Tuesday, November 03, 2009

The National Banco Deluxe Royal Lloyds Of Halifax

While you might not agree with the law and consider the lawmaker to be illegitimate, the news that the British banking system, a network which should properly be operating under the name 'The National Banco Deluxe Royal Lloyds of Halifax', is in the process of being compelled to do something according to what somebody, somewhere perceives to be the law, rather than according to some airy-fairy ideology about light touch regulation, is good news. We could do with some more.
Let's hear it for golden shares empowering ministers to summarily dissolve any bank that fails to provide any pensioner with a penny less of interest on their savings than what is due to them, and to have the power to do this without compensation. After all, they're not normal businesses, so there's no reason why their share capitals should be organised normally.
Let's hear it for a significant strengthening of the UK's weak and unsatisfactory laws on the disqualification of company directors. Let's hear it for mandatory 10 year jail sentences, and both mandatory tagging and mandatory disqualification for life, for every director of every bank that fails in the future. After all, they're not normal businesses, so there's no reason why their directors should be accountable only under normal criminal laws.
Let's hear it for mandatory unionisation at every major bank, with shop stewards being able to close down trading with a text message saying 'Everybody out!' After all, they're not normal businesses, so there's no reason why they should enjoy the proclaimed benefits of a flexible labour market.
Finally, let's hear at least one prominent public figure proclaim that the banking system is founded on the sin of usury, that it's inherently disgusting and wrong and, like all sin, does nothing but pollute the characters of those who engage in it. After all, they're not normal businesses; so there's absolutely no reason why they should be afforded respectability.


Blogger Bruce Hall said...

Martin, I don't know the relationship of banks and Parliament, but if it is anything like banks and the Congress in the U.S. it is the politicians that should be sent to jail for forcing banks to lend money to unqualified applicants in the name of "social justice."

Banks here are left with assets that have little or no real value due to the nationwide housing value destruction stemming from loans to unqualified applicants who met the target criteria of Congress. Banks would have been severely penalized for refusing to allow such loans... Congress called it "redlining." Now banks are severely penalized by the economic reality of allowing such loans.

Sure, the government backs personal accounts in banks that are failing so that individual accounts are protected up to a large degree. Of course, the cost of that assurance is borne by the banks and taxpayers in general.

When things go wrong, look to the government first... as the source, not the answer.

04 November, 2009 22:47  

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