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Friday 27 January 2012

Verity Murphy | 14:59 UK time, Friday, 27 January 2012

A £963,000 bonus in shares awarded to Royal Bank of Scotland boss Stephen Hester has been strongly criticised.

The Labour leader, Ed Miliband, said the payout represented a "disgraceful failure of leadership by the Prime Minister".

And the Conservative Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said RBS was "not a normal bank" and there "should be a concept of public service and duty to the wider British public".

Tonight, our Economics editor Paul Mason investigates how the bonus was approved, and why.

And as the great and the good of politics, economics and business meet in the stunning Swiss mountains, has Davos come up with a plan to get us out of the economic crisis? Steve Smith has been going off piste to find out.

Also on the programme, Guillermo Arriaga, the Mexican screenwriter, director and producer who has received accolades for his films 21 Grams, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada and Babel, and has a strong view or two on the economic crisis.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Fred Goodwin, who created the catastrophe at RBS, was on a pension of over £700,000 until he was strong-armed into cutting it to a mere £350,000 per annum. Goodwin’s bonus in the last year of his incumbency was £2.8million.
    Hester has been appointed to oversee the thankless task of sorting the mess out. It is absolutely wicked to rally the mob against his salary and bonus for the purpose of political point-scoring.

    And I guess there are more than a few BBC executives and presenters who wouldn't get out of bed for Hester's salary and bonus.

  • Comment number 2.

    #1

    You're having a laugh aren't you?

  • Comment number 3.

    #1

    If you don't understand the unique status that banking has as a "business" within the capiltalist system, then you surely have a lot to learn.

    I implore you to watch Paul Grignon's video "Money as Dept" as an easy-to-understand starter.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dc3sKwwAaCU

    All banking should be state controlled for the benefit of the real economy, NOT the other way around. Banking should provide a SERVICE to real wealth creation businesses and the rest of the economy. Not the economy subservient to Banking.

    This is exactly why bankers should never receive bonuses or huge wage packets ilo bonuses (ref Barclays, they've been cleverer than the others in side-stepping the big bonus issue).

  • Comment number 4.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/newsnight/fromthewebteam/2012/01/wednesday_25_january_2012.html?postId=111535133

    Don't get me wrong, the pervasive Laurie Penny serves a fantastic function. Like Mr. Miliband does for Labour. At least she is 'colourful', though that is, in itself, not surely enough to warrant a near permanent gig in BBC studios. I know she is gunning for/being groomed to be the younger, less hypocritical (fiscally) Toynbee lite or a staffer, but this is a bit overt, even in support of Mr. Mason's muse.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01bfd9b/Daily_Politics_27_01_2012/?t=1m35s

    Which one supposes, explains the frequent 'guest' invitations sent out by the BBC. One hopes.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/newsnight/fromthewebteam/2012/01/wednesday_25_january_2012.html?postId=111538843

    We may be bereft of talent and options, but at least we have clear indications of what ever we end up with, it has to be better than some..

  • Comment number 5.

    Top comment from Peston's latest blog on RBS/Hester...


    "Hmm..... Share Price when Mr Hester was appointed 65p
    Share Price Today 28p

    I must have got this wrong somewhere along the line ?

    Payment by results, I don't think so !"

  • Comment number 6.

    '2. At 16:05 27th Jan 2012, museV wrote:
    You're having a laugh aren't you?


    Have to agree, market rate talent compo should be much more realistic.

    Ms. Penny might struggle to get various Heads of Vision, Hearing no Evil and 'Only speaking it when protected by FoI exclusions on board' with her £26,800 across the board scheme, mind. I saw a flicker of panic cross the tanned visage of a well travelled (though Ms. Penny has racked up the frequent flyer miles too) Mr. Neil there too.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre/latestnews/2012/1201disclosure.html

    Thanks for asking.

  • Comment number 7.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 8.

    Note that Hester also studied PPE at Oxford. This means that he knew from a relatively early age the influence that the banking cabal has over Western liberal "democracies".

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Hester

    Those that own/run the banks own/run the entire world....unless they are regulated.

    A guy called Jesus, who lived around a couple of thousand years ago, had quite a lot to say on this subject.

