What is it about our national/worldwide climate that seems to 'encourage' occupational fraud?Right now--and in the near past--the media has really focused on instances of occupational fraud.  Is...

What is it about our national/worldwide climate that seems to 'encourage' occupational fraud?

Right now--and in the near past--the media has really focused on instances of occupational fraud.  Is there something about this time in history or is it media hype spotlighting something that is for sure a problem, but not really tied to anything that is 21 century specific?  I am trying to come up with a thesis statement that is defendable.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I would argue that there is nothing in our national climate that makes occupational fraud more likely.  Furthermore, I doubt that it is more common now than in past times.  Instead, I believe that there is something in our national climate that makes it more fashionable for the media to focus on this sort of crime.

I think that the main factor involved here is income inequality and the immense wealth of some people involved in the highest levels of business (especially in the financial sector).  I think that the fact that there are some really rich people who do so much better than the rest of us leads to some amount of class anger aimed at the rich.  I think that we tend to resent them and feel that they are taking unfair advantage of the rest of us.

Because of this, when a Bernie Madoff or a Ken Lay comes to light, it plays into our preconceptions.  The media focuses on it and we pay attention because it supports our beliefs about the rich.

Overall, then, I think we are more sensitive to occupational fraud because of the rising income inequality in the US.

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