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Thu Mar 22, 2012, 12:06 PM

Why the World Bank has no real intentions of reducing poverty

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/commentary/why-the-world-bank-has-no-real-intentions-reducing-poverty

Why the World Bank has no real intentions of reducing poverty

The World Bank congratulates itself for slashing poverty, while global hunger soars. "It's a massive crime against humanity."

Joel ElliottMarch 22, 2012 06:26

WALTHAM, Massachusetts — It’s time for the World Bank to stop pretending significant progress is being made in reducing extreme global poverty. The self-congratulatory report it issued recently claimed it had achieved its stated goal of cutting global poverty in half. This was extremely misleading at best, http://siteresources.worldbank.org/INTPOVCALNET/Resources/Global_Poverty_Update_2012_02-29-12.pdf

This goal (the first of the eight Millennium Development Goals) was originally announced as being to cut in half the total number of people living in extreme poverty by 2015. When it became obvious that the economic policies of the Bretton Woods Institutions of the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and also the World Trade Organization would never allow for that to happen — because they were not intended to reduce global poverty, as will be explained — the UN General Assembly redefined the goal as being to cut in half the proportion of the global population of those living in extreme poverty. This redefinition enabled the World Bank to put forth the illusion of progress when none was actually occurring.


Thomas Pogge, Director of the Global Justice Program and a professor of philosophy at Yale University, is deeply skeptical both of the World Bank’s findings and its methodologies. In his 2010 book, Politics as Usual, Pogge argues that, besides the troubling redefinition of MDG1, the World Bank’s methods of calculating consumer price indices (CPI) and purchasing power parity (PPP) fail to count many people who actually are experiencing extreme poverty, which is defined as living on less than $1.25 a day.

“It’s a massive crime against humanity,” he said in an interview. “How can this be? How can people be less and less poor, and more and more people are hungry?”

The number of chronically undernourished as tracked by the United Nations increased from about 800 million in 1992 to 925 million in 2010, according to this UN report, and increasing food prices are likely to have pushed it much higher since.

..more..

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Response to G_j (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 12:11 PM

1. i think we should be sceptical of all our institutions whose purpose is said to be

about the reduction of poverty. or even helping the poor.

and indeed -- the world bank has a lot to answer for.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #1)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 12:55 PM

4. If you look at the governments in Latin America who really have reduced poverty

what you see is that the WB has attacked all of them. "By their works shall ye know them".

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Response to EFerrari (Reply #4)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 01:39 PM

5. +1

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Response to EFerrari (Reply #4)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:16 PM

8. this.

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Response to EFerrari (Reply #4)

Fri Mar 23, 2012, 06:34 AM

18. yes

a prime example, and poverty is the hallmark.

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Response to G_j (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 12:34 PM

2. When in the history of the world has any bank cared about reducing povery? The bottom line has

always been their main goal. It sound like a comedic punch line.

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Response to demosincebirth (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 12:52 PM

3. When FDR started the World Bank (and GATT and the IMF) at the Bretton Woods conference in 1944.

From the United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference wiki:

The United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference, commonly known as the Bretton Woods conference, was a gathering of 730 delegates from all 44 Allied nations at the Mount Washington Hotel, situated in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, to regulate the international monetary and financial order after the conclusion of World War II.

The conference was held from 1-22 July 1944, when the agreements were signed to set up the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The seminal idea behind the Bretton Woods Conference was the notion of open markets. ... This meant countries would maintain their national interest, but trade blocks and economic spheres of influence would no longer be their means. The second idea behind the Bretton Woods Conference was joint management of the Western political-economic order, meaning that the foremost industrial democratic nations must lower barriers to trade and the movement of capital, in addition to their responsibility to govern the system.

Failed proposals

International Trade Organization

The Conference also proposed the creation of an International Trade Organization (ITO) to establish rules and regulations for international trade. The ITO would have complemented the other two Bretton Woods proposed international bodies: the IMF and the World Bank. The ITO charter was agreed on at the U.N. Conference on Trade and Employment (held in Havana, Cuba, in March 1948), but the charter was not ratified by the U.S. Senate (controlled by republicans who were suspicious of the UN and protective of national sovereignty). As a result, the ITO never came into existence.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bretton_Woods_Conference


From the World Bank wiki:

The World Bank is one of five institutions created at the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944.

The World Bank's official goal is the reduction of poverty, according to the World Bank's Articles of Agreement...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Bank


My opinion is that the bottom line was not FDR's main concern in establishing the World Bank or the other multilateral institutions. I believe he viewed them as a means to share prosperity, reduce poverty and decrease economic nationalism.

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Response to G_j (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 02:39 PM

6. Corrupt and want to protect Corporations

it is part of the New World Order

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Response to lovuian (Reply #6)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:15 PM

7. This New World Order?

In conspiracy theory, the New World Order or NWO is the emergent totalitarian one-world government.

The common theme in conspiracy theories about a New World Order is that a secretive power elite with a globalist agenda is conspiring to eventually rule the world through an authoritarian world government—which replaces sovereign nation-states—and an all-encompassing propaganda that ideologizes its establishment as the culmination of history's progress. Significant occurrences in politics and finance are speculated to be orchestrated by an unduly influential cabal operating through many front organizations. Numerous historical and current events are seen as steps in an on-going plot to achieve world domination through secret political gatherings and decision-making processes.

