Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Most and Least Corrupt Countries in the World... by what standards?

map of most 
corrupt countries
Transparency International

The stats and map are posted. Sunny piss-yellow, golden places are "good" or, rather "very clean". Menstrually bloody red places are "bad". Darker bloody red places are VERY bad, or "highly corrupt" according to this report. Men piss on things to mark them. When women bleed "down there" they are said to be dirty.

How much you wanna bet that if a bunch of white men are deciding what countries are most corrupt, the ones white men patriarchally, racistly, militarily, and economically destroy will be red while the countries where white men live will be yellow or golden? For the really big version of this map, that has more detail and information, please see *here*.

We can note in the top left corner how "corruption perceptions index measures the perceived levels of public-sector corruption  in 178 countries around the world."

What is clear is that whoever is deciding the criteria for what constitutes "most corrupt" and "least corrupt" has some major biases against what might be termed "global-impact corruption". A definition is posited which disallows factors which would have the U.S. ranked as most corrupt. It goes a bit like this: "We're not talking about corruption in the sense of breaking the law," she said. "We're talking about a sense that the system is corrupted by these practices. There's an integrity deficit."

What if we were going by breaking the law? Breaking international laws of human rights, for example? Breaking the law in terms of starting and continuing illegal, corrupt wars in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, where the U.S. has been militarily ruling for years. Note how Iraq and Afghanistan make the "most corrupt" list but the U.S. is at the other end of the spectrum, in the "least corrupt 25".

What if we were making determinations based on countries that make and reinforce laws that allow corruption to occur but appear to be "free trade"?

What if we were going by breaking our own laws against raping children in our homes, nationally, regionally, and internationally?

Which countries claim that men raping women is a crime and his awful but allow it to flourish and protect rapes that are filmed as "free speech"?

Which countries pride themselves on being anti-racist white practicing white supremacy?

Isn't "hypocrisy" a sign of corruption?

Which countries in the Global North hoard the most wealth and resources, at the expense of the rest of the Global South? Which countries have been committing genocide unabated for the longest periods of time? The U.S. has been at it since before it became an allegedly more perfect union. And it shows no signs of stopping as it strives for even greater "perfection".

What if we were basing this on this criterium: which country most supports the most wage slavery and sexual slavery while also having the material and military means to stop it?

Which country claims to be most egalitarian, most fair, most just, most free, while participating in activities that are torture, criminal, barbaric, genocidal, and gynocidal?

Which countries are most responsible for working at polluting and killing the Earth. Where's England on the list with their BP corruption? Where's does the U.S. with ExxonMobil, Halliburton, and many other evil-doing corporations rank?

Which countries funnel the most armaments to poorer countries so that poor people can kill each other in ways that would be utterly impossible were it not for those weapons of mass destruction?

The countries that are most corrupt according to the above and other measurable atrocities would be some of these golden yellow areas: the U.S. and Western Europe. There are countries where rape is endemic in ways it is not in the U.S., but the U.S. claims to respect women and calls itself post-feminist, while making rape inevitable, and while it and European countries socially, politically, economically, and naturally destablising every country where rape is at alarmingly atrocious levels.

The map above and the rest below are from Transparency International. Please click on the title below to link back.
Transparency International

Corruption seems endemic. It follows war and chaos like an unwelcome cousin. Transparency International has just released its annual report ranking corruption across the world.

At the bottom of the list, the most corrupt, are countries hit by warfare and strife, unsurprisingly. Somalia is the worst, followed by Burma, then Afghanistan and Iraq. The least corrupt countires are Denmark, New Zealand, and Singapore, unchanged from last year.

In a press release, the organization said, “Notable among decliners are some of the countries most affected by a financial crisis precipitated by transparency and integrity deficits.” Greece fell from 71 to 78 and Italy from 63 to 67. The US also fell, from the 19th spot to the 22nd. From Reuters:
Nancy Boswell, president of TI in the United States, said lending practices in the subprime crisis, the disclosure of Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme and rows over political funding had all rattled public faith about prevailing ethics in America.

"We're not talking about corruption in the sense of breaking the law," she said. "We're talking about a sense that the system is corrupted by these practices. There's an integrity deficit."

Various financial scandals at state and city level had encouraged the impression that the regulatory oversight was weak and that influence could be bought, she added.
Corruption is something that just becomes ingrained in a society and once it's there it's hard to stop. It becomes a habit of mind, a sense that this is simply how things done. An official pamphlet given to Iraqi refugees who are heading to the States advises them not to bribe police officers. After working in Iraq for years I came home from one trip and had to go to the DMV. I'm waiting in line, as one does, and all I can think is, "Who can I bribe to make this go away?" To address corruption you have to change a society's whole way of thinking about what the cultural norms are, which is not easy, to say the least.


Bluetraveler said...

Hahaha, it's only fair for Italy to be red when there's a man such as Berlusconi as Prime Minister!
You know how Italy is called now by some Italians? "Whoreocracy". See the Ruby scandal for the reasons (and I don't want to oppress most actual prostitutes with this, they are already misunderstood slaves :( )

Julian Real said...

Hi Bluetraveler,

I'm linking your blog on my blogroll. Thanks for stopping by.

Yeah, I know all about the problems with Berlusconi. I think I did a separate post about him once, but can't remember. What a completely misogynist jerk. And the U.S. thought Sen. John Edwards and Pres. Bill Clinton were bad! (And, yes, they were/are.)

Bluetraveler said...

Not that the others are good, but he's so bottom of the barrel. And he's so short he probably can't even look outside. Ok, I'll stop with heightism, it's just that the ways he employs to look younger/taller/not bald are so obvious and ridiculous. And that's just scratching the surface of that horrible man, and the videocracy he turned Italy into. I'm thinking about moving abroad in the future, seriously, because helping Italy while being in Italy is hard, especially as a physicist and as a FAB physicist to boot.

Julian Real said...

When is the dude gonna step down or be booted out of office? He really is an embarrassment to all of us who are Italian.

Bluetraveler said...

When the soft dictatorship Italy really is gets reformed into a real democracy. The Magistrati from Milan are processing him (while he's calling them "dirty communists" and such). Let's hope it will work this time.

Julian Real said...

Ciao Bluetraveler,

incrocerò le dita.

(For those who don't read Italian:
"I'll cross my fingers".)