Thursday, January 22, 2009

A bit late, mate!

With the banking system in ruins, financial services in meltdown and the taxpayer footing the bill the City "watchdog" has finally awoken from a ten year slumber and turned one bleary, misty eye to its domain.

The banking system must undergo “profound” changes if a repeat of the current collapse is to be avoided in future, the head of the City watchdog has warned.

With that, it snuffles it's snout back into its own crotch and goes back to sleep again. Yeah, thanks, Lord Turner - that was really really helpful. At least it would have been if you'd said it ten, five or even two years ago.

“Central banks and regulators between them need to ... identify the combination of measures which can take away the punchbowl before the party gets out of hand.”

Sorry, mate - but you are way too late. The party got well out of hand a long time ago and is, in fact, all over. All that is left is the shattered remnants of the venue; the house has been trashed and the gatecrashers have gone home with their plunder.

To be fair to Lord Turner, he's new to the role - but it doesn't excuse the FSA from the fact that it was patently asleep on the job. Oh, and what needs to happen to avoid a repeat of this in the future is that around 50-100 of the financial world's top people should be arrested, charged with corporate fraud, found guilty, chucked in prison for 10 years or so and have all their assets seized.

That might help to prevent the situation happening again. I doubt that showering them with cash and the empty threats of a toothless, useless quango will.

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