There are many faces of corruption, many places of corruption, many cases where corruption plays a part.
Why does corruption exist? Man succumbs to greed, be it for power, for money, for glory or for personal gratification. Man succumbs to crime, maybe to support a drug habit or make money from those who have one, maybe to enact revenge, maybe in a crime of passion, maybe just to deal in 'dodgy' goods.
At a political level, there are those who seek power and will do anything to get it; they'll trample on anyone, they'll use underhand means, they'll make hollow promises, all the time charming and sweet-talking their way through the ranks, their public face always showing the right image, saying the right things whilst their private lives and discussions are quite the opposite.
Politics widens to the national, then international stage; the same tactics apply and, sometimes, are never exposed.
It happens, too, at a business level; banks, industrial companies, pharmaceutical companies, commercial business, right down to the individual businessman.
Sadly, too, it happens in our own private lives. We steal, we lie or (just as bad) withhold information, we cheat, we fight, we injure and some of us even kill.
Types of Crime
Some steal to make money; how does that affect those who are robbed? What about the elderly pensioner whose savings are then gone? Does she survive or does she give up and die? Does she have someone to help her or does her pride keep her quiet?
Some steal to support a drug habit or to make money as dealers. Can we understand those who have to feed a habit? Can we tolerate those who make it their business to supply the drugs, purely for gain?
Some plot another's downfall, or physically harm, or even kill in the name of revenge. Is this justified? Can we understand why this happens? Is it right to retaliate, to treat injustice with injustice?
Some have such strong feelings for someone, or such strong convictions, that they commit crimes of passion. Is that understandable? If someone acts without premeditation, can they be pardoned?
Then we have the cold-blooded killers, the rapists, the pedophiles. Can we possibly understand these people? Is there any way they can be forgiven, rehabilitated?
How Does it Start?
The basic instinct is the survival of the fittest;
- children instinctively push each other away to get to something they want, until they learn tolerance & kindness from their parents,
- they scream & shout in temper because they want something or don’t want to do something, until they learn, from their parents, that it gets them nowhere, that being kind and reasonable gets them rewards, the best of which is a kiss and a cuddle and told ‘what a good boy/girl!’,
- they cry more and more loudly when they are hungry, until they realise that they will be fed, they won't go hungry.
What happens, then, when a child is not given the tolerance and kindness, not taught that screaming doesn’t get them anywhere, not given kisses and cuddles, not ever told they’re good.
What happens when something bad happens, either in childhood, or later in life, that the victim sees as unjust or unfair and it seems that the only way to get anywhere is to take any means available whether or not that in itself is fair.
Have you ever stolen from the workplace? I’m talking about a pen, a pad of paper, a folder, some paper clips..... A little thieving is regarded by some as a ‘perk’ of the job; it’s nothing perhaps. However, like drugs which start with a little cannabis maybe, it can be the beginning.
‘I got away with that, so why not this? No one suffers, I’m not injuring anyone. Why shouldn’t I? I’m poor; no one gives me anything. How do they expect me to survive with little money?’
Then the slippery slope begins.
Those Who Suffer
- the pensioner loses his or her life savings through theft or deception,
- the mugged pedestrian falls, receives cuts and bruises and is afraid to go out again, or worse still, falls and has a heart attack, or is maimed for life, or dies,
- the child who is abused is scarred for life, may never be able to trust again, to have a loving relationship,
- the family of a murder victim are the ones who suffer through someone else's anger or other extreme emotion,
- the child or adult bullied at school or at work, loses self-esteem, feels abandoned, rejected, worthless and the repercussions ripple through the family.
There are many more.
How do we Deal with Corruption?
Why don’t we give up fighting corruption if it’s all around us?
We don’t give up because
- we’re natural survivors,
- we think we can make a difference,
- we hope the world can be a better place,
- we can make our own little corner of it a place which is better to live in by being kind to our friends and neighbours,
- most of all, we can teach our children how to go about doing all that.
Hopefully, the kindness and good examples will spread, the ripples will become wider and wider and drown the corruption little by little.
