Many shades of corruption

TO most people in their workaday lives, the notion of ‘corruption’ seems to carry connotations of the dishonest appropriation of state funds by governmental officials for their personal gain. To others, the problem includes both the demand and the supply sides, in the sense that it takes two hands to clap. However, the definition of corruption should not be so narrow.
Much has been written about the correlation between the supply and demand sides, linking the nature of corrupt practices to the systemic, public, private and individual planes. From the Buddhist point of view, there are four corrupt practices, namely, favouritism, anger or hate, delusion or ignorance and fear or intimidation.
In its common sense, the practice of corruption has its roots bypassing red tape in government offices. Nowadays, bribery has become conventional behaviour. This systemic corruption stirs up public anger because people have to grease the palm of officers to get documents signed and permits granted.
Needless to say, many people have the tendency to boast of intimacy with authorities in the hope that such familiarity will breed favouritism. As a direct consequence, the practice of name-dropping is fashionable.
Showing favouritism in the pretext of obedience to seniors in office is a form of corruption. In addition, seniors seem to be under the delusion that asking for favours from juniors, with or without intimidation, to get things done for their relatives or acquaintances is morally justifiable. All things considered, corruption in any form is unethical.

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