On G8/G20 pointlessness

Financial Times columnist Gideon Rachman captures the essence of G8/G20 summits in this piece:

“We are seriously concerned about this most serious outbreak of seriousness,” said the head of the institution, either a former minister from a developing country or a mid-level European or American bureaucrat. “This is a wake-up call to the world. They must take on board the vital message that my organisation exists.”

The director of the body, based in one of New York, Washington or an agreeable Western European city, was speaking at its annual conference, at which ministers from around the world gather to wring their hands impotently about the most fashionable issue of the day. The organisation has sought to justify its almost completely fruitless existence by joining its many fellow talking-shops in highlighting whatever crisis has recently gained most coverage in the global media.”

(h/t Alanna Shaikh)

Pointlessness is a theme this weekend in Toronto, as small factions of violent protesters destroy property for no reason :

credit: Ryan Walker for The Torontoist