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93% Of Icelanders Reject "Icesave" Bill In Historic Referendum

Tyler Durden's picture


Another European country is about to be cut to junk by the rating agencies, after a whopping 93% of Iceland voters turned down the ironically named Icesave bill in a historic referendum, which would have saddled citizens with an additional $16k in debt to compensate the UK and Holland with a $5.3 billion note for the failure of Landsbanki. The vote failure, which has already prompted Fitch to downgrade the country to junk, and is now sure to see Moody's and S&P follow suit, has left many to believe that a government crisis is now imminent. Another implication is that an IMF-led loan is now in limbo, demonstrating that the international bailout watchdog is truly powerless when the people of the bailout recipient nation want to have nothing to do with the international rescue circuit.

What is amusing is that the disconnect between what governments think their people want and what people actually want has become unprecedented:

The Icesave deal passed through parliament with a 33 to 30
vote majority. Grimsson blocked it after receiving a petition from
a quarter of the population urging him to do so. The government has
said it’s determined any new deal must have broader political
backing to avoid meeting a similar fate.

Icelanders used the referendum to express their outrage at
being asked to take on the obligations of bankers who allowed the
island’s financial system to create a debt burden more than 10
times the size of the economy.

The nation’s three biggest banks, which were placed under
state control in October 2008, had enjoyed a decade of market
freedoms following the government’s privatizations through the end
of the 1990s and the beginning of this decade.

“This referendum is very peculiar and without any parallel in
Iceland’s history,” said Gunnar Helgi Kristinsson, a professor of
political science at the University of Iceland, in an interview.

And in Iceland, the people not only don't care about what the IMF or the UK think, but they are certainly making their opnioins against the executives of the failed bank felt, in a way that Americans only wish they could.

“Ordinary people, farmers and fishermen, taxpayers, doctors,
nurses, teachers, are being asked to shoulder through their taxes a
burden that was created by irresponsible greedy bankers,” said
President Olafur R. Grimsson, whose rejection of the bill resulted
in the plebiscite, in a Bloomberg Television interview on March 5.


Protesters have gathered every week, with regular numbers
swelling to about 2,000, according to police estimates. The last
time the island saw demonstrations on a similar scale was before
the government of former Prime Minister Geir Haarde was toppled.

Icelanders have thrown red paint over house facades and cars
of key employees at the failed banks, Kaupthing Bank hf, Landsbanki
and Glitnir Bank hf, to vent their anger. The government has
appointed a special commission to investigate financial malpractice
and has identified more than 20 cases that will result in

In the meantime, Iceland, which as recently as 2007 used to be one of the richest countries on a per capita basis, is seeing the net wealth of its citizens sublimate.

The island’s economy shrank an annual 9.1 percent in the
fourth quarter of last year, the statistics office said on March 5,
and contracted 6.5 percent in 2009 as a whole.

Household debt with major credit institutions has doubled in
the past five years and reached about 1.8 trillion kronur ($14
billion) in 2009, compared with the island’s $12 billion gross
domestic product, according to the central bank. Icelanders, the world’s fifth-richest per capita as recently
as 2007, ended 2009 18 percent poorer and will see their disposable
incomes decline a further 10 percent this year, the central bank

Grimsson, who has described his decision to put the depositor
bill to a referendum as the “pinnacle of democracy,” says he’s
not concerned about the economic fallout of his decision.

At this point we will take the opportunity to remind readers once again that the biggest fan of the Iceland experiment was none other than the worst and most full of methane Fed board member in the history of the US Central Bank, Fred "Iceman Napoleon" Mishkin, who not surprisingly has made cheerleader-central CNBC his newest media forum, as he conducts yet another monetary calamity lemming cascade off the cliffs, this time not of Reikjavic, but first of Dover, and then of D.C. (the analogy would be more appropriate if D.C. actually had any cliffs as opposed to 50% underwater housing, and an administration full of hyperinflated hot air).



Mishkin Iceland -


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Sat, 03/06/2010 - 21:46 | 256518 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

What will this do to the FX market on Sunday?

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:52 | 256567 Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

I dunno, but Hank Paulson said the unemployment ra ra rate will go to 150% if they don't pa pa pay back the ba ba banks.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:23 | 256692 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

@careless whisper. hahahaha. laughing at your co co comment. i know hank paulson is a crappy public speaker but you want to know my theory? i think hammering hank's public displays of excessive stu stu stuttering is all a contrived act to convince the public he is harmless even though he is close to being the devil reincarnate. in private conversations with his friends, i bet that hank paulson ne ne never ever stutters.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 03:11 | 256723 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

What like why does a guy who grew up in CT boarding schools sound like a Texan? Or why when there is no teleprompter does Obama say absolutely nothing with as many confusing words as possible?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 21:59 | 257336 Problem Is
Problem Is's picture

"What like why does a guy who grew up in CT boarding schools sound like a Texan?"

Because he was a cheerleader at his all male prep school while busy flunking classes... I have a picture...

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:09 | 256810 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

p-p-pl-pl-plus te-t-t-ttenn.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 12:10 | 256878 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Mark-to-model accounting would icesave the banks and then nobody would have to pay. Somebody wasn't thinking.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:34 | 256920 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Stuttering is directly proportional to stress.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:36 | 256922 dnarby
dnarby's picture

Stuttering is directly proportional to stress.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:09 | 256903 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Hank "Jimmy" Paulson: "Hey Ti ti ti Timmy. Why don't you bailout AIG for Gu gu gu Goldman?"

Tim "Timmy" Geithner: "Timmy? Timmy. Timmy!"

