Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Bob Diamond wants more risk at Barclays

This is brilliant news. Of course, it will upset the sort who like to wet their pants at every opportunity, but so what? They should be grateful. This is another opportunity.

Bob Diamond, chief executive now, remember, the big man, never forget, wants to raise the bank's risk profile because - and this is beautiful - he wants Barclays to make more money. It's the most natural desire in the world. It's the most natural desire beyond this world, if the truth be told. However, the truth hurts, like a bullet from a gun. Yes, that's a lot of pain, so I'll keep quiet about things beyond this world, for the sensitive ones, and I will focus on the cold ground we all crawl over, hungry for salvation, the money-love, the only salvation there is in these parts. Sad but true. Cheer up. It could be worse.

Bob Diamond wants Barclays to achieve a 13 per cent return on equity by 2013. Is this possible? Is Bob being realistic? Or is he dancing in an astral landscape with fairies and goblins? Well, as you know, I have banned everyone from the astral plane. It's in the City of London and on Wall Street that we must make our presence felt; I mean, more than we have ever done before. So, no, Bob is not away with the fairies and the goblins. (There were never any goblins, anyway. That was just a story put about by our enemies in a ludicrous attempt to discredit us. The fairies are another matter, and I will not discuss them. For the record, I am not the man who dreamed of Faeryland. That was W.B. Yeats. And even he tired of the fairies. That's why he changed his writing style around his fiftieth year. I'm only forty-two and already making the change. I'm talking about the shift from dream worlds to a more intense engagement with the everyday world of the cold earth wanderers. There'll still be mysticism, but controlled, like everything else. It's yet another new way, a stronger way, and the people who want to ignore it, can ignore it; however, they will be storing up trouble for themselves. A quote from Damien Hirst is in order; on Nick Serota and the Tate: 'I'm dangerous to them. I mess up their parade. It's a dangerous game you play with Nick Serota. It feels like Nick Serota's not buying one to teach me a lesson. And I'm going to embarrass him for not having one. It's that fucked up. "Why have the Tate not got a Damien Hirst?" "Damien Hirst turned out to be shit." That's his game.') Where was I? Oh yes, Bob Diamond. I think he is being realistic. The Barclays characters, souls, what have you, should take more risks and reach for more profit, more greatness, more life, a magical 13 per cent return on equity! You only live again, and again, and again, until elevated enough to escape the cycle of birth and death. Why not make the most of it?