  • Comment number 9.

    #4 When I read this Junkk http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Statesman I'm astonised at where this paper has gone, look at the august writers that once were there, and look at the bigoted ones today.

  • Comment number 10.

    '7. At 16:35 27th Jan 2012, MaggieL wrote:
    This comment has been referred for further consideration'


    Why? Who is to know? Some it seems, can say what they like, provoke and disrupt, free as birds, yet when others so prompted respond... that unique way of dealing with things that exists in the most trusted places takes a darker form.

  • Comment number 11.

    '9. At 16:44 27th Jan 2012, ecolizzy http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Statesman I'm astonised at where this paper has gone, look at the august writers that once were there, and look at the bigoted ones today.'

    There might be a causal link to explain that publication's less than public-representing ABC figures in there?

    Not so sure it explains its entire staff being pretty much the only print media the BBC production teams go to when Polly Toynbee or Kevin Maguire are sipping a Chianti together and can't make it.

  • Comment number 12.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 13.

    ALCOHOL: THE WEFT OF A WARPED CULTURE - THE DRUG OF "JUST SAY YES"

    Off topic I know, but BBC put QT on iPlayer, so not my fault.

    The ALCOHOL SLOPE: Alcohol - more alcohol - stronger alcohol - nastier drugs - injuicious copulation - violence - crime - A&E - prison - sickness - death. (And you can always 'ave a fag' on the way down.)

    Bravo Westminster Governance!

    Just watch Britain slide . . .

  • Comment number 14.

    I guess one needs to accept the inevitability of those who share views flocking together, but do we really need to be subjected to ideology that's also from the brainpower of a self-promoting, zero-irony collection of sparrow synapses?

    http://order-order.com/2012/01/27/picking-up-the-penny/

    I know you all went to Uni together 'n all, guys, but tanking audience figures all round might suggest sharing too much is bad for your ratings-driven bonusses.

  • Comment number 15.

    IT'S A SYMPTOM OF THE AGE OF PERVERSITY LIZZY (#9)

    Eradication of maturity and wisdom, is precisely what Tony's "Education X 3" was intended to achieve.

    Nuff sed

  • Comment number 16.

    Oh Maggie.. so good they banned it twice?

    Dye your hair, speak wiv cred, and write what 'they' think 'we' need to hear, and you will be golden.

  • Comment number 17.

    There was a time when bankers were Equity Partners (Unlimited Liability), and so any loss would actually hurt the pockets of the management:

    “Interestingly, banking was slow off the mark. Limited liability status was at first not taken up enthusiastically. Bankers appeared to prize unlimited liability. It served as a safety certificate for depositors, a badge of prudence. ‘A depositor would be much more likely to trust his money with a bank whose shareholders he knew must yield up to him the uttermost farthing’.”

    http://www.bankofengland.co.uk/publications/speeches/2011/speech525.pdf

    This is the very essence of an Equity investment. Symmetrical Risk & Reward.

    However it soon ended.

    So nowadays, Hester et al enjoy all the Reward for no Risk.

  • Comment number 18.

    #17 cont.

    This is the injustice of our times:

    “the risks from banking have been widely spread socially. But the returns to bankers have been narrowly kept privately. That risk/return imbalance has grown over the past century.”

    Those are not the words of a barmy Lefty, Occupy tent dweller or Anti-Capitalist protestor, but the words of the head of financial stability at the BoE.

    The 1% of this country have no intention of accepting the role of Equity investors. They want to accumulate wealth and power, whatever the level of success (or failure) they achieve, their firm achieves, or even the country achieves.

    I weep for our future and theirs.

  • Comment number 19.

    Laurie Penny is marvellous. Her views, always so politely and beautifully put, are supported by her entire generation without exception who recognise in her a genius at articulating their unanimous thoughts. The plummeting, sorry soaring, circulation of the New Statesman stands as testament to her huge popularity. It is clear that Newsnight invites her to appear as a guest because, like, say, John Prescott, she is well-informed, rational, reasonable and it can always be guaranteed that interviews with her will be an enjoyable and informative experience for the discerning viewer. Unlike some programmes that aim for an emotional response to news and current affairs, Newsnight does not promote bear-baiting and rabble-rousing but strives to give viewers rounded well-informed discussions with people who know their subject.

