Friday, 7 January 2011

Who Do Bankers Think They Are?

'If I don't get a seven figure bonus this year, I'm emigrating' I threatened my boss.

He laughed.

So I rang Prime Minister David Cameron's Office and repeated my threat, emphasising how ruinous to the economic recovery my departure would be if this country were not prepared to renumerate the top rate to the top people.

Ok, so I didn't really phone David Cameron's office, but you get the picture.

How come bankers can hold this country to ransom, and not even over their obscene salaries, but their obscene BONUSES? And believe it or not, the actual industry term is 'compensation' (???????)

Why do the rest of we employees (most of whom do not even receive bonuses) lack this snake-like mesmerism over our government to persuade them that our workaday mediocrity is actually genius in disguise so that they live in terror of us hightailing our talents elsewhere?

If ALL banks were capped by the government at the £2,500 max per banker pledged by the LibDem government when they came to power, where are they all going to go in protest? There are only so many top banking jobs abroad paying even more, and other countries may actually follow suit if they see Britain taking a firm stand as many can no more afford it than we can in a worldwide recession. Plus countries such as Dubai are on the edge of bankruptcy in their own right, having been constructed on a house of cards known as debt. Greece has already toppled over the edge. Spain is teetering. Japan and China will soon get over the novelty of their newfound wealth and realise they don't have to pay these a-holes as much as they think.

I firmly suspect if we lost half, we wouldn't even notice, so they don't scare me with their threats to emigrate. And let's not forget they're the ones who got the banks into the mess they're in, forcing us to bail them out in the first place, so they should be incurring performance penalties and paying US compensation, not to mention actually acting in our interests!

Why would we need people at the top of the financial pyramid who regard our savings as casino chips? This was never the way banks used to behave before they watched 'Wall Street' and decided it was a documentary. They used to be solid institutions we all trusted and we were rewarded with stability and predictable steady growth in return. Old fashioned things known as 'Codes of Conduct' also kept them in check.

Hardly thrilling, but then losing your hard-earned pension or life savings is hardly thrilling to the victim, yet from the 1994 Lloyds name scandal to today, it seems not a fig has been learned. Or earned by these wondrous winged beings in charge of our piggy banks.

I remember when 9/11 happened in 2001, a financial expert on TV predicted the whole world would suffer at the loss of at least 1500 top people in the financial world. Not a word more did I ever hear on the subject, so perhaps the loss was entirely personal, to their friends and families, rather than the global economy.


Steve said...

Our bankers threatening to emigrate? Good riddance to the lot of them. Let them go and join their money - most of which is conveniently abroad anyway...

Owen said...

Personally, I think the whole lot of them should do exactly like lemmings do sometimes... to emigrate right over the edge of a cliff and into the ocean. A very high cliff, we don't want any survivors coming back and contaminating the human race ever again... they are positively evil... When I look at what I've paid in interest on a housing loan over the years, for the privilege of being able to live in a house, it positively makes me crazy. Our interest payments, among other forms of organized thievery, are paying their bonuses. The whole banking system is rotten to the core... We are not out of the woods yet either... Glad to see I'm not the only totally disgusted observer...

rb said...

Well, yes I don't think they have any skills we can't live without, so let them emigrate.

But I do think they will just be replaced by more of the same, sadly.

Anonymous said...

Agree, agree, agree! And Steve's comment, re. them joining their money abroad, made me laugh.

The Sagittarian said...

Don't send them down here, we have enough of this breed of our own!! It is very annoying that after having skived off our meagre savings for years we have now also had to bail out the bankers that put the economy in the situation it is in AND with bonuses to boot. Criminal.

Nota Bene said...

I just couldn't agree more whole heartedly...

brokenbiro said...

... But what can be done? I'm trying to think of some sort of protest... maybe we should have a day when everyone goes into their bank and pays in 1p (preferably cheques we all give each other - doubling the paperwork for them)... there'd be queues and stuff, and lowest-paid bank staff would suffer, but it might make a point, eh?

Wisewebwoman said...

I have far too many rellie bankers and I am appalled at how they talk.
I will never forget the comment made by one of them when the ATMs were first installed.

"Now us bankers have you all where you should be: out in the cold and rain on the street where you belong and not sullying our lofty halls".

Says it all, doesn't it?


Martin H. said...

Hmm, I wonder if politicians are reluctant to be too hard on bankers, for fear of missing a lucrative place at the table. See Tony Blair.

moi said...

I wish someone, somewhere, could tell me, in simple elementary school terms, what it is, exactly, that bankers DO. And why we need them? 'cause I just don't see it.

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Ha Ha Steve. On the money as ever. Which makes it even more of an injustice you don't actually have more.

Owen, yes, let's reinact that scene from 'Whoops Apocolypse' all over again where people jump off a cliff as part of a job creation scheme to create jobs for others.

RB. Of course they will easily be replaced by more of the same. Which makes their argument of being so economically indiposable even more laughable.

Christine, welcome. Yes, that Steve is a sharp one!

Sagittarius. Reassuring that NZ doesn't want them either. Just goess to prove my theory that other nations don't fancy them as much as they think.

Cheers Notabene.

Broken Biro - welcome. Your protest idea is eminently sensible and peaceful. I suggest we all change banks to more ethical ones wherever possible. None are paying any interest any more so it's not as if we will suffer financially by doing so, but THEY will!

WWW. I sincerely hope that relation turned out to be a b***ard rather than actually sharing any DNA with you. Mind you, being a banker and with that attitude, he is already proving that!

Interesting point Martin H. Thanks for dropping by and the valuable link.

Moi. I'd tell you if only I knew!

David said...

It's simple, isn't it - they're put in charge of minding all the money, so hardly surprising that they decide that they deserve a fat chunk of it. There need to be laws to prevent this, to protect them from their own greed.

As to going off abroad - call their bluff. If they do, then when the next crisis comes up, we won't have to bail them out, will we? Sounds like a win to me.