Tuesday, August 03, 2010

An Excess of Ambition for Sarkozy

…if you think big — and the French and their president, Nicolas Sarkozy, can think grandiose (as in organizing “a new international monetary order”) — then [last week witnessed] the first official and annunciatory clash of cymbals in the short reign of Nicolas, king of the G-20, from November 2010 until November 2011
writes John Vinocur.
…here is Mr. Sarkozy, whose international calling card could read Energy + Chutzpah Unltd., preparing for his year of setting the agenda for the world’s economic summit meetings with the goal of demonstrating, as he has said, “America no longer has the world’s only currency.”

Ultimately, that means limiting — whatever euphemistic verbs are used — the role of the U.S. dollar as the world’s monetary standard.

…Could Mr. Sarkozy and France conceivably have the authority, practical leverage and international support to start a process that would try to turn the dollar into a co-equal player in a basket of reserve currencies with those, let’s say, of China, Russia, India and the euro zone countries?

…Funny, where interesting answers can be hiding. Mr. Obama’s great friend, President Dmitri A. Medvedev of Russia, attending an economic conference with Mr. Sarkozy in St. Petersburg in June, seemed to board the French president’s ship of dreams

… [However] Sarko’s Very Grand Ambitions have a history of imploding through excess.

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