Ben "Cartman" Bernanke: "Yeah! That's a great idea. I'm glad I thought of that."

(The Fed's rendition of South Park)

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:14 | 256585 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

so what is the argument in favor of saddling ordinary people for the failure of a private bank?

other than the bankers happy to be paid.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:55 | 256675 faustian bargain
faustian bargain's picture

The argument is in favor of default and start over with a real currency, no bailouts or moral hazard, and 'you get what you pay for' government services.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:38 | 256816 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Damned radicals!

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:29 | 256838 doublethink
doublethink's picture


Damned Angelenos!


Los Angeles Fires First Shot In California's War On Banks, As Cities Seek To Wrangle Out Of Swaps

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 09:57 | 256806 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Well, don't you understand? If they could only borrow at 3.6% like Germany, their world would be all good.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:56 | 256826 masterinchancery
masterinchancery's picture

None--bravo Icelanders! Perhaps the new land of the free, home of the brave.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 12:51 | 256894 Cistercian
Cistercian's picture

 The argument is that the morts must pay all losses..and the banks must keep all profits.At some point I am hoping people will understand that the BIG banks are actually operated by super-villains.And that they should be treated accordingly.

 Treated like the evil greed addled criminal scum they are.


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:52 | 256627 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

How many little-teeny ceramic tiles had to come off the shuttle before the whole thing burnt up?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:33 | 256695 ElvisDog
ElvisDog's picture

Just one actually. There was an impact cavity in one tile on the wing leading edge. It caused a heating  spike that burnt through the aluminum sub-structure like a blow torch.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 14:47 | 256991 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

Uh oh.  I count at least two so far on this mission.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 17:45 | 257146 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Brilliant analogy.

Mon, 03/08/2010 - 19:10 | 258371 gold_tracker
gold_tracker's picture

That's a great analogy. A sad one for sure, but would appear rather applicable. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:07 | 256642 GoldSilverDoc
GoldSilverDoc's picture

Could it be that finally a nation will choose the right path? Can the citizens of Iceland choose a non-governmentally controlled currency, and immediately change the course of all of history? 
Imagine - "Iceland Declares Krona Worthless, Converts To Gold" 
"Iceland Gold Krona Begins Circulation On May 1" 
"Enormous Boom Seen In Iceland Since Announcement" 
"Iceland Repeals All Property And Income Taxes; Declares Open For International Business" 
"IBM Announces Relocation Of Worldwide Headquarters To Reykjavik" 
"Huge Immigration Backlog In Iceland" 
"Capital Pours Into New Icelandic Banks; Banks Promise 100% Gold Reserve" 
One can dream....

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:56 | 256676 faustian bargain
faustian bargain's picture

If they did that, I would have to seriously consider learning Icelandic (or whatever their crazy language is called).

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:01 | 256678 Frank Owen
Frank Owen's picture

How about... over the last few weeks they've been converting their money into another currency knowing that the financial terrorists would be coming to give them a beating for not doing as they're told. They come, beat the shit out of the Krona, and then the citizens of Iceland laugh as they look at their bloodied krona and pull out another currency, convert it to worthless kronas and pay of all their mortgages and debts. Then declare the krona dead, and start off fully owning what is theirs instead of being peasants on the king's land. Fantasy?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 02:07 | 256706 Rick64
Rick64's picture

Or they could short the krona and then announce they aren't paying the debt.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 04:58 | 256740 A Man without Q...
A Man without Qualities's picture

The lunacy is that mortgage and car loan debts have been converted into a Euro notional (at a historic rate), so they don't have this option.  The thing about the Icelandic banking crash is that no money has been destroyed in the round.  The Icelandic banks paid stupidly high rates on their current accounts (bizarrely depositors failed to grasp the possibility that higher return implies higher risk) then leveraged to the max and paid way too much money to buy crappy overseas assets.  The flow of funds was little guy lends money to Iceland that pays far to much to the big guys for worthless assets.  Iceland was no more than a pass through.  But now, the little guys in Iceland need to pay back the little guys in the UK and Netherlands.  

It's a combination of the worst bits of capitalism and the worst bits of socialism.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:36 | 256771 Zippyin Annapolis
Zippyin Annapolis's picture

Good summary of the situation


-- However once the British navy finishes off the Argentines over that latest Falklands oil dust up I might want to spend a little more time looking over horizon South toward their 2 Imperial tormentors: the UK and Netherlands.


At the end of the day the dutch will drop this passive/ agrressive and destructuve stance but never ever count the Brits out--they invented Imperialism.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:02 | 256757 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Frank Owen, Iceland has done close to what you depicted.

Iceland did well for this crisis.

Iceland is located on the outskirts of a consumption sink (Europe) with the known consequences of availability of goods in Iceland.

To counter that, they implemented carry trade which allowed them to grow a lot richer and benefited their society as a whole.

As they knew this would have to end, they designed an exit plan: borrowing from themselves to constitute a basket of currencies (mainly USD, EURO, YEN), this when the Krona was strong against the other currencies.

With that, they have been able to clean a part of their Krona denominated debt when they devalued it as they offered debtors holding debts in a devaluated Krona to be paid back with the reserve basket of currencies.

Icelandic people pocketed the difference(which was invested in real wealth) and now it is trapped in Iceland.

Iceland did very well with the cards hand they had.

More impressively, while this process is nothing new, they seem to be on verge to get away with it. This will have a deep impact on the international scene as some much poorer countries were punished very severely (national resources being privatized stuff like that) for trying a similar scheme to Iceland.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 17:47 | 257150 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

HOw do the kids say it? Epic fai? Powned?

