Bankers ooze arrogance again


by David Malone

From a BBC film to be shown last night called “Britain’s Banks: Too Big To Save?”  9pm on BBC2.

“… the deputy governor of the Bank of England, Paul Tucker, said the serious flaw in the current banking system was that the bankers had got rich in the boom years while the cost of their failures had been heaped on the taxpayer.

File that one under “No Shit Sherlock”.  This visionary goes on to cast this further pearl before us,

He said the priority for the coming year was to reform the banking system to allow banks to go bust like any other kind of business, with their losses falling on creditors and investors, not the taxpayer.”

Why is it that at the moment when it would have mattered, all the people and institutions involved in with regulating the financial sector and dealing with the crisis were deaf dumb and willfully blind to the truth, but now, years later, when it’s of no consequence, they just can’t resist assuming the posture of benevolent arrogance while they give us the benefit of their great wisdom.

A wisdom we are no doubt supposed to admire and be grateful for. It was only a week ago that Bob Diamond lectured us with his inimitable mixture of weary restraint and bridling arrogance that “The time for Banker remorse is over.”  That’s what Mr Diamond has understood from the last two years is it?  Bankers have had enough of lowering themselves to feign ‘remorse’ to please the peasants and now feel we all need to move on.  Remorse?  No one is interested in banker’s remorse. I want bankers facing ruin and bankruptcy. I want bankers on the streets because of the massive debts they had to pay.  I want bankers at the job centre being asked if they have an NVQ (National Vocational Qualification) in customer relations?  Remorse be damned, Mr Diamond.

But wait, as they say, there’s more.  ‘Britain’s banks pay too much to many of their bankers’ – that’s the shock horror ‘news’ from RBS Chairman Sir Phillip Hampton.  So if he knows this, and we have always known it and even our gutless leaders know it, why is it the bankers laugh and collect their inflated salaries and bonuses anyway?

For me this only piles on top of earlier revelations.  Think back to the wiki leaks discovery that,

King said that liquidity is necessary but not sufficient in the current market crisis because the global banking system is under capitalized due to being over leveraged. He said it is hard to look at the big four UK banks (Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays, HSBC, and Lloyds TSB) and not think they need more capital. A coordinated effort among central banks and finance ministers may be needed to develop a plan to recapitalize the banking system.

In other words, way back in early 2008, Mr King knew full well, what people like me were saying, that this was a crisis of solvency NOT of liquidity. He knew that  the shortage of liquidity was the symptom while the disease was insolvency.  And yet he like all the others went along with the public protestations the ALL the financial press unquestioningly accepted and endorsed, that this was a liquidity problem to be solved by measures to pump i liquidity.  Measure which DID NOT solve anything at all other than to keep in the insolvent able to draw their inflated salaries and large bonuses DIRECT from the public purse.

What does it tell you, that these people now feel sufficiently at ease and protected, back in their untouchable penthouse of power and luxury, that they feel at ease as they smile down at us and confirm just how much they all lied to us and used us and stole from us for their benefit?



David Malone is the author of the book Debt Generation. You can read and listen to excerpts from his book here: