Public and white-collar corruption affects society in ways not always obvious. Misappropriated funds can lead to inadequate schools, faulty buildings or homes, unemployment and even homelessness. The ripple effects can also damage local economies and eventually erode public trust.
However, directly addressing corruption can help tackle more extensive societal issues like taxes, infrastructure and poverty. According to leading national economist Gary “Hoov” Hoover, we all must take action and remain vigilant.
“There's only so much public corruption, white-collar crime if you want to call it that, that people are going to tolerate because there's a pooling of wealth around a few individuals while the rest of the citizenry is suffering,” said Hoover, executive director of Tulane’s Murphy Institute and professor of economics. “We're only going to be able to stand so much of this. There will be a reckoning. I do believe that there will be a tipping point where people's appetite, or even their patience, with this type of activity will reach an end.”
“There's only so much public corruption, white-collar crime if you want to call it that, that people are going to tolerate because there's a pooling of wealth around a few individuals while the rest of the citizenry is suffering.”
- Gary "Hoov" Hoover
Hoover recently spoke to Tulane’s On Good Authority podcast about the layers of public corruption, discussed both large-scale and small-scale corruption, the consequences and who ultimately suffers when money never reaches its intended recipients.
“It's not always the big splashy parts of a corruption scandal that we see, the parts that are making the headlines, that do the most damage to us. It's typically those things that we didn't see. It's when something didn't get done as a consequence of public corruption. That's when it becomes most insidious,” said Hoover.