Thursday, July 05, 2012

Why so serious?

The Goat accidentally ran into one of his fans last evening. It’s great to know that there are folk out there who read the blog. Seems there are more lurkers than posters. One point made was that of late, The Grumpy Goat has been rather more grumpy and less amusing than it used to be. Perhaps the blog is suffering the same fate as Viz comic: not as funny as it used to be. If this is indeed the case, the Goat apologises. He writes to entertain, and just recently has been going through a rather difficult patch.

How about an ill-researched rant?

The Goat has been a Barclays Bank customer since nineteen eighty-fruitcake, when, as a fresh-faced, beardless school-leaver he headed off to Polytechnic to start a degree course in Civil Engineering. That was when the Goat could hardly even spell ignigneer; now he am one. Barclays was the only bank that would trust fresh undergraduates with a chequebook, cashpoint card, and a credit card. Those with a cynical streak might suggest that the bank was simply trying to get its grubby mitts on that big, fat grant cheque, for given values of “big” and “fat”.

And the Goat has banked with Barclays ever since. He arrived in the Gulf in 1996 and was obliged by his employer to bank with good old “Red Triangles”, but that’s a different story.

It is alarming to learn from the news that Barclays has been found guilty of fiddling its figures. Seemingly, the basic modus operandi was to fix the price for inter-bank lending whilst still charging borrowers an arm and a leg in interest, and whilst offering savers rates that might disappoint a church mouse. And then keep the difference.

Having committed the heinous sin of Breaking the Eleventh Commandment: “Thou Shalt Not Get Caught”, Barclays is obliged to pay a fine of £291 million. That’s over 1.7 billion UAE Dirhams. It would take the Goat many, many human lifetimes to earn that much; in goat years the figure is too large to comprehend.

The Goat has a couple of question, which are these:-

  1. Where is the bank going to find the money to pay its fine?
  2. Where does the money go?

Unfortunately, it would appear that the bank will raise the cash from its customers. It will, in all likelihood, increase interest rates to borrowers and decrease rates offered to savers. How else does a bank make money? The Goat, among others, having already been ripped off, seems now to face the prospect of having to contribute towards paying the fine on behalf of those who wronged him.

One of the Goat’s friends reported that this £291 million will go back to the British taxpayer, whatever one of those is. Oh goody; the Goat gets to pay his contribution to the British government. But wait! Another of the Goat’s sources said that around 90% of the fine will have to be paid to the United States Treasury. No, the Goat has not checked the veracity of this claim. At the start, he said that this rant would be ill-researched.

Whatever the truth, it appears that small-time personal (and caprinal) customers get short shrift from the big corporation, even when it’s that same corporation wot done them wrong.



Jayne said...

I would have thought that Barclays made a shit load of dosh from screwing its customers in the first add another heap of dosh gained from ill-gotten means and they should be rolling in it, innit?

Anonymous said...

Although not related to this topic, I have been giving considerable (note to self - delete "considerable" insert "some")consideration to your dilemma concerning new career/change of direction of life/indecision/etc. and have arrived at the perfect solution, viz. you must proceed forthwith to India and commence a glittering career as THE VILLAIN IN BOLLYWOOD MOVIES. Consider it: you are ideally suited; English and white (their favourites for Baddies); perfect physique and countenance for the role; you have acting experience (of a sort) and wouldn't even have to improve your thespian abilities (it's Bollywood not NT/RSC); the high pitched singing could be easily (if badly and obviously) dubbed, although you would have to learn how to dance atop a moped (your biking background and experience would surely come in handy here). I see no alternative for your future and remember, if you need an agent/representation I am available - family motto: 'nunquam non paratus' - ah the joys of a classical public school education.
Regards, SIRRAH.


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