If government represents us, that means it is our agent. It acts on our behalf — does what we, the people, want done.
So, do we, the people, want those who act on our behalf to act like liars, thieves and cheats? Or do we, the people, believe if an act is immoral for us, it should be immoral for them? Do we believe if an act is criminal for us, it should be criminal for them?
I hope the answers are no, yes, and yes. Because if we accept lying, thieving, cheating conduct from people in government, we have no reason to respect government. And people elsewhere in the world have no reason to respect us.
I bring this up because of another in the limitless list of examples of people in the government that supposedly represents us acting in ways that would get you, me, or anyone else thrown into prison and turned into paupers. The longer this kind of thing goes on, the less reason we, the people, have to respect the lawmakers whose laws apply to us but not to them.
Justin Rohrlich at Minyanville.com has the details on how US Senators and members of Congress have long obtained stock market returns that Warren Buffett could only dream of obtaining.
Rohrlich notes they enjoy “a substantial informational advantage compared to ordinary investors and even corporate insiders.”
And he further notes:
[C]ongressional ethics rules specifically state that members must not use privileged information gleaned during the course of their duties for personal gain. But the rule is just a rule; it is not legally binding, and the SEC has never brought an enforcement action against any member of the Senate or the House.
Insider trading is illegal for you and me and standard operating procedure for our government overlords, er, representatives.