We don’t give up because we are in the majority! Despite the daily news telling us of wars, death, riots, murders, theft, poverty, disease and cruelty, there is much which is good in the world. People are being good parents, offspring, friends, neighbours, doctors, teachers...; they are making others’ lives better, richer, happier, healthier, safer. At least we do hear a little good news each day but not enough. There should be a compulsory hour or two on radio and television for good news, something to cheer us up, to inspire, to amuse, to give us a warm, cosy feeling. Yes, we need to know about what’s happening in the world but let’s have the wonderful with the dreadful, the amazing with the awful, the brave ones with the cowards. I was hard-pressed to find positive headlines when researching for this hub (and only one was in a newspaper!).
A Vision - What can we do?
Look to the ideal world? No, actually! That would be lovely but could we do without the challenge? Could we survive without something to strive for? Maybe. Let’s be realistic though, let’s take it one step at a time.
The vision for me is a world which is much more peaceful but at the same time is able to deal with crime, prevent most crime, understand the reasons for crime and deal with the perpetrators accordingly, humanely, with successful rehabilitation. We're getting there but it's still a long way off.
I believe the ideal world will never exist because mankind has free will and therefore will never be perfect. That doesn’t stop us trying to get close to perfection - what’s the point if we have nothing to aim for, nothing to give us satisfaction when we achieve it?
In my mind, it takes tolerance, understanding, forgiveness, faith in the good and the brave, faith in God if you like, whichever way you look at it. All well and good, you say; words are easy. All those good qualities are not so easy to keep in one’s heart. We are often stretched by bad deeds, bad words, bad situations, stretched to find any tolerance at all, any forgiveness when someone hurts us, any faith when a loved one is harmed.
However, if we can do our best to keep open minds and hearts, then we’ll be a step nearer to fighting the corruption around us. Corruption often comes from a wounded soul or a damaged child, a disappointed person who’s been cheated by a trusted friend, a person let down by a broken promise. Do we let them down further or do we try to understand why they act as they do?
I’d like to think I could help to make this a better world but I know I’m sadly lacking; what I do know is that it’s so important to keep trying.
Ways to Beat Corruption
What's your View?
Please tell me your views on this issue; there are many ways to tackle a problem and many people with innovative ideas - what's yours?
© 2012 Ann Carr
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on May 21, 2016:
jman00001: Thanks for reading and for your comment.
Jman from Texas on May 20, 2016:
Good article! I agree the fight against corruption is an uphill battle but a worthy one. I wrote an oil company hub on the subject. https://hubpages.com/politics/Dark-times-for-big-o...
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on November 28, 2013:
someone who cares: I appreciate your kind comments on my hub and I understand the fact that you are angry with much of the world. I think it's important to concentrate on what's good around us and try to do what one can to make the world a better place, to channel any anger into doing good.
I know one uses extreme language sometimes in conversation but it's not welcome in my hub; I thought about denying this comment but you have some valid points so I didn't. Thank you for reading and for taking the time to comment; please do not use 'f**k' on my hubpages comments again. Thank you.
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on November 24, 2013:
jirel: Thank you for your comment; yes, we have to look at the positive, it's what keeps the world going round. People working together to make a better place is the key. Thanks for stopping by.
jirel from Philippines on November 23, 2013:
Thank you for this hub.No matter what we will always try our best. Day comes after night. So, we have hope and we will never lose it. Voted up
jirel from Philippines on November 23, 2013:
A great read. You're right we cannot have a perfect world because we all are different. I believe in the ying and yang theory. There maybe plenty of corruptions in the world but there are good people working against it.We should never lose hope. Day comes after night. If everyone will work actively against it, corruption could be reduced.
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on November 17, 2013:
Tusitala Tom: Thank you for your kind comments. What you say about fear and self-image is so true and a great shame. I believe education has a lot to do with it. Great to have you pop by and contribute; much appreciated. Ann
Tom Ware from Sydney, Australia on November 16, 2013:
A wonderful Hub; one of the best I've read in a long while.
Corruption...all sorts of crime is also mentioned here. So what is the underlying cause?
I think the underlying cause for all crime is fear. Fear comes from a lack of love. The love of the self is paramount in this. But it must be love of the Real Self, not the congealed and conglommerate of thought patterns most of us generally think of as ourselves - our self-image or ego.
