This is an informational thread. I am a working sociolinguist.
Face is the positive social value a person claims when interacting with other people.
Face is related to respectability, pride, and sense of self-worth.
What kind of face we can claim directly relates to who we are and what kind of social power we hold.
People surrounding you are CRUCIAL to maintaining or not maintaining the kind of power we want/expect to project.
The MD is likely to get this deference. A person who is not a MD cannot expect to project this kind of authority - people will not play along.
Roughly, politeness is how we maintain face.
1) positive, or your desire to be approved by others.
2) negative, or the desire to be unimpeded in your actions.
More on negative face wants: people don't want to be told not to do the things they want to do.
Maintaining face wants preserves the existing power relations.
You have to be polite to people with more power, you do not have to be as polite to people with less power.
Politeness is playing along with what is expected in terms of power.
Politeness is maintaining the social power of people who already have social power (e.g. showing deference to doctors, politicians, etc) - this is positive politeness;
1) universal admiration no matter what this person is doing (positive politeness),
2) a desire to be unimpeded in one's actions, no matter how horrible (negative politeness)?
There are repercussions. There are punishments. There might be threats to life, liberty, safety.
Because the power holders have the power.
This is about the disruption of power relations.
It's lamenting the lack of desire of people with lesser power to maintain the face of people with more power -- *because of their immoral actions*.
Because "civility" only works when power holders play along as well. There are expectations of social conduct from *everybody*.
This is exactly where we find ourselves.
"Civility" happens in society. Everybody must maintain it.