A British government official, Peter Mandelson, calls in the Wall Street Journal for diminished respect for the "choices of sovereign governments":
The only way forward is a totally renovated approach to international coordination of economic policy. We need to strengthen and depoliticize the International Monetary Fund and give it a new surveillance role that covers all aspects of systemic risk. It needs to be mandated to make recommendations on weaknesses in the system, and countries should be obliged to take these recommendations extremely seriously.
He concedes, "Free-market true believers will resist the conclusion." But you don't have to be a free-market true believer to resist the conclusion. You just have to believe in government by consent of the governed rather than by a group of supposedly depoliticized (i.e.: unaccountable) international bureaucrats. The IMF is nowhere in the American Constitution, and it is governed by a board in which unfree countries such as China, Saudi Arabia, and Syria get significant votes. This is less about free markets than about democracy. Not that the two are unrelated. The British may be used to giving up some of their national sovereignty when it comes to economic matters because of the European Union. But Mr. Mandelson's proposals will likely strike many Americans as extreme.