Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Regulatory Capture

I was reading on opinion on ZeroHedge today and commented upon it. You can read the whole story and the comments at the link above. In essence, Richard Field goes on to say that the main problem with the current regulatory structure, at least in the financial sphere, is one of a monopoly on the information.

Financial regulators have a unique position. They are the only financial market participant who can see the current asset and liability level data at any financial institution.

What this means is that only the regulator has the complete picture. No fund manager, consumer, or corporate finance officer can see all the data on any other hedge fund, bank, etc. This gives the monopoly of information only to the regulator. This monopoly of information is inimical to what is called the Internet. The Internet was pure anarch unleashed by happen chance upon the world. It was immediately embraced, organized and led to an explosion of knowledge, communication and power.

With the power of this monopoly, responsibility is ceded to the regulators. This is not how a free and capitalist society should work and be governed. Of course, there are layers upon layers of regulations that try to enforce information flow, but these have never succeeded. The only success is in the revelations brought about by wikileaks and anonymous and others. Basically, taking the information that is so closely guarded by the regulators and giving it freely to the public.

Even with the volumes of information leaked, the populace and the savants that exist, seem to quickly comb through the data to find all the true and relevant information. Well the same could be said of financial regulations. Let the data be public. And let the public learn, be educated and help enforce the simple and stated laws.

This would be the beginning of a new and equitable governance model and would surely return our great country to the rule of law vs the rule of man.

3 comments:

Right Reason said...

Rule of law is the rule of man since a few men make and enforce the "law."

Anonymous said...

Transparency is a great idea. Good thinking.

It's only slightly related, but check out the book "The Seven Day Weekend" by Ricardo Semler. He's a Brazilian businessman who built his entire company up around transparency. All information available to anyone in the company. The results are interesting.

Just being me. Are you being you? said...

Thank you. I will investigate the book to learn more and to back up my Socialocracy concept