Photo: (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
First name termsIf Bob Diamond thought that using MPs’ first names was going to – as he put it – “win him some love”, he misread the mood. “Really annoying that Mr Diamond is using our first names. So rude,” tweeted the Labour member Teresa Pearce from inside the committee room. Etiquette books might also have something to say about tweeting during an evidence session.
‘We got it wrong’
Diamond, or RED as he was known after his initials, had seemingly consulted his thesaurus out before the hearing as he ran the gamut of words to cover the behaviour of his staff. They were “reprehensible” and “wrong” and there was “no excuse”. Midway through the session they were “abhorrent”.
If the first-name plan didn’t spoil the chemistry, Diamond would not have endeared himself to his inquisitors by interrupting their interruptions with the words “This is really important…” – meaning his point, not theirs.
Enough to make you sick
Much of the rest of his evidence was a long version of “It was awful, but don’t blame me”, peppered with corporate speak about “stress tests” and “citizenship” being “one of my four planks”, and a clunking PR-planted expression about feeling “physically ill” when he heard about the Libor scam.
‘No jerks’ rule
There was the inevitable odd Americanism – his “no jerks” rule, for example. Diamond explained this rule to the Times in December: “If someone can’t behave with their colleagues, it doesn’t matter how good they are at what they do, they have to be asked to leave.”