Government Nepotism Corrupts


Nepotism is defined (The American Heritage Dictionary, New College Edition) as “Favoritism shown or patronage granted by persons in high office to relatives or close friends.”

“Official” Government postulations on this subject can be found at the below link on “Prohibited Personnel Practices in US Government Employment” which contains:


The principles illustrated in Section 2302, Title 5, should also apply in private sector employment.  However, the reality of the situation, in both Government and the private sectors, often does not measure up.  As a former US Government employee I have observed many instances of violation of the principles and rules. Management can be very liberal and self serving in their interpretation and application of the principles.  However, in the private sector these decisions can adversely affect the “bottom line” and thus provide some level of limits to this use of patronage.

Reciprocal, self-serving application of the authorities vested in management is one tool that may be used within the organization’s management culture to obtain the desired ends for its management members.

If management is prone to use of these practices, it is very likely that other issues such as allocation of pay and other discretionary benefits will be subject to abuse to the detriment of other employees in the organization.  Morale and performance will also very likely suffer.  Each new beneficiary of these unethical practices most likely becomes a convert and perpetuates the practices.

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, New College Edition, 1976, includes the following definitions for “corrupt”:

To destroy or subvert the honesty or integrity of.

To ruin morally; to pervert.

To taint; contaminate; infect.

The above dictionary provides the following definition for “corruptionist”:

One who defends or practices corruption.

Each time someone is the beneficiary of this practice they likely deprive someone who believes in, and is dependent on, “the merit system” of the position.  Even if they are under no illusions about the reality of the system, defense against the practice is very difficult, especially for the “outsider” that may be unaware of the disposition of the position.

This organizational cultural lapse in attention to stated mandatory personnel practices also includes promotions and other personnel issues.  The recognition of this reality is affirmed by recent publicity about abuses in the public sector.  However, I believe this is a case where the principal of “the squeaking wheel gets the grease” applies, and the real problem will, again, not be addressed.  The highly vocal parties, I believe, pervert the issues.  “Management” adapts.  Management adopts. The level of corruption and abuse of positional privilege has reached new heights in the current Obama Administration.  The new abuses, of both type and magnitude, I believe, have a great potential for destruction of the country.

United States Office of Personnel Management – Official Site

Prohibited Personnel Practices in US Government Employment


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