Owen Jones in The Guardian posts a blistering attack on the British private banking system that pulls out all the pillars propping up any rationale that private banking is a good thing. Decisive examples build the case there is no reasonable alternative to public ownership, now supported by half the British electorate.
“Our finance system is rigged in favour of a crisis-ridden City to reap profits for individuals. It’s time these institutions worked for the good of communities. Britain’s privately run banks have proved a disaster for everyone except their shareholders. The only good alternative is public stakeholder banks, run by workers, consumers and local authorities, with an obligation to defend the best interests of our communities. Privately owned banks have proved a catastrophic failure – for our economy, our social cohesion and our politics. There is surely no alternative to public ownership.”
… Would Brexit, Donald Trump, or the gathering demands for Catalonia to secede from crisis-ridden Spain have happened without the financial collapse? Almost certainly not.
Economist Laurie Macfarlane says the banks make a mockery of the nostrums of free-market capitalism. Because the banks were given state bailouts after their catastrophic failures, there is the assumption that, when another crisis hits, the same will happen again.
No other industry enjoys the same protection. They are “too big to fail”, which means they benefit from an implicit subsidy – worth £6bn in 2015.