Mon, 03/08/2010 - 04:40 | 257539 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I dont know but I will certainly not qualify the icelandic case as a failure. Greed has grown so sharp nowaday that any kind of investment is felt as a loss.

What Iceland is going to pay back is straws compared to what they already pocketed in.

Like those firms which know that going against this pecular law might earn them a sizeable profit while earning them a fine.

Yes, they do have to pay a 1 million fine but in the meanwhile, they gain five millions.

The situation would be better if they did not have to pay that fine. That's the greedy's position. Others think that well, having to pay a 1 million fine to be able to pocket four millions is still better than not having to pay that 1 million and not pocketing that four million.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:03 | 256681 jesus
jesus's picture

you goldbugs are hilarious


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:36 | 256697 faustian bargain
faustian bargain's picture

you cynics are pathetic.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 04:16 | 256737 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Gold isn't the answer, but neither is transferring private debt to the public account. Iceland is giving suggesting a very different path to an economic takedown of Europe.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 08:01 | 256775 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I can understand why silver might make you a little uneasy...but gold?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 12:27 | 256880 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Do you know anything about silver fundamentals? Silver has more upside. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:01 | 256899 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I was going for a Jesus joke.
(I agree with you.)

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:34 | 256919 WaterWings
WaterWings's picture


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 16:52 | 257105 merehuman
merehuman's picture

Up on silver=real money, cant fold it, but a 10 oz bar feels like 500 bucks, no its better than that. It doesnt compare.I admit it , i am enamored of it. All my life i got paid in dollars and was always aware it was nothing but paper. A transitional tool and a measurement of value. Part of that value was time invested as well as labor.

The more we value(love) ourselves the more we treasure time. As we age time ranks higher in importance. And no time is more important than now.

I venture that silver as well as time are undervalued.


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 17:52 | 257157 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

4 stars to that!  Time is of the essence!

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:44 | 256819 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

They would be declared as financial terrorists and be invaded.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 19:15 | 257237 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

LOL! I thought that said IceSLAVE.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:45 | 256820 alexdg
alexdg's picture

They would be declared financial terrorists and be invaded, "for their own good".

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:40 | 256852 Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

They already have been declared regular terrorists by Britain. You see, my friends, these anti-terror laws have many uses.


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 12:35 | 256885 35Pete
35Pete's picture

This "terrorism" thing is so way out of control. The sick part is that so many people still salivate everytime the terrorism bell is rung. 

I check under my bed, in the closet, and even under the hood of the car everyday to make sure that terrorists aren't hiding there, ready to pounce and rain doom on me for the sole reason that they hate my freedoms. 

I'm on guard. Ever vigilant against the political boogeyman. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 14:14 | 256953 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

Someone is going to do it.  The US wants to be the first, but they will not back currentsea until the total demise of the doelarr.  You know what I want...State Banks backed with gold/silver/hemp/etc.  I could totally see Iceland going for the jugular now though.  One CAN dream!

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 17:07 | 257119 merehuman
merehuman's picture

I understand they had a country wide referendum, chances we have that are ?%

I feel like a farm animal! Duped, disgusted and impoveraged and homeless, a sheep asleep at the wheel of life. This is us!

I am better of than many of my neighbors who really dont want to admit how things are and are slow to prepare.

Not until the dollar actually gets devalued will they believe, and then of course , its too late 



Sat, 03/06/2010 - 21:52 | 256524 Harbourcity
Harbourcity's picture

Can we get a vote like that in Canada?


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:01 | 256530 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Would love it.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:07 | 256534 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Getting one in the U.S. would require legislators and/or chief executives that actually represent the people and not the goddamned banks and the MIC.  In other words, not a snowball's chance in hell.  Instead, we get TARP.

Governments are hungry for money and are looking for ways to tap into it.  If we could verify this:

Tonight, a correspondent who has just come home from a Tea Party Townhall Meeting in Salado, Texas with US Representative John Carter (R-Round Rock) issued the warning. She said, “Representative Carter informed the crowd that talk has been bandied about Congress to appropriate every state’s pension plans into the bankrupt Social Security System.” She is absolutely 100% sure that she understood him correctly.


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:37 | 256608 trav7777
trav7777's picture

TARP was 300:1 against, by most reports.

I wrote all my senators and Congressidiots and told them that a vote for this was a death sentence to their career, but I did put in a caveat that if the purpose of TARP was not to bail out banks but to liquify the PDs so that Treasury could roll the 2010 issuance, that they should make this public and clear and that they had no choice but to vote for it.

But if they put TARP to a referendum, it'd have failed miserably.  And, let's not forget that GOP members of the House with some brave Demoncraps voted it down.  TARP only passed because the Senate attached that shit to another existing bill.  Don't fking ask me how the Senate, which is Constitutionally NOT empowered with this type of spending and bill origination authority, was allowed to do that.

Basically, the billionaire house of congress passed this by themselves.  And, let's not forget which party was in control of it at that time.  People try to lay TARP on Busch, but in fact it was the other party that did whatever it took to cozy up with the scumbag GOP oligarchs and make this happen.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 02:51 | 256719 dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

yup - those 12 votes only cost about another $130 billion....  the south wanted a nice slice of the pie upfront

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 09:37 | 256795 RatherBFlying
RatherBFlying's picture

I'm sure my Senator just cowers in the corner: "Oh NO! Another sternly worded email from a constituent! I just peed my pants!"

