We're all in the sulphur soup now
We've already blogged the fiasco of local councils losing gzillions of council tax money in busted Icelandic banks. Including police authorities and Transport for London, the total has already raced above £750m.
So of course they're now whining that central government should bail them out. "How were we to know?" they wail. "These banks were all top rated and we had no reason to think they might fall over. Perrleeesssee daddy, give us our money back."
Item 1: The excellent video above is a TV report by ex-broker Max Keiser dating from 5 August 2007 - ie before the interbank markets even started locking up. It wonderfully highlights just how lunatic the Icelandic banks were (HTP EC Forster).
Item 2: By March this year the situation was so worrying and so widely known, it was even featuring in the Daily Mail. On 16 March 2008, reporting on risky banks, they wrote:
"The real horrors are in Iceland.
Credit insurance for debts at Iceland's biggest bank, Landsbanki, is priced at 610 points while that for Kaupthing is priced at a hair-raising 856. Given that these two have taken billions in UK retail deposits, it may be a sobering thought for savers to consider where they are putting their cash. These banks are now seen as the most unsafe in the developed world.
Of course, no one can be sure that disaster looms for anyone, but the figures on credit default swaps show clearly where investment professionals think the big risks are.
You have been warned."
So WTFFFF did the councils carry on as if nothing was wrong?
Especially since by February-April this year, even the conflicted way-behind-the-curve discredited credit rating agencies were formally downrating Icelandic banks (eg see here).
So tonight, as you listen to the squawks and special pleading from these incompetent town hall bureaucrats, just remember the truth.
And feel free to scream at the telly extra loudly.