13th August 2011
Transparency International’s model does not attack the cause but the symptom
I support TI and indeed, all anti-corruption work. But I hadn't heard the fully story of TI till today when I chanced upon the following video (worth listening – 16 minutes). After listening to the video, do consider reading my comments, below.
(to get the full screen option click this, instead)
I thoroughly commend TI's founder Peter Eigen who is a true leader, a doer, not just a preacher or teacher.
However, and this is an important point: TI's efforts have NOT been successful in removing corruption.
They CAN'T WORK.
That is a key point to note.
It is like trying to fight malaria through a half-open mosquito net.
Yes, some foreign aid projects or defence purchases by poor nations may no longer involve significant corruption on the surface, but these projects will be substituted by others that do allow corruption.
So long as the Third World leaders WANT corrupt money, there is NOTHING that TI or anyone else can do to stop corruption.
India is a WORLD WIDE HERO in corruption despite all TI efforts. So also China.
The solution, I'd like to suggest to Peter (and to TI), is different.
It involves promoting liberty across the Third World. It involves studying the detailed design of governance systems in the Third World and fixing the incentives that (today) ONLY allow the corrupt to rise to the top.
In other words, BFN-type solutions will work, not TI-type solutions.