Wednesday, June 30, 2004


I sense that if I were to publish this stuff in code and then neglect to diseminate the key, my audience would not decrease substantially, but screw it. Here we go.

Answer quickly: Who's in charge of the World Bank? Where does he make decisions? Whom does he consult? Do they have meeting agendas, or do they just sit and spit until the deadline?

You can replace World Bank with "G7" or "the Fed" or "the Vice President's Energy commission," and unless you have some special acquaintence with the issue, you probably can't answer quickly. I'd have to check wikipedia or something. Maybe that's my fault. On the other hand, the Fed evidently holds its meetings behind closed doors, leaving the world to snivel outside the door waiting for the official news of a .25% interest rate increase. According to news sources, most folks with some expertise knew what Greenspan was about to hold forth with, to the extent that no one expected "markets" to react much because they'd already done it. But why does the whole spectacle need to be arranged like the College of Cardinals picking the a new Pope? At least the Cardinals can claim that they need the peace and quiet to hear God's choice. Why is the discussion not public? I've listened to public radio an awful lot in the last few days; to my knowledge, no one at all asked why the public doesn't have access to the discussion. Would this be dangerous somehow? (In comparison, the situation surrounding WTO, IMF, World Bank, G7 meetings is worse, in part because of the wash of folk protesting, principally I think, the acts of these organizations, "impact of globalization," that sort of thing.) Perhaps transcripts or some other general records of these meetings exist in the public domain, but even then it's a far cry from, say, orations in the forum. I drift towards conspiracy theories sometimes, but there's no need to drift in this case. These are people, in fact, conspiring behind closed doors, even if the conspirators believe they're doing this for our benefit. I don't know if we, the public, accept this situation. If so, I suppose that says something bad about us. I'm sure that if activists of various and sundry kinds want to effect some real change in the behavior of these bad guys, the best tactic must be to subject the decision making process to public scrutiny.