Being honest

Being honest - August 4, 2005 There's a Hidden Price for...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
August 4, 2005 There's a Hidden Price for Being a Cheat By ROBERT H. FRANK WITH steroid violations and accounting chicanery so much in the news, one begins to wonder how honest individuals still manage to survive at all in competitive domains. Sanctions against violators obviously help, but what about the countless situations in which cheaters face little possibility of being caught and punished? Is it quixotic to hope that honesty will prevail in these situations? Economic analysis suggests that this question has a different answer in the world of sports than in the world of business. At first glance, the factors that motivate cheating seem to reinforce pessimism about its inevitability. Although some athletes take steroids to gain an unfair advantage over their rivals, evidence suggests that most who use these drugs do so simply because they believe that everyone else is cheating. To these athletes, to refrain from cheating may actually seem unfair. Corporate misconduct stems from a similar mix of motives. Without doubt, some cheaters are driven primarily by greed and raw ambition. But many others are just trying to avoid falling behind their rivals. Given the Darwinian logic of competition, it would seem that honest competitors - those who don't
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 04/21/2011 for the course ECON 1001 taught by Professor S.c during the Fall '10 term at HKU.

Page1 / 2

Being honest - August 4, 2005 There's a Hidden Price for...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online