A test for Turner

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Since Lord Turner saw fit to have a pop at me in his Mansion House speech, a place incidentally from which I am banned for life, let me have a wee pop back.

Last year, I heckled him because he had given his organisation a 10 per cent salary increase across the board and 15 per cent bonuses in the wake of the greatest regulatory failure in the history of the City.

The heckling was prompted not so much by this deed as the supreme arrogance that has come to be the hallmark of the socalled “great and the good”.

Lord Turner is supreme among these beings. They appear on many boards of directors as non-executives, head quangos and nestle on boards of trustees. Their pomposity is worthy of any Gilbertian character invention. Yet look them up in Who’s Who? and see if you can find out what they have ever done. Not, incidentally, what they have been.

They have been plenty of things, yet where is the achievement? A couple of years here, a year there, plenty of consultancy jobs. whatever that may mean. Chums in high places, an effortless elevation to the Lords for no apparent reason, yet what do these fellows even know? What real experience have they ever had?

For my part, he accuses me of not being able to “grasp” concepts in financial services. Well Lord Turner, I have spent 35 years in financial services. I have been an award-winning fund manager, general manager of a life insurance company and a broker consultant and analyst. I exposed pension misselling in 1992 in The Observer newspaper, the unsound risk analysis of split caps in Money Marketing well before their demise and was part of the Treasury’s consultancy process on the implementation of the 1986 Finance Act.

My average term of office in any job is seven years. So who are you and your fabulously well paid cronies at the FSA to tell people of modest wealth that hitherto their advice can come only from nationalised banks, whose failures in the field of financial advice are legion?

How dare you, in a free society, stand outside the principles of English law and dictate to the rest of us?

Share a platform with me, my noble lord, with an independent audience and we will see who grasps what.

Godfrey Bloom is a Ukip Member of the European Parliament and a former IFA