Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Business of Policing Ethics

You may have seen this article on the CNN website: "30 Rock" Biggest Ethics Violator on TV.

According to an organization called Global Compliance, which describes itself on its website as "the leading global provider of comprehensive, integrated ethics and compliance solutions, ranging from employee hotline services to harassment training to risk assessments, benchmarking, and inspection and validation services ... (providing) ethics and compliance solutions to more than 4,000 clients in over 200 countries and territories," the popular television show "30 Rock" leads all shows on television in the number of ethical violations per episode (11). Our favorite show, NCIS, scored an average of 5 ethical violations of various kinds per episode.

I'm not sure which is sadder - the fact that squishy ethics pervade our popular entertainment, or that there's money to be made by a global provider of a service to track them.

And we haven't even mentioned Congress and its vast supporting army of lobbyists and lawyers yet.

What appears on television and in the movies reflects the world we wish we had. We want to see bad people pay the price for their crimes, instead of being released on legal technicalities or buying their way out of trouble with high-priced lawyers. We get tired of having to watch everything we say and do to make sure that we're being politically correct. We wish we could trust our elected representatives to act in the larger national interest instead of being driven by hyperpartisan political agendas or bought by organizations with deep pockets.

We're getting what we think we want when we watch police on television egregiously run roughshod over the rights of citizens, and when we see characters "tell it like it is," regardless of the feelings of others.

If we just all paid a bit more attention to the Golden Rule, the Ten Commandments, and honesty as the best policy, there wouldn't be a market for a firm like Global Compliance, an arrogantly self-righteous buffoon like Julian Assange and his WikiLeaks site, or HR staffs that have to be maintained to police behavior that should have been corrected years before by attentive and caring parents.

But sadly, it's the world we live in.

Enjoy the rest of 2010. Perhaps things will be better in 2011, but I'm not holding my breath.

Have a good day. More thoughts tomorrow.



KathyA said...

Interesting -- I had to go to the site to see if the infractions were on set or in the story lines. Wonder how the 'on set' actual ratings would be.

Also, I noticed that Kelsey Grammer is getting married for the third time and they're expecting his fifth child...just thought I'd mention it.

craziequeen said...

But, but.....when there are obvious ethical transgressions in NCIS, it's usually DiNozzo and somebody always puts him in his place before long ;-)
Did they count the illustrative transgressions? Hehehe - I bet they had a ball with ...the episode with the Equality training...that was hilarious... and made a point.


Mike said...

I wonder if DiNozzo getting slapped on the back of the head is part of their count..... naaaaa, that's just funny.