November 24, 2011

What’s in a name, mused romantically thwarted 13-year-old suicide Juliet Capulet in a well known work of dramatic fiction dating from the early 1590s.

If a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, would not the ABI’s Nick Starling remain just as fragrant as ever rebranded Nick Sparrow? Adds a bit of urban street cred or piratical swagger perhaps.

Whether this was anti-referral-fees warrior Jack Straw’s intention when he recently substituted one bird name for another on Radio 4’s Money Box Live, Bankstone News is (predictably) ill-equipped to judge.

Perhaps Straw, whose original family name was something longer and more East European and who switched, whilst a radical student leader in the sixties, from plain John to Jack in homage to the Peasant’s Revolt leader with whom he now shares a name, is just a bit casual with nomenclature.

Or maybe, given that Straw’s insurance salesman father ran off and left his family in severe financial difficulties when John was but a child, Straw harbours a longstanding grudge against insurance types and likes to take them down a perch or two whenever the chance arises.

Perhaps that’s why he’s planning to nationalise motor insurance.


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