impossibly hard to get rid of corruption.
In Kenya, political corruption has grown rampant. People, who are supposed to be representing the interests of their constituency, instead take money from the constituents to keep their representative positions. Political corruption is parasitic; it finds a host, and can almost always find a way to survive. Eventually, people grow dependent on this corruption as a means for income, thus forming a symbiosis between the people who benefit from it, and the elites that regulate it. People sometimes ignore the corruption surrounding them, feeling that as long as the politicians do their jobs well, their ‘extra salary’ can’t hurt (BNS).
Generally after revolutions take place, anarchy exists. No new government simply moves into place. During this time, it is easiest for Corruption to take hold of this Government as it forms, limiting or halting the true development of a government for the people. In an environment infested with corruption, any acts of corruption simply become commonplace. Where anarchy exists, people lack the power of representation. If there is a government in which corruption exists, people lack a voice with which to take action. A government is necessary for the growth of people and nations as a whole. If the government is not legitimate, it will only act as a parasite to its host – the people and the country’s economy. Various steps have been taken to reduce the growth of corruption.
For example, every time a president’s term ends in Kenya, a man offers the new ex-president five million dollars to step down peacefully. In countries with a weak economy, a job with lots of political power, influence, and money, it is easy to get tempted to not stay down, and with the proper abuse of political power, it becomes possible. Anyone with political power can ensure the safety of their job with abuse of their power.The primary of goal of leaders now is to make Corruption more traceable, so that people will be deterred from even the thought of corruption. Kenya is currently taking steps to reduce corruption.
The first three solutions include: “the rule of law, transparency and accountability.” Kenya plans to oversee the actions of their political leaders and make sure all the corrupt will be held accountable for their actions. The other steps include: “inculcating a culture of compliance with laws and decent human behavior and to change legislation that is clearly not conducive to the creation of a good business environment” (Kibaki). These steps will void people, who were possibly or would possibly become corrupt, of any opportunities to abuse their power.Another problem with political corruption is the fact that it could affect anyone with power.
The prospect of losing their job, to some people, may make them steep to new low. If anyone with power wanted to keep from losing their job, they could. And in an environment in which corruption is common, and the law is not inculcated, it becomes infinitely more difficult to extirpate corruption. An even more widespread problem is corruption within law-enforcement. If no one enforces the laws, then people are free to abuse the laws as they wish. One of the primary problems of corruption in law-enforcement is that it exists just as much in developed countries as it does in underdeveloped countries (Ebbe). With the police’s job of enforcing the law, it would be easy for them to allow some violations of the law occur to their benefit (Ebbe). If this occurs, it makes it harder to trace political corruption.
Corruption with law-enforcement has some of the greatest impact on a company because not only does it make way for other kinds of corruption, but it makes people lose faith in their nation as a whole. Creating a nation in which corruption is impossible is far from the present, however, with proper action, a nation such as this can be created. It requires the participation of its people, its elites, and its law-enforcement. A problem with a country’s constitution would be the primary problem of any country. Ghana exemplifies this. Their constitution allowed the military, in a country that was previously a military-based dictatorship, constitutional immunity to the law (Africa News). This gave the military too much power over the government, making it hard for the new president, in a newly formed democracy, to exert any real form of power.
If a country has a revolution, someone must make sure that the reform assures the people of that country their basic rights. Otherwise, this leads to an endless chain of corruption; elections would be corrupt, and people would lack their basic rights, simply making them ghosts in a nation overrun with corruption.Bangladesh currently faces problems similar to those in Kenya. They are currently looking to keep their parliament clean as well as holding whole groups responsible for any corruption they take part in. People have begun losing faith in their government. The future of Bangladesh is solely dependent on its politicians (Knox). The people of a nation are the basis of the nation.
A government, let alone a nation, can’t work without the consent of its people (Keeping the Republic). For a nation to be free of corruption, the people must also be willing to do their part in keeping the nation free of corruption. Corruption exists anywhere where people allow it to exist. If we take any steps we can to extirpate corruption, we reinstate people’s faith in their democratically dead nations, and raise the strength of the country to that of other developed nations. In the case of developed nations, it can strengthen the economy as well as the willingness of the people to do their jobs.
It is absolutely necessary, for the future of democracy, to rid the countries of any form corruption that inhibits the growth of nations. Out of all of the forms of corruption that affect politics, corruption within politics and corruption, which impacts politics, they all have the same solution. It is absolutely necessary for every person of their nation to take part and take action in stopping corruption, not only in their own country, but on a global scale. If corruption exists, people must take action to report it. People must do anything they can to deter corruption and keep it from continuing.
Berlinski, C.. “The Dark Figure of Corruption. ” Policy Review 155 (2009): 71-81. ProQuest Political Science, ProQuest. Web. 19 Feb. 2010.
Ebbe, Obi N. I. “Political Corruption.” Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment. 2002. SAGE Publications. 19 Feb. 2010