Thursday, March 19, 2009

Icelandic Men

I just heard an NPR report about the financial collapse in Iceland. For years, Iceland had a profitable fishing industry -- so profitable that they were able to pay for extensive education for everybody, including things like graduate school and even study abroad.

One problem: highly educated people don't like fishing, or smelting aluminum (Iceland's only two real job sectors.)

Enter investment banking. In the last few years, Iceland emerged as a financial powerhouse of sorts. Led by well-educated males, Iceland's economy emerged with tons of apparent assets.

Then the collapse.

I think each person who lives in Iceland would owe something like $330,000 to pay off the country's debt. Obviously this is unlikely to happen.

What came next, of course, is that Iceland elected new government, featuring the first openly gay head-of-state -- a lesbian who blames Iceland's economic woes, in part, to meddling men who thought they were smarter than they were.

1 comment:

  1. Typical.
    And were there not also women in the financial industry?
    This is a bit more nuanced than the abuses of patriarchy by over-testos fueled alpha males. And Sigurdardottir's attacks on male lack of caution is simply a throw away comment.

    Previous generations of male bankers wouldn't have taken these risks. And in fact many older traders and bankers worldwide advised caution and criticised the direction the economy was headed in.

    It is a generation thing, not a gender thing. Two generations of overly entitled reedy and amoral individuals made massive amounts of money for an equally amoral elite who has suffered not at all while things are crashing.