Who’ll we get to run our bank?

I’d thought it was a nearly-amusing coincidence that Northern Rock’s ex-chairman Matt Ridley shared a name with the journalist and science writer.

But no, apparently they’re the same guy. Now, I know that chairman is a non-exec role, but even so – if I were selecting a chairman for a major bank, I’d probably opt for someone with more experience in financial services than, err, none at all. Or at least, someone with more experience in running a medium-to-large company than, err, none at all…

(via)

But financial standards ARE interesting, dammit

I’ve got a new Sharpener piece up on the unholy trinity of Craig Murray, Alisher Usmanov and Prem Sikka. It’s got accountancy, it’s got bribery, it’s got a respected writer making himself look like an idiot and accidentally libelling people – what more could you ask?

“A post which isn’t about transport or accountancy, please, John…”

Maybe one day. The thing is, my social life is so extreme and hectic [*], and my professional life so amazingly fun and high-powered [**], that it’d just sound too gloating-ish if I were to post about them on my blog. Talking about financial standards and transport projects is the only way I can stop your jealousy of me reaching unbearable levels. Honest.

[*] last night I went to two pubs, and considered going to a third
[**] last month I got taken to a lasagne factory in Wales

Hooray for London

It’s truly an autumn of Finally Approving Transport Projects That Should Have Happened 10 Years Ago. As well as Thameslink 2000 and Crossrail (both of which approval I’ve somehow failed to write about – bad me), we’re now getting the Camden Town station rebuild.

As regular readers may be aware, I approve of all of the above. If we were hanging all the NIMBYs, that would be even better still…