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Don’t Mind if I Do! Helping Oneself to Moral Failure – Episode 111

In this week’s episode Dara is bothered by the current controversy in Ireland’s national broadcaster, RTE. He is bothered, but not surprised by it, because it is simply another example of institutional corruption and moral complacency. He looks at why people continually fail to rein in their greed and dishonesty.

He believes a culture of ‘permission granted’ must be the default setting in institutions where such blatant abuse of power and privilege takes place. He argues that a grossly distorted sense of entitlement contributes to the behaviour as well as institutional tendencies as observed in the Stanford Prison Experiment and the Milgram Obedience Experiment. 

Dara discusses the television program at the heart of the controversy, The Late Late Show, and argues that it is nowhere near as relevant to Irish cultural life as it once was.

The question of self-control feels central to the individual moral failure of the personnel involved in the scandal. Dara looks at self-control in the context of personal morality and martial arts philosophy. He concludes that personal responsibility is one of the most important elements of resisting institutional failure.

Time is also found to quote Shakespeare’s Hamlet and to look at the lines we know we shouldn’t cross.

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