The lesson Icelanders have taught us is that phone calls and faxes and emails are a waste of time. Maybe pouring a little red paint "over house facades and cars of key employees" makes a difference after all.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:20 | 256813 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

Our now retiring Republican Senator George Voinovich voted for the TARP and current Democrat Senator Sherrod Brown voted for it as well.  According to the NY Times, as well as our local Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Senator Sherrod Brown, Democrat of Ohio, said he had been getting 2,000 e-mail messages and telephone calls a day, roughly 95 percent opposed.

I would believe that Sen. Voinovich received the same feedback.  The problem is Capital Hill said damn the people, run the printing press.  With Boobus Americanus now fixated on whatever happens to be on the idiot box, many of Boobus now forgets his outrage.  Had a vote been put forth for the US at that time, the results would have been simliar to Iceland. 

Now that the FED is getting more power to conduct more business behind close doors, I fear that the ongoing bailout of the bubble barons will not see the light of day for Boobus to be reminded as to why exactly he should be angry and to whom that anger belongs. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 15:25 | 257019 35Pete
35Pete's picture

You should have written your representatives. That's what Amerika is all about!

Wait. I did, and the bastards voted for it anyways. Then sent me a form letter explaining why I am such an idiot. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 19:27 | 257248 Harbourcity
Harbourcity's picture

All I got was a form email.

They didn't even waste a stamp on me :(.


Mon, 03/08/2010 - 10:04 | 257654 35Pete
35Pete's picture

At least they still had the courtesy to explain to you why they are really smart and you're not. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:11 | 256638 Frank Owen
Frank Owen's picture

It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything.

SWRichmond:  In other words, not a snowball's chance in hell.

Come-on, I know you don't mean that. If you meant it you wouldn't be so passionate about what the Tea-Party started out out as. People are complacent because the cover-up "is working" (look at the dow, things are fine!), but as we all know it can't last forever and then people are going to have to face the ugly truth like Iceland has been. Things are just starting, and I bet more and more politicians and financial terrorists are starting to get insomnia worrying about what happens when the illusion falls apart. Seeing Iceland's population collectively reach into their pockets and pull out a great big huge finger and say fuck-you is great, and I think people in Greece, England, the States and other countries will hopefully follow suit, but not until it is really bad. Disaster Capitalism has left the 3rd world countries and moved on... but the people who are going to soon be affected will be much more harder to screw because they have been sold the lie for so long. Where's Howard Beale... should be along soon.. lol

Only after disaster can we be resurrected.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 09:22 | 256794 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I am surprised how successful the MSM was in making Sarah Palin the chief tea partier. Is there an easier way to discredit a movement?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 12:40 | 256886 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Exactly. And Sarah is such an idiot that she doesn't even realize that she's an idiot. She thinks that she's really smart, and their lies the problem. 

Boobus right-wingus Amerikanus thinks she's smart too. So Mooselini and her video sheep think that they're doing the nation a favor when all they've done is completely destroy a legitimate grass roots movement by showing up. 


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:37 | 256925 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

And Sarah is such an idiot that she doesn't even realize that she's an idiot.

That is why they call them "useful idiots".

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 23:51 | 257399 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Dangerously stupid..just like Dubya. She goes after her "opponent" with all the maturity and grace of a Jr. High scorned cheerleader. Seriously--I cant ever remember seeing a public official with Palin's level of immaturity, it is truly staggering.

The Tea party folks must be cut from the same cloth, or they never would have let that REEETARD near their campaign. Talk about the kiss of death!!

Note to the TEABAGGERS--If you want to be taken seriously, Sarah Palin as spokesperson should have been last on your list. You would have had better luck with Gary Coleman in a pink tu tu.

Mon, 03/08/2010 - 05:49 | 257554 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

are all you people braindead?

maybe we should elect McCain or Romney in 2012? or maybe Reelect Obama? yay 4 more years!

wtf are you people thinking?

Mon, 03/08/2010 - 13:06 | 257831 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

You can't find anyone better than Palin to represent the teaparty?

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:02 | 256531 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Can we get a vote like that in the USA ? - the free-est and great-est country in the world ?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:32 | 256770 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I'm not sure the U.S. is the freest. If "freedom" equals lack of rules, then any 3rd world failed state will do. But if freedom has to do with people having power over politicians and the state apparatus, then a country like Switzerland is miles ahead of the U.S.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 12:44 | 256891 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Any nation that openly declares that it can assassinate its citizens, without due process, without trial, on the notion that one or more of its operatives thinks they're a terrorist, is NOT a free country. 

We live in a police state. As Doug Casey put it, America as a nation no longer exists. All that's left is the United States and it's just another fucking country. 

And if the Iceland situation is the new litmus test for "terrorism", then what does THAT tell you? 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:04 | 256533 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Who cares about Moody's & S&P ratings ? The way I see it, Icelanders are the winners and let the Brits & Dutch go get their money someplace else - maybe BB ?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 05:13 | 256744 Nout Wellink
Nout Wellink's picture

We, the Dutch, have sent the bill to Bernanke. He promised us the money back. Just a new billion number in the computer et voila, it's done.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 05:42 | 256747 BorisTheBlade
BorisTheBlade's picture

Who cares about Moody's & S&P ratings

good point, S&P and Moody's ratings are pieces of junk themselves already.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:13 | 256535 ptoemmes
ptoemmes's picture

Mish has some interesting quotes from Iceland's PM and FM.


Political leaders have already moved on and are trying to negotiate a new deal with the U.K. and the Dutch, making the bill in today’s vote “obsolete,” Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir said on March 4.

"It's of utmost importance that we don't over-interpret whatever message comes out of this. We want to be perfectly clear that a "no" vote does not mean we are refusing to pay," Finance Minister Steingrimur Sigfusson told reporters.


