The manager/executive isn't stupid, they simply need to be shown an alternative. If there really are none, then you can gripe. Your responsibility as a supposedly knowledgable IT employee is to find other ways to accomplish the goals using methods and practices that are acceptable. The last time I checked SQLExpress and MySQL are free, and there is open source encryption software.
I'd hate to work with or employ someone that can only say why something can't work and has no answers as to how to work around the problem. IT people are supposed to be problem solvers not problem creators.
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