Sunday, June 27, 2010

Do they know?

Ever wonder if leading politicians and bureaucrats have actually been briefed, that they actually understand how completely humans have fucked the world, but are just playing along to avoid a general panic and rebellion?

All of those still out there "informing the public" and trying to get politicians on-board: what if they already know, and are just pretending they don't get it, keeping up a front, so that great changes wont happen in their life-time, and they can go on comfortably as before. After all, they are very comfortable in "power", with big pay-checks, position, homes and families--why rock the boat? Maybe they just want to live out their days in the lifestyles to which they have become accustomed...

You would think they would get a decent briefing when they take office...

12 comments:

Doffen said...

They do not care, they are only looking for excuses to grab power, if politicians took the climate seriously they would lead and not limit their proposals too what is currently politicly fashionable.

Thor said...

You would think they would get a decent briefing when they get into office... Must be human frailty...

Thor said...
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Thor said...

Hugo Chavez: If the climate were a bank they would have saved it already...

Meg said...

Well, it's not so easy. Being a higher ranked bureaucrat my self, I have experienced that we were forced by the ministry to change reports in favor to the government.

And creatures are not thinking in long terms. It's a little bit like me eating something I know will cause pain the day after, but it's just so good there and than. Even if I know I will be tired the next day, I stay up late, surfing on the Internet. And what's about people living together for years, in spite of their spouses abusing them?

We all are weak in one way or another; neither you or me are better - even if we try hard and might feel superior compared to others.

Of course this is no excuse; we have to continue doing our very best, with hope to contribute to save the world.

We have to point out the problems, trying to get political power with becoming corrupt; to be those ones making the difference.

Meg said...

...of course I meant WITHOUT becoming corrupt ourselves...

茹順茹順 said...
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Thor said...

Thanks for your comments, Meg. Keep watching this space for a post exactly on this topic...

Thor said...

Isn't the giving in to pressures from the top, against your professional judgement, merely another form of corruption?

Bummi said...

Hi again. The different name is due to that I registered i the meantime, I don't know why I got that «Meg» name in the first place, that's something given automatically.

I understand your question, which seems to be rather your point of view than a question. Concerning the expression «corruption» there are lot of different understandings. I assume you might point to the definition «the abuse of public power, office, or resources by government officials or employees for personal gain, e.g. by extortion, soliciting or offering bribes.». According to that definition it could be a form of corruption, BUT: there is no direct personal gain for a single person in my case. Those instructions are usually not given by a minister him- or herself, but by public officers who tries to follow the politics given from the government.

Does it make me corrupt, who changes or takes parts out of a report (I never got to know any cases where officers were forced to take something in a report which is not true, but only the demand on hiding information or changing to more moderate expressions or a modification of the truth)? As an employee, you do not have lots of choices. You have to consider how serious the demand from above is. If you not disagree with the new text, there won't be any problem.

But if, as you indicate, the new text is in conflict with your professional judgment, you've got a problem. In that case you have to decide if it is better to accept the lie, and being able to continue working for trying to make a difference in the positive way, or to go to the public, which probably will force you to quit your job, or even can put you in jail, like in the recent Wikileaks-case. That decision is not easy to make; how serious the lie is, and the impact it will have both on the field you are working at and the environment is important.

Back to your question: Is the giving in to pressures from the top, against your professional judgment, merely another form of corruption? For being able to say yes, the employee must have a personal gain in one form or another. Getting fired is a thread, if you define avoiding getting fired as a personal gain, the answer might be yes; but you also have to consider how serious the giving in and it's consequences are. Fortunately, I never got in that position. I do not see myself as corrupt in my case.

This problem is occurring both concerning researches done by public institutes incl. directorates, and research institutes which get paid for their research from those ordering the report. If the institute is not making the conclusions the ordering organization desires, it might not get any further orders. This is a dangerous dilemma. So: if you read a report, be aware of who made it, and who paid for it.

Thor said...

I see the dilemma. Still, if you define corruption as an official taking money to obtain a certain result then I would say one is on dodgy ground when taking a salary to produce a text or something that is against one's professional judgement, then one might say that was corruption even if the person "giving you money" happened to be your boss... Of course, one might say that you are just taking orders--but that is the Nürenberg defense... As you say, it may depend on how important it is...

Bummi said...

I totally agree with you.