Mish's blog post here:


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:00 | 256574 35Pete
35Pete's picture

I hope they hang the parliament from lampposts in the streets if they override the 93% referendum. 

Enough is enough. People are sick of being ruled. 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:15 | 256586 Harbourcity
Harbourcity's picture

Although Iceland will experience hard times, I would give up everything I own to be free.  I doubt any politians or bankers can make the same statement.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:17 | 256587 35Pete
35Pete's picture

When in the course of human events....

I'd rather be impoverished and free than what we are now. 

Unfortunately, about 90% of the public have an addiction to materialism and entitlement. 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:45 | 256622 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

Impoverished and free vs. impoverished and not free.

That 90% doesn't realize it, but they're almost certain to be poor either way.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 06:59 | 256756 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Amen to that brother. Amen to that.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 09:32 | 256796 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Speaking for an Icelander - I'd rather be poor but I'd be none the richer by giving a yes vote for the mobsters !!

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:37 | 256698 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

More anti-populist claptrap red hearings
from Mike Shedfield.
Without the referendum there would not
have been ANY negociations in the first
place. Now that it passed the banksters
have to start all over from ZERO.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:07 | 256536 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Have not felt happier in days and weeks - the feeling equals that of a 100 point one day drop on the S&P500 !!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:08 | 256537 Fritz
Fritz's picture

Iceland - 1, UK/Holland - 0

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:08 | 256538 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

way to go Iceland. f*ck those bankers!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:16 | 256539 digalert
digalert's picture

Let's see here, were the US voters mostly in favor of TARP bailout nation? I don't think so, but they did it anyway.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:23 | 256544 Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

capitalism is alive and well.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:23 | 256545 Hondo
Hondo's picture

Way to go Iceland....tell them to stck it

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:28 | 256548 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

wow interesting development iceland is yrs ahead of other counries will we be seeing this again and again?

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:30 | 256551 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

The US is going to need a lot of red paint.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:49 | 256557 perchprism
perchprism's picture

"...surely you don't mean to include the church?"

Ghostrider (High Plains Drifter):  "I mean especially the church".


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:06 | 256641 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:39 | 256556 THE DORK OF CORK
THE DORK OF CORK's picture

I salute the Icelanders they are made of stern stuff

My countrymen have failed the test yet there is still hope


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:43 | 256558 Gimp
Gimp's picture

We could only dream of such a vote in the U.S. but it will never happen as the bankstas own the poltical hacks in DC.

Way to go Iceland, somehow I have a feeling the government bureaucrats will still work out a payment scheme behind closed doors and stick the burden to the people regardless.

No one survives the Spanish Inquistion!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:45 | 256561 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I believe that the forces that rule this world ($$$) are trying to pull a quick one !!

They let a small country default its debt. What Iceland owns or the wealth they can produce is pocket change for the big boys anyways

People will praise it. "yeah...brave Icelanders!!!!!!"

They plunge the country in such a terrible crisis to the point where the whole nation have to beg on the streets.

The whole world's media news send their cameras to Iceland. " See what happens when people rules!!!!"

VOILA !!!! Joe six pack will think twice before questioning the "experts"

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:17 | 256588 moneymutt
moneymutt's picture

I do believe money elite would prefer Iceland take their IMF medicine and not default but rather stay in debtors doubt they set Iceland up as a test case but Iceland's populism may stand in the way..

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 09:37 | 256799 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I will willingly send some of my post-tax dollars to an Icelander. Countries have defaulted before and it did not make the people any less unhappier.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 18:00 | 257163 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

One interesting thought on Iceland, is what % of their food is locally produced?

I believe much of it is imported, and that will be tough to maintain if the currency is worthless. Was it the ideal test case?

I applaud their bravery, but how will they eat?

Mon, 03/08/2010 - 07:44 | 257618 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Probably they'll eat more fish, but they may have to fight for those fish with UK... again:

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:48 | 256565 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I doon't understand why Canada doesn't annex Iceland and pay that bill. Chump change for a whole country. We can forcibly resettle the Icelanders in Gimli MB and they'll be happy and we'll have a toe in Europe.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:17 | 256762 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Empire building, eh? Yeah, that worked well for us. Not to mention that it's immoral. 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:48 | 256566 35Pete
35Pete's picture

I'm proud of the Icelanic people. They shouldn't have to go in the hock for their criminal banking syndicate. 

Why can't we Amerikans grow a pair like them? 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:54 | 256572 Fish Gone Bad
Fish Gone Bad's picture

This is such terrific bad news.  Dow 36,000 on Monday.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:02 | 256578 35Pete
35Pete's picture


Yep. On any shitty news watch the S&P to gap up 6%. 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 22:58 | 256573 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Its not the bankers there sticking it to its the British public. All those who lost money in ice save only to have the British tax payer foot the bill. Iceland should pay their debts or have a battalion of royal marines landing on their fair shore!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:11 | 256582 moneymutt
moneymutt's picture

did some one make a promise to Brits, did Iceland have a FDIC? did Britain?...and why should average citizen be responsible to average British citizen for the acts of a bank they did not control?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:51 | 256774 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Yes. When a bank in one EEA country operates in another EEA country through a branch it remains regulated ('passported') and under the deposit compensation scheme (FDIC-equivalent) of the home country. This was to prevent banks being regulated 15 times over if they wanted to operate across Europe, which would discourage the free movement of goods and services.

