In my experience on this planet, anything that is both important and corruptible (without detection) is already corrupted.

Scott Adams

Does this fit with your experience? As a cynical economist, I'm pleasantly surprised at how non-corrupt grading is at U.S. colleges.

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Does this fit with your experience?


At least, not here in England. I do a lot of hiring for posts that are well paid with a lot of scope for "professional independence". There is scope for these being sinecures, at least in the short or medium term. I have never once been offered a bribe or any hint of anything like corruption. I have never once been asked for a bribe by any public official. I have never once been offered one or anything like one when acting as a voluntary public official. I would be genuinely shocked if those ever happened. I do not believe my experience is unusual in this country.

I believe there are other places where this would be unusual.

0elharo4yI suspect the answer is that grading at U.S. colleges just isn't that important.
1CCC4yI feel I should point out that corrupt grading is easily detectable - one can often see it by looking at a corruptly graded paper, or by interviewing a candidate who got a high grade and finding that he does not know the subject. And thus, it is not covered by the Adams quote. Moreover, universities have a strong incentive to not be corrupt in their grading - if they let people slip through without learning the work, employers will start to notice and discount qualifications from that institution, and then prospective students will hear of this and go to other institutions instead, and then the entire institution will collapse. (It's not immediate, or perfect, and quick action at the start of the process can save the institution, but it is a consideration).

Rationality Quotes Thread February 2016

by elharo 1 min read2nd Feb 201697 comments


Another month, another rationality quotes thread. The rules are:

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