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trust and individual (ir)responsibility March 2, 2009

Posted by Bradley in : Uncategorized , trackback

I can’t help thinking that the big loss of trust which has hit the financial markets is related to lots of small recurrent losses of trust in all areas of life. Paul Krugman writes that:

you could say that American bankers, empowered by a quarter-century of deregulatory zeal, led the world in finding sophisticated ways to enrich themselves by hiding risk and fooling investors

There even seems to have been cheating in the UK’s University Challenge. Even though he had already graduated (and was therefore not at the time studying chemistry, but working for PriceWaterhoouseCoopers, one of the members of the winning team (from Oxford) apparently introduced himself as:

Sam Kay from Frimley in Surrey and I’m studying chemistry

Comments on the story posted to a BBC web page suggest that there is an inherent timing problem because it takes a long time to get from the initial audition to the final round of the competition, but it does seem that at some points when he said he was studying chemistry, Mr Kay was in fact working for an accounting firm.

(Update: The BBC disqualified the team).

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