When the Icelandic banks collapsed the Icelandic government announced that their deposit compensation scheme would only compensate Icelanders. This was in direct contradiction to the assurances they made when signing the treaties to get access to European markets. The debt only relates to the part of deposits they were supposed to cover via the compensation scheme, not to all the deposits.

On the other hand, it was always clear that Icelandic government didn't have enough money to meet their treaty obligation...

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 10:15 | 256802 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

The British and Dutch depositors were compensated through each country’s bank deposit guarantee schemes after Icesave collapsed in October 2008 and the two governments are now seeking to reclaim the money from Iceland.


Ms Sigurdardóttir said Iceland was the victim of “faulty regulation” in the European Union, having been bound as a member of the European Economic Area to rules on cross-border bank deposit guarantees that were not designed to cope with systemic collapse of an entire banking system. She said Iceland had never accepted its legal obligation to provide a sovereign guarantee to repay the money, but had agreed to do so in order to resolve the dispute.

The "FDIC" like deposit insurance scheme was covered by the UK & Dutch systems, as required.  What the UK & Dutch governments are attempting is to get the citizens of Iceland to pay 100% of all UK & Dutch citizens deposits, not just the insurable limit.  In this the citizens of Iceland have already paid their just debts.  That is the citizens of Iceland and other European nations not involved with the failed management and regulation of these institutions and their cross border relationships.   Makes me wonder who benefited from the collapse of these Icelandic institutions, when were these financial positions taken and if these payouts have been considered in the present negotiations?  After all, a fair presumption is that the member institutions of the Dutch & UK central banks were most likely major market makers in creating and moving these and like products.

If the Brits did show up in force and bring war to a nation that has avoided that for hundreds of years I would volunteer to defend Iceland and put the experiences from my years of military service to work. After all, it wouldn't be the first time my family traded rounds with the red coats.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:06 | 256831 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Did you read the article you quoted?

"The British and Dutch depositors were compensated through each country’s bank deposit guarantee schemes after Icesave collapsed in October 2008 and the two governments are now seeking to reclaim the money from Iceland."

It's the money from the bank deposit guarantee schemes that UK and NL are seeking, not the whole deposit. It was not SUPPOSED to be covered by the UK and Dutch schemes because Landsbanki was "passported" in and was supposed to be under the Icelandic scheme still. The UK and Dutch schemes made ex-gratia payments because the Icelandic government repudiated the treaty commitment. That's why the UK government seized Landsbanki assets using the terrorism legislation - as security for the ex-gratia payments it had made because Iceland couldn't/wouldn't.

Iceland's argument is that the collapse of all banks is kind of a "force majeur" situation which nullifies the government responsibility to pay out the compensation.

I still think that according to the letter of the treaties Iceland is liable for this money, but I can also see the practical difficulties for them in doing so.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:22 | 256835 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

I stand corrected and ammend my comment.

The "FDIC" like deposit insurance scheme was covered by the UK & Dutch systems.  In this the citizens of Iceland have already paid their just debts in that they never signed onto the treaty obligation for cross border deposits and that there was and is woefully inadequate regulatory enforcement by European authorities relating to cross border banking.  (Sounds like the failures to properly enforce with respect to Greece and other Euro area nations and their apparent fudging of their books to look proper being played out in a different arena)  That is the citizens of Iceland and other European nations not involved with the failed management and regulation of these institutions and their cross border relationships.   Makes me wonder who benefited from the collapse of these Icelandic institutions, when were these financial positions taken and if these payouts have been considered in the present negotiations?  After all, a fair presumption is that the member institutions of the Dutch & UK central banks were most likely major market makers in creating and moving these and like products.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:56 | 256600 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

With greater return comes greater risk.  Iceland's taxpayers didn't force Brits to chase yield. 

Plus, I think those too few Royal Marines of yours are going to be a bit busy in Afghanistan, Iraq, soon The Falklands, and very possibly up 'round Belfast.  Plus, with a big chunk of the Nation of Islam setting up shop in every shithole suburb of England, it looks like Bjork won't be facing any Redcoats on her beachfront for the foreseeable future.


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:32 | 256603 caconhma
caconhma's picture

"have a battalion of royal marines landing on their fair shore!"

I wish you get a cancer and rotten to hell.

As for fuckin Brits they will be bankrupt shortly. Should Chinese stuff every single brit?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:24 | 256764 35Pete
35Pete's picture

I 2nd that. 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:47 | 256624 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

To use the internet idiom, FFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hey, sucks to be the British taxpayer.  Also sucks to be the taxpayer almost anywhere else.  For the UK and Netherlands to try and extort this bill is adding insult to injury, and is the sort of thing that tends to lead to extremely violent wars 5-20 years down the road.  Ever heard of the WWI reparations and Weimar Republic?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:12 | 256648 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

"Its not the bankers there sticking it to its the British public. All those who lost money in ice save only to have the British tax payer foot the bill. Iceland should pay their debts or have a battalion of royal marines landing on their fair shore!"

Your Government stuck it to you a long time ago.

You're just to stupid to see it.

"..battalion of royal marines landing on their fair shore.."

Prick. Is that your answer to everything?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 05:50 | 256748 boiow
boiow's picture

caveat emptor, i'm british and i think good luck to the icelanders. we have somehow got to reign in our elite in the uk. but part of me thinks its too corrupt to change without a miracle.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:30 | 256767 35Pete
35Pete's picture

+1. Good man. Empire building didn't work for you, isn't working for us (US) and again, is immoral as hell. 

