I left for my trip to Europe ranting about SOX and other compliance. Back from my trip I am even more determined to keep questioning the growing Western glamorization of compliance and government policy.
Every place I visited is booming - and in a hurry to get away from its past century.
On the trip I heard comments to distance themselves:
"Hungary was never really communist"
"The Soviets let Romania run fairly independently"
"That monstrosity (a bunch of drab buildings) is our reminder of the Communist contribution to Bratislava"
"This is Central Europe, not Eastern Europe"
Against the background of these fledging free markets, it was surreal to watch at the G8 summit all the mega-government proposals around global warming, social responsibility etc.
I have a suggestion. Make every major Western politician like Rep. Oxley spend at least 3 months in an emerging European nation. They need to re-learn: Big business may not be perfect. But Big Government is really bad.
And a plea to my technology peers. Let's help business do better at controlling emissions, diversity management and other positive goals, not help government extend its compliance tentacles. What's the difference? As subtle as that between Central and East Europe.