Prior to the early 1990s, New World Order conspiracism was limited to two American countercultures, primarily the militantly anti-government right, and secondarily fundamentalist Christians concerned with end-time emergence of the Antichrist. Skeptics, such as Michael Barkun and Chip Berlet, have observed that right-wing populist conspiracy theories about a New World Order have now not only been embraced by many seekers of stigmatized knowledge but have seeped into popular culture, thereby inaugurating an unrivaled period of people actively preparing for apocalyptic millenarian scenarios in the United States of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

In the aftermath of the two World Wars, progressives welcomed these new international organizations and regimes but argued they suffered from a democratic deficit and therefore were inadequate to not only prevent another global war but also foster global justice.

In the 1960s, right-wing populist individuals and groups with a producerist worldview, such as members of the John Birch Society, disseminated a great deal of conspiracy theories claiming that the governments of both the United States and the Soviet Union were controlled by a cabal of corporate internationalists, greedy bankers and corrupt politicians intent on using the United Nations as the vehicle to create the "One World Government". This right-wing anti-globalist conspiracism would fuel the Bircher campaign for U.S. withdrawal from the U.N..

Claiming that the term "New World Order" is used by a secretive elite dedicated to the destruction of all national sovereignties, American writer Gary Allen, in his 1971 book None Dare Call It Conspiracy, 1974 book Rockefeller: Campaigning for the New World Order and 1987 book Say "No!" to the New World Order, articulated the anti-globalist theme of much current right-wing populist conspiracism in the U.S.. Thus, after the fall of communism in the early 1990s, the main demonized scapegoat of the American far right shifted seamlessly from crypto-communists who plotted on behalf of the Red Menace to globalists who plot on behalf of the New World Order. The relatively painless nature of the shift was due to growing right-wing populist opposition to corporate internationalism but also in part to the basic underlying apocalyptic millenarian paradigm, which fed the Cold War and the witch-hunts of the McCarthy period.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_World_Order_(conspiracy_theory)

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Response to pampango (Reply #7)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:42 PM

12. Another heavily debunked conspiracy theory from the Birchers

 

According to the tinfoil hat crowd, President George H W Bush said this:

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #12)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:57 PM

13. If HW said it, that's good enough for me. The Birchers must have been right.

Or did HW slip up and let the secret out?

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Response to pampango (Reply #13)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 04:09 PM

14. My point is that the New World Order problem is not invalidated just because Birchers pointed it out

 

If they said the sky is blue then I'm thinking we would be inclined to discredit that.

We're not going to see a World Government any time soon but the Plutocracy would love to see it happen - there's already very little escape from the exploitation racket and planet-wide pyramid scheme that is globalism, but in a one-world government there would be no escape at all. The motivation is there, and so is the means, even if specific incidents like the Bancor and other supposed world currencies and organizations are disputable.

It's only a matter of time before someone tries to "unite" the world. I don't see the tinfoil hat insanity in admitting that.

Hell, you yourself are a fan of globalism, no matter how much it has utterly destroyed America's working class. What do you think is the logical conclusion of globalism?

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #14)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 04:40 PM

15. It wasn't just the Birchers. "The militantly anti-government right, and secondarily fundamentalist

Christians concerned with end-time emergence of the Antichrist" were also on the One World Government conspiracy bandwagon. They are all suspicious of the multilateral organizations created by FDR and "progressives who welcomed these new international organizations" like the UN, IMF, and GATT endorsed by FDR and Truman.

Proclaiming that there is "a secretive power elite with a globalist agenda is conspiring to eventually rule the world through an authoritarian world government—which replaces sovereign nation-states" is not exactly the same as proclaiming the sky to be blue. If you want to give the Birchers, militant anti-government right and fundamentalist Christian organizations the benefit of the doubt on this conspiracy theory, you may certainly do so. I disagree with them on this.

I don't see a world with 200 nation-states as inherently superior to a world where global problems like climate change, deforestation, disappearing fresh water supplies and an interconnected world economy are addressed in a coordinated way. Whether you want to call that "coordinated way" globalism or a one-world government or an international organization of national governments, matters little to me. When national governments get in the way of global solutions to global problems, well that matters to me. (Similarly, when state governments get in the way of national solutions to national problems (like immigration and universal health care), well that matters to me, too.)

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Response to pampango (Reply #15)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 04:58 PM

16. Yeah, the NWO hardly has to be secretive.

 

You have much more conspicuous examples like the WTO, which dares to tell America what laws we can pass... to the point of telling us we can't protect dolphins.

You're worried about national governments getting in the way of global solutions, but global organizations like the WTO are known for getting in the way of global or local efforts to protect animals and the environment.

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Response to lovuian (Reply #6)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:41 PM

11. Population control

 

If you can't go to war against them... starve them.

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Response to G_j (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:17 PM

9. rec.

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Response to G_j (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 03:23 PM

10. If the numbers don't fit just change the numbers.

It always seems to solve the issue for bankers & economists.

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Response to G_j (Original post)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 06:08 PM

17. I was friends with the President's daughter in college

She was heavily involved with Amnesty International- she didn't like to talk about the World Bank- as several profs contuially tried to pry information or prod about its workings. Just thought that was an interesting tid bit

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