"Greed is Good" Guffaws Fat/Wealthy London Mayor

By Gary Cutlack on at

As you might expect, influential posho Boris Johnson is totally on the side of London's banking industry, suggesting the UK's about to enjoy a 1980s-style boom and that the city's greed should be considered a "valid motivator" that helps drive economic progress.

Johnson was speaking, appropriately enough, at the Margaret Thatcher lecture, where he did at least attempt to add some caveats to his defence of the wealthy, hoping rather nebulously that people might somehow behave better when they get filthy rich and their houses treble in value this time around.

He said: "I hope there is no return to that spirit of 'Loadsamoney' heartlessness -- figuratively riffling banknotes under the noses of the homeless -- and I hope that this time the Gordon Gekkos of London are conspicuous not just for their greed -- valid motivator though greed may be for economic progress -- as for what they give and do for the rest of the population."

Boris basically hopes the UK might become more charitable when or if the good times return, adding: "And if there is to be a boom ... I hope it is one that is marked by a genuine sense of community and acts of prodigious philanthropy, and I wish the snob value and prestige that the Americans attach to acts of giving would somehow manifest itself here." [Independent]