Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/516/3652
From The Socialist newspaper, 17 January 2008
Nationalise Northern Rock - permanently
THE LABOUR government is still desperate to find a private-sector buyer for Northern Rock, despite having shored up the bank to the tune of £50 billion (over half the NHS budget).
The bank went belly-up last September after Northern Rock's board speculated in financial markets and was caught out by the US sub-prime mortgage crisis.
The media has stories about the 180,000 small shareholders (who hold 20% of the stock) worrying that their investments will become valueless if Northern Rock is nationalised. But the real scandal is the role played by hedge fund shareholders.
When Northern Rock's shares nosedived, prompting a government bailout, two hedge funds - SRM Global and RAB Capital - snapped them up (they now own 18%) intending to make a big profit when the bank was sold on.
But faced with nationalisation - which the government may be forced to resort to - they could have their fingers burned. The hedge funds now want to limit Northern Rock's board's ability to sell or buy assets and issue new shares to stop a quick sell-off.
The bank should be nationalised - not as a temporary measure as demanded by sections of the capitalist class - with no compensation to the fat-cat speculators. Small shareholders should be compensated on the basis of proven need.
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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal
The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
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In The Socialist 17 January 2008:
Fight for a living wage
Burslem: Support victimised postal workers
Editorial: Fight three year low pay tie-ins
Environment and socialism
Stop nuclear power plans NOW!
Is the burning of fossil fuels causing climate change?
Hain's sorry saga of sleaze
Blair's rewards from big business
Fire cuts threat to our public safety
Cardiff schools campaign grows
Nationalise Northern Rock - permanently
Growing crisis in housing
Socialist Party news
Save our post offices
Salford says: "Don't close our women's centre"
'Them and Us': news shorts
Feature: Building the shop stewards' movement
Socialist Party campaigning
Ideas for campaigning and fundraising
International socialist news and analysis
Sri Lanka: New year starts with atrocities
Biggest miners' underground occupation in Polish history
Socialist Party review
Review: More Time for Politics, Diaries 2001-2007, by Tony Benn
Socialist Party workplace news
Reinstate Karen Reissman - defend mental health services!
Derby nurses fight management attacks
Liverpool: City of Cuts
Vote Jim Cessford
The Socialist 17 January 2008 |
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