Friday, December 12, 2008

Johnson's nonsense

TJN's senior adviser Richard Murphy has written an important blog about Boris Johnson, the clownish new mayor of London, and his plans to turn London into more of a tax haven than it already is. Johnson represents Britain's Conservative Party. He wants to accelerate a race to the bottom on tax and regulation (and let's not forget the subtexts: secrecy and a blatant resistance to judicial co-operation with crime-fighters in other jurisdictions.) Johnson's arguments about "competition" are entirely bogus.

Richard also paraphrases proposals to set up a new Financial Services Board, like this:

"we want to take London out of democratic political control because we can’t be sure the electorate will always deliver what we want."

We won't do much more than say this: read the blog.

One last thing, though: remember the Conservatives' recent policy paper? We copied a section of it onto our quotations page:

The last ten years in particular have been good years for the world economy as a whole. They have been characterised by two massively favourable trends. The first is an era of easy money. The main central banks worldwide have opted for low interest rates, the ready creation of credit, and tolerance of innovatory means of financing public and private sector activity through big increases in debt. It has been the era of public/private partnerships, specialised credit-based funds and funds of funds, collateralized debt obligations, collateralized loan obligations, credit default swaps, special purpose vehicles and many other similar ways of raising borrowing throughout the financial system.
- Britain's Conservative Party, Policy document "Freeing Britain to compete", August 2007, amid the start of global economic turmoil triggered by collateralized debt obligations, collateralized loan obligations, credit default swaps, special purpose vehicles and many other similar ways of raising borrowing throughout the financial system.

It's astonishing that they published this even after it had started to become clear what a monumental idiocy it has all been. Johnson's nonsense is more of the same folly.

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