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No More Business As Usual For Banks - G20

Recent events may have forever changed the global economic system. That isn't to say capitalism is dead, no its alive and will become well, eventually. It will just be a different style of capitalism. It won't, however, be back to business as usual for banks.

Unrestrained capitalism rather obviously leads to no good.

Good is sort of what it is really all about. The greater good. A 21st century world will be a lot harder place to do things against the greater good. That is where banks will face real challenges.

It is about time. We have a society with laws and customs generally based on the greater good. Judges supposedly ponder this everyday in their deliberations.

Banks, it seems, do not, ever.

That is about to change forever, and it may in fact become the primary consideration in decisions as to where funds are allocated.

Government's have a role to play in this. Their only real mandate is the greater good.

It is well and truly past the time for green-washing and whitewashing. We see around us the price of unrestrained capitalism - puppet governments, environmental destruction, wasted resources and broken promises.

If your bank isn't up to speed on the new mindset- that fast-moving 21st century herd of dollars will be out of your corral and rushing into the arms of someone who is. It might take a little while, but it well happen and happen suddenly, without leaving an institution time to remodel it's culture and it's image.

No amount of propaganda and spin will change the outcome. Fibs will be uncovered, lies mercilessly exposed and the institutions built over centuries will cease to be, replaced by those more socially aware, if not quite democratic socialist.

The 21st century will be a time of inclusiveness, by force, asymmetric force. That cat is out of the bag. The only way to manage will be more responsibly, both for governments and corporations - including banks.

The nuclear weapons age is over. We will very soon see it put where it belongs, consigned to history. Clearly capitalism has no interest in nuclear war apart from the dollars which can be made 'managing' the fear of it. Too many people have now had a taste of 'progress'. There is no going backward for the vast majority of us, especially those who have benefited financially - those who control the money. They may even become those who used to control the money.

The benefit of the internet and modern communications is that it is going to be much harder to cover up mistakes and misdeeds. In the past it was fairly easy to marginalise a minority and discredit their ideas or proponents. Its getting harder.

We should not fail to realise how close this society we have built over centuries came to total collapse and anarchy. Perhaps some bankers are still unaware (and those who stupidly oppose bail-outs and nationalisation). It appears that at least governments are keeping it in mind. It is by a tenuous thread that the puppets remain leading the entertainment - that thread is connected to their citizen's wallets.

I'd suggest that governments perhaps have a little education session with bankers about the 'greater good' and enlighten them as to how close we came to the greater bad descending upon us all. It would be prudent to remind them just what that worse-case scenario could have been. Preventing a similar occurrence will only be possible through more focus on the greater good, and the concept of adding value to society and the economy. There will be plenty of voices spreading the word and banks would do better business to hear it.

Governments, and bank board members, have never had a stronger mandate to make it so.




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