    (Is this the sort of thing you want?)

  • Comment number 20.

    Oh good. Now I know the sort of Newsspeak I must strive to master if I ever again want to be heard in this Brave New Newsnight World.

  • Comment number 21.

    19. At 17:40 27th Jan 2012, MaggieL

    Nails on heads, etc.

    Appreciated by some if, perhaps, not all.

  • Comment number 22.

    THE NEWSYNIGHTY BLOG PROTOCOL (#21)

    I must take issue Junkk. Having no way of knowing 'where you are coming from' I can only deprecate your stance on post #19.

    If we all went round reading between the lines, and then making cryptic comment, only Times Crossword buffs would be able to extract any meaning at all from the NewsyNighty blog AND THE BLOGDOG WOULD BE BAFFLED! Then where should we be?

  • Comment number 23.

    Bit ironic, but it would appear that " Green Tech " industries have precipitated some of the most potentially toxic places on earth, far, far worse polluting than any coal revolution ever was !

    http://toryaardvark.com/2011/01/31/china-pays-the-environmental-cost-of-chris-huhnes-wind-turbines/

  • Comment number 24.

  • Comment number 25.

    Nothing on the uk banning Press TV?

    which is one afraid of? truth or lies? If lies then they are easy to expose so people will see them as lies so no need to fear them. If truth then that is because it exposes lies which is a service to the nation.

    https://wikispooks.com/wiki/Document:Britain_Bans_Press_TV

    seems uk state security spends it time fighting its own people?

    "German Tutor found at the bottom of a spiral staircase, in "unexplained" circumstances"

    this article links Gareth Williams [the GCHQ guy found padlocked in a bag] death to hers.

    https://wikispooks.com/wiki/Document:A_Gareth_Wiliams_-_Gudrun_Loftus_Axis%3F

    what do we get on NN? people trying to whisk water into a thick cream over a bonus.Yawn.

  • Comment number 26.

    IPCC report leaked by those concerned over its methodology

    https://wikispooks.com/wiki/IPCC_5th_Assessment_Report_Zero_Order_Drafts

    http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2011/12/23/a-blaze-of-unwelcome-light/

    "Organizations that receive government funding for climate research are surprisingly reluctant to have any public scrutiny or input. For example, the University of Virginia, Penn State and the University of East Anglia are using the courts to block disclosure of information relating to work paid for by taxpayers."

    http://gallopingcamel.info/IPCC.htm

    shhh. sweep under carpet.

    "A climate scientist who became embroiled in the 'Climategate' scandal has been awarded a knighthood in the New Year Honours List.

    Professor Bob Watson of the University of East Anglia, who is also the chief scientific adviser at Defra, has been handed one of the highest honours an individual can receive. "

    http://www.clickgreen.org.uk/events/events/123002-%5Cclimategate%5C-scientist-rewarded-with-knighthood-in-new-year-honours-list.html

  • Comment number 27.

    Regarding last night’s ‘ead to ‘ead …..

    (Aside from the matter of another Munchkin - query two - getting unnecessary air time!)

    Surely, but surely, it is a serious ‘anging offence?

    i.e.

    Sleeping with the enemy!


    And we pay these people !!!!!



    And …. Oh yes!

    Why do so many elected sic representatives sic seem to start from the premise ….

    “Don’t do as I do, do as I say!

    (Particularly the person sitting on the left whom is so far over to the right she seems to be falling off, much the way the individual sitting on the right - whom purports to come from the left - already has! [Repeatedly?] )

    (Apo’s for the repetition! ….)

    And we pay these people !!!!!



    And …. Oh yes!

    Rickets …. Up. Obesity …. Up. Aids/HiV …. Up. Tuberculosis …. Up. Diabetes …. Up. Birth defects …. ?Up. (Please add to list according to your own p.o.v. ….)

    Collectively, a ticking ‘health time bomb’?

    Any recognisable causal links?

    Come on Nn! How about it?

