Good ol' boy network

From Academic Kids

In the southern United States, the good ol' boy network refers to informal social, religious, business, and political associations among usually older, white Southern men (the "good ol' boys"). In most rural areas of the South and even in many large cities, the good ol' boy network still exerts considerable influence over many aspects of local government, business, and law enforcement. Most usage of the term implies a wrongful exclusion of others from the network, or even a willingness to exploit non-members of the network for the benefit of fellow members (although not as extreme as that in organized crime gangs.)

The term refers broadly to a highly decentralized social phenomenon rather than to any organized group or groups; there is no central structure or organization. The good ol' boy network manifests in institutions such as conservative white Protestant churches and the local bar.

Effects of the network include ensuring that the white members of a community can limit business transactions to only other whites, to give white clients better deals, and generally to enforce traditional white conservative dominance over any other elements in the society. The network also functions like any other social network inasmuch as governmental, business, and professional connections and concessions often develop via mutual friendships and introductions established through the network.

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