Friday, April 8, 2011
You may recall that some time ago, I wrote of Iceland with some enthusiasm and approval. I believe it was shortly after they elected a professional comedian as mayor of their largest (only?) city, Reykjavik.
Iceland goes from strength to strength, however. When the Icelandic banking system began to smell like a bucket of bad hakarl, the Icelanders didn't permit a massive bullshit bailout. They did NOT authorize a huge transfer of taxpayers (public!) funds to prop up a bunch of (private!) corporations. Nope.
Like the sensible folk they are, they took it on the chin, and let the banks fend for themselves. (Amid considerable rancour. As should indeed have been the case.)
Now they've gone one shining step farther. Not only have they begun prosecuting the people who played fast and loose with the banking system -- they've actually found one of them guilty, and sentenced him to prison. To top it off, before the crash he was actually a permanent secretary in the Icelandic Ministry of Finance.
This is a good thing. Imagine how much better the USAnian situation could have been right now if the American government had shown some stones, and actually arrested the corporate megabastards who financially sodomized their entire nation!
But they didn't. Instead, they threw something like a trillion dollars of taxpayer monies into the hungry maw of the corporate finance beast - and at last check, Wall Street finance companies were once again paying multi-million dollar bonuses to their executives while the government teeters on the edge of shutdown, and ordinary Americans find themselves without simple things that most of the Western world takes for granted.
Now... if only Iceland would stop harpooning whales and start harpooning American bankers instead!