National sovereignty stands tall at the G20
Sunday, Jun. 27, 2010
Terence Corcoran, Financial Post
Global governance, one of the drearier hallucinations of statist think tanks and back-room bureaucrats — and the phantasmagorial nightmare of anti-capitalist black-clad ideological crazies — crashed into the great wall of national realities at the G8 and G20 Toronto summits and went up in smoke. But that does not make the Toronto summits a failure. What still stands tall in the world economy and in global politics — as it should — is national sovereignty.
The governance camp will try to scrounge fragments of globalist achievement out of the official verbal and rhetorical shambles generated in the final communiqués and closing comments of the Toronto summit leaders. But there is little in the end that could be reassembled into a coherent statement of collective action. Prime Minister Stephen Harper, host of the summits, tried on Sunday to claim summit unity on the basis that the summits established a “framework” for common cause and policy convergence.
But in fact the Toronto summits represent a near total collapse of efforts to create some kind of overarching centre of global economic power. Despite repeated reference to strong collective commitments to international cooperation, sustainable development and macroeconomic co-ordination, the G8/G20 separately and jointly agreed to go their own ways and avoid collective action as much as possible.
On everything from deficit reduction to climate change, from financial regulation to trade, foreign aid, currencies and Afghanistan, the G20 ultimately marched off in 20 separate directions.
Reality trumped fantasy in Toronto, the fantasy being that leaders can legally or would even want to commit their nations to the objectives of an unelected collective of political leaders from the four corners of the world — as if leaders from China, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Brazil and elsewhere could set global policy by some kind of balloted consensus at a weekend meeting.