Throughout history, public corruption has been endemic. Exceptionally, it was significantly suppressed in modern times in northwestern Europe. Why did that happen? Why did politicians introduce measures that acted against their own interests? And are the political forces that then induced reform alive in today's world? Neild explores these highly topical questions by looking at the suppression of corruption in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in four countries France, Germany, Britain and the USA; at the evolution of independent judiciaries; at developments in the twentieth century, including a reminder of how widely corruption was used as a weapon in the Cold War, particularly in the Third World. Finally, and most devastatingly, he analyses the rise and decline in standards of public life in Britain in the twentieth century.
The Dark Side of Social Evolution