With the opportunity to talk about pop culture and its relationship to business,government, and society, I knew I had to write about one of my all time favorite shows: 24. In each season, there are 24 episodes (aka one full day), and each episode represents one hour of this full day. Jack Bauer, the main character, works for the Counter Terrorist Unit (CTU) as an agent, and the show focuses on their efforts to protect America from terrorism plots. Over the 8 seasons, the political thriller has ranged in plots from presidential assassination attempts to nuclear threats to government and corporate corruption.
CTU often credits Jack Bauer as their most valuable agent, yet his methods of saving civilian lives and government administrations causes much controversy on the show as he frequently uses questionable methods such as torture to gather his insight in preventing terrorist attacks against the U.S. Jack’s methods usually go against what the CTU wants him to do, not to mention the law, but he doesn’t care. The way Jack sees it, he’s going to save lives and protect the greater good of society no matter what the cost may be.
24 exemplifies a couple of different topics that relate to business, government, and society. Each season’s plot always has some sort of political scandal involved where a cover-up, secrecy, and betrayal by someone high up in the current government administration comes into play. This clearly is a question of ethics, and although most of our ethical discussions have been focused on companies, there is much to be said about unethical practices in the government as they are always supposed to be looking out for the greater good of society. That brings me to my next point. Although Jack Bauer typically breaks the law and acts in ways that some would say are inhumane, he is the only person throughout every single episode that is trustworthy and can truly say that he is doing all he can to protect Americans. Even though his methods aren’t always ethical, his ultimate intentions and reasoning for doing so most definitely are.