Osborne's Command Economics

Guido just watched George Osborne on Marr argue that because banking is regulated, he should be able to order the financial regulators to order private enterprises to limit the pay of their employees (and further he wants international agreements to limit banker’s bonuses). In other words he is advocating a neo-Heathite incomes policy for the private sector.

Marr Osborne

Command economies have been out of fashion since the seventies when they were tested to destruction around the world. Television is another heavily regulated industry, why not cap Simon Cowell’s pay? Telecommunications is regulated – Telecoms tycoons earns hundreds of millions, why shouldn’t they be on maximum wages?  The football transfer market is heavily regulated in Europe as well…

Why single out bankers?  Guido doesn’t think it worth getting too worked up about this policy lurch because it will never happen and he doesn’t think Osborne really believes in what he is saying.  The Tory treasurers Stanley Fink and Michael Spencer know something about huge bonuses and might be in a better position to advise the Shadow Chancellor.  Bankers will simply re-organise their affairs so as to avoid socialising their rewards.  The Cameroons show a depressing lack of leadership in making the argument at any level on any area of policy that is a hard sell.




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