Friday 2 December 2016

Bankers must be kept away from any debt relief scheme

Those who poisoned customers with debt have no role to play in search for an antidote, writes Shane Ross

Published 04/09/2011 | 05:00

Three years ago they were kings of the casino. Today they posture as born-again princes of prudence. The sinners of Ireland's financial apocalypse are suddenly joining a crusade for "forgiveness". Such benign religious rhetoric is a bit rich coming from Ireland's bankers. These rogues belong more in the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than on the road to Damascus .

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Bankers are insinuating themselves into the thick of the current drive for debt forgiveness. And no one can match their brass neck. Those bankers who poisoned their customers with debt in the last decade are queuing up to detox them with antidotes today. Poison or antidote, the banks are re-emerging as winners either way. Borrowers are wed to their bankers, for richer for poorer.

A consensus is emerging about the debt forgiveness time bomb: that there is a deep problem; that tens of thousands are unable to pay their mortgages; that they must not be evicted from their homes by bankers; that solutions must be found for genuine victims of the bankers' reckless lending and -- equally importantly -- that no scoundrels can be allowed to exploit answers specifically designed for the genuinely afflicted.

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