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Mr Moralistic

An idea that struck me this week was something I heard on the Rest Is History podcast (this episode). They were discussing how different generations react to the previous generation’s ideas – usually by swinging in the opposite direction. Here’s a (slightly cleaned-up) excerpt:

The archetype is the age of Charles II coming after the age of Oliver Cromwell. But it’s a pattern that you see repeating again and again – the regency being followed by the Victorian period would be the same. I would say that we, actually, now are living through an equivalent of the Commonwealth or the Victorian period, in that we are reacting against a period of kind of hedonism. The 60s, 70s, 80s, maybe even to the 90s, was a very hedonistic period where morality was relaxed, and now the sense of the importance of moral standards being upheld and the determination to punish people who don’t stick to moral frameworks is coming right back in, as it did in the 1650s, as it did in the 1830s and ’40s.

Tom Holland

I like this as an explanation of the various moral panics that seem to be happening constantly. It makes it seem like our era is not a uniquely nutty period of history, but just the way we inch toward progress as a species. Eventually we’ll – hopefully – throw the bathwater out, keep the baby, and have another era of everyone doing whatever the hell they please.

Virginie O’Shea is a top memeist in my field and I’ve chuckled at some of her ‘Mr Men for Capital Markets’ – here are some of my favourites (captions are hers):

‘With so much discussion about investor education, I think it’s high time we update the Mr. Men series to highlight: the long arm of the #finreg law, why so many people make poor investment decisions, and (my personal favourite) the Mr Man that lurks in the back office.’

‘Today’s Mr. Man is hard to find because he’s a little fella. He might even be shrinking every year. He’s going to struggle to carry T+1 if someone doesn’t help him.’

‘Today’s #fintech Mr. Man is a great friend of Mr. Late Implementation. They often arrive together to functions, always a long time after they should have arrived. This guy’s always looking for something to bring to the party, doesn’t matter what, it just needs to look about right.’

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