This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.


← Why Powerful People -- Many of Whom Take a Moral High Ground -- Don't Practice What They Preach

ukvillafan's Avatar Jump to comment 24 by ukvillafan

For the love of dog .....

Right folks - here's the deal

1. Human beings are lousy at following anyone's moral quidelines, including their own. We like to think we can, but mostly, we can't, at least when opportunity presents itself.

2. The people with more power may well be more ruthless and less obviously capable of maintaining a set of moral standards - after all, power results from the ability to be ruthless as much as anything.

3. People in positions of power, by definition, give more orders than those who are not.

4. These orders or pronouncements are most likely to accord with some given societal view of prevailing moral standards, mostly because if they do not, then the person is likely to lose that position of power pretty sharpish.

5. Their outward moral stance and subsequent moral behaviour are more likely to be remarked upon/noticed.

6. Hence the phenomenon described.

OK, so these are all sweeping generalisations. Perhaps some proper science is useful to solidify such views?

Fri, 01 Jan 2010 18:45:00 UTC | #427479