In the high and far-off times, when there was an interesting talk on the wireless it was possible to read it in print in The Listener the following Friday. In this era of super-communications I'm not sure that a similar facility is still available but Christine Lagarde's brilliant Dimbleby Lecture, broadcast on BBC1 Television last Monday, can still be seen via iPlayer at least until next Monday. It is not to be missed.
It may just have been Gallic tact which caused Mme Lagarde to praise Keynes to the skies, illustrate the development of communications by comparing the reporting of the Queen's coronation by one voice to the multitudinous tweeting of the birth of Prince George, and even manage to mention Downton Abbey to her British audience, but her call to "rekindle the spirit of Bretton Woods" suffused the entire lecture.
Three special vignettes:
- We need a financial system which serves production rather than its own purposes.
- Inequality can tear down the fabric which holds society together [so] inclusion should be given equal weight with growth.
- Fair taxation requires political courage.
As an afterthought, although she didn't actually say that Gordon Brown saved the World, she did have some very complimentary words to say about the London G20 Summit which he lead, something coalition spokespersons might bear in mind when they continue to mislead us by claiming that they're "clearing up the mess left by Labour."
As a campaigner for justice for the Third World for over half a century I never thought I'd say this, but, in Mme Lagarde's case : Vive le FMI!