Power Corrupts, Corruption Empowers

Political Scientist
In The Dictator’s Handbook: Why Bad Behavior is Almost Always Good Politics, Bruce Bueno de Mesquita nakedly examines the (often ugly) means by which people are able to gain and keep power.
  • Transcript

TRANSCRIPT

Bruce Bueno de Mesquita: There is an interesting interplay between power corrupting and corruption empowering.  The causality does not go one way.  It is not that power leads people to be corrupt, but rather, people who are prepared to be corrupt are more likely to come to and hold onto power because, after all, to hold onto power you need to keep the loyalty of the folks who keep you in office,and if that happens to be a small group of people such as in a dictatorship the efficient way to govern is to allow those people to be corrupt so that they make lots of money by being loyal to you, and that keeps you in power.

Directed / Produced by
Jonathan Fowler & Elizabeth Rodd