“The stain of dirty money is hard to wash off"

May 06, 2020
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Anti-Money Laundering regulations were just taking hold in the life insurance industry, when I started my career in 1991. Stories of huge cash payments for policies were legion around the agency I joined when I started selling, and this was common across all agencies. People had literally been walking off the street with shopping bags full of bills, looking for an eager agent to sell them big fat policies in which they could dump that cash. Up until the authorities cracked down, the prevailing rationale among the producers was “Don’t ask where the money came from, and they won’t tell you; just get the sale. Business is business.”

You can imagine that it took extensive “re-education” of life insurance sales people to adopt a more responsible mindset when taking on new clients. I remember distinctly the message of one my teachers in an industry continuing education class. He basically said this: 

“The life insurance salesperson is really a link in a long financial chain. In the links before you, the client somehow got some money to pay for a policy.  He then gives that money to you, and you pass it on to an insurance company. They then put it into investments, reserves, etc”

“Suppose the money the client gives you is ‘dirty’ - obtained illegally or immorally. By accepting it as a premium payment, you are passing on dirty money. If somebody got killed or robbed for that money - like by organized crime, or some drug cartel, or even a lone crook - then you had a hand in that crime. You may not have known about that crime, or even approve of it; but if the bad guys couldn’t go to people like you to launder their ill-gotten goods, they wouldn’t commit the crime in the first place. So like it or not, you help make those crimes happen if you are willing to take that dirty money.”

“So choose your clients very carefully. By selling people life insurance ,you are a link in some chain of financial events. Make sure they are good events - ones that involve helping people, not hurting them.”

“The stain of dirty money is hard to wash off.”

A great lesson in the right way to do business, don’t you think? It certainly applies not just to life insurance, but to all industries.

That brings us to all the apologists for the Communist Chinese Party in American industry, media, and government. For decades, rich and powerful Americans have cashed in on the “economic engagement” we have with a regime that is the poster boy for evil. Government officials, corporations, tycoons, and billionaires have all filled their pockets with cash from a population that is used, abused, and cast away. The Corona pandemic is only the latest in a long series of atrocities that regime has perpetrated on its citizens - and on the world.

All these beneficiaries of CCP exploitation will tell you how hard it would be to economically “disengage;” of the severe adverse impact on the world economy such a move would have. Etc. Etc.

Such a scheme is beyond my expertise to figure out. But what I do know is that as long as we do conduct business with them, we will remain links in a horrible chain of events that eventually lines our pockets with cash. We will still have a part in people getting oppressed, hurt, and killed. That’s the real price we pay for those CCP goods and services.

“The stain of dirty money is hard to wash off."