For the second time in a year Gordon Brown has demonstrated decisive leadership on an issue of import, making an unpopular, mould-breaking decision, and then had the satisfaction of seeing others follow him.
In the spring he “saved the world” by rejecting the complex US approach to bailing out the banking system in favour of straightforward and direct state-backed recapitalisation. “I saved the world” is poignant because it is only a small exaggeration of the reality.
No wonder the UK prime minister feels righteous indignation that bankers plan to cash big bonuses riding the bailout wave that he created, and no wonder that he feels he has the moral authority to tax them.
For the second time others seem to be following Gordon’s lead. France plans a copycat measure on bank bonus tax and Goldman Sachs and the German banking industry (of about equal import in the global banking industry) appear to be planning preemptive measures.
It must be very hard being Gordon Brown. Sometime master of the universe, a hero to his wife, but those pesky voters just don’t seem grateful.
Banquo is still an active investor so will declare his financial interest where appropriate in any blog post.