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Transparency Hits the Vatican Bank

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Gotti Tedeschi

Just as Spain’s fourth largest bank, Bankia, has requested a governmental bailout like those in the U.S. and UK, it seems no one is safe from the spotlight illuminating dodgy investments, sticky fingers, and the cooking of books. Interestingly no one is immune, not even the Vatican. Once again the word being used by banks, and now quasi-religious ones is: transparency. Now it’s time for the head of the Vatican Bank to face allegations of money laundering and unethical dealings. As was reported recently by the BBC, “The bank’s board of directors unanimously passed a no-confidence vote in Mr Gotti Tedeschi.” Without much elaboration, by either the Vatican or Mr Tedeschi, a terse statement was issued by the former’s board of directors (ironically requiring very little elaboration to understand the gist of the scenario), insisting that a new director would be chosen, “based on mutual respect for accepted international banking standards.” Enough said.

Amongst the mire of yet another scandal, the cry from the public and leading officials is a plea for transparency in financial dealings. Regarding the ‘T Word,’ Bankia’s head, Jose Ignacio Goirigolzarri, issued a pensive statement on their website trying to quell the public fury: “We are mindful that we will be managing a bank with public participation and will do so with all the professionalism, austerity and transparency we are capable of applying.” And to add to the chorus, the suspected crook, Mr Tedeschi also remarked to the Reuters news agency that he had “paid for his transparency.” Obviously not quite enough, but the days of pillage and plunder seem to be over for officials of any department. The Internet and it’s social media cousins have produced a lot of dreck in the last fifteen years, but these days only a fool would attempt to carry out covert operations, as everything becomes part of public record. The crooks have to get faster than Facebook and the new public consciousness and that, I’m afraid, is a tall order.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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William R. Feins , freelance journalist from London, UK; he received his B.A. degree in Economics and his Masters in Sociology. William has always been interested in the mechanics of business and the inspiration of original thinkers, and firmly believes that the former can’t succeed without the latter. In his spare time, he enjoys the ridiculous spectacle of watching table tennis on a big screen (preferably at a pub) and reading weighty tomes about World War II.