There are two types of human power. The one is personal power, and the other is the power of office. Developing personal power, rather than pursuing the power of office, or before one pursues the power of office is a good thing to do. It is not necessary to have the one in order to have the other, and it is interesting that, mostly, when people have a lot of personal power, the desire for the power of office subsides. Examples of personal power would include those with personal physical power (martial arts experts), those with personal mental power (heavyweight intellectuals), and those with the strength of character to do the right thing in spite of enormous obstacles. Examples of those that hold the power of office would include the president and other political offices, CEOs and those who have senior positions in gigantic corporations, policemen who have authority over the general public, and men who wield power over their wives. People who tend to pursue personal power tend to be introverts because it’s an inner power and people who tend to pursue the office of power tend to be extraverts because it’s an outer things.
How and Why Power Corrupts, and Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely
by Tessa Schlesinger. Everybody knows the saying about how power corrupts, but few people have actually examined why this happens.
How Does Power Corrupt?
The Motivation for Corruption
When people who hold power want something, and they are not able to get it using the normal channels that everybody else does, some will use their power of office or their personal power to obtain it. This is corruption. The people who tend to be the most immune to corruption are those who have strength of character. Strength of character means the ability not to be corrupted despite temptation, doing the right thing despite the threat of death if one does so, and speaking the truth despite it consequent unpopularity, and/or loss of job or relationship.
Bullies Abuse Others to Feel Good About Themselves
Abuse of Personal Power
Bullies and thugs are people who have allowed their personal physical power to destroy and harm others. As these people tend to use physical force when they can’t get what they want through normal channels, they abuse their personal power. This is corruption of the character.
Verbal and Intellectual Abuse of Power
The Power of Manipulation and Threats
Intellectual bullies are rampant these days. They have learnt how to use silver tongues to manipulate people to get what they want. They provide partial information so that others make a decision in their favor. They speak louder so that one’s own response is drowned. They speak all the time so that nobody can get a word in edgeways. They use big words to people who don’t understand them. All of these tactics are those of a verbal or intellectual bully. They also are a corruption of personal power – using a way that is not socially acceptable to get what they want.
Books About Corruption
|Corruption: What Everyone Needs to Know®|
Corruption regularly makes front page headlines: public officials embezzling government monies, selling public offices, and trading bribes for favors to private companies genera...
|Corruption (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)|
Grindhouse Releasing is proud to present the FIRST-EVER U.S. home video release of the wildest, sickest and sleaziest swinging-sixties British horror thriller -CORRUPTION. The l...
|Corruption and Government: Causes, Consequences, and Reform|
The second edition of Corruption and Government updates Susan Rose-Ackerman's 1999 book to address emerging issues and to rethink old questions in light of new data. The book an...
|Corruption: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)|
Corruption is one of the biggest global issues, ahead of extreme poverty, unemployment, the rising cost of food and energy, climate change, and terrorism. It is thought to be on...
|Corruption in America: From Benjamin Franklin’s Snuff Box to Citizens United|
When Louis XVI gave Ben Franklin a diamond-encrusted snuffbox, the gift troubled Americans: it threatened to corrupt him by clouding his judgment. By contrast, in 2010 the Supre...
The Power of Office
Positions of Power Offer the Opportunity to Get Away with Criminal and Unethical Acts
Most people relate corruption toe the power of office, generally because the degree of suffering caused by that kind of corruption is much greater than that caused by the corruption of personal power. The saying that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely is a piece of folk wisdom that has come into the common lexicon as a result of observation. There are several steps that are taken on the road from no power to some power to absolute power, and it is during that journey that it becomes apparent whether someone has strength of character or not.
The Path of Corruption
How People Become Corrupt
As this person moves up through the ranks, he attains each rank through cheating in some way. It may be insider trading on the stock market; it may be paying off somebody not to tell what he saw, or it may giving a kickback payment to a government buyer to purchase one’s products. All of it gets the corrupt person what he wants. More to the point, the more power s/he gets, the more opportunities he has for corruption, and as s/he obtains greater and greater positions of power, the more corrupt that person becomes. And so it is that eventually, when someone attains absolute power, they are in a state of absolute corruption.
Why Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely
Power Corrupts, and Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely
Generally ambitious people desire power. Money and goods are a symbol that permits power over others. The reason they desire power is so that they can tell other people what to do. Telling other people what to do enables them to get more of what they want.
If people do not have strength of character (which is rapidly becoming the norm today because status, money, and possessions are more highly prized than a good character), then they are open to taking the easy path to getting what they want. This is what corruption is – doing things which are harmful to others in order to benefit oneself.
