The G20 Summit has been the only story in town this week. I have not commented on it because I cannot yet decide whether it has served any worthwhile purpose. Looking forward to the Sunday newspapers, when there will have been a little time for sober reflection. But even at this stage, I can say that it was much better than I'd feared. At least President Obama made a real effort to butter up the British Prime Minister, after the dismissive way he treated him on the only previous occasion that they met. For those of us who set great store by our relationship with the US, this was important.
It also seems to me that the Germans and the French got together to save us all from another crazy fiscal stimulus. At one stage this had seemed to be Gordon Brown's main aim at the Summit, but by the closing photo op, it had disappeared completely. And most of the other words struck the right note as well. The questions will be whether there will be any conversion of the words into actions. Personally I cannot see anything of value coming out of this massively hyped, and monstrously expensive meeting that could not have been achieved through a phone call. But I have to say that Mr and Mrs Obama, and Mrs Brown and genuinely class acts. And yet again, Her Majesty made me proud to be a supporter of the Monarchy.
The only really big development seems to have been the huge dollops of cash made available to the International Monetary Fund. There could be more to this than meets the eye. It really was interesting to hear Lord Mandelson talking about taking the stigma out of a visit to the IMF, and I need to know more about who can access, (and in what circumstances) the £250 billion Special Drawing Rights Fund that has been made available to IMF members. I've always thought that if Gordon Brown is forced to ask the IMF for financial help, his credibility would be totally destroyed. There's something tells me that this could all be a ruse to obscure our Prime Minister's ultimate humiliation. But then, I need to read the Sundays (Liam Halligan especially)to help me form my opinions