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The Democratic LeaderHow Democracy Defines, Empowers and Limits its Leaders$
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John Kane and Haig Patapan

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199650477

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199650477.001.0001

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The Moral Dilemma of Democratic Leadership

The Moral Dilemma of Democratic Leadership

(p.49) 3 The Moral Dilemma of Democratic Leadership
The Democratic Leader

John Kane

Haig Patapan

Oxford University Press

Democracy is held to be the most honest and open form of government, yet democratic citizens typically feel that their leaders are seldom completely truthful. This chapter explores in depth this commonplace paradox. Part of the issue is that democracies want a moral leader who will also do whatever is needed for the sake of the sovereign people. The tension between the moral and the necessary proves to be an intractable problem for democracies, and gives rise to the persistent dilemma of hypocrisy for democratic leaders.

Keywords:   morality, ethics, lies, hypocrisy

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