Best way to rob a bank is to run one

Bin the mask, the sack and the gun. Become a bank boss instead.

Reflecting on the chaos that occurred when RBS's computer system crashed, Max Hastings writes in the Daily Mail that the "saga of the banking industry" on both sides of the Atlantic "exposes ever-greater incompetence matched by ever-more iniquitous bosses' greed".

RBS may be making the headlines, but in Hastings's experience Barclays' standard of customer service is just as bad. Yet the Barclays' boss, Bob Diamond, goes on getting richer. Last year he "trousered £23m for his services" while Barclays' "hapless shareholders sobbed into their soup".

A survey last week revealed that the average British bank robber makes less than £10,000 from every raid he carries out. "What are such poor saps thinking of? Bin the mask, the sack and even the gun. Get smart. Become a bank boss instead the skills are the same."

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These top bankers, Hastings goes on, are "today's hotshot heist artists. They collect swag on a scale beyond the Great Train Robbers' dreams, and none of them goes to prison even when the figures show that they are pocketing millions for delivering disaster."

Hastings says he has a "smidgen of sympathy" for Stephen Hester, the boss of RBS, who inherited "a historic shambles" from Fred Goodwin and waived his bonus last year (though only after pressure). But "the rest of them are pillaging their businesses without shame, bringing the entire capitalist system into disrepute. I cannot think why anyone would voluntarily sit down at a table with the likes of Bob Diamond."

The trials of being a billionaire

One of the trials of being a billionaire is finding worthy things to spend your money on. Once you've got enough superyachts and private jets to be going on with you can always buy yourself an island, and that is what Larry Ellison, CEO of the technology company Oracle, and the sixth richest man on the planet, has just done.

And not just any old island. It's 141 square miles of Hawaii called Lanai, with 3,200 residents, two luxury hotels, two championship golf courses and a school. For $380m, he's bought 98% of Lanai, including 50 miles of Pacific coastline. It's said to be the most expensive private purchase in history.

A $640,000 shoe habit

It had to happen. Plenty of rich women own absurd numbers of shoes. So sooner or later a shoe collection had to feature in a divorce. Sure enough, a New York hedge-fund manager is now suing his ex-wife for 35% of the shoes she owns. Daniel Shak claims Beth, his ex-wife, kept the shoes hidden as they thrashed out their $2m divorce settlement.

According to the Daily Mail, Mr Shak alleges she hoarded the shoes in a "secret room" in their New York apartment. But Mrs Shak, a professional poker player, claims she funded her shoe habit with her winnings. She plans to fight her ex-husband all the way. You might wonder: why so much fuss? The answer is that Mrs Shak's 1,200 pairs are said to be worth $640,000.

Tabloid money "I'll tell you what's morally wrong, David"

David Cameron thinks Jimmy Carr's tax avoidance scheme is "morally wrong", says Jeremy Clarkson in The Sun. "I'll tell you what's morally wrong, David. You take half of my money every year and spend it on an aircraft carrier that can't even carry any planes.

You spend it on aid' to India, a country that is perfectly capable of looking after itself. You pay massive subsidies to build wind farms, which you know are useless And that's before we get to Mr Blair, who spent £12bn on an NHS computer system that didn't work and had to be scrapped."

"Nancy Doolally-O says the modern WAGS aren't as glamorous as those herself included who attended the 2006 World Cup in Germany," writes Jane Moore in The Sun. Nancy advises them to behave with "decorum and dignity".

But now we find out that Nancy's former boyfriend, Sven-Goran Eriksson, is having to resort to legal aid to evict her from his £2.7m London flat, where she has been living rent-free since they parted in 2007. "He wants to sell it, but she claims they had a verbal agreement that she could stay there indefinitely Common sense dictates that she should stand on her own, Jimmy Choo'd feet. Not to mention decorum and dignity."

Teachers' pension warrior Christine Blower "won't be short of a few quid when her own retirement comes along", says The Sun in an editorial. "The militant NUT leader has enjoyed a massive increase in union contributions to her pension pot up by £10,000 to £36,128. That's on top of her £106,235 basic salary. Of course, it's up to the union how it spends its cash. But members may ask why they are urged to strike and lose money while their leader coins it."