Fwd: corruption and cronyism: Rife in UK horror!


Fun topic for the week has been pointing out how corrupt we are and quite how loudly we would tut-tut if we heard about it happening in Kenya (or the developing world in general - sorry Annie - "global south")

Favourite of the week is scenario swapping : posh contemporary art dealer flies prospective clients to Denmark in private jet, wines dines and gives them presents: no obligation (Not Corrupt) versus African arms dealer flies white, male, prospective clients to Nigeria in private jet, wines dines and gives them presents etc, maybe a card at Christmas?
What's the difference here - as long as both are legitimate businesses? Maybe it's just a moral issue - but then surely corruption and cronyism are all about drawing moral lines.
There are lots of things that aren't illegal but that most people would find repellant or "wrong". Ask any city banker.

For example referrals at work: 'networking' or cronyism? At what point did it become reasonable to expect a bonus for head-hunting your mates?
McKinsey and Co Alumni: Dynamic Professional Network. Rampant and inexcusable corruption on a micro-level. http://www.mckinsey.com/aboutus/alumni/
Cash-in-hand for cleaners or plumbers: supporting black market and illegal labour.
Being taken out for lunch by suppliers: nice or naughty?
Client perks generally: if you're buying then they're paying. Kids take note, - if you want a nice life - orientate your career towards spending the budget, not making it.

This rolls out across the arts in even more prolific forms. No-one in the art-world gets anywhere without knowing someone or being supported by someone else. Patronage they used to call it in the old days. Most authors network their way into the hands of an agent. Musicians need luck, money and contacts - before they even buy an amp. Talent is not plucked fresh and stinging from the street, except for 14 year old models and may God have mercy on their souls.
I think I need to put the name Marcel Mauss, here mainly to make the post look post-modern and intellectual in searches. The ethic of reciprocity an' all that... Frankly I have very little idea who he is though, sorry, but apparently he's the whole point...

Whether it's family or friends we all use those around us to help us get on in life, get a bit further. So when someone gives us something we are bound to give something back, and we expect when we give... whether that's professionally or with friendship. A useful realisation in life is that much success, prestige, acclamation, fame - comes on the backs of contacts and cash. Talent is a big, fat, enjoyable myth (only good for sustaining success, like a life-jacket). So where do we draw the line, how can we see it?

Written by
Tea Uglow
There is, it turns out, always a Tea in team. And Beth. Of course. x
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