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Archive for the ‘banks’ Category

Our ‘domestic’ market

Fanatical europhile Pete “Teflon” Mandelson has admitted Europe is our ‘domestic’ market. During what can only be regarded as an extraordinarily rude and thinly-veiled attack on the USA’s plans for regulating its own banking system, he revealed this peculiar – some might say unique – weltanschauung, presumably, by extension, believing that the United Kingdom is now no more than some kind of local trading area, rather than a sovereign nation.

Of course, we all know what he’s up to: softening-us up for entry into the eurozone without a referendum while simulatenously trying to reboot the “only Gordon can save you” routine. Pull the other one, it’s got Russian billionaire-paymaster yachts on it. “Dishonest” is simply far too weak a word to describe the depths of this hideous individual’s machinations. Here’s an example:

Asked specifically about critics of the single currency who argue that by retaining sterling, Britain had been sheltered from the worst of the market backlash against high public deficits, Lord Mandelson said: “That’s true.

“But it doesn’t necessarily mean that being out of the eurozone will always play to Britain’s advantage

“The truth is that Britain depends on a vibrant, growing European economy, this is our domestic market. The one on our doorstep, we don’t want it to fail. It will have a better chance of succeeding the more Britain is able to influence its policies.

Europe’s become our “domestic market” eh? (tell that to the French and Germans!). And a virtual admission that we’re heading for the eurozone, eh? Over my dead body.

Anyway, you can read the rest of the article here.

If anybody else is tempted to vote for these traitors, liars and thieves again, I will be amazed. That 30% of people still, apparently, are planning to, is amazing.

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Seems that Obama’s speech on banking regulation has finally put paid to any remaining pretence that Brown was in any way ‘leading the world’ in this area. It has, perhaps predictably, sent the government into a tailspin, with no co-ordinated response to the plans and, it seems, very little idea of what to do with the new information. According to Iain Martin:

So, since Obama spoke British ministers have been in quite a spin. The Chancellor’s office said Britain would not be following the U.S. but Number 10 said, rather nervously, that it is studying the plans.
“I think what the president is doing is very much in accordance with the direction we’ve been taking,” said a Number 10 spokesman. But that’s simply not true. Obama’s plans are not in accordance with the direction the British have been taking. A plan to break up the megabanks and inhibit proprietary trading is not at all what the Treasury wants. It wants the UK’s megabanks – RBS, and the Lloyds-HBOS monster it created mid-crisis – to trade their way out of their poor position and into safety so that taxpayer money can be recovered.
The Number 10 spokesman mused some more: “Obviously one of the issues in the banking world is that you have different circumstances in different countries.” Sorry, I thought a co-ordinated global response was supposed to be the priority?To further cloud the issue up popped Lord Myners of the Treasury. He said there is no way Britain will follow the Obama lead on this. But… “I think the important thing is that there is a globally co-ordinated response taking place here.”
Again, no, there isn’t a globally co-ordinated response. I repeat: Obama acted unilaterally on Thursday in making his biggest post-crisis reform proposal.
What there is here is a mess created by a serious breakdown in global policy-making. In a panic after his party’s Senate defeat in Massachusetts this week, Obama has decided he needs to be much tougher than he has been.
And it creates a serious difficulty for the current British government, which wants to appear in line with a president who popular on this side of the Atlantic and is taking on finance. But he is proposing to do what the Treasury and Number 10 do not want to do: he wants to break up the big banks
For the Tories this is a gift. They have advocated G20-wide policies similar to those now promoted by Obama – so they get to be on his side (a boon in Europe) and lined up against big banks the government here won’t break up. No wonder George Osborne sounds delighted this weekend.

While I very much doubt that Obama was thinking too much about Gordon Brown’s political credibility when he decided to get tough with the megabanks (for better or for worse – probably worse since he’s got just about everything else wrong since he took over), there can be no doubt whatsoever that Iain Martin is right and this is a disaster for a prime minister who, in his own fevered imagination, believes he – and only he – has the credentials to ‘save the world’.

And Martin is right to say it’s a gift for the Tories. It is, and for Britain too. Anything that helps to prick the Brown ego bubble and correct his (and Labour’s) utterly dishonest narrative on his role in the economic crisis (for which he himself as Chancellor was largely to blame) can only be a good thing. Why? Because it hastens the useless old fraud to the political grave he so richly deserves and to which his passage is now long overdue. Two cheers for Obama, then.

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I thought the Daily Mash’s reporting of Billy Bragg’s principled hypocritical tax protest and celebtivist posturing was rather bloody funny.

DEFICIT REDUCTION WAS BASED ON SALES OF ‘BETWEEN THE WARS’, ADMITS DARLING

19-01-10

CHANCELLOR Alistair Darling has been forced to scrap his deficit reduction plan, admitting it was based entirely on sales of Billy Bragg’s Between the Wars EP.

