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11:46PM

Indiscreet

If the 21st century will be known for anything I reckon it will be the progressive eradication of a silent corruption that harks back to era when hushed nepotism and turning a blind eye was often how things got done.

One of the results of the last forty years of progressive computerization is the displacement of people and paper from processes. You see, unlike hard-wired processes, people are corruptable. Forty years ago if you got a parking ticket and you knew someone who worked in the traffic department, a phone call could get your ticket magically 'lost'. If you were on a waiting list for something such as a shiny new council flat and you happened to know someone in the housing dept., you might conveniently have your pick of the best flats and jump a few places in the queue while you were at it. 

Good, honest people might argue that there's a clear distinction between an innocent favour or temporary deviation from the rules and all out corruption, but viewed logically it's a pretty fine line. If there's a line at all.

Regardless, it's moot since computers don't respond to requests for favours. To quote that famous line from The Terminator:

It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.

Perhaps 'dead' is a little harsh in the case of a parking ticket, but you get my point.

So if we, the little people, now have no choice but to co-exist in this increasingly zero-discretion brave new world, it seems to me to be only fair and somewhat satisfying to finally see expenses fiddling politicians, phone hacking journalists and now shyster bankers finally being called to account.

A jaw dropping loss of innocence, maybe, but ultimately a good and timely social course correction.

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