It was with sadness I read Andrew's obituary in today's DT. He served 25 years in the BoE before going to be head of the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) in Basle for about 8 years. He retired from that post in time to be considered as the next Governor in 2002 when Gord made Merv Governor designate. This ranks along with the sale of UK gold reserves and setting up his tri-partite regulation as three dreadful Gord decisions. The popular vote in the bank was for Andrew Crockett who had been as head of the BIS the central banks central banker to be the next Governor. Quite simply he was a banker, understood banks and got on well with bankers. Merv was none of these things. He was an academic monetary economist at times playing with a central bank like a toy train set.
The other candidate was Howard Davies who would also have been preferable to Merv. Howard let people get on with their jobs and respected their expertise. He was also a great PR man and networker. Merv was a control freak who wanted to control everything and everybody.
We are now paying the price for another poor GB decision and we will go on paying it for the next 10 years at least.
Like Vince Cable as a pleb I cannot resist commenting on Thrasher Mitchell's bike incident. It gives the lie to the myth of police independence when Downing Street brazenly admit that the cabinet secretary, Sir Jeremy Heywood leaned on the head of the Met, Mr Hogan Howe to close down any investigation into f'ing pleb comments. One can't help noticing how many Chief Constables have knighthoods. Poor Mr HH must be getting a bad case of knighthood starvation something I am sure JH had soothing words for. And who is the good fairy who has final say on the next honours list? Well his initials are JH. That's how we do things in the UK!