Keynes began more serious discussions on the Consideration on 9 June. The opening meetings were still preliminary and vague, but the trend of Keynes's thinking at the time came out clearly in his letter to the Ambassador on 12 June.
To LORD HALIFAX, 12 June 1941
Dear Lord Halifax,
My conference yesterday at the State Department about ‘consideration’ was scarcely more definite than before. They have no further instructions either from the President or Mr Hull. Nevertheless, we conversed for about an hour and a half, and I suppose that some sort of vague progress was made. At the end Mr Acheson agreed that they on their side must seek strenuously for more definite instructions with a view to our meeting again on, perhaps, Saturday.
A good part of the time was occupied with talk arising out of two suggestions which I made, as I was careful to explain, personally and without authority. I hope I was not indiscreet in this. On the one hand, it is doubtful policy for us to take the initiative. On the other hand, if we draft the phrases, we can give them the turn we prefer.
The two papers in question are attached. I had discussed both of these beforehand with Purvis and Phillips, and in the opinion of both of them they were quite harmless and even desirable. In any case, they commit no one, and it is understood that I put them forward merely with a view to making the conversation a little more precise.