    If not ….. how about ……

    “Umbrellas. Fashion icon or Fashion faux pas? Sadly no members of the public were available at such short notice so our studio guests will consider the moral dilemma facing the nation.”





    And …. Oh yes! …. Again!

    It might be a very good idea for us all to treat this site with a bit more respect ….

    An occasional greetings card to the odd Nn staff team once in a while ….

    A glowingly positive, upbeat comment about the studio set now and then ….

    Sartorial elegance, intellectual acumen, makeup standards, guest list, camera angles even ….. deep breath …. moderator impartiality!

    (Cautiously …..)

    It might actually not be pushing it too far for Posters here to collectively recommend the newly interred - Oops! That might best be read as ‘interned’ - Studio Runner for the next Honours List?

    For services to the beverages industry perhaps?

    Why?

    Take a good look at the the ‘Faustbook’ and ‘Bitter’ shambles that is the replacement for viewers comments regarding the ‘Daily Politics’ programme!

    And - unless you ‘sell your soul’ to ‘Faustbook’ and ‘Bitter’ ( both ‘commercial’ organisations!) - it seems that you can’t even tell the DP team just what you think of the new ‘hip, trendy, edgy ‘audience interaction protocol’ !!!!!

    Think positive, cancel those negative thoughts, be nice ….

    Come out …. into the ‘Bright side’!

    For ….


    You have been warned!



    378

  • Comment number 28.

    I am very disappointed and annoyed that maggieL's and Sasha Clarkson's (from yesterday) comments have been referred.

    What's the point of these blogs if draconion sensorship is the order of the day?

    BBC pah!

    btw Hawkeye-Pierce's comments are spot on!

  • Comment number 29.

  • Comment number 30.

    '28. At 23:16 27th Jan 2012, museV -
    What's the point of these blogs if draconion sensorship is the order of the day?'


    Don't always see eye to eye, but appreciate being able to say so, and why (if often in a manner designed not to 'disrupt'), so happy to take the chance to agree here.

    As far as I can gather 'the point' is them being able to show 'they' are not only listening, but graciously facilitating exchange. Until they don't, of course.

    Why and how is in a notice in locked cabinet in a basement with a cryptic sign on the door.

    Luckily, that fools few.

  • Comment number 31.

    THAT SIGN: "BEWARE OF THE BLOGDOG" (#30)

    Nice!

  • Comment number 32.

    8. At 16:43 27th Jan 2012, museV wrote:
    "A guy called Jesus, who lived around a couple of thousand years ago, had quite a lot to say on this subject."

    I think it was "render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's"

    Which brings me to the question of Tax.

    Hester's bonus I assume was a given number of shares, and they happened to add up to that amount (if the share price had been higher, the value would have been higher).

    He can't get the cash unless he sells, at which point he will have to pay tax. If he hangs on till the share price rallies, which is probably will, how much tax will he pay?

    Conceivably, he could end up paying as much in tax as the shares are currently worth, so it will be quits.


    Just a thought.

  • Comment number 33.

    We need to decide what we think out banking industry is for.

    There are two fundamentally incompatible paradigms:

    Fee market laissez faire capitalist banking - let finance make money wherever and whenever it wants to in a globalised world economy - let it take the risks - win the rewards - or lose their shirts trying. This it is claimed creates big money for bonuses, tax receipts and loads of jobs. The trouble is that this is now a busted flush - finance isn't making the money it used to, jobs are going and worst of all, we have found out the hard way that it was the taxpayer who had to pick up the massive bill when it all went pear shaped.

    Therefore IMHO the case for laissez faire banking falls - it is a contradiction in terms because it isn't "free" at all - we all have to pay for it and therefore we don't see that it is right to allow a tiny minority to reap rich rewards which we have underpinned at huge cost to the nation.

    Indeed the last enquiry into the financial services industry pointed out that there is a huge amount of entirely pointless activity at vast cost to your pension fund, your mortgage etc which is taking risks for very little reward, buying & selling shares to little purpose, other than to generate enough turnover and margin to.... pay big bonuses for the managers, often against the interests of those whose money they aresupposed to be managing.

