In their own words

To the shareholders

“... a year ago a lot of these [banks] were teetering on the brink, and the United States government and taxpayers came to their defence. They have responsibilities, and they ought to meet those responsibilities.” — David Axelrod, a senior adviser to US President Barack Obama, on bonuses being paid to bank executives.

Don’t upset the poor dears

“... you don’t want to create a system that raises great uncertainty [that] changes what institutions, risk management executives and lawyers are used to.” — Edward Yingling, president of the American Bankers Association, urging the US Congress not increase bank regulation very much.

Silver lining

“We delivered beyond anything the framers of the all-volunteer force would have anticipated.” — Bill Carr, US Department of Defence deputy undersecretary for military personnel, on the US military meeting its recruiting goals for the first time in 35 years, thanks to the economic crisis and rising unemployment.

Just keeping in practice?

“Richardson was often a thug when he didn’t need to be.” — A former Labor minister, quoted in the October 24 Sydney Morning Herald, on the persuasive powers of Graham Richardson, current lobbyist and former federal Labor minister, once known as “the minister for Kerry Packer”.

Not everything

“The C.I.A.’s practices also suggest that the United States is not doing everything in its power to stamp out the lucrative Afghan drug trade ...” — New York Times, October 27, on CIA payments to Ahmed Wali Karzai, suspected opium kingpin and brother of the Afghan president.

And who does which?

“The key thing with employers and employees is it’s a relationship ... There is give and take.” — Paul Ritchie, a spokesperson for the NSW Business Chamber.