...and bite your lip, for the Clunking Fister is about to ram it home, right up to his elbow, I suspect, when we see the selling on of the debt of Northern Rock.
The EU will demand it is not State subsidy, so we will see the UK Government subordinated by the EU. The Taxpayer, in effect, will have to pay a private entity enough of a margin to take on the debt so the EU does not get all upset. Of course, if, say, France did this, the EU might still have the ab-dabs but the French government knows that it is there to defend the French National Interest (even if the population disagrees about what that is, but that is another matter) and would shrug its shoulders and bog down any attempts to interfere in what it felt it needed to do - "Nous sommes l'EU! L'EU c'est France!".
Not so the UK Government* - it now acts as if it owes loyalty to the EU first, over and above its obligations towards the UK electorate and taxpayers. Scumbags!
* Not that I am in favour of the Northern Rock strategy, mind - one could argue that the EU is acting in the taxpayer's interest in putting a brake on the State assuming the risk for free. How about NR handing over more assets to the BoE to compensate for the selling on of the existing debt, eh? This way NR might actually PAY for its predicament!