Government Ethics

            If American Idol’s Simon Cowell sat on your city council or county commission, would he be a help or a hindrance to ethical decision-making?

             As someone who seems to be swayed by no outside opinion or influence, my guess is that, from a consideration of ethics, he would be a help.

             In past posts I’ve

            Many sermons and discussions on ethics include a story from an episode of The Andy Griffith Show.  Today’s post is no different.

            In one of the later Andy Griffith episodes when Opie is older and the show was filmed in color, a man from “somewhere up north” robs a bank in Raleigh and is caught

I met a girl who sang the blues
And I asked her for some happy news,
But she just smiled and she turned away.
I went down to the sacred store
Where I’d heard the music years before,
But the man there said the music wouldn’t play.

                                                       And in the streets the children screamed,

            Earlier this week I wrote about ethics laws affecting local governing boards.  On Friday I was in Raleigh where the News & Observer ran the front page banner headline “51 Charges for Former Easley Aide.”       

             I met Easley aide Ruffin Poole briefly only once.  I have dealt with him on three or four matters over

January 1, 2010 marked the beginning of both a new year and, potentially, a new era in local government.

             Beginning January 1, all governing boards of cities and counties and boards of education and sanitary districts must adopt a code of ethics guiding decisions by that board.  The code of ethics must contain at least