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on October 27, 2013:
Thank you Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay. It certainly would help if the governments around the world acted upon their promises of tackling poverty. Unfortunately they're too busy worrying about their status and power and they leave it to the charities who don't have enough funds. You're right that corruption often comes with poverty but it also comes with power. I appreciate your input.
Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay on October 27, 2013:
You know if we seriously desire for a corruption-free society, decent political atmosphere, has to put genuine commitment in our own mindset, most of the communities (such as Bengali or Malayalam) in this sub-continent are covered by ‘Culture of Poverty' (hopelessness), irrespective of class or economic strata, lives in pavement or apartment. We are not ashamed of the deep-rooted corruption in this society at heart, decaying general quality of life, bad Politico-Governance, poor work place, weak mother language, continuous consumption of common Social Space. We love to become parents only by self-procreation (blindfold support by lame excuses, followed by the very animal instinct) depriving their(the children) fundamental rights of a caring society, fearless & dignified living. Never search for other positive alternative gesture, a passionate way of parenthood, stop giving birth to any child him/herself till it improves up to the mark, co-parenting children those are born out of extreme poverty, instead. A deliberate attempt to touch the core of the society. Induce reasonableness in our (pool of insensitive persons) way of life. If a pure freedom is desired from vicious cycle of poverty, rotten capitalism need to involve ourselves in 'Production of space' movement, clean & quality Politics would certainly come up. – SB, Howrah-1, India.
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on June 21, 2013:
Thank you Ethan Green, for taking the trouble to read and to comment. Yes, we do need to focus on education - it's the answer to so many things. Sorry for the delay in responding - have a good weekend!
Ethan Green on June 18, 2013:
I'm glad to see people are voting for education and preventative measures, since anyone who works in criminal justice will tell you that the prison system just doesn't do as well as we would hope...
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on October 29, 2012:
soumya Mendon: I appreciate your comment and thank you for stopping by.
soumya Mendon on October 25, 2012:
corruption is not related with political leaders but now it spreads in common man also.Because we do not believe humanity. We have to remove corruption from myself first. Our teachers,are mostly responsible for it. All this lessons are thought in the school only. Today I am seen students who is in 9th standard cannot read or write.what audit or what inspection taken place. I asked audit report of sdo Bhiwandi Mumbai revenu secretary answered me that we cannot do audit of Judgement, order etc. then from where we will start?definitely I will start from the Root. Media from Mumbai are not taking News against Judiciary, they advise me to fight in court.This is the destiny .
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on July 27, 2012:
Yes bizandtechcitadel it certainly would be; we can only do what we can and hope for the best but it's amazing what people can do if they all do it together. Thanks for reading and leaving your comment; much appreciated.
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on July 15, 2012:
katyzzz; thanks for the comment. Yes people do seem to get off so lightly, be it the persistent juvenile offender or the corporate rogues who think they're untouchable (and some do seem to be!). Sorry for the delay in replying; I'm away and internet access is not as good as it should be. I appreciate you dropping by. Ann
katyzzz from Sydney, Australia on July 12, 2012:
Society would benefit from implementing new ideas, the situation is getting out of control, but letting people off so lightly, juveniles in particular does not serve any of us well and especially the perpetrators who just laugh and do it again
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on July 03, 2012:
Teru: thanks for the comment. Do you mean that if we dream corruption-free living, then it will happen? That would be great if everyone did the same but, sadly, there are those who are quite happy being corrupt. I appreciate you dropping by, reading and commenting.
Teru on July 03, 2012:
Dream acorruption free living
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on May 18, 2012:
Thanks for the comment thom w conroy and also for the follow. Collective action certainly does make a big difference! Looking forward to reading your hubs.
thom w conroy on May 17, 2012:
I agree totally - the only time we all lose in this issue is when we collectively give up. Keep fighting!
Ann Carr (author) from SW England on March 25, 2012:
Hi Billy! Thanks for another kind comment. Yes, I think it's the fact that people act together that makes the difference. Not my usual type of hub but I found that it made me really think about the problem and ask myself some questions! Off to enjoy some lovely Spring sunshine - hope your day's as good.
Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 24, 2012:
I agree Ann; to give up is unacceptable! We will do our small part and the small parts will make a big part and we will make a difference. Love the message in this hub and as always love your writing.