Let’s take a look.
A Cancer at the heart of so many of the problems we face around the world.
Across a great deal of the modern world corruption continue to prevail.
We have all resorted to it in one form or the other: The Dash, The Sweetener, The Kickback, The Backhander, Hush Money, Payola, Soap, Fix, Graff, Look Money, The Brown Envelope, The Political Party Donation and the Tip all bribes.
Think of Putin’s Russia, Zardari’s Pakistan, Karzai’s Afghanistan, or modern Saudi Arabia. In all cases government has been converted into a form of pillage by a ruling family, individual or ruling elite.
Why? Because human nature is venal.
There is little point in trying to categorize or to list all the forms of corruptions.
World wide, corruption that has being going on long before the arrival of Capitalism.
It is sufficient to say that, a world-wide contemporary malaise which we could call the revolving doors has been around and will continue to exist as long as we and the planet we live on are turned into consumer products.
These days it is treated with the same taboo (over pointing a finger and stirring up concerns) since time memorial.
For years we have all knew that FIFA lined the pockets of those on the inside. However no one lifted a figure. It was met with a reluctant sigh.
We see our world leaders gathering at International meeting after International meeting to addressing World Poverty and Inequality only to be undermined by Corruption.
The World Economic Forum recently estimated that Corruption adds about 10% to business costs globally. While the World Bank says that $1 trillion dollars are paid in bribes every year, about 3 % of world GDP.
It costs the EU £120 million a year.
The question as to how to get good governance in corrupt countries when they see themselves surrounded by corruption in sport, business, banking, religion, and power.
Scandals in the corporate world, whether centered around corruption, bribery, fraud, or other greed tend to have a significant impact on the economy.
Take your pick from a few of the most recent.
The Bernie Madoff Ponzi Scheme. $65 billion.
Health South. $1.4 billion.
The Stanford Financial Fallout. $8 billion.
Tyco Ltd.$600 million.
Lance Armstrong and the Livestrong Foundation.
Bearn Stearns Companies Inc. government bailout
Parmalat. €14 billion.
BANINTE. $2.2 billion deficit.
Adelphia Communications Corp.$2.3 billion.
Global Crossing Ltd. $22.4 billion with debts amounting to $12.4 billion.
HIH Insurance $5.3 billion.
Martha Stewart’s Mess.
Deutsche Bank Spying Scandal.
Jerome Kerviel and the Société Générale Banking Scandal.€4.9 billion.
Barings Bank.$1.3 billion.
Hewlett-Packard Spying Scandal.
Siemens.bribes may have been up to 100 million Euros.
World Com.$11 billion with $3.8 billion in fraudulent accounts.
Woodrow Wilson’s Engagement, Grover Cleveland’s Illegitimate Son, The Petticoat Affair, The Credit Mobilier Scandal, Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemmings, The Whiskey Ring, Iran-Contra, Teapot Dome, Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky,Watergate. US financial imperialism in Latin America, or Washington’s refusal to confront Israel over its maltreatment of the Palestinian population.
62% of Indians had first hand experience of paying bribes or influence peddling to get jobs done in public offices successfully.
Indian Coal Allocation Scam – 2012 – Size 1.86 L Crore.
2G Spectrum Scam – 2008 – 1.76 L Crore.
Wakf Board Land Scam – 2012 – 1.5-2 L Crore.
Commonwealth Games Scam – 2010 – 70,000 Crore.
Telgi Scam – 2002 – 20,000 Crore.
Satyam Scam – 2009 – 14,000 Crore.
Bofors Scam – 1980s & 90s – 100 to 200 Crore.
The Fodder Scam – 1990s – 1,000 Crore.
The Hawala Scandal – 1990-91 – 100 Crore.
Harshad Mehta & Ketan Parekh Stock Market Scam –1992 – 5000 Crore Combined.
Brazil’s biggest ever corruption scandal.
Court approves inquiry into dozens of senior leaders, including former president Fernando Collor, over kickbacks from the state-owned oil company, Petrobras. In total, 54 people are to be investigated by the attorney general, including 21 federal deputies and 12 senators.
Chinese authorities have seized assets worth at least 90 billion yuan ($14.5 billion) from family members and associates of retired domestic security tsar Zhou Yongkang, who is at the center of China’s biggest corruption scandal in more than six decades.
You got phone-hacking, the LIBOR banking scandals, child abuse allegations, the manipulation of evidence by police over the Hillsborough disaster, the 2013 horse meat labelling scandal, British involvement in torture,and so forth.
Corruption, you could say is “a central mode of power-mongering in contemporary Britain”. Theft of public assets.
- Barclays and HSBC have been named in legal papers filed in the US
- Documents have also named London-based Standard Chartered Bank
It could be said that Britain is as corrupt as klepto-states such as Afghanistan or Russia, and that only residual racism prevents us from perceiving this.
The last prime minister to make a fortune out of public office was Lloyd George.
Tony Blair is admittedly an exception but he has acquired his wealth since leaving office. No one has ever suggested that he took (or takes) bribes.
Nigeria is not quite the most corrupt country on earth.
Nigeria’s 170 million-strong population should be prospering in a country that in recent years has launched four satellites into space and now has a burgeoning space programme.
Nigeria is sitting on crude oil reserves estimated at 35 billion barrels (enough to fuel the entire world for more than a year), not to mention 100 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. The resource curse.
70 per cent of Nigerians live below the poverty line of £1.29 a day. It is estimated that since 1960, about $380 billion (£245 billion) of government money has been stolen — almost the total sum Nigeria has received in foreign aid.
Whether the country is ruled by civilians or soldiers, who invariably proclaim their burning desire to eradicate civilian corruption, it makes absolutely no difference.
Frankly, we might as well flush our cash away or burn it for all the good it’s doing for ordinary Nigerians.
And you wonder why ship loads of people are arriving in Europe.
Haiti or the Congo are more corrupt than Nigeria..
Corruption and poverty unfortunately go hand-in-hand.
Corruption leaves children without mothers, families without healthcare, people without food, the elderly without security, and businesses without capital.
What can be done?
The general consensus is,
We need to increase the participation of people in decision-making, making public spending and budgets more transparent, and making law enforcers and public services answerable to ordinary people.
We need to make governments publish key data on spending. Simply getting the information out there would be a good first step.
Today only a fifth of the 49 lesser developed countries have access to information laws.
2.5 billion people still live in poverty. This is not sustainable.
By 2030 the population will reach 8.5 billion.
In the latest Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index that measures how corrupt the public sector is perceived to be, two-thirds of the 177 countries ranked scored less than 50 on a scale where 100 is considered clean.
The average score of the world’s least developed countries is 28.
My belief is that the Smart Phone is already getting rid of low-level corruption, by reducing opportunities and incentives to engage in corrupt practices.
The world needs sustainable, equitable, and clean development before large-scale corruption can be tackled.
This can only be achieved by making Capitalism contribute, IE placing a 0.05% Aid Commission on all High Frequency Stock Exchange Transactions, on all Sovereign Wealth Funds Acquisition and on all Foreign Exchange Currency transactions over ($20,000) : see previous posts.