Sunday, March 29, 2009

Drugs Tests for Bankers

its time we instituted this = we need sober, level headed people in the financial world
and so we need people that don't down a bottle or two at lunchtime.

noone should be in charge of the world's future who isn't as sober as a judge...

actually, someone sent me this article in the FT on
10 principles of Black Swan avoidance which looks pretty sane

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

the randomness of fish

so how come every country in europe has a different word from a completely different root for every type of european fresh and salt water fish except salmon and trout?

i mean ask a grek, german, french, or whatever for the word for
Bass, Bream, Cod, Dogfish, Hake, Haddock, Herring, Lemon Sole, Whitebait, etc etc
and you get a totally different answer

obviously the norman french in england didnt eat much fish or at least in english we'd have the same words (as we do for the meat of animals) as the french....

Monday, March 16, 2009

Taxing Bankers Bonuses - simple proposal

so how about we propose a very high tax on bonuses which were not earned.
to determine if they were earned should be easy -
case 1 - the company is in profit (i.e. profit share)
case 2 - company is moving into profit from loss (incentive)

case 1 is trivial - indeed both cases would be covered if bonuses were simply shares and people were patient, and paying stock as a bonus was only taxed as income.

In the counter example, senior staff at companies like AIG or RBS who made a massive loss AND only exist because of bailouts, would be taxed at (say) 90% on income over (say) 1M pounds. This would leave incentives intact, but recoup money from poor decisions by early shareholders meetings. at least to the government. who is, um, the biggest shareholder now.