The Meltdown

British Bankers Grilled

When American bank CEOs testify before Congress, they better hope they get a kinder treatment than their counterparts across the pond. Testifying before Parliament yesterday, former executives from the Royal Bank of Scotland and HBOS received a public thrashing. "Isn't part of the problem with your bank, and your leadership, is the culture you created, that you lived for good times, and wanted the good times, and you didn't want any criticism ... you didn't identify any of the problems?" one parliamentarian asked one banker. The bankers were apologetic, admitting to strategic gaffes, but that did not earn them any sympathy. The hearing was picketed by protesters holding signs that said things like “you’ve put jobs at risk.”