    The other model is the mutual bank which is owned by itrs customers and delivers bog standard retail banking and small business finance efficiently and at low risk. In the past in the UK this was dominated by building societies, but they were sold off and turned into some of the worst risk takers with unsustainable business models, e.g. N. Rock.

    As a lot of the Lloyds TSB branches have been bought by the Coop Bank, this may finally offer ethical consumers a viable retail banking product which will get them away from the City banking culture - I hope my local branch is one of them!

    There is then the ticking timebomb of bank exposure to high risks - if the the EZ PIIGS defaulted, 85% of UK bank equity would be wiped out - then there's the housing market - a big fall in house prices would also bust the banks - and IMHO it won't be politically possible or economically feasible to do another massive bailout.

    The problem we have is that we have doctrinaire free market ideologues in the Coalition attempting to roll back the deregulation of the fiancial services industry, whilst the consequences of laissez faire banking has%2

  • Comment number 34.

    32. At 10:37 28th Jan 2012, Hastings
    Just a thought.


    Just wondering... in Mr. Mason's extensive, thorough and one is sure meticulously impartial 'investigation', one presumes the terms of the contract that lead to this, and who negotiated it were all clearly outlined, especially given Mr. Miliband's excitable input here:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01bfd9b/Daily_Politics_27_01_2012/?t=2m05s

    Because there does seem to be other possible aspects worth bearing in mind:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-16752358 - (comments, sadly, closed within a day)

    'the previous Labour government was responsible as it had forged the contract that included a bonus clause'

  • Comment number 35.

    Continued.

    The problem we have is that we have doctrinaire free market ideologues in the Coalition attempting to roll back the deregulation of the fiancial services industry, whilst the consequences of laissez faire banking has left us all convinced that it doesn't work and that root & branch reform to reregulate banking is essential.

    Which brings me back to my question - what is banking for?

    For the Tories its the gravy train they, their families and friends ride on. It gives them jobs, it makes them rich, it funds their Party - hell, the Tory Party IS the Bankers' Party! Any Tory minister therefore now faces an impossible conflict of interest - bite the hand that feeds you, or bite the hand that voted for you.

    For me banking ought to be a public service role to provide a fair, low cost retail banking service and channel investment into businesses and lend to home owners - and a mutual structure seems to me to be the only way this can be provided.

    If the whole kit & caboodle of UK banking could be dismantled and mutualised, then we would be rid of the bonus culture, the greed, the unacceptable risk taking and the speculation which drives up prices and funds the lifestyles of the City, which IMHO is a cancer at the heart of society fuelling greed and resentment the rest of us feel when we see people receiving bloated seven figure incomes.

    The Coalition is now between a rock and a hard place - go entirely against their beliefs and supporters and implement a reform package to rein in the banks and end their bucaneering behaviour and bonus cluture, or allow the City another roll of the dice and hope there isn't another meltdown which will see private sector banking disappear, as it has in Eire.

  • Comment number 36.

    How Ron Paul Could Win

    http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2012/01/27/how-ron-paul-could-win/

    A candidate committed to saving the Constitution, environment, private savings, protecting the security of the elderly, opposing war, and boosting the incomes of the worst off, which has the added benefit of reducing illegal immigration, is a candidate without equal in the presidential election.

  • Comment number 37.

    #33 &35 rb

    thumbs up

    great post!

  • Comment number 38.

    ED MILIBAND, MAN Of THE PEOPLE

    Davos Open Forum blow to E Miliband

    http://www.presstv.ir/detail/223495.html

  • Comment number 39.

    NATO’s Grisly Crimes in Libya: Extensive Evidence that NATO Deliberately Targeted Civilians

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=28917

    The report exposes the human rights and democratic pretexts employed by the US, France, Britain and their NATO accomplices to carry out a colonial-style war of conquest. It makes clear that UN Security Council Resolution 1973, imposing a "no-fly zone" and arms embargo on Libya supposedly to protect civilians from repressive actions by Muammar Gaddafi, was in fact used to carry out a ruthless air war waged in co-ordination with "rebel" forces on the ground.

  • Comment number 40.

