‘Why are we so hated?” the City asks with increasing nervousness as it begins to realise that its gaudy allure is fading. “Because you wrecked our prosperity and then stole our taxes,” is the short answer it will hear during the coming weeks as bankers pick up £6bn in bonuses.
The national consensus holds that the City is being “rewarded for failure” and, for once, the national consensus is right. Most understand, too, that in the cases of RBS, Halifax and the other bailed-out banks, the financiers are engaged in a theft of public money beyond the dreams of a mafia crime family. What we must grasp if there is to be serious reform is that the bonuses are rewards for cowards as well as for failures.
Carry on reading