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A conversation is recounted in the book # Shantaram  in which the character, Khaderbhai, says: “There is no such thing as believing in #G...

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Sunday, 27 September 2015

#VW: LIARS, CHEATS AND POLLUTERS

I'm not sure why, after all these years, I am still surprised and disappointed when things turn out to be different from what I had assumed and from what they seem. How can it be that VW, a paragon of integrity and quality, can have shown its colors as a lying, cheating polluter in one of the biggest corporate scandals to visit us in recent times?

What would possess a company with such an incredible brand to behave in a way which simply shocks everyone's sense of moral decency? The facts are by now trite, so other than to say they have been pretending to the world that their diesel cars have far lower emission levels than they actually have, and they have done this by way of the use of sophisticated cheating software, I shan't discuss the detail of what they have done.

More importantly, what were they thinking? Is the deadly sin of greed the motivation for that of deceit? One has to think so, but surely with all the grey matter that sits on the executive of VW it might have occurred to someone that:

  • What they were doing was dishonest
  • They might be found out
  • The discovery would ruin the company
  • Overnight they and Volkswagen would become pariahs when they were discovered
  • What they were doing may have been earning them greater profits, but they were helping f*ck up the world for generations to come, including for their own children and grandchildren
It's that last piece that gets me. People chop down rain forests, pollute, destroy the environment, pay bribes for soccer tournaments and shoot wildlife for sport all in the name of greed or ego. And when someone finds out, the default position is to become even more deceitful and pretend they didn't know or didn't do it. 

Somewhere in every action like that is an in congruence, a denial of people's fundamental selves as authentic, caring and loving beings which is nothing short of tragic.


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