    Iran moving closer to stage where it will be too late to destroy nuclear facilities, Israel warns

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/iran/9045484/Iran-moving-closer-to-stage-where-it-will-be-too-late-to-destroy-nuclear-facilities-Israel-warns.html

    Note who wrote the piece.

  • Comment number 41.

    Have to say, a 1hr+ 6min moderation queue takes some managing.

    Sure it will all be worth the considerable awaiting going on.

  • Comment number 42.

    Though, noting most pieces, and the author (especially when the reason for being highlighted is less than clear, in a less than good way), maybe not.

  • Comment number 43.

  • Comment number 44.

    Michael Gove criticised for awarding public funds to organisation he advised

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/jan/27/michael-gove-funds-organisation-advised?newsfeed=true&tw_p=twt

    The education secretary personally made the decision to give taxpayers' money to an organisation that distributes funds to pay for better security at Jewish schools. Gove has promoted the Community Security Trust (CST) as an adviser since 2007.

    What a good little Neocon he is!

  • Comment number 45.

    Sir Philip Hampton waives £1.4m RBS share award

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/9046377/Sir-Philip-Hampton-waives-1.4m-share-award.html

    Sir Philip Hampton, chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland, has turned down £1.4m in shares, in stark contrast to the position taken by his chief executive on bonuses.

  • Comment number 46.

    OR - MORE DIRECTLY - WHAT IS MONEY NOT? (#33)

    Clearly: money is not a commodity. All the evils arise from treating it as such.

    Nuff sed

  • Comment number 47.

    44. At 15:18 28th Jan 2012, museV -
    Michael Gove criticised for awarding public funds to organisation he advised

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/jan/27/michael-gove-funds-organisation-advised?newsfeed=true&tw_p=twt

    All have, and often deserve their critics. Or, maybe, not.

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/tobyyoung/100133098/guardian-attacks-michael-gove-again-%E2%80%93-and-scores-spectacular-own-goal/

    Maybe it depends what you read, and what you choose to believe, or focus upon.

    Irrespective of faith.

    One also has to wonder why the Guardian is so often well, if not pervasive as default press commentary in certain quarters. Can't be representation, or accuracy.

    Maybe those in the edit suite just know what they, and a few others, like.

    http://www.thecommentator.com/article/624/the_guardian_acknowledges_a_degree_of_anti_semitism

    ps: It might be worth reading the content before 'noting' who wrote the piece. Poor historical precedent. Don't tell 'im , Pike!

  • Comment number 48.

  • Comment number 49.

  • Comment number 50.

    My goodness telly's boring tonight and not much on radio ...
    Bad accounting practices?
    Govt./Treasury/Whitehall does/do not have proper or meaningful 'accounts'
    Banks do not have proper or meaningful corporate accounts
    Bank of England ... Ha ha Ha
    EU - has not produced any verified accounts, at all, for 17 years
    - and we wonder why things are in a mess?

  • Comment number 51.

    I CEASED TO WONDER SOME TIME AGO WHEN I REALISED (#50)

    Westminster is a natural home to parties. Parties pre-select 'Westminster Creatures', for voters to choose from. Parties elevate the MOST Westminsterly of their Creatures to high office. From these emerges a QUINTESSENTIAL WESTMINSTER CREATURE to be party leader. When a small number of key voters finally lose patience with ineptitude, the other party gets in - its leader goes to the powerless Queen, and returns with almost unlimited power that he no way warrants.

    Under this ethos, the finer aspects of life corrode, degrade and atrophy.

    "YOU ARE HERE"

  • Comment number 52.

  • Comment number 53.

    How the Banks Broke the Social Compact, Promoting their Own Special Interests

    by Prof. Michael Hudson

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=28938

  • Comment number 54.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/the-lay-scientist/2012/jan/26/1

    'This doesn't just lead to boring programmes; it's also poor journalism.'

    Coincidentally, I cam across this 'story' just now..

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-dorset-16754531

    The default seems to be 'mystery', erring on UFOs.

    Uh-huh. Maybe before rushing to broadcast/print the investigative activities of Mr. Hornby, maybe first get a person who might have a clue beyond 'might' or 'could' to advise?

