Iceland: Report of Special Investigation Commission

English-language versions of some of the report into Iceland’s financial crisis are now available here.

Update: this Powerpoint file contains the main points.  Plenty of lessons for Irish readers.

Update:  A panel of philosophers considered the ethical failures during the Icelandic boom and bust: the one-page summary is here.

11 replies on “Iceland: Report of Special Investigation Commission”

@Philip Lane

So the philosophers find ‘weak social structures, political culture and public institutions’ to be causal here. They sound like ‘real’ political economists ………. where is the ‘philosophy’?

That said, in line with the type of ‘broad social scientific analysis’ called for by the Governor in his early days. Will get to the rest of it later ……….


From the PowerPoint – striking on similarity with ‘insider’ on Anglo-Irish share dealing …… the 10, the Quinns etc …. and the global on the key economists in powerful positions [fed, china, ecb etc] who failed to shout ‘stop’ on the cheap money supply ….. and the dodgy short termist derivative equations ….

…. & West Ham United could still be relegated! Maybe Anglo-Irish could pop in a few bob …….. might as well go down in style! Or perhaps the sovereign could come in – and stay up – well we are buying into everything at the moment apparently so why not buy up a bit o the east end?

There are many striking parallels with Iceland and Ireland, i.a. inexplicably large exposures to very few clients. The report that came out today gives an insight into a scary way of running banks and a staggering negligence on behalf of the government, parliament, regulators and the Central Bank.

Have to say that I found the philosopher contribution a little fluffy.

Are they to be sent back to more worthy issues, now that they have rendered judgement?

Twill be dangerous if our problems are left to ‘ethicists’!


We need hard headed ethicists and moralists who deeply undestand the relations between democracy, representative politics, corporate power, and law.

C’mon – it is now ‘legal’ to literally, and factually, bankrupt a state and sell future generations into serfhood. This sure as hell ain’t deliberative democracy …….

Icelandic bankers are trembling… “Were screwed, they are sending a crack squad of philosophers after us.”

This may be better not said but,..

What they need and we needed were Assholes,
Antisocial, bullshit detecting assholes…
Who dont play golf…
Who have enough of a code to do their job no matter what…

There, I said it..

Kondratieff. 70 year long cycles. It takes time for credit to be credible. Then and only then can we blow bubble after bubble and know that this time, it is different.

Then the cycle begins again. Winners? Losers. Disruption, without apparent morality anywhere.

Yet there is, clearly. Being rich is clearly being morally superior indeed. All the traps (and especially greed) have been avoided. Only the little people pay, as in pay taxes. Get government to pay all the bills and keep the machine running for as long as possible and keep the foreign bank accounts, in Bangkok, Singapore, Panama topped up.

Every 70 years. Vary the timing, as we decide to make a super-depression, by destroying home owners equity along the way. Watch as everyone denies the obvious. Not that it matters. By the time the economy recovers, for the little people, credit will be credible again …..

Economic warfare, skip the arms manufacturers and go straight for the wealth, leaving the slaves alive to create more wealth so we can go back again. So much more effective than all that dangerous killing.

Rinse and repeat! Squeeze and release. Gosh, I feel like a new World Order! Hegelian, what?

@Sigrun Davidsdottir

Keep in touch. We should be able to share a few lessons …

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