There is nothing better than Paris in the fall, except of course, Paris in the spring. Unfortunately, the G20 can’t afford to wait until spring, so this weekend they will convene in France for a very important summit meeting.
The world’s financial leaders will gather amongst the twinkling lights, fine wine, and wonderfully rich French cuisine, and hopefully won’t immerse themselves too much in one of the world’s most romantic, charming, and fairytale cities.
The non-European countries, while struggling with their own economic problems, will most likely publicly encourage (while privately cajoling) Germany to shoulder more responsibility and will also persuade the remaining few members to further tighten their belts.
Christine Lagarde, coincidently, a French woman, and managing director of the IMF, will probably make a play for increased funding to better support the problem countries.
All in all, it seems a major agreement will finally be reached to do much more, and this time, really get serious.
However, the participants in the G20 meeting are not the ones who will have to suffer the so-called belt tightening. Regrettably, it will be the European citizens themselves, whether Greek, Portuguese, Spanish, or German, that will suffer the ultimate consequences.
It’s easy to sit high above the fray as the G20 representatives do, and issue orders to the populous; pay more taxes, make less money, work longer, eat less, etc.
Once upon a time, long ago, when the populous grumbled, someone said “Let them eat cake.”
Of course, we all know what happened to her.
Not to be outdone will be the sideshow between China and the U.S.
After the passage of the Senate-Chinese “war tariff bill” the response by the Chinese was predictable.
No bluster, just fact – you put tariffs on us; we’ll put tariffs on you.
Behind closed doors, I can just imagine how the Chinese will respond to little Timmy Geithner’s position.
“Are you kidding me? Do you remember Smoot-Hawley, and by way, we’re your banker!”
But never mind, when you’re in the City of Lights, anything seems possible.
In fact, I can’t wait to hear the next European Union plan.
In the meantime, please fill my wine glass and pass the escargot, and let them eat cake.