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TheStreet Open House

5 Dumbest Things on Wall Street This Week: March 22

1. Cyprus Silliness

By the time you finish this sentence the nation of Cyprus may be solvent or insolvent, in or out of the European Union or possibly even reborn as Vladimir Putin's private island getaway. The situation is still too fluid for us to predict.

All we do know is that the country's banks won't be open until next week as bureaucrats from the Mediterranean to Munich to Moscow try to conjure up a new plan that won't confiscate the hard-earned savings of Cypriot sheepherders and Russian oligarchs alike.

With all that in mind dear readers -- and in all seriousness, it is a lot -- the best we can offer you at this juncture are a few highlights from the past week that tickled our Dumbest bone:

  • Her Majesty's Not-So Secret Airlift: The British government sent a plane carrying one million euros to Cyprus as a "contingency measure" to help troops and their families. In a statement, the Ministry of Defense said it is asking personnel "if they want their March, and future months' salaries paid into UK bank accounts, rather than Cypriot accounts." To which we hear the British troops are replying: "What do you think Sherlock?"

  • Archbishop's Unorthodox Solution: As worried Cypriots pray for the banking crisis to be resolved, the country's influential Orthodox church offered to help this week. Cyprus powerful Archbishop Chrysostomos II said "the wealth of the church is at the disposal of the country." To which we hear Vladimir Stalin . . . we mean Putin, shot back: "The Pope? How many dividends does he have?"

  • Putin's Hyprocrisy/Apoplexy: Russian leaders hit the roof over the EU's original plan to tax bank deposits as part of its bailout package. President Vladimir Putin went so far as to call the move "unfair, unprofessional and dangerous." To which we overheard a Russian gangster say: "We can settle this problem over cocktails. Make mine a Molotov."

That's just a quick taste for now. We promise to report back if anymore inane events occur over there in what is turning out to be a real Cyp-riot.

-- Written by Gregg Greenberg in New York City.

Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors and reporters from holding positions in any individual stocks.
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