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Thursday, 6 May 2010

Pass the junk: a doubly poisoned chalice whoever wins

This little graph from the New York Times neatly explains that what the bankers were doing - passing on worthless junk we ended up paying for - is exactly what Europe's politicians are doing.

They are passing each other's toxic national debt round. That's one reason why whoever wins this election we will all lose. That is beside the fact that Mr. Brown has been spending 25% more than we are earning. From a fiscal point of view he is as guilty as the politicians who failed to rearm before world war, but unlike you and me, who will foot the bill, he will have a fat, index-linked pension as a reward.

Folly reigns everywhere, of course. I see The Pru, despite employing battalions of extortionately expensive advisers didn't do its homework before its planned takeover of AIA. I guess the advisers were too busy counting their fees to do their job.

Yet another demonstration of the fact that so many in financial services are as blindingly incompetent as they are obscenely overpaid. But a lucky escape, I suspect; most of these deals fail to create added value, being based on the idea that a) a deal is an easier road to profit than hard work; b) two culturally different organisations will fit in with each other; and c) won't it be fun when I have a bigger organisation to preside over?

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