That a society controls, to a greater or lesser extent, the behavior of its members is a universal; but the methods, the particulars of that control, vary from one culture to another. It is also, I would guess, a universal that in all societies people value respectability granted to them. If this is lost, the losers may become ineligible for many of the responsibilities and privileges of that society or subsociety. In this article, three ways are discussed by which such "credit rating" can be lost-as told by one member of a particular geographical subsection of the Mixtec society, as he has seen and lived it. Difficulties arose for some of its members, for example, from their refusal to vote with the majority, or from failure to care for children adequately in terms of grandparents' evaluation of the parents' responsibility, or from moral delinquency as judged by other members. Such internal cultural standards may be labeled "emic."