As Gordon Brown, former British Chancellor, now Prime Minister, heads for Washington to try to convince the new adminstration to set up a “global regulatory system” the Americans should ask themselves why they should believe him when he failed so spectacularly for 12 years.
At home, Brown has come in for stern criticism in recent days for his failure to stop the immense and growing disaster occurring in the British economy.
Lord Turner, new head of the Financial Services Authority (FSA), blames Brown when Chancellor for the failure of regulation which led to catastrophic losses at Northern Rock, HBOS and RBS.
“They existed within a political philosophy where all the pressure on the FSA was not to say ‘why aren’t you looking at these business models?’, but ‘why are you being so heavy and intrusive, can’t you make your regulation a bit more light touch?’,” he said.
“We were supervising people like HBOS within a particular philosophy of the way you do regulation, which I think in retrospect was wrong. I think (the FSA’s actions were) a competent execution of a style of regulation and a philosophy in regulation which was, in retrospect, mistaken.”
Similarly, Bank of England Governor Mervyn King claims he has been shouting warnings for years about risky lending without any response from Brown.
It is on the record that Brown delivered a speech in the City urging them to take even greater risks.
The Prime Minister is now trying to cover up the mess by throwing the kitchen sink at sacked RBS boss Fred Goodwin’s enormous pension. Significantly this was done as the Treasury unveiled its third bank bailout in the form of a £325 billion insurance scheme for desperate RBS.
Meanwhile the head of the Audit Commission, Steve Bundred, warned that public debt is at “Armageddon levels” and will exceed two-thirds of the entire annual economic output of the country.
Send this man back with a flea in his ear.