Center for Ethics in Public Life | St. Louis Public Radio

Center for Ethics in Public Life

Wally Siewert, the director of the center for ethics in public life at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, discussed money and politics on Thursday's "St. Louis on the Air."
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Earlier this month, the spotlight was cast on the brand new nonprofit called A New Missouri Inc. Formed by Gov. Eric Greitens’ campaign treasurer, the group’s focus will be to advocate for the governor’s policy agenda. Its nonprofit status assigned by the IRS means that A New Missouri can take unlimited contributions and it does not have to release information about who gave those contributions.

Protesters are greeted by lines of state and county police during a demonstration march on the Ferguson police station on August 11, 2014.
Bill Greenblatt | UPI

An upcoming conference on Ferguson has promised “not to re-litigate the past,” but organizers instead hope to draw lessons for the future on both the rights of protesters and the difficult job that police officers face when they put on their uniforms each day. “The Ethics of Ferguson – Policing, Prosecuting, and Protesting” is the name of the conference, which will take place at Harris-Stowe State University on Friday, Nov. 20.

Áine O'Connor

After the resignations of Rep. John Diehl, R-Town and Country, and Sen. Paul LeVota, D- Independence, earlier this year following realizations of sexually explicit texts and advances toward college-aged interns, the public’s eye has turned not just to the political decisions of Missouri lawmakers but the culture in Jefferson City as well.

Public faith in those serving the public good at the Capitol seems to have taken a serious hit.

Wikipedia

Political dysfunction has been bandied about for several years, but its meaning remains unclear. That’s the first order of business Friday at the Political Ethics Conference at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

“One of the reasons that we decided to do the conference was precisely because everyone complains about political dysfunction, but you ask five different people what it is and you’ll get five different answers,” Wally Siewert, director of UMSL’s Center for Ethics in Public Life, told “St. Louis on the Air” host Don Marsh on Thursday.

Commentary: Is political ethics an oxymoron?

May 20, 2013

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: UMSL’s Center for Ethics in Public Life opened its doors 18 months ago, and as I was introducing myself as its new director, I began to notice a trend. In every new meeting the idea of "ethics for politicians" provoked a knowing smile and a sad shake of the head and a comment like: “Is that an oxymoron?” Or “Well you’ve certainly got your work cut out for you.”