Banks are bastards. Everyone seems to be discovering this for the first time, as though banks had always been the stalwart champions of morality and decency, and have only just now strayed from the path of the righteous. Banks have never been there to be our friends. Despite the claims of their adverts, no one from the Halifax has ever magically appeared to help me carry stuff up the stairs or to reach a high shelf or to just generally ‘be there’. What they have done is to help me every step of the way into crushing, crippling, debt by ‘helpfully’ piling on ever-increasing charges the deeper into it I get.
So, as if the collapse of the economy brought about by reckless lending and dubious trading tactics wasn’t enough, we now hear about the deliberate manipulation of the markets for individual gain. We then have to chew on our fists whilst enormously wealthy men get to shrug their shoulders and say ‘i didn’t know – no one tells me anything’ while their Bentley waits outside to take them back to their country estate.
Money lending used to be seen as the crudest and least honourable form of earning a living, and was earmarked for only the lowest and most disdainfully regarded sections of society. Now these moneylenders shape and change our daily lives with their crooked dealings, and when it all goes wrong, they make us pay for the damage (and their bonuses), so that those most responsible can continue living a great quality of life, while us normal folk feel our living standards slipping significantly.
They say crime doesn’t pay, but it depends what school you went to and who you work for.
If I was employing people to manage such vast amounts of (other people’s) money, I’d make them work in a special building where every floor was made of collapsible metal mesh, suspended above a pit of hungry angry lions. Everytime the public was disadvantaged by unscrupulous dealing, a random desk would drop, taking its screaming heartless occupant with it. That would make them think twice.