It will be some time before blame can properly be allocated for the collapse of the international trade talks.It is in the first place a tragedy for world governance. If agreement cannot be reached over the reduction of unfair agriculture subsidies - where economic and ethical arguments combine- then what hope does that leave for a solution to all the other problems that globalisation has thrown up?
One of the key problems thrown up is the extraordinary power of producer lobbies as reflected in the power a tiny proportion of farmers and associated lobbies can wield over politicians seeking re-election. The voice of the consumer in America (let alone the poverty stricken farmer in Africa) never got a serious look in. One of the challenges of the next decade is to harness the potentially formidable power of the new networks on the web to counterbalance the force of the international lobbies. Any ideas?(Written on a phone in a broadbandless part of France)