During the early 1990s, I worked for an outsourced IT contractor doing a desktop support job in a multi-national insurance corporation headquarters in a town a few miles from my own.
The level of business this corporate group was involved in at the time was not one which would draw the attention of the average person. It was divided into several categories, with a separate company within the group controlling each. A few examples of these are Energy/Nuclear, Special Risks, Aviation, UK, etc.
During my time there, I noted that the CEOs and other representatives of certain companies within the group were periodically visited by representatives from various government departments. I also saw documentary and other evidence linking the UK company with the introduction of town centre CCTV systems and the neo-militarisation of the police as conditional to policies covering “civil disorder risks” which became a requirement for UK local authorities to take out cover against. Indeed, the first town centre in the country to introduce a CCTV system covering public areas was the one where I live. I also saw how the local press “sold” the idea of its introduction to the general public, needless to say with no mention of the real reason for its introduction. During this time, the UK company began acquiring small local offices throughout the UK for the purpose of rolling out this business to other local authorities.
During the four years that I worked at this corporate headquarters, I gained the impression that the level at which certain companies within this group operated amounted to nothing less than an international protection racket. Their interface with the UK government was plain enough for anyone who worked there to see. Beyond that, the whole operation had a distinct masonic undercurrent and flavour to it.
One day, out of curiosity, I picked up a booklet given to all inducted employees of the group and began to read it. the very first paragraph of the first page began, “THE INSURANCE BUSINESS IS FOUNDED UPON THE BABYLONIAN PRINCIPLE OF THE MANY BEARING THE LIABILITIES OF THE FEW”. I didn’t bother to read any further.
I can well remember a conversation I had with a programmer who worked in one of the companies there. He was exasperated at having been given an idea so vague by his CEO and been expected to write a programme for it that it could have been compared to being told to tell Nebuchadnezzar his dream and give the interpretation thereof!
This whole episode of my working life was regularly punctuated with seeing things that I never went looking for, neither asked nor wanted to see. Certain things I reacted to quite openly. I was good at what I did but soon became identified as a “corporate dissident” and was subsequently engineered out of my job there. Not long after I left, what had once been a long established British controlled blue chip insurance group was bought out and taken over by a US corporation and remains so to this day.