Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The unacceptable face of capitalism*

The Farepak collapse, in which more than 150,000 people have lost their Christmas savings, is a surprisingly-little-reported scandal. If the allegations that were made in Parliament are true, it appears to be a case worthy of Edward Heath’s famous phrase*. The Commons debate was reported on the Times Online site but in few other places that I could find.

It seems extraordinary that a savings scheme such as this wasn’t covered by the regulations that cover conventional banking and savings accounts.

There is some brighter news today as the company’s bankers and many supermarkets rally round to try to provide a little compensation for the unfortunate thrifty (and probably poor) families who face a fairly bleak Christmas.

A balance has to be struck between burdensome regulation that ties business’s hands unnecessarily and a free for all in which hapless consumers suffer. In this case it’s clear the right balance wasn’t struck.

And why has this sad story had such little coverage?

* Ted Heath, of whom we should perhaps forgive a lot because he took Britain into the EEC, made his remark in 1973 in connection with the Tiny Rowland / Lonrho affair


At 07:01, Anonymous Andrew Brown said...

The Sun gave it quite a bit of space the other day.

At 09:27, Blogger Hughes Views said...

Thanks Andrew - I missed that...

At 17:44, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll tell you what, until more people are educated, or educate themselves, on the evils of the current money creation process, things like this will continue to happen to good, unsuspecting people while the rich continue to roll the profits in.


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