Now that Northern Rock appears to be exiting stage left, probably with several billion of our pounds, is it reasonable to ask why the US bankers got the world in this position in the first place? From what I understand, the "sub-prime" market is lending money to people who have proved already that they can't fund their debts. Can it be any wonder then, that they do it again? Meanwhile, Joe and Jo Public lose money hand over fist, firstly by their investments going down the pan, then having to bail out those who hold mortgages with the bank that's going bust. I wonder how many of the bankers, even those who have resigned, will be short of a few bob as a result?