    'Calling Mr. Shuckman and Ms Watts. Clean up in aisle 9'

  • Comment number 55.

  • Comment number 56.

    Economics in the Age of Deleveraging

    By Prof Steve Keen

    http://www.debtdeflation.com/blogs/2012/01/28/economics-in-the-age-of-deleveraging/

  • Comment number 57.

    It seems to me that the social and economic problems that we are facing could be reversed by returning to sound money. The adoption of fiat money along with the whole libertarian construct, over the past 30 to 40 years, is behind much of successive UK libertarian government’s refusal to moderate the situation for the hard working majority. Why? Because it gave them unlimited access to the hard earned resources of the state . This has culminated in the creation of the warfare/welfare state which, ordinarily, would be unsustainable if it were simply funded by EARNED income and savings – not future (brought forward) income and savings. The creation of credit induced economic booms brings FORWARD to the present, future growth, which as we have found out the hard way, is completely unsustainable.

  • Comment number 58.

    Damian Green: 'brightest and best' immigrants to be given priority
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/9047318/Damian-Green-brightest-and-best-immigrants-given-priority.html

    ‘Damian Green is this week expected to outline the principles behind the Government's new ''selective'' immigration policy that will give preferential treatment to investors, entrepreneurs and world-class artists, dancers, musicians and academics.’

    So it looks like the UK will admit more oligarchs, cosmopolitans and non-doms who will only be out for a fast buck at the UK’s expense (think more off-shoring). World class artists, dancers and musicians will also be welcomed. Since when have the likes of these ever greatly improved a nations GDP? Sounds a lot like more BGT and X-Factor types to me, you know the ones, the narcissistically gifted ones who tend to only think of "me, me, me". And of course you can never have too many academics when your country has become the sink-estate-university to the world.

  • Comment number 59.

    SCIENCE IS LIKE BUILDING WORK - THE BEST IS DONE BY TALENTED AMATEURS (#54)

    The latter are paid by results, and far from selling out to government - they fiddle the VAT!

    Nuff sed

  • Comment number 60.

    CHARLES FORT - PERFECT EXAMPLE OF THE TALENTED AMATEUR (#54 & 59)

    The Book of the Damned covers falls of all kinds. It is on the web, free. All those who are sure about anything in science, should read Fort. It 'cleanses the scientific pallete'.

    You'll believe the sky can lie.

  • Comment number 61.

    Hold tight for the snapping back. feeding time at the trough has been disturbed.

  • Comment number 62.

    Its started, what is a banker worth, what is a footballer worth, what is a surgeon worth?

    First of all, we know what footballers and surgeons do for their wonga!

    What does Stephen Hester and these other corporate actually do for their wonga over and above say, a university chancellor or any other comparable position?

    Secondly, footballers are paid too much too.

    Thirdly, surgeons do a meaningful job which actually affects positively individual peoples lives for the vast majority of the time. I don't know if they are paid too much or too little. I just don't know.

    So to make bankers comparable with such a role is dodging the issue.

  • Comment number 63.

    PSST! DON’T TELL ANYONE, BUT THERE ARE ANOTHER 500 “STEPHEN HESTERS” AT RBS IN LINE FOR MILLION POUND BONUSES.

    RBS chief Stephen Hester to waive £1 million bonus
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/9048374/RBS-chief-Stephen-Hester-to-waive-1-million-bonus.html


    The details of the further £500 million in bonuses (as part of a £1.5 billion bonus and redundancy pot) to be awarded to other executives was detailed in the Telegraph report first released at 11:30pm last night. The details of which now appear to have been removed from the re-issued version of the story timed at 6:15am this morning.

  • Comment number 64.

  • Comment number 65.

    Last year the City contributed £11.5billion in taxes to the Treasury.
    Last year the BBC took £7billion from the British taxpayer/license fee payer.
    They were both paid exorbitant salaries and bonuses but one had a net benefit and the other was to our detriment.

  • Comment number 66.

