So the G20, the group of the world's twenty leading industrialised nations, is having their annual
The "heightened security threat" seems to be - can you believe it! - a media beat up. Seven news this morning made it sound like the whole Melbourne CBD is in lockdown, but a source on the ground speaking exclusively to Xander and Nico said that, apart from an extra security guard or two in front of major buildings, there's very little that's different to normal.
Meanwhile, the protesters are actually having the opposite effect from the one I hope they intended, by diverting attention from the real issues...whatever those may be. There must be few things a news producer enjoys more than fresh footage of protesters clashing with riot police. Even so, it's hard to discern what exactly the anti-G20 group are protesting against, though their official website lists such articles as "Wanted: Big Bellies" (hang on guys, I'm on my way); "Revolutionary knitting circle: a call to action" (as practiced by Maoists in the Chinese civil war); and an "Origami coffee table toy for stopG20" (if folding bits of paper changed policy, then people with nervous tics would be running the planet).
No answers are forthcoming over at the G20 Homepage itself either. There's a welcome from Peter Costello, accompanied by a picture of him looking creepy (the man has only three facial expressions: creepy, smirking, and the creepy smirk), and a brief explanation that the G20 is a gathering of the Finance Ministers and bank governors from the relevant nations. So while the summit promises to be a haven of debauchery and excitement, what will actually go on there?
One thing's for sure, John Howard won't be honouring the delegates with his presence. He's off to the APEC leaders conference in Vietnam. There are embarrassing shirts which need wearing, after all. According to The Age, this year "the APEC shirt will be the ao dai, a traditional Vietnamese silk tunic - with possibly a turban." Can't wait for the glamour shots.