It seems to me, whenever and wherever some are above the law, what you have is not law but arbitrary rule. Another term for arbitrary rule is unlimited power, More than a matter of justice, when a culture allows certain people or groups to be above the law, that culture steps onto the path of destruction. That destruction is as sure as the Sun rises in the East. Tyranny always leads to societal discohesion, crime and poverty, as the people strive to follow their leaders into vice. When we see our leaders are above the law, we as human beings will emulate them and try to be just as corrupt, as those we are told to admire are. So, while allowing some to be above the law is immoral, it also has a very deleterious effect on the economy, society and indeed the culture itself. If we seek to leave our children a world wracked with tyranny, poverty, crime and violence, then by all means allowing some to be above the law is perhaps the best means to that end. If on the other hand…
Arbitrary rule simply means that the laws are inconsistent, random, subjective, and injudicious, and/or those that make the “laws” are themselves unaccountable. Arbitrary, like when they make laws that the little people are subjected to, but those that make the laws are not. A law that allows lawmakers to engage in an act, that would garner jail time if a common citizen did it, would be an example of inconsistent laws and therefore proof of arbitrary rule. When some people are caught, openly violating laws that they are supposed to be held to, but are not, is perhaps the most dangerous form of arbitrary rule… lack of accountability. It is not hard to recognize arbitrary rule if you know what to look for. All one needs to remember is, are the elite held to the same standards as a common person, do the laws apply to all equally and, are some above the law, the answer to these questions will inevitably tell the inquiring mind, whether or not he or she lives under arbitrary rule.
Arbitrary rule is always and everywhere a psychotic means to enrichment and power over others. As such, those that seek arbitrary rule are people who, by definition, should never be allowed anywhere near the levers of power, let alone unlimited power! You cannot claim that a person who is above the law, and can make laws that apply to everyone but him or herself… does not have unlimited power. What other definition of unlimited power is there? So what if the arbitrary ruler claims to be limited, by a no longer valid or upheld “constitution,” when in fact they are not. One has to ask oneself, is it reality that I favor, or a glittering lie? If I am connected inextricably to reality, then I must accept it no matter how ugly it is. Moreover, simply seeking to better oneself, makes one a human being, seeking to abuse power to enrich oneself at cost to humanity, is psychotic.
If we agree with Aristotle and admit, only those governments that serve all the people can be considered “Right” forms of government, which makes any government that serves only those that make the rules and their cronies, a “Wrong” form, then any type of arbitrary rule is a wrong form of government. All wrong forms of government are tyrannical in nature, according to Aristotle’s definition, and despotism is always exploited as a means to riches, rather than serve society as a whole. It should be obvious to anyone however, that those governments engaged in arbitrary rule, would not want that fact advertised. Like ancient Rome after the final intercine battle, that led to Octavius Caesar becoming emperor and establishing the Praetorian Guard, Rome pretended to remain a “republic,” but it was in name only, not at all in fact. So, you can cling to a glittering lie, or embrace an ugly truth, the first is the easy choice, and the second the more difficult.
We cling to glittering lies, believing that people who have lied to us, have proven themselves to be above the law, and have gone from rags to riches while in public office… actually work for the “downtrodden.” Many of us have invested so much emotional energy rooting for our team, which creates great cognitive dissonance, because admitting we have been rooting for villains instead of the heroes we believed they were, threatens our own self image. Mature adults however need to be reality based, living in a fantasy is a luxury best left for children, and so as adults we must take a hard look at our nations, societies and cultures asking ourselves… do we want to bequeath our children arbitrary rule or a land of laws, opportunities and wealth? If so, then we have to demand any and all forms of arbitrary rule be expunged from our countries, call for severe punishments of those exploiting their offices, and require from our leaders, without exception… accountability.