Man should not prey on his fellow man. Your private citizens accepted risk, that risk manifested itself. Boo hoo. They can move out of their castles and estates and into an economy flat in Liverpool. It's called risk/reward. 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:37 | 256772 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Well i think you will find its more the people who live in council flats in Liverpool who had what savings they did in icesave, not the rich elite (which there arnt exactly mainy left of in the UK unless you count the Russians and Arabs!. This is not your typical case of the government bailing out banking tycoons, they were bailing out every day people, who will pay for it them selves from there taxes.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 21:52 | 257333 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Then why has your British govt given sanctuary to the execs from Glitnir and Landesbaanki? Those are the men responsible, yet they are staying in London (luxuriously) without a care of being extradited. Who is creating the criminality and who is protecting it?

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 07:30 | 256768 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

This is all rich coming from the americans who basically took on Britannia's legacy of raping and pillaging to the extreme!

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:12 | 256901 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Uhh, some of us are doing our damndest to change that. Problem is that we have an extremely powerful ruling class that's intentionally wrecked our education system, making it impossible for the average citizen to think (all issues are emotions based here)  produced exceptionally effective bread and circuses, and are becoming more brazen against opposition domestically by the day. 

Don't paint us all with a broad brush. We know our military has been used as brigands around the world to pillage, plunder, loot, and exploit. 

What most Americans today still won't admit is that we've had it so well because we've stolen from everyone else. And just now they're bitching because that theft is turning more inwards towards them. 

We know that "in our name", societies have been destabilized, governments overthrown, and lives destroyed for the benefit of the few. 

And we know that this is going to end badly for us. That doesn't mean that we still can't try to do the right thing. Not all of us are apathetic. Some of us have a tough time looking at ourselves in the mirror knowing what has been done "in our name". 

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 06:58 | 256755 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

They didn't fair too well at Lexington or Dunkirk.
And they were an empire back then.

Good luck with that.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:09 | 256581 moneymutt
moneymutt's picture

No matter what, they are screwed, best to default and get it over with, or bu austere for decades...

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:12 | 256584 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Go Iceland!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:18 | 256589 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I'm willing to sell nearly every Goldman Sachs employee and ex-employee (with a few exceptions for those who've seen the light and mended their ways or just pushed a broom at the squid) into slavery to help fix things.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:21 | 256593 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

20 prosecutions is 20 more than we will see here. Fucking banker locusts.. Obama will keep his Jew puppet masters safe and make sure the teet of the nation keeps their bellies full of the milk and honey from a good day trading the market... And never losing.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 13:54 | 256933 dnarby
dnarby's picture

OK, time to dial down the stupidity...  Most of the bankers are WASPs.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 19:42 | 257254 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

Why does race come into it for people here? This crew is too smart for that. I believe in free speech, but WTF? Not all Greeks or Jews or WASPS or any other group is all X. Over generalization is bad logic that will more often than not lead to bad conclusions.

Not all of Obama's puppetmasters are Jewish, or Muslim, or communist, or bankers.

Puppetmasters of the world unite!

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 21:00 | 257306 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

The Illuminati consist of all the tribes of the world.  Originally, it was done this way to consolidate power in Europe.  Now that the world is a "global village" (thanks Hill), they have accepted into the ranks certain "races".  The House of Saud are best buds with the Bushes.  The Bin Ladin's own a third of the Carlyle group; the other proprietary owners are the Bushes and Sarkozys.  David Rockefeller said that religion is a thing of the past; in other words, they do not care what you worship, as long as you abide by their rules.  Their rule is MONEY.  This rule gives them power.  The upper echelon is mostly white however.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:22 | 256594 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

>Icelanders have thrown red paint over house facades and cars of key employees at the failed banks<

Excellent idea. Let's not forget their jets and yachts.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:26 | 256597 10044
Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:30 | 256662 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

plus plus

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:52 | 256673 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

China must strengthen its currency, internalize its markets and build its middle class.  Now we will see that capital flows towards a strong currency, and increasingly so towards a strengthening currency.  And when China begins attracting capital with a slowly rising currency, from where will the insatiable capital borrowing needs of the U.S. be met?  This is slow starvation for the U.S.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:30 | 256602 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Bravo Iceland!!

STOP the fraud, STOP the endless looting---Let the chips fall where they MAY.

The world needs to learn from your example!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:40 | 256612 trav7777
trav7777's picture

Go Iceland!

I recall the great days of 2008 when shorts were making money hand over fist on throwing darts at the Wall St journal stock pages for puts to buy and the sheer candor coming out of the leader of Iceland was spectacular.

I mean, it was basic reality.  Instead we got "Mission Accomplished" and "strong economy" and the recession is a state of mind and whining.  Everyone should read that national statement in Iceland when they went into default. 

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:42 | 256614 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

this is hilarious. The Icelanders lived rich for 10 years, enjoying the fat tax benefits of being a hedge fund. Now it time to pay the piper and suddenly its all 'freedom.' I love it. Just like the 'poor' Greeks. If you want to play the game of high finance, you have to be prepared to lose. Not pull a Goldman Sacs and once the going gets tough get your marbles and walk away. O well. Hope they enjoy eating whale meat and sheep for the next...long fucking time.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:13 | 256651 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

This comment is about as accurate as saying that the workers in Greenwich, CT's restaurants are the beneficiaries of Goldman Sachs' thieving.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:17 | 256653 Frank Owen
Frank Owen's picture

Not pull a Goldman Sacs and once the going gets tough get your marbles and walk away.

What? Goldman walks away with their's and everyone else's marbles. Pay attention to the game.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 01:20 | 256689 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Iceland taxpayers != Iceland banks

Why should the Iceland taxpayers pay for the Iceland banks' foibles?
Why should the US taxpayers pay for the US banks' foibles?
Why should the UK taxpayers pay for the UK banks' foibles?

