The partial transcripts, published in the Irish Independent newspaper, appeared to show the bank’s then head of capital markets, John Bowe, admitting that Anglo had deliberately hoodwinked the government over the size of the bailout required.
Speaking to Peter Fitzgerald, Anglo’s former head of retail banking, Mr Bowe appears to describe how the bank cynically lured the government into a €7bn rescue in full knowledge that the sum would be nowhere near enough to save the lender. The thinking, he suggested, was that once Dublin had been “pulled in”, it would have no choice but to keep picking up the tab.
Ah, the old “in for a penny” trick — first we get you “invested” in the fraud, then we tell you that unless you back the entire thing and swallow that you’re going to find your money was lost.
Oh, and the amount? More than four times the amount originally claimed.
There’s a difference between being wrong and being intentionally deceptive so as to screw people — in this case, screw all the people of a given nation by effectively scamming the government.
The problem we, along with Ireland and the rest of the world have, in that this sort of behavior is supposed to lead to indictments and prosecution, not bonuses and stock options. But it doesn’t; the banks have gone from lending capital provided by investors and shareholders to being able to force taxpayers to fund anything they wish when their bets turn out badly, keeping the profits and shoving the losses up the butt of the common citizen.
This is not just fascism at its worst as it also destroys the tax base and ultimately your economy’s ability to grow. As the people’s purchasing power is trashed via this sort of tactic they lose the ability to get ahead and all that remains is borrowing tomorrow’s earnings for today’s wants and needs. Eventually that collapses as well amid the demands for lower and lower “capital” (really credit) cost to maintain the ponzi scheme.
It is this end-point we are now facing on a global basis, with Europe in unremitting recession and the United States right behind it, unable to post up positive economic growth. The reason for this is simple — innovation has been destroyed, leaving ever-larger percentages of the population able only to go on the dole in some form or fashion as the return of savings and investment is reduced to zero.
Now let’s step back a bit — given this history do you believe that the banks are solvent now and that their derivative positions, along with the rest of their book, is properly valued?
Neither do I.