Coincidence and serendipity

I am a great believer in “thought waves”.  I don’t mean this in the sense of Mystic Meg or even (for the more modern reader) Derren Brown, but it’s simply that I have observed on many occasions that if you think about someone, very soon you will bump into them or they will telephone you out of the blue – it’s almost like summoning them up by thought power.  There may be a logical explanation for this – a bit like a couple trying for a baby who suddenly become aware of pregnant women everywhere – but it happens so often to me that I am no longer surprised by it.

And for me, it also works rather beautifully with money laundering related issues.  For instance, I was actually in Jersey on the very day that Peter Michel was sent to prison for laundering – the very day!  I went into a corner shop and bought six copies of the Jersey Evening Post, just for the thrill of seeing the words “money laundering” in the main front page headline.  Why six?  Just too excited.  In recent weeks I have spent a lot of time writing books for, and delivering training to, directors – it’s all linked to the publication of my AML books for NEDs, which in turn were inspired by the focus of regulators on the lack of specific high-level training for Boards.  And what should happen next?  Well, Bob Diamond – and this quotation from an anonymous Barclays banker talking to the Independent: “Libor fixing was escalated by several people up to their directors.  They would then have escalated it up the line because at Barclays if you don’t escalate, and it is found out that you haven’t, it is grounds for disciplinary action.  You will be dismissed.”.  I’m not claiming that I have any skill whatsoever for foretelling the future or influencing world events, but it is strangely pleasing when the theory of AML training (regulated professionals are expected to exhibit a particularly high standard of diligence, or Boards have an increased burden of directorial responsibility in these regulated times) is shown to be true in practice.

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