Bin Spin

We teach our children to speak the truth. We know that it is usually better to tell the truth, admit mistakes and move on. It makes life simpler. There is also great humility in admitting mistakes. We know it is this quality that people appreciate and value. Across the board we have seen the gradual disappearance of that cluster of principles that went by the name of morality. Whatever its source – religion, conscience, custom – it meant that there are certain things you did do because they were not done. You don’t take advantage of your position just because you can. You should be guided, even if no one is watching, by a sense of what is right. Somehow in recent years the idea has prevailed that we can do without any moral sense. Self-imposed restraints are dismissed as simply old fashioned and outmoded. After the recent financial collapse the question has been asked if our markets need more regulation. But no amount of regulation will restore our sense of honour and shame. When right and wrong become relativised and morality is condemned as “judgmental”, there is nothing people won’t do if they can get away with it. No regulation will save us – people will simply outwit the regulators.

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