Nationalize U.S. banks: Bob Rubin — give our $110 million back

February 3, 2009

rubinInteresting post from James Saft’s Reuters blog.

Saft interviewed Nissam Nicholas Taleb, author of the Black Swan at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Taleb wants banks nationalized and forced to become a zero risk utility. He argues that they should never be allowed again to take the risks they took that resulted in the current economic crisis:

They rigged the game. We pay them for their profits, there is no clawback so their incentive is to hide the risk they are taking.”

“Which is why eventually as someone who loves free markets,  a total nationalisation of the part of the business that requires insurance and does clearing and payments needs to happen.”

“I am angry with U.S. policy. What we had is exactly the opposite of socialism, they got TARP to pay their bonuses and to take more risk.”

And he goes further. He wants banking executives [see Robert Rubin above] to give the bonuses back that they stripped out just as their banks tanked.

…he wants Bob Rubin, who trousered millions while chairman of Citigroup, to cough up.

“I want Bob Rubin to return his $110 million dollars to the American taxpayer.”

Taleb insists (Facebook: Make Bankers Accountable- A “J’accuse”) that capitalism must produce pain but the powerful should not be exempt from the outcomes of their behaviours.

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