recommendation. Social influence can eradicate good judgement. Good collective decisions require both deliberation and diversity of opinions
I have already mentioned how changes are being made to address some of the institutionalization in Irish Policing. It is a difficult subject to tackle as this institutionalization is what makes policing the great occupation it is, the solidarity of its members to support one another at difficult calls with members of the public and the dark humour that ensures to allow Gardai to emotionally cope with the challenges faced whether it be going to sudden deaths of babies, children killed in vehicle collisions or telling the parents of a sixteen year old boy that he has committed suicide. But this solidarity can be toxic too as the force can close ranks when one of its own speaks out about organizational failures within. The recent publicised case of Sergeant Maurice McCabe serves as a warning to those members who raise their head above the parapet to expose wrong doings and bring the eyes of the nations media on it. Sgt McCabe has spoke about this issue, both in television interviews and in written press. He mentioned it was the closing of the ranks that hurt him the most, he nearly expected management to go against him. That members he had worked with for over thirty years chose not to support him hurt him deeply.
On a higher level and as already mentioned, the Policing Authority in 2018 appointed Drew Harris as the new Garda Commissioner. This was viewed with trepidation as there was now an outsider controlling the strings. He has very publicly stated that he will not accept the status quo of continuing to do business as heretofore. He has appointed a senior ranking officer, a former colleague of the Police Service of Northern Ireland to carry out a analysis on what senior ranking offices should be offered a severance package to retire early, he making attempts for sure to clear out the orchard of any toxic remnants of old regimes. This is in the main welcomed by the rank and file officers who for a long time now have suffered at the hands of the old boys club in not being promoted if not part of the gang etc.
Both O Hara and Arielys books are thought provoking with respect to issues in law enforcement. I think one could be forgiven for taking the attitude of why bother when OHara ad nauseum reports on the failings in these organizations and Ariely makes you think we as human beings are slaves to our cognitive failings, that we are doomed to failure. But I think thats just it, we need to be aware of what has gone wrong in the past and how it was caused partially through our indifference to the fact that our brains were not consciously or actively assessing the choices we had made. Being aware of our failures and taking the necessary steps to address them will at least give us a stronger hand when we face difficult choices in the future.