... and all the Boy Osborne seems able to think of is using the LIBOR outrage to score petty student-politics points against Balls. Grow up, you infantile git, and look around you at what is about to befall.
We have written here before of the significance of defending the UK's AAA. Now we see a challenge of even greater magnitude: powerful forces full of revanchist malevolence see their opportunity to destroy the City utterly and forever. The French, the Germans, the multifarious ex-communist euro-federasts seated in Brussels, yes and even the Americans with their atavistic anti-colonial instincts, they all want the pre-eminence of London ended for good. The Chinese will be only too pleased to pick up some of the pieces for themselves.
Addicted to their own centralising bureaucratic ways, none of these envious nations have ever truly succeeded in emulating (or even understanding) the deep OTC markets fostered here. Instead, heavy-handedly they always fall back to corralling commerce into exchange-trading uniformity, thereby crushing the financial creativity and innovation which are the hallmarks of flourishing capitalism, and vehicles of economic advance. By contrast, the City together with our precious common law legal system sustains not just the deepest and most liquid markets in financial and physical traded products, but the vast industry of legal and other professional services that Raedwald discusses here. And, yes, the envious euro-wallahs would dearly love to overthrow our pre-eminence in commercial law, too, and win the world over to the Code Napoleon.
In the modern age, the imperative of defending these freedoms and ways of doing business should rank alongside the physical defence of the realm. Do our schoolboy politicians have the faintest idea of what needs to be done ? The integrity of the City's mysterious processes needs to be as secure as the hallmarks on our silver and gold - always accepted as totally trustworthy the world over, just as French hallmarks are taken with a pinch of salt.
Osborne, lay down your catapult and ink-pellets, and listen to Old Drew. No hiding behind protracted inquiries, we know what we need to know. Consider yourself responsible for a fabled and most valuable brand that has suffered the most appalling and potentially fatal blow to its reputation, like Mercedes when its A-Class started flipping over at bends in the road, or Perrier when its pure waters became contaminated. Stop at nothing to restore the actual integrity of the brand, as energetically and transparently as you know how. Make examples. Stage public floggings. Work night and day. Take such measures as will shock, awe and fundamentally impress hardened bankers the world over.
Or else, the City will be left as the nasty, spivvy little offshore tax haven it is portrayed in unfriendly quarters: isolated, friendless, legislated against in foreign capitals, reduced to raising the odd million for bent commodity traders, unsavoury Central Asian biznismen, and Mr Unscrupulopoulos the dodgy shipping magnate.
Get on with it. Right now. You little git.