Trust and Distrust

If auditors won’t keep corporations in line, let’s send in the Marines. Public opinion would back such a solution, to judge by a Gallup poll on people’s confidence in major institutions. The military won the highest ratings, with 79 percent expressing either a “great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in it. As for “big business,” just 20 percent of respondents voiced such esteem. But banks scored well (47 percent), surpassing the church/organized religion (45 percent), the medical system (38 percent), TV news (35 percent) and Congress (29 percent). So far, disesteem for big business has not spilled over into distrust by employees of their own companies. In a separate Gallup poll, 46 percent of employed adults said they have a “great deal” of trust in the people who run their companies, with 43 percent feeling a “moderate amount” of trust.