If you haven't figured it out yet, this is all about taxpayers versus politicians + financial institutions + those dependent on transfer payments.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:10 | 256832 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Goldman Sachs needs to be tried at the Hague.

Crimes against humanity.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:30 | 256839 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

Too bad those judges are most likely share holders or have their money managed by them.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:42 | 256615 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Please double check your facts on the IMF.

Last I checked, the IMF declared that the vote's outcome would have no impact whatsoever on whether they'd continue to finance Iceland. Considering that Strauss-Kahn is at its head, I'd be hard convinced that they didn't mean it.

Fact is, the only people who are saying the IMF will do otherwise are, duh, the UK and Dutch governments. It's just pathetic that ZH is peddling that IMF loans are at stake.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:43 | 256616 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Please double check your facts on the IMF.

Last I checked, the IMF declared that the vote's outcome would have no impact whatsoever on whether they'd continue to finance Iceland. Considering that Strauss-Kahn is at its head, I'd be hard convinced that they didn't mean it.

Fact is, the only people who are saying the IMF will do otherwise are, duh, the UK and Dutch governments. It's just pathetic that ZH is peddling that IMF loans are at stake.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:43 | 256618 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Please double check your facts on the IMF.

Last I checked, the IMF declared that the vote's outcome would have no impact whatsoever on whether they'd continue to finance Iceland. Considering that Strauss-Kahn is at its head, I'd be hard convinced that they didn't mean it.

Fact is, the only people who are saying the IMF will do otherwise are, duh, the UK and Dutch governments. It's just pathetic that ZH is peddling that IMF loans are at stake.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:44 | 256620 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

Kudos to Iceland.

And weekly protests of 2000 people in a nation of 320,000?  That would be equivalent to weekly protests of TWO MILLION people in the US.  Oh, one can dream.

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:54 | 256631 hayleecomet
hayleecomet's picture

we need to get it together

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 23:41 | 257393 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

WHY are American's so spineless?? I just dont underestand how you can watch these Banksters and the FED pull of the biggest heist of taxpayer dollars in history, and just sit there-??

What is going on with that?

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:44 | 256621 Stranger
Stranger's picture

Punish the failures!

Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:52 | 256628 hayleecomet
hayleecomet's picture

+1000 to the people of Iceland for focusing and getting their message through loud and clear.  Our "tea party" has become so fragmented I don't even know what they stand for, especially since Palin has become their mascot.

In our defense, the message was loud and clear about TARP and they did what they wanted anyway.  Not to mention the litany of other assistance programs made available....TAF,PPIF,TALF,CPFF,PPIF,TIT,TOOT,TRAP,TAINT....if you know what I mean.


Sat, 03/06/2010 - 23:55 | 256632 doublethink
doublethink's picture


"[Any] bailout watchdog is truly powerless when the people of the bailout recipient nation want to have nothing to do with the...rescue circuit."


The good people of Iceland have performed an action which has repercussions for the fate of Greece (and for the PIGS and STUPIDS as well). We in the States tried to express the same sentiment by the avalanche of calls to Congress in the lead up to TARP. That is to say, Americans too were willing to sacrifice a near-term economic disaster so as to avoid the bailout of the banks.


Political leaders throughout Europe will be contemplating this earthquake in Iceland as will our own. There will not be another US bailout without the good people of America demanding a vote similar to Iceland's. After all, taxation without representation goes to the very core of our democracy. Anything less would be perceived by all the people as treason.


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 11:35 | 256844 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

We have been getting taxed without representation ever since the federal reserve seized the power to appropriate.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:17 | 256654 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Thank you people of Iceland. You are truly beautiful and brave. We will follow in your footsteps here in America.
Economic justice is for all, not for just the privileged.

Sun, 03/07/2010 - 00:21 | 256656 chindit13
chindit13's picture

Ignorance of reality is no excuse.  What I mean is, folks who put their savings in the banks of a country that had bank assets 10X the country's GDP should be selected out by Darwinian Socialism.  Sorry Brits.  A fool and his money, and all that.  It's more than your average stout drinker, though.  Lots of UK municipalities put funds into Icelandic banks.  Poof!

Perhaps I am ignorant of the facts, but I do not think the average Icelander had anything to do with what their bankers did, thus it is understandable and fair that they should vote against paying.  What should be done immediately is to claw back every last krona any bank executive received since the beginning of the debacle.  Clearly they did not earn them, so take the house, the car, the bank account, pull the braces off their propagated gene pools' teeth...everything.

After that, I'm willing to buy the air tickets for a gaggle of Icelanders to come to the US and teach the population how to "Just Say No" to bankers and their political apparachiks.


Sun, 03/07/2010 - 04:37 | 256738 Gussiefink-nottle
Gussiefink-nottle's picture

There was a time when most investment houses were unlimited liability partnerships. If your bets went wrong not only was your job on the line, but also your personal assets and through the quaint concept of joint and several liability, the personal assets of all your partners. The men who ran the investment houses in those far off days were giants compared to the unbelievably rapacious termites who are now in charge. Most of them had served during World War II in the military and had seen friends and comrades killed. Whilst I am sure there were many exceptions, on balance they were less concerned with personal enrichment and more focused on providing the sort of service to their clients for which their investment houses had originally been established.


We do still have joint and several liability but nowadays that liability falls on the shoulders of the taxpayers whose consent was never sought. Iceland has shown that when they are asked, they are not keen to become unwitting partners for losses incurred at the casino.



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