“Life is a slate where all our sins are written; from time to time we rub the sponge of repentance over it so we can begin sinning again.” George Sand
George Sand was a woman also known as Amantine-Lucile-Aurore Dupin. In the late 19th Century she wrote about the Social Conventions that bind a wife to a husband against her will.
In the 21st Century, Social Conventions, and many others, have compounded into something referred to as The System.
The System is defined as a group of interacting, interrelated, or interdependent elements forming a complex whole, and its purpose is to control function and purpose at both macro and micro levels. Not all systems are bad or carry with them harmful intentions. However, all systems are open to manipulation by a minority to influence and control the majority.
For example, one aspect of The System is Parliamentary Democracy. We, the majority, grant a small number of individuals powers to manage national affairs on our behalf. Once elected, often on the basis of false promises and lies, there is little or no accountability for their actions. A closed political system has been allowed to evolve and grow into one of the most terrifying constructs of society. In my view it is a fatal flaw of Parliamentary Democracy one which continues to erode personal freedoms at an alarming pace.
When I set out to reclaim my sanity, one of the first things I wanted to understand was how The System impacted my daily life.
First, I made a list of organisations I dealt with – Banks, Credit cards, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, Utilities, Insurance and so on. There were also a few not-so-obvious ones such as Loyalty cards, Gym membership, Library cards, Magazine subscriptions.
Second, I ranked each of them in three ways. A) Dependency: does my family need them to survive and maintain quality of life? B) Trustworthiness: are they reliable? Do they accept responsibility for their actions or pass the buck onto their customers. C) Control: to what extent do they manipulate my life and the things I wish to do and achieve.
Thirdly, I connected each organisation or resource with shared dependency – car insurance to car tax to road license, bank account to direct debits to credit cards, debit cards, store cards and bills, electoral register etc.
The image of my life’s infrastructure was truly enlightening. Unsurprisingly perhaps, almost all linked back to the Financial System. Even those you may not expect such as Gym membership which, it turns out, was actually wrapped up in a credit agreement.
The most obvious discovery was that the common link between them all was my data. For example, through Loyalty cards, they knew what I had bought, where and how much I had spent. Through bank transactions they knew when I had moved house and to which location. Through the electoral system, they knew how many people were living in my home along with their ages and any previous addresses. The list goes on.
Without exception, in one way or another, all the above mentioned organisations link to Credit Reference Agencies. And perhaps the scariest aspect of all was to see just how powerful these privately owned organisations have become.
The System does not recognise the needs of any individual. Their consideration extends only as far as your credit score.
Rebel Rules . . .
The First Rule: You only need worry about Credit Reference Agencies if you are planning to purchase debts.
Mortgage: If you need a mortgage, use a Financial Adviser and explain your position with regard to keeping your information private. It may not always be possible, but if there’s a way, an IFA will find it.
Break the links: A) Repeat after me, “I do not share details of my private life with anyone I don’t know.” Refuse to sign a Credit Agreement for anything such as mobile phone or gym membership. Pass the problem back to them, they will always find another way.
B) Get rid of as much credit as possible. It takes courage but destroy those credit cards. They are a mugs game.
Electoral Roll: Always tick the box to prevent information sharing.
© Rod McRiven 2017