This letter is part of an addendum to our submission to the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards. But it was not published. Hence it is now on the Forum for Stable Currencies site here.
From: LORD SUDELEY FSA Co-Founder and Convenor of the Forum for Stable Currencies
27 August 2012
To Sabine McNeill
Re: Forum for Stable Currencies
Many thanks for sending me your pamphlet to list what the various activities of the Forum for Stable Currencies should be. Out of this listing, here are some rough guidelines of a few of the directions in which we might travel, much of it suggested originally out of my own rather unpleasant personal experiences.
WHAT IS THE PERMISSABLE FUNCTION OF MONEY?
Aristotle was correct to say Money should be a medium of exchange only, and never the mother of interest, which is to say Money should not be allowed to breed by itself. Such a definition lies in complete contrast to what you have called the unchallenged assumption that banks and other financial institutions should have the right to exist to make money out of money- a particularly bad effect of which as I have mentioned in my pamphlet on Usury is the intensification of business cycles with many more bankruptcies than necessary to follow.
Do you know Howard Flight MP, now Lord Flight, who has the right sort of mind to have written one or two good books on exchange rates, and out of a lifetime of experience in banking could be approached to give an account of how unfavourably the UK compares with the USA-because over here so much more money is controlled by the banking system rather than to lie in the hands of what is called the mutual fund industry?
As a translator of financial texts my present wife Tatiana has lived in Austria. She tells me that in both Austria and Germany, quite unlike in the UK, every kind of effort is made to avoid bankruptcy situations.
Bankruptcies become fraudulent especially where as happened to my great-grandfather the 4th Lord Sudeley in 1893 creditors enlarge their claims because they are not independently and adequately audited. A top accountant, Christopher Arkell of 32 Addison Grove, London W4 recommends the introduction of a short bill in the House of Lords to deal with this abuse.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE SPECIAL WAYS IN WHICH SAFE MAY BE HELPED TO MATURE?
During the Middle Ages Parliamentary Bills were born out of the grouping together of various Petitions or complaints for what they had in common. In the same way I could suggest just four of the various areas in which SAFE’s victims of financial exploitation might be grouped.
ONE. You will recall the problem I have had with the 63 freehold reversions all in London in the estate of my grandmother Madeleine Hargreaves who died in 1958,where Lloyds Bank as Executor and Trustee of the estate broke both the law and the terms of my grandmother’s will by selling the freehold reversions before their leases fell in.
There should on the maturity of the leases have been an estate worth about £30 million. Instead, Lloyds Bank sold all but one of the freehold reversions well before the leases fell in for a few hundred pounds each-which is to say for prices which appear to reflect what they would fetch at auction without reserves when all auctions have rings; and none of us three beneficiaries of my grandmother’s estate are aware of having been paid for any of them. To try and understand better the mess left by Lloyds Bank, I have been trawling through some of the entries on the freehold reversions in the Land Registry to discover what a mess these entries are in. An Unstarred Question is needed in the House of Lords to call for a full definition of what kind of entries we should have in the Land Registry, and a mechanism to ensure that such entries are properly made.
TWO. Both Brad Meyer and I have had the bad experience of wives (in my case my second wife Margarita) stealing our identity to raid our bank accounts. In my case the Legal Aid authorities funded a solicitor to get up a case against the bank for allowing this to happen. The solicitor instructed a barrister who dismissed the case because by a whisker it fell the wrong side of the Six Year Limitation Period. In such cases of deception or fraud victims like Brad Meyer and myself should have all such Limitation Periods waived for us.
THREE. We know the effect of Lloyds Bank, low down on the list of his creditors, filing a petition for bankruptcy against my great-grandfather the 4th Lord Sudeley in 1893 was a foreclosure with all assets going for decimated value because that petition destroyed 4th Lord Sudeley’s capacity to borrow further to give himself enough time for rescheduling and the sale of some assets only at a comfortable pace to fetch their proper value. We need to know more on why Lloyds Bank ever filed for bankruptcy-about what information they had to make their decision and the discussion over it which ensued. Our law of libel precludes our suggestion Lloyds Bank is hiding anything when in point of fact the bank is allowed to be in total control of its own records and information. To help victims in such cases Eddy Weatherill of the Independent Banking Association(IBAS) calls for proper search powers as per Customs and Excise.
FOUR. In the case of where Lloyds Bank broke the law over the freehold reversions in my grandmother’s estate the bank got one of their in-house lawyers to provide an Opinion to say how the bank had acted quite legally. When I showed this Opinion to a judge, he pronounced it to be spurious and invalid. But I had to decline the offer of help from this judge to take my case to court, because with the endless appeals allowed under the English legal system Eddy Weatherill of IBAS points out how banks with their endless funds can use such appeals as a ‘back-stop’ to prevent any proper complaint against them from being fairly resolved. To cut through the ‘back-stops’ remedies are available in the form of Arbitration and Lord Browne-Wilkinson’s recently devised Mediation. But they both have to be paid for when the victim may not have any money, and there is no appeal from Mediation.
Please show this letter to anyone else if you so choose.