> the problem is that when judges come from cultures where trading favors and
> *** are "normal accepted practice"
Okay, I live in a country like that (mildly at least) and need to point out a few
There's a basic division between public and private problem solving. In many
countries (I think Russia and Poland are generally similar here) the private
channel is simply more effective and fair than the public channel. Solving problems
privately or off-the-record through mutual contacts does _not_ mean *** or
corruption or giving up all one's ethics. There are strong informal rules about
what can and can't be 'arranged' and how far one can go.
> they aren't likely to give it up even when they are dissociated from their
> national governing bodies. The purpose may change, but the tendency to regard
> deal-making as a regular and accepted part of the process will still exist.
No special reason they _should_ . Russian skaters or coaches who are living long
term in the US need to learn different ways of doing things, absolutely.
Representatives to an international organization who normally reside in their own
countries are a different kettle of fish.
> If they come from a culture such as that, judges may regard "being good at
> making deals" as a virtue that all aspire to.
That's too much, they probably regard 'arranging things' as a separate set of
skills than technical judging. A consummate arranger may also be justifiably proud
of their technical expertise.
> They may think that those who don't do it are not *honest*, so
> much as they are inept in a necessary skill.
Very good observation.
> The ISU has got to address this issue head on, and explicitly (and repeatedly).
> They have got to point out -- explicitly and clearly -- that such behaviors
> are NOT regarded as "normal" --(cut)
In other words, _they_ have to do things _our_ way?
I think a better approach is to incorporate policies into the ISU that will address
these problems realistically with more effective punishments for crossing the line.
First a couple of social science concepts. in most societies, one or the other of
the following is the _primary_ punishment for wrongdoing (both exist in all
societies to some extent or other, and probably in all people to some extent or
other, but at the societal level one is usually much more important).
Guilt: Tends to be private and focused inward, the violator has to face and accept
the fact that they've done wrong. Operates whether or not the infraction was
discovered. Also known as conscience. Guilt isn't shared.
Shame: Public and shared. When the infraction is discovered, the trespasser _AND
THE GROUP THEY BELONG TO_ lose prestige.
Most (probably all) societies where the private channel for problem solving is
pre-eminent are also primarily motivated by shame (or avoiding shame).
Current ISU policies are guilt-based (As far as I can tell) and aren't going to
deter someone from a shame culture. Let's bring some shame in. As in, some kind of
public *** for the misbehaving judge _AND THEIR NATIONAL FEDERATION AS
In other words all wrong-doers are punished in two ways, part of the punishment
addresses guilt, and the other shames them (and their group). For most wrong-doers,
this will mean that part of the punishment doesn't make sense or seems pointless,
while part of it hurts.
Balkov is obviously not affected by temporary suspensions, during which he's
supposed to examine his conscience (he appears to have very little). Some form of
public *** of him and all Ukrainian judges (who can't be very respectable
if they allow such poorly trained judges to represent them) in an ongoing format
for some time would probably work much better. No punishment that only affects
Balkov will stop him (short of a lifetime ban and that won't stop other Ukrainian
This would seem to me to be a more promising course of action than trying to get
people from all over the world to agree to a single standard of behavior.