The Assault on Financial Privacy Goes Parabolic

Wednesday, November 16, 2011
By Paul Martin


The conflict of ideals that ultimately determine the circumstances that define the human condition at any given point – freedom, privacy, human rights, morality, charity, entitlement, obligation, promising – are the ingredients of the world’s oldest and perpetual ideological battles. It is said that if you isolate any two people in a room long enough they will find something about which to disagree. True enough.

It is not so much that the dominant beliefs and accepted norms that throughout history have evolved through a cycle of embracing and rejection that disconcerts people. Homo sapiens seem genetically hardwired to ideological rivalries. It is the process of failing ideological paradigms and progression into the terminal phase that unfolds just before failure that can be alarming.

Today’s situation in Greece is a prime example. At its genesis, the ideal of a socialist society takes hold among the people. Promises are made and the manifesto of entitlement, social fairness, obligation, and social equality infects the populace. The socialist ideal eventually goes viral, and the majority learns to game the system. Everyone is trying to live at the expense of everyone else. In the terminal phase, the failure of the system is disguised under a mountain of lies, hollow promises, and debts. When the stream of other people’s money runs out, the system collapses.

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