£3bn of taxpayers' money injected into Northern Rock
Philip Hammond, the Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, has attacked Labour's handling of the Northern Rock crisis after it emerged that £3bn of taxpayers' money will be used to keep the bank afloat.
He stressed that it was Mr. Brown's regulatory regime that failed to prevent the run on the bank in the first place, and blamed his "subsequent dithering" for preventing "a successful rescue."
He described the £3bn injection of taxpayers' funds as "the predictable consequence" of nationalising a mortgage bank at the height of the housing boom.
And he accused Brown and Darling of not being straight with people after part of the loan to Northern Rock was written off despite assurances that it would be repaid in full.
I agree. About the only thing the government got right in respect of Northern Rock was their initial extreme reluctance to nationalise it. However great the problems with other approaches - and they were serious - it's a pity they did not stick to their guns. All governments, and especially this one, have enough problems doing their own job properly. Trying to run a bank as well is a recipe for throwing away taxpayers money, and amounts to unfair competition for other banks.