Image

Bragg says some RBS executives can now afford to buy a house as big as his

Britain’s 14th biggest pop-folk shouter is withholding his income tax in protest at Royal Bank of Scotland’s continued insistence on being a bank.

Bragg said: “The RBS bonuses echo the kind of backstage rider demands I never get to make at the Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival. I just hope I can make a difference before the Murdoch press hires someone to assassinate me.”

But the Treasury warned it will be forced to make even deeper cuts in public services, including those council-sponsored equality and diversity festivals where Bragg turns up and makes BMW-owning management consultants feel like students again for 20 minutes.

Tom Logan, chief economist at Madeley-Finnegan, said: “This is potentially very serious. Five year gilts are currently being sold on the basis of guaranteed revenue streams from William Bloke and the ones he did with Wilco.

“We don’t want to have to use up the tax revenues from the Kirsty MacColl version of New England. We need that in case we go to war with China.”

Other left-wing musicians have supported Bragg’s stance, with Paul Weller only declaring income from his last three solo albums and all that Style Council rubbish.

Weller added: “But not Stanley Road or All Mod Cons. I’m not some fucking mug.”

A spokesman for the Inland Revenue said: “I’ve actually got a copy ofTalking With the Taxman About Poetry. Maybe he should do a new album called Talking With the Taxman About Spending 18 Months in Jail for Being a Marxist Twat.”

Meanwhile Bragg demanded that all banks should be run like the Co-operative with its green investment policy, fair trade mortgage refusals and the ethical way it charges you thirty quid whenever you go 1p over your limit.

You can read Billy Bragg’s pile of disingenuous horse manure here, if you really want to. Some of the comments underneath it might make it worthwhile, I suppose. Like this one from ‘unionjackjackson’:
I similarly am withholding my tax from HRMC until we have a tory government and my money will be spent wisely.
unlike these labour tossers pissing it away.

Or this excellent one from the multi-posting Lefty-basher ‘stevehill’:

I’ll visit you in prison Billy. Maybe.

Starving schools, hospitals, pensioners, benefit claimants etc of funds to make a protest is a particularly infantile form of toy throwing.Most bank staff are on or below the national average wage, their bonuses will be in the order of £1,000 or so, and they depend on this to pay their bills. The bank’s assets – which you and I own – are essentially its people. They walk out of the door every night. You seem to accept that you can’t veto HSBC or Barclays or Goldman Sachs bonuses. So how do you plan to stop the best people at RBS joining their rivals, causing the bankruptcy of RBS, the loss of 141,000 jobs, and a total write-off of the taxpayers’ investment?

No, you’re not an anarchist. But you’re not being very smart.

Perhaps there is hope for Britain after all – so long as we all club together now to ensure that Bragg and his ilk never have any influence on the running and the future of our country again!

Then we can deal with the bankers properly. They’ll keep.

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One of these two knows what he’s doing

Having flailed around in my last blogpost banging on about some sort of ‘new phenomenon’ where there wasn’t one, really, (I’ll leave it for others to decide, but I reckon it was not my best effort to be brutally honest), it comes as something of a relief to see the Spectator doing what it does best and putting the boot in to old “saved the world” Brown himself. And all they had to do was flag up Bernanke’s testimony to a Senate hearing about Brown’s ultra-useless tri-partite banking regulation system. Here’s what the report says:

Gordon Brown’s much heralded tripartite regulatory system failed the first time it was faced with a financial crisis, proof that taking away regulatory powers from the Bank of England was a massive mistake. Now, Ben Bernanke — who is trying to secure a second term as Fed Chairman and keep the Fed’s regulatory powers intact — is citing the Brown model as what not to do, telling the Senate banking committee:

“[O]ver the past few years the government of Britain removed from the Bank of England most of its supervisory authorities. When the crisis hit – for example when the Northern Rock bank came under stress – the Bank of England was completely in the dark and unable to deal effectively with what turned out to be a destructive run and a major problem for the British economy.”

As Paul Waugh points out, George Osborne and his team are rather pleased with this effective endorsement of their position by the Fed Chairman. Bernanke’s quote does rather show that Brown isn’t leading the world in quite the way that he likes to claim.

Very gently put by James Forsyth. In reality, what Bernanke is saying here is that Brown himself – personally – through his moronic regulatory mishmash, directly caused – not contributed to, mind, caused – the ‘destructive run and the major problem for the British economy’ we are all having to suffer through now. Namely, the worst peacetime recession in modern British history. That’s how cognitively dissonant the Brown-Labour narrative is on the banking crisis and recession for which, I and many others maintain, Brown is directly responsible.

I’d say Osborne is absolutely, champagne cork-popping cockahoop tonight, and about a dozen Nokias have been obliterated on the bunker walls. It seems Bernanke and Obama alike are distancing themselves from the tainted loser that is Brown, just like that little French gnome Sarkosy did yesterday.

For them, at least, the penny really has dropped. They’ve abandoned Brown long before we’ll get the chance to do precisely the same thing, in 2010.

