I was interested to hear on the news this morning that another gang of remote bank thieves have been apprehended. This time a gang targeting Barclays and £1.9m to go with the team who got clobbered last week for trying to rip off Santander.
With much fan fare this morning – the metropolitan police have made 9 arrests and this is right and proper but herein lies the problem.
There have been no arrests whatsoever of the thieves involved in plots within the city that have cost many billions of pounds. The Libor scandal alone and just yesterday, JP Morgan and a scandal involving sums that we cannot comprehend. JP Morgan was fined but crucially, no one was held to account. Not suit went down. And their fine will be paid for by shareholders, which is me and you if you have a pension. Same thing with Lehmans, RBS… Knighthoods have been revoked and the odd career curtailed but no one is doing porridge.
I have little sympathy with the argument that the worldwide financial recession was caused by greedy bankers. Not that there are not venal people within financial services who pay them revolting amounts of money and far more than they deserve. But if any single profession is going to be blamed for the crisis, then look no further than our hapless politicians. Politics and economics are incompatible by their design but that said, our self aggrandising politicians compounded a bad situation the world over.
Thou shalt not steal – one of the cardinal sins and bank robbers should go to jail - but this should apply to all robbers. There is no confidence in our financial services industry because those who transgress and thieve within the City seem to do so with impunity and that stinks.