The Ethics Sage, Steven Mintz, comments on an earlier post.
Yes. We can do what is difficult but the first step is recognizing there is a problem. I haven’t seen that from any of our leaders and it’s certainly not discussed in the media. The work ethic and hunger for learning that once existed no longer is there. We have become a soft nation; too many have had it too good for too long. It used to be young people were motivated to succeed at least in part to have it better than their parents. Since they have been given everything they need and want, what’s left? The problem is exacerbated by our instant access culture. Press a button and you have what you want. Go on the Internet and download what you need. We are not a doing society anymore. We are a let others do it for us society. It has taken its toll and those of us who are trying to educate young people are constantly frustrated by the prevailing mentality of students — tell me what I need to know to get the highest grade or best job. I don’t have any answers because I don’t think many people recognize the problem or, if they do, it’s easier to just make believe it doesn’t exist.
Good Words. I, too, see a lack of leadership on moral issues. But we really can’t have a national dialogue without enforcement of the law against the financial sector. When we read daily of the profits of investment bankers against a back drop of investigative reports showing their culpability in financial disaster, it is difficult to tell anyone that high ethical standards are important. Just the opposite. The great investment banks live for profit without any consideration of any moral or ethical principle. They are willing to participate in the destruction of democracies, economies and the, occasional, forest; if it makes money.
In the next life they will be punished. I find that cold comfort when their actions are solid evidence that an immoral corporate culture can make you rich.
These people do not deserve their money. They do not deserve the high opinion in which they are held. They do not deserve the influence they have over the lives of others.
They do deserve salaries in proportion to what they produce, not a comical casino profit insured from blunder by the government, but salary based on value produced. Those among them who have committed crimes, prison sentences and confinement in real prisons with real prisoners. These captains of investment deserve to be rated according the their actual accomplishments and abilities not held up as examples to steer youth into ruthless pursuit of gain.
The culture I want rewards people based on their merits and at the very least values the common brotherhood of all human kind.