Sunday, 5 October 2008

A few random thoughts

1. There's a mounting number of ex-City workers looking for new jobs. I wonder whether this isn't a bit of an opportunity for unions and NGOs to pick up some insider financial knowledge on the cheap. There have alaways been people in the City whose views are quite a bit to the Left, but have decided to make money while they can. In addition there will now be quite a few embittered ex-City folk who may be willing to swap teams. Seems worth exploring to me?

2. Wouldn't it be great if a politician did a Joe Kinnear? A lot of the football 'news' that gets reported would make a tabloid gossip columnist blush, so I had a lot of sympathy when I read his rant. But politicians get it far worse (though some of them obviously court this type of press), so I would love to see an MP get stuck into a journo for their constant focus on personalities and 'what X said to Y about Z' 'revelations'.

3. This S&M post about ownership is obviously right up my street. Given that we now have a window of opportunity to re-examine what has worked and what has not in the past 30 years of capitalism, a review of the ownership strikes me a central question to address. As much as there has been an increase in emphasis on getting the 'shareholder as owner' model to work, at the same time we've seen a surge in trading suggesting an increasingly short-termist attitude on the part of investors. And 'owners' appear to have failed to get pay - on of the key governance issues - under control. How can we make it work better?

The question of ownership feeds through into lots of other issues. It's one of the factors in the private equity boom - some argue it's a better governance structure, whilst some directors prefer the model because it gets away from ceaseless short-term pressure in the public market. It also links to what we think about issues such as stock-lending and shorting.

Tomorrow's Company is already carrying out some work in this area as part of it's What is happening to ownership? project (PDF). But I'd like to see something come out of the Left. What about it?

4. I am obviously a little bit biased, but I think the TUC blog is great and exactly what we were missing in the lefty blogosphere - a regular policy-oriented blog linked to a respected labour movement organisation.

1 comment:

Nick Drew said...

quite a few embittered ex-City folk who may be willing to swap teams

wishful thinking, perhaps, but I'd like to see these chaps finger some high-level illegalities

(always assuming there were any, natch .. !)

Jeff Skilling could probably do with some company - what do you reckon, Mr FSA ? Two years and an unlimited fine, that's the tariff, not that anyone's ever even tried

we may however be in indemnity territory, Mugabe-stylee