    WHAT KIND OF PEOPLE HAVE WE ELEVATED TO POWER? (#64)

    Hi Lizzy! And STILL 'we the people' fail to see that THERE IS OVERT TYRANNY, AND THERE IS COVERT TYRANNY. Under the Eastern tyrant YOU KNOW YOU ARE SCREWED. You know who by, and how screwing works. Under the Western tyrants (eg Blair, Cameron) an immeasurable level of cultural deceit is exercised by Westminster (and by ALL the lower INSTITUTIONS - school, police, local authorities, etc etc) until the screwed finally explode, AND CAN BE LABELLED "TERRORIST" (the ultimate tyranny D MOCK CRASS Y).

    At this point there is no alternative - WE COME TO LOVE BIG BROTHER.

  • Comment number 67.

    65. At 10:59 30th Jan 2012, MaggieL

    'Questions won't be asked'. Any bets on tonight's guest list? I'm going with Chukka on how Labour did not have a failure in leadership... well.. recently.. er, the last few hours, anyway. Which some 'interviewers' will see as nothing to challenge too deeply.

    Can't think why.

    So far the BBC's favoured son has been given free rein for his notion that highly paid folk should not be awarded bonusses for simply doing their jobs.

    I'd tend to agree.

    But really, as with so many things, are certain politicians and their media glee clubs being a bit narrow in their scope...

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2088567/Huge-bonuses-grotesque-expenses-spendthrift-bosses-austerity-BBC.html

    ..for some reason? Did Diane Abbott draft their contracts?

    Plus there's also a big void in what is not being asked about the not so distant past in who drafted these contracts.

    Speaking of what gets left out I found this interesting..

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/blog/2012/jan/30/newsdesk-live?CMP=twt_gu

    Now, being the Graun and CiF being more 'CiFitsuits' with the potential for a few community moddings out 'for harmony', I might chip in and ask them to also 'explain how we choose what we DON'T report and why'.

    And wonder if the BBC may ever be so minded on this topic, too?

  • Comment number 68.

    #65 MaggieL

    Angela (Knight)...is that you?

    If not, you are being fooled by the rhetoric and propaganda that the bank lobbyists are being paid literally billions of pounds to promulgate. Or is hubby a banker?

    Have you ever heard of the phrase "mark-to-market"?.... aka mark-to-fantasy. Because these are the accounting practices that the banks are using to generate most of their balance sheet profits. That and all the other general rip-off skimming schemes that they have devised.

    Bank of England official calls for bespoke accounting standards for banks
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/jan/19/bank-england-account-standards

    "Senior Bank of England official Andy Haldane has set out the case for banks to be held to different accounting standards than other major companies because the existing rules may have allowed banks to overstate their profits and exacerbate their losses. Concerns about the use of fair value accounting have been raised since the 2008 banking crisis and were raised last month, in a paper for the Adam Smith Institute, former banker Gordon Kerr warned banks were able to inflate their profits and bonuses through the existing accounting regime."

    It's all just funny made up money and profits.

  • Comment number 69.

    According to Ed Miliband nurses and social workers are so mean spirited that they spend their time obsessing about the £1million bonus paid to someone who's taken a pay cut to sort out the mess left by Sir Fred Goodwin and the Labour Party's lax banking non-regulations.
    I wonder if anyone has asked them whether the £1million+ a WEEK spent on the Leveson inquiry is a good use of scarce resources.

  • Comment number 70.

    68. At 11:48 30th Jan 2012, museV wrote:
    Angela (Knight)...is that you?


    I love the scent of precedents being set in the morning, along with compliant BlogDog approvals.

    At risk of being referred, I'll resist the temptation to join in.

    Meanwhile, on all being happy at a few joining the many in the gutter and all being so much happier for it (if you believe a few news purveyors)...

    http://order-order.com/2012/01/30/taxpayers-cut-off-nose/

    I think the BBC needs more from the shadow cabinet to 'explain' in that unique way they are offered.

  • Comment number 71.

    MONEY TALKS? NO - MONEY GAGS! (#65)

    The number of seriously contentious issues that the BBC neither see, hear, nor speak of, grows steadily, such that now it is clear they are NOT 'public service broadcasting'. there is so much that the people might be properly made aware of. Perhaps all that money is to buy silence - PREVENTING AWARENESS??

    Not enough said BBC.

 

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