In other ages, we have called on shamans or saints in times of crisis when the usual remedies have not worked.
In the stagnant world economy today, we have designated central bankers as our superheroes, and we are relying on their magical monetary powers to restart global growth.
As the European Central Bank president, Mario Draghi, whom some have nicknamed Super Mario, said this month: “There was a time, not too long ago, when central banking was considered to be a rather boring and unexciting occupation.”
Not anymore. No one embodies this new glamour more than Mark Carney, the 48-year-old governor of the Bank of Canada, who has been tapped to lead the Bank of England, making him the first foreign governor in the institution’s 319-year history.
The bar for Carney could not be higher. A cartoon in the British papers made the point. It showed a Bethlehem inn with Joseph leading Mary on a donkey. The caption above the innkeeper’s head declares: “Unless you’re Mark Carney, you’ll have to make do with the stable.”