Sunday, February 11, 2007

Old Labour Rears Its Ugly Hain

You really need to read this interview by Peter Hain in the Daily Telegraph (here). In this imaginative return to the 70s, he calls for City bonuses to be given to the poor and needy.

"I don't believe that people will only work in the City because they get those sort of bonuses. They don't need to offer them. Why don't they give two thirds of that £8.8 billion and invest it in charity or invest it in regeneration schemes for unemployed kids who are living a mile away from the opulence that there is in the City?

"In the interest of the City, particularly if they don't want to invite attacks for greater regulation or changes in taxation, if they don't want to get into that kind of arena, then they have to show a lead.

"Let's work this out on the basis of consensus, let's not have a big fight, because it will come to a big fight otherwise.

"There's a debate starting and either it's done in a self policing way, a way that shows moral and socially responsible leadership, or people will look for other solutions."They may go down the regulation road. It's hard for me to see how that would work, but they may do."

Does Hain honestly believe that large banks and asset managers would be giving such whacking great bonuses if they didn't need to? And if they stopped, would they give it to charity or to shareholders? Hmmm let me think... Nice one Peter, now go and lie down for a while.

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