That is the sub-headline of an article in Sunday’s Wall Street Journal about how the Clinton campaign is going to attack the Trump campaign. Notice the phrase “self-interest”.
The reality is that politicians, agency heads, and others in government (the political class) are just as self-interested as everyone else.
The conventional wisdom is that the political class acts in the interests of the country, state, locality, or on behalf of some group of victims. Right? Nope. They enjoy power, money, prestige, enhanced reputation, and loyalty as a result of their actions. So is that not acting in their own self-interest? Of course it is. They take credit for their actions by holding press conferences and issuing press statements. They want to be remembered in the history books. They attach their name to laws, i.e. Smoot–Hawley, Dodd–Frank, Obamacare. But all this gets lost in the partisan debate about the issue being acted upon.
What’s worse is that their actions can have long-lasting effects on thousands or millions of people. Don’t be fooled.