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Monday, 12 December 2011

Paying for the most capable!

Time, and time again, we are informed that it is necessary to pay extravagent salaries, and outrageous bonuses, to senior bankers and others, in order to ensure that we get the best people at the top!

It has now been revealed by the FSA that a major cause of the collapse of The Royal Bank of Scotland, in 2008, was "poor management"!   If that is the result of paying people like "Sir" Fred Goodwin annual sums that many working-class people don't manage to accumulate in a lifetime, perhaps that old chestnut needs to be consigned to the fire of history - and even the so-called 'top people' paid according to results obtained, rather than those expected!

This becomes especially relevant in light of the further reports that "Sir" Fred acted deceitfully towards the board of RBS by, effectively, hiding from them that the FSA had not always regarded the dialogue with RBS's executive management as constructive!  I wonder if he can not now be charged with fraud, or some similar criminal offence?

This evening's news bulletin informed us that he ended up - even after having returned some of it - with a pension pot of £12million.  That's on top of any savings/investments he might have had, and doesn't even include almost a year working for another company after he had left RBS.   His annual pension is reckoned to be £342,500 a year - reduced from the original £555,000, after he took out an estimated £2.7m tax-free lump sum. The agreement reportedly followed the completion of RBS's internal inquiry into his conduct, which found no wrong-doing!

We live in a strange world, in which failure is so highly rewarded, while those who provide the services that keep us all going from day-to-day, receive so little in financial terms.  And in the persecuted church, there are many who are expelled from their homes, and villages, and even their country, with what material assets that they had being confiscated by the state - or simply stolen by their former neighbours!

Jesus said, "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." (Matt 6:19-21).  Those, whether in the world of banking, or politics, or industry, who show that their god is Mammon, ought to heed those words, and seek after the true riches that come from faithful service of the Lord.

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