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Al-Megrahi: the convicted Lockerbie bomber might still not be dead as all the Labour stooge doctors and this Labour government ghoulishly promised everyone he would be (he’s a full five days overdue now), but he’s still about to come back and haunt at least one of them. Yes, you guessed it, the King of Sleaze himself, Lord Mandelson of Tripoli.

Incidentally, this partridge shooting party thing of Lord Rothschild that Mandelson attended with, among others, Saif Gaddafi – I can’t help but wonder whether there is any connection between this and today’s “Supreme” Court ruling enabling banks to continue legally to steal however much they like from customers that their extortionate, punitive charges turned into debt slaves in the first place. After all, at least one of the judges was a Rothschild banker.

The point is that wherever you look there’s some sort of Labour shadiness going on – or has been going on- so often with Mandelson right at the very heart of it. Be it Iraq, Afghanistan, the economy, the banks, education, health, PFI, Europe – the list is seemingly endless.

If and when we kick these ruinous crooks out, the Tories will have to uncover anything and everything about Labour’s record of betrayal and deceit, however damaging it might appear potentially to be to the reputation of the country. Hiding it will only cause the rot to creep ever further. Revealing the truth about these long years of Labour corruption and sleaze is the only way gradually to draw Britain out of shadows into which it has been cast by the worst government it has ever had inflicted upon it.

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This is the implication of Mervyn King’s long-overdue criticism of Crash Gordon’s mishandling of the economy and creation of the largest peacetime deficit in British history, ostensibly somehow to buy his way out of recession, but in reality to try to generate some sort of fake recovery in the run-up to the general election, thereby, somehow, securing a victory. God help us all if that works.

Well, that’s precisely the point, isn’t it? Whatever the motive for Brown’s profligacy, it’s becoming abundantly clear that it won’t work. Britain is not recovering, in spite of the gazillions of pounds, much of it printed, being poured down the drain to make up for Brown’s truly horrific, banana republic-style borrowing and spending splurge. King, it seems, has finally come clean on the scale of the government-led secret, further bailout of those two giant Scottish banks, RBS and HBOS, (£61Bn) whose chiefs were so very close to Brown and other Scottish Labourists, and who brought such pain to the people of Britain as a whole with their casino business practices and high risk, rank profiteering. He seems to have had enough of carrying the can for all Brown’s gargantuan errors of judgment, both as Chancellor and as unelected Prime Minister.

Today’s Telegraph report therefore makes refreshing reading, at least for me, loathe Brown and support the Tory plan for saving the British economy as I do.

In comments which are likely to infuriate Mr Brown, Mervyn King said that the next Government would need to “eliminate a large part of the structural deficit” over one parliamentary term alone. This proposal goes significantly further than anything penned in by the Government in the Budget, or what is demanded by the Fiscal Responsibility Bill unveiled last week in the Queen’s Speech.

In a hearing of the Treasury Select Committee, Mr King said repeatedly that the Government’s plan needed to be “credible” and detailed, or it would lose the confidence of the international investors who buy British debt. He said: “I think [the plan] has to be something where a really significant reduction in the deficit, the elimination of a large part of the structural deficit, takes place over the lifetime of a parliament, which is the period for which a government is elected. Beyond that is a statement of intent and hope rather than a plan for which someone can be held accountable.”

This, to me, represents not only a “rebuke” of Brown for his incompetence and subsequent complacency about the state of the national finances, but also a clear message of support for George Osborne. And it goes further, according to the report.

In comments which will further rattle markets, Mr King said that the top-tier rating on Britain’s debt could be at risk if the Government does not go ahead with significant cuts.

He said: “I don’t think there’s any immediate risk [of a downgrade] but of course the longer there isn’t a credible plan that sets out what actions will be taken, the more that is a risk. I myself don’t think that there is any impediment to the UK putting in place a credible plan that will convince financial markets.”

This is arguably the sternest of the numerous warnings the Bank’s Governor has issued to Mr Brown over the size of the deficit. It is the first since Mr Brown announced last week that the Government would draw up legislation forcing it to cut the deficit each year for the next decade and insisting that it halves the budget deficit within four years. Since then, however, official statistics have shown that the Government is still borrowing cash at the rate of almost £3 billion a week.

I wonder how Brown will get his revenge. Remember, you see, for ‘moral compass’ man, it’s all about politics and always has been. He will burn anyone down who shows dissent and over whom he exercises some form of control. That’s Brown’s way, the way of the bully, the coward and the demagogue.

It’s also the Labour way. An expert has just spoken out of turn, in this case Mervyn King. We know how Labour deals with people like that, don’t we Professor Nutt?

But hey, things can only get better. We can vote the bastards out in 2010. As one poll shows, published at the same time as that Guardian Ipsos-Mori rogue, (another puts Labour back down on 22%, on point ahead of the Liberals), it’s looking increasingly like that’s precisely what we will do. And there’s nothing Brown, Mandelson or the rest of that shower of lying, ruinous losers can do about it.

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