Once one has chosen to take the first small step to doing something that enables one to get something in a ‘wrongful’ way, and one gets away with it, it sets the path for a life of power and corruption. So, let’s say, someone cheats at school in order to get into college and then cheats at university in order to graduate magna cum laude. The pattern of corruption is already set. All these goals have been achieved through getting something they wanted by doing things in a way that is not acceptable to others because it harms them in some way. Yes, cheating does harm others, because it means the person who should have come first doesn’t, and therefore loses a rightfully earned reward.
Reason corruption is increasing in the world
Corruption is the Result of Low Standards and High Expectations
Its a result of a huge population on earth, it is very unlikely that there is a rarity of skills. For instance, there are masses of speech writers, people with leadership quality, people who dance sufficiently well to be entertaining, people who can do math, etc. As a result of this, it’s extremely difficult to reach any sort of elevated position unless one is truly brilliant at what happens.
When someone wants to reach that position, and there is a lot of competition, and they aren’t particularly the most likely to succeed, that’s when the corruption (another name is office politics) begins. It is no accident that the more successful people are, the more likely they are to be sociopaths, unethical, and corrupt.
How to Recognise if Someone is Corrupt
Corrupt People are Evasive, Tell Lies, and Avoid Confrontation.
People who are corrupt tend to lie, evade giving a detailed answer, tend to be secretive about their dealings, and seem to have lots of money without anyone being quite able to figure out how they did it. They might say something like, “Oh, I’m in silver.” What they won’t tell you is that they made a bunch of money on silver stock because they received an insider tip. Generally, when people are vague, it’s a warning sign. They will also contradict themselves, and the degree to which they contradict themselves is often an indication of how open to corruption they are.
Documentaries about Corruption
|Deliver Us from Evil|
|Zeitgeist: The Movie|
Zeitgeist: The Movie, by Peter Joseph. Originally released in 2007 as a non-commercial performance work - only later to evolve into an unprecedented internet sensation - Zeitgei...
Narrated by Academy Award nominee Joaquin Phoenix (WALK THE LINE, GLADIATOR), EARTHLINGS is a feature-length documentary about humankind's absolute economic dependence on animal...
Development of Strength of Character
Personal Power Develops When One is Young
Strength of character and integrity is the result of always saying no to doing things the wrong way. It develops as one suffers difficulties as a result of doing the right thing. There is no easy way to develop strength of character. When someone has it, they developed it because they went through difficult times for a long time, and despite being tempted many times, they always did the right thing - in spite of it being easier to do the wrong thing. The process starts early – in young childhood. Pretty much by the time one enters adolescence, one is set for life. It is extremely difficult to develop personal power (strength of character) when one is older.
Religion: The forgiveness of corruption
Religion and Corruption
For some, religion brings a change. When corrupt people give up the rewards they attained through corruption, then it the beginning of a true development of strength of character. When it is simply turning to religion as a result of deep inner guilt, then these people will retain the money and possessions which they obtained through corruption. They still do not have personal strength of character because they aren’t really repentant. True repentance means giving up the profits brought by 'sin.'
5 Scientific Reasons Powerful People Will Always Suck | Cracked.com
Science says being in charge not only attracts terrifying douche bags but creates them as well. And with that, here's the scariest article you'll read this month.
Upper class people more likely to behave unethically
New studies reveal something the well off may not want to hear. Individuals who are relatively high in social class are more likely to engage in a variety of unethical behaviors.
Corruption In America
In the United States today, it is not just the economy that is crumbling. The entire fabric of society is coming apart as well. Literally almost wherever you look you can find rampant corruption in America.
Judicial Watch Announces List of Washington’s “Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians” for 2011 | Judic
Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released its 2011 list of Washington’s “Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians.
Hugh Hefner's daughter betrayed by her husband as he bought and sold Playboy stock for years without
Christie Hefner served as CEO of her father's company from 1988 until 2009, and during that time her husband disobeyed her specific instructions not to buy or trade any Playboy stock for fear of a conflict of interest.
Can one develop strength of character?
The more corrupt one has become, the less likely it is that one will ever attain strength of character. Essentially, the further one has traveled on the downward path, the more difficult it is to turn around and begin the upward path. Very, very few attempt it, and even fewer manage to make the change. That said, if you're interesting in developing strength of character, read the wiki link. the only solution to avoiding corruption when the opportunity for corruption presents itself is the strenth of will to say no.