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Old 03-21-2012, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Old Bellevue, WA
18,794 posts, read 14,293,102 times
Reputation: 7950

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In 1999, the FDIC proposed a new set of regulations called 'Know Your Customer.' It was to require that banks issue a 'suspicious activity report' to the federal gov't for large cash transactions. There was a public comment period, and activists on both left and right were able to get the email and snail mail addresses widely circulated. The FDIC received comments from over 250,000 people, including me. Of the 250,000+, exactly 72 supported the regs; 249,928+ were opposed.

So the regs were withdrawn by the FDIC. But not for long. After 9/11 an even more robust version of 'KYC' was enacted as part of the 'PATRIOT' act. So today, in spite of over 99.97 percent opposition from the public, we have KYC in place.

This is an extreme example, but I've always noticed that democracy often tends to produce results that go against what the voters really want. Unions and publicly traded companies are examples. Dues-paying members and stockholders respectively have a vote, but the real benefits always seems to go to those at the top--union bosses and senior execs, respectively. Do stockholders really want that multimillion dollar golden parachute going to the departing CEO who tanked the company? No, but the other senior execs like it that way.

Democracy has taken on a kind of angelic halo for us. It's like life, health, and love--for the most part, it doesn't even occur to us to question its beneficence. But it's actually a broken model, and one of these centuries we're going to have to come up with a way to fix it.
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Old 03-21-2012, 04:51 PM
 
Location: NE Ohio
30,373 posts, read 16,673,058 times
Reputation: 8903
Quote:
Originally Posted by wutitiz View Post
In 1999, the FDIC proposed a new set of regulations called 'Know Your Customer.' It was to require that banks issue a 'suspicious activity report' to the federal gov't for large cash transactions. There was a public comment period, and activists on both left and right were able to get the email and snail mail addresses widely circulated. The FDIC received comments from over 250,000 people, including me. Of the 250,000+, exactly 72 supported the regs; 249,928+ were opposed.

So the regs were withdrawn by the FDIC. But not for long. After 9/11 an even more robust version of 'KYC' was enacted as part of the 'PATRIOT' act. So today, in spite of over 99.97 percent opposition from the public, we have KYC in place.

This is an extreme example, but I've always noticed that democracy often tends to produce results that go against what the voters really want. Unions and publicly traded companies are examples. Dues-paying members and stockholders respectively have a vote, but the real benefits always seems to go to those at the top--union bosses and senior execs, respectively. Do stockholders really want that multimillion dollar golden parachute going to the departing CEO who tanked the company? No, but the other senior execs like it that way.

Democracy has taken on a kind of angelic halo for us. It's like life, health, and love--for the most part, it doesn't even occur to us to question its beneficence. But it's actually a broken model, and one of these centuries we're going to have to come up with a way to fix it.
We are a Republic, not a Democracy. I hope you know the difference.
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