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Corruption & Power

Corruption 2020-12-30 22:38:35

If everyone around you was corrupt, would it make sense to stay uncorrupt?

This question came up in a conversation with a friend today. And like many morality questions, the right thing seems obvious in theory but it is never as easy in real life. 

In a lot of economies around the world, particularly in developing countries, there is rampant corruption. At first I assumed it was a result of mismanagement and lack of leadership alone. But as I get to interact with different types of people and work on projects with large amounts of money, I see how ripe a lot of situations are for corruption. The main culprit in my view is the inequality between the rich and the poor. That is the same cause even here in the US. The <1% already seem to have an unfair advantage that seems to get exponentially larger with generations. And the worst part is that the <1% get to be part of the law making body - further deepening the injustice. 

When someone is unlucky to be born to a family with less opportunities, mixed with blatant injustice or bad luck in life, it doesn't take much to push anyone to become corrupt. One justification is that there is a need to balance the playing field. Cognitive dissonance has a huge role at times like this. 

So when I think about the question again - how many people would not engage in corruption if everyone around them were corrupt? 

Corruption is a complex problem that is mixed with bias, cognitive dissonance, capitalism, herd mentality, self preservation and power. It is a problem that usually starts small but affects any group like an infectious cancer.  


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Even though the first sentence has a typo, it's a great starter. Good hook and thoughtful question.

I like the last paragraph in how it illustrates how complex this issue is. You could literally write 400 posts all diving deep into this issue of corruption... starting with the examples you listed off bias and cognitive dissonance for example. And each topic would prove that there is more to unravel, like a loose thread. See how much thought and idea can be given to one topic? I think all the great books that enact change happened to do so because the writer got obsessed with a single topic and kept unraveling and unraveling. 
2020-12-31 02:12:56
Thanks Sir Abe - Originally, the title of the piece was IF - then the question. I have added the IF to the question. 

You are right about the unraveling of different things within this one topic. A lot of the top 10 topics I listed are very intertwined and complex. You are right that there could be multiple posts on this topic and its related topics. 
2020-12-31 04:25:05
If you ever find that you are writing a series of posts that seem connected to each other you can start a collection. You can even go back to existing posts and place them into collections retrospectively once you've created a collectionl
2020-12-31 16:58:01
I thought Sir abe was pointing out the typo of subjunctive voice "if....were corrupt." I think one variable that plays a role in the decision of whether to be corrupt is how visible is the corruption to others? If it's possible to somehow hide the corruption, it would seem to be easier to take that route.
2020-12-31 17:47:47
Sir Abe - I created a collection but unable to edit to save this post in the collection. Am I doing something wrong?
2021-01-01 05:39:08