Top 10 list of the Icelandic crash

This is taken from The Economic Disaster Area website: This is very good work from them, and simply cant be written better. Here is a direct copy from that site:
Top 10: Who’s To Blame For The Icelandic Crash

Since Newsweek was pointing fingers this week with its “Who’s to blame” report, it only makes sense that Icelanders start extending their index fingers. For every Fred Goodwin, there is a Bjarni Armannsson and for every David Oddson…well there are actually few people who could have made as much mess in history as David Oddson. So here is the top ten, which actually holds a lot more than ten people, but then again inflation is still here.


1.    David Oddson
He wanted all the praise so he has to accept the blame. Within 50 years of ridding itself of a foreign dictator, the King of Denmark, Iceland had something close to its own. He went about changing a closed, regulated society and throwing it onto the free market of everything. Unfortunately he wanted complete control of where the wealth and power was supposed to go. He could have become a JFK but ended up a George W. Bush. You can throw Political Science Professor at the University of Iceland, Hannes Holmstein Gissurarson into the mix with David as they are attached lips to butt anyways. Retired for now, supposed to be writing his memoirs. Quite a few dinosaurs and Independence Partyjugend would like to see a return to politics. One of incredibly many top Icelandic politicians to battle cancer in the last decade.

Halldor_asgrimsson_jpg_280x600_q952.    Halldor Asgrimsson
A Godfather of sorts to a Progressive Party Cosa Nostra which did not hesitate stealing the resources of Iceland in broad daylight. Hardly a visionary of any kind, but a dark lord of special interest who did anything to maintain the axis of power he built with the Independence Party. Thought he could become the emperor, but once on the PM throne he was ruefully exposed as a naked don of demons of greed and corruption. Would have sold Mount Esja if the right bid had come along. Retired after battling cancer. Family benefitted directly monetarily from the fishing quota system his party helped build and sustain.

geirvalgerdur3.    Valgerdur Sverrisdottir & Geir Haarde
Every villain needs a trusty sidekick which is both scary in the lenghts it will go to please its captain but pitiful all the same. Valgerdur was the middle-woman when Iceland sold its soul at Karahnjukar and the person who made the privatization of the banks happen into the right hands. Her education at a Berlitz languague school probably made her most qualified. Geir Haarde was handed the atomic bomb with 10 seconds to go on the clock, which was somehow fitting as he’d been one of the chief engineers as a Finance Minister to David Oddson. Of course it was going to end up blowing in their face. Geir now battles a serious case of cancer. Valgerdur was appointed to head a committee by rival party minister Ossur Skarphedinsson, so don’t worry about the co-operative of politicians not taking care of each other.

FinnurIngolfsson4.    Finnur Ingolfsson
When you are a simple Minister of Commerce and Industry one day and a humble Central Bank Governor the other, and then suddenly a billionaire after being handed a state bank through privatization, well then you just have to be either a brilliant businessman or an incredibly corrupt poltician who knows no shame. And Finnur Ingolfsson ain’t no brillant businessman. Is probably negotiating a nice loan-remittance for himself at the banks right now.

bjorgolfur-45.    Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson & Bjorgolfur Thor
Bankrupt a shipping company, run a few risky and failing businesses, go to post-communist Russia and make a buck, get a loan from a newly privatized bank to buy another bank because you are acceptable to the Independence Party, line the bank’s top positions with the Party’s favorite sons and daughters, run it almost to the ground, start a shady pyramid scheme called IceSave, destroy the lives of your countrymen and then ask for a discount on your loans. Last year Bjorgolfur Thor said that he had acquired all money could buy and now he was most concerned about leaving a great reputation. Might qualify for any worldwide list of top ten disastrous businessmen. Are now being battered from all sides, which is not surprising as they owe more money than the population of Central America. Recently asked for a discount on the loan they took from Bunadarbankinn to pay for Landsbankinn in the beginning, probably challenging the world record for chutzpah. Will probably continue to live in luxury with the money they’ve got stashed away in tax-havens.

6.    Sigurdur Einarsson (Kaupthing), Bjarni Armannsson (Glitnir), Hreidar Mar Sigurdsson (Kaupthing), Sigurjon Arnason (Landsbankinn), Halldor J. Kristjansson (Landsbankinn), Larus Welding (Glitnir)
CEO’s and chairman of the boards of the companies that built the smoke and mirrors of the “Icelandic Economic Miracle”. Middle-men in the transfer of Icelanders wealth into the pockets of a few chosen ones. Tax-evading enablers par-excellence who paid themselves a Croesian sum through bonuses and dividends that had no grounds in reality. You will find them as highly paid consultants today, as they are too well-connected to ever go to jail like you would.

7.    Jon Asgeir Johannesson (Baugur), Hannes Smarason (FL Group), Palmi Haraldsson (Fons), Karl Wernersson (Milestone), Agust & Lydur Gudmundsson (Bakkavor)
Parasites of the business world whose magic revolved around leveraging everything through the roof, and making away with what owners equity they could find. It is easy to buy what you want with a loan when you own a bank. Shamelessly neuveu-riche, typical Icelandic car-salesmen who’d gone upscale. Were never favored by David Oddson which made them tolerable to a large part of the nation. Hiding abroad, investing their loot.

8.    Olafur Olafsson
The money behind the Progressive Party, which he aquired through the Party’s connections and consent. Became a billionaire through close connections with Valgerdur Sverrisdottir and Halldor Asgrimsson who left no good morals unbroken in bringing Bunadarbankinn into his hands. Was the main player in a massive market manipulation swindle when a sheik from Kuwait was supposed to have shown his trust in Kaupthing with a 5% share purchase. Again, too connected to ever go to jail.

9.    Kjartan Gunnarsson
You are the Independence Party CEO and on the board of state-owned Landsbankinn. It is privatized and you are still on the board. The whole bank is filled with party hopefuls. The bank introduces IceSave and deliberately ties the knots so that the Icelandic state is responsible if it goes bust. It does.

10.    Ingibjorg Solrun Gisladottir
Could have offered a stark alternative to the disastrous regime of David Oddson’s Independence Party. And for a while she was harshly critical. But when things seemed rosier than ever during the “economic miracle”, she formed a government with the party she loved to loathe. If she’d let the Left Greens form the government instead in 2006, the economic crash would have happened under political explosions. Instead we got scared little mice running into cover as her party had become the second fiddler as the nation burned. Yet another one who’s having to fight cancer right now.

Honorable mention: Olafur Ragnar Grimsson
Hey Mr. President! We haven’t forgotten about you even if you seem to prefer being in hiding these days. An Icelandic president is supposed to unite the nation, support its people’s endeavors and protect its image. He is not supposed to be an on-call PR person for venture capitalists. Building his own dynasty, Olafur left a stain on a beloved institution. The first president to obviously honor greed as good. And that “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” speech completes the icing on the cake on the Icelandic nation’s  ridicule. Has mysteriously disappeared from the nation’s consciousness, another magical PR trick from him.


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