by argentus maximus, TF Metals Report:
To obtain a definition of the word “institution” I went to Wikipedia and found the following which I have condensed somewhat:
“An institution is any structure or mechanism of social order and cooperation governing the behaviour of a set of individuals within a given community. Institutions are identified with a social purpose, transcending individuals and intentions by mediating the rules that govern cooperative living behavior.
The term “institution” is commonly applied to customs and behavior patterns important to a society, as well as to particular formal organizations of government and public services. Institutions are also a central concern for law, the formal mechanism for political rule-making and enforcement.
As mechanisms of social interaction, institutions are manifest in both formal organizations, such as the U.S. Congress, or the Roman Catholic Church, and, also, in informal social order and organization, reflecting human psychology, culture, habits and customs, and encompassing subjective experience of meaningful enactments. Most important institutions, considered abstractly, have both objective and subjective aspects: examples include money and marriage.
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