Last night, UK Prime Minister David Cameron “threatened” to prosecute the four oil giants who stand accused (along with intermediary price reporter Platts) of manipulating the oil price for their own advantage – if they’re found guilty. Why is he only threatening to do so? And why did he only threaten to do so after the EC had already caught them at it?
Let me give you a simple answer to each question. Cameron can only threaten, because energy providers – like bankers – are more equal before the law than the rest of us. And he has only made the threat after the EC went ahead with their raids because there is no way any British government would risk evoking the ire of these criminal sociopaths. Mr Cameron, and most politicians at his level, are nothing more than ordures on the shoes of oilmen.
Consider where the trail leads on this oily little racket. Platts is a wholly owned subsidiary of McGraw Hill. McGraw Hill also owns, um, Standard & Poors. S&P has within its gift the ability to say Britain is doing well (gilt yields fall) or Britain is heading down the sh*tter (gilt yields rise → Britain goes bankrupt → D Cameron out of a job). Stand by for an intervention from Boris Johnson along the lines of this being a deliberate EC plot to destroy Old Blighty by increasing its borrowing costs.