Paul Wolfowitz as Head of the World Bank! Say it ain’t So!

21 March 2005 by Mobilization for Global Justice

The Mobilization for Global Justice is shocked and awed at the audacity of the Bush administration in nominating Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz to head the World Bank World Bank
The World Bank was founded as part of the new international monetary system set up at Bretton Woods in 1944. Its capital is provided by member states’ contributions and loans on the international money markets. It financed public and private projects in Third World and East European countries.

It consists of several closely associated institutions, among which :

1. The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD, 189 members in 2017), which provides loans in productive sectors such as farming or energy ;

2. The International Development Association (IDA, 159 members in 1997), which provides less advanced countries with long-term loans (35-40 years) at very low interest (1%) ;

3. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), which provides both loan and equity finance for business ventures in developing countries.

As Third World Debt gets worse, the World Bank (along with the IMF) tends to adopt a macro-economic perspective. For instance, it enforces adjustment policies that are intended to balance heavily indebted countries’ payments. The World Bank advises those countries that have to undergo the IMF’s therapy on such matters as how to reduce budget deficits, round up savings, enduce foreign investors to settle within their borders, or free prices and exchange rates.

. Mr. Wolfowitz is a proven enemy of justice and peace worldwide. Our stomachs turn and our hands wring at the thought of the World Bank under the leadership of Paul Wolfowitz. As a US-based activist group, we reaffirm our commitment to continued acts of resistance to the World Bank through demonstrations, direct action and popular education.

This move by the Bush Administration makes the MGJ’s planned actions at the World Bank and IMF IMF
International Monetary Fund
Along with the World Bank, the IMF was founded on the day the Bretton Woods Agreements were signed. Its first mission was to support the new system of standard exchange rates.

When the Bretton Wood fixed rates system came to an end in 1971, the main function of the IMF became that of being both policeman and fireman for global capital: it acts as policeman when it enforces its Structural Adjustment Policies and as fireman when it steps in to help out governments in risk of defaulting on debt repayments.

As for the World Bank, a weighted voting system operates: depending on the amount paid as contribution by each member state. 85% of the votes is required to modify the IMF Charter (which means that the USA with 17,68% % of the votes has a de facto veto on any change).

The institution is dominated by five countries: the United States (16,74%), Japan (6,23%), Germany (5,81%), France (4,29%) and the UK (4,29%).
The other 183 member countries are divided into groups led by one country. The most important one (6,57% of the votes) is led by Belgium. The least important group of countries (1,55% of the votes) is led by Gabon and brings together African countries.
spring meetings, April 16-17, even more important. The MGJ urges everyone who cares about the economic fate of the world to be in Washington, DC on those dates.

Jon Scolnik, an organizer with MGJ, summed it up when he said “The nomination of Wolfowitz casts aside all doubt as to the true imperialistic and destructive nature of the World Bank.

MGJ expects that under the leadership of Wolfowitz, the World Bank will not only be driven by an ideology of the supremacy of capital and the free market over the lives and dignity of people, but also by the ideology that all out war is an acceptable way to enforce that vision.

Althea Swett with MGJ added that “Over the past twenty-plus years, Wolfowitz has supported and orchestrated US military actions throughout the world. You cannot work to end poverty while advocating for increased militarization and war.

The Mobilization for Global Justice stands firmly by its demands of the World Bank and IMF:

•Open all World Bank and IMF meetings to the media and the public.

•Cancel all impoverished country debt to the World Bank and IMF, using the institutions’ own resources.

•End all World Bank and IMF policies that hinder people’s access to food, clean water, shelter, health care Care Le concept de « care work » (travail de soin) fait référence à un ensemble de pratiques matérielles et psychologiques destinées à apporter une réponse concrète aux besoins des autres et d’une communauté (dont des écosystèmes). On préfère le concept de care à celui de travail « domestique » ou de « reproduction » car il intègre les dimensions émotionnelles et psychologiques (charge mentale, affection, soutien), et il ne se limite pas aux aspects « privés » et gratuit en englobant également les activités rémunérées nécessaires à la reproduction de la vie humaine. , education, and right to organize. (Such “structural adjustment Structural Adjustment Economic policies imposed by the IMF in exchange of new loans or the rescheduling of old loans.

Structural Adjustments policies were enforced in the early 1980 to qualify countries for new loans or for debt rescheduling by the IMF and the World Bank. The requested kind of adjustment aims at ensuring that the country can again service its external debt. Structural adjustment usually combines the following elements : devaluation of the national currency (in order to bring down the prices of exported goods and attract strong currencies), rise in interest rates (in order to attract international capital), reduction of public expenditure (’streamlining’ of public services staff, reduction of budgets devoted to education and the health sector, etc.), massive privatisations, reduction of public subsidies to some companies or products, freezing of salaries (to avoid inflation as a consequence of deflation). These SAPs have not only substantially contributed to higher and higher levels of indebtedness in the affected countries ; they have simultaneously led to higher prices (because of a high VAT rate and of the free market prices) and to a dramatic fall in the income of local populations (as a consequence of rising unemployment and of the dismantling of public services, among other factors).

” policies include user fees, privatization, and economic austerity programs.)

•Stop all World Bank support for socially and environmentally destructive projects such as oil, gas, and mining activities, and all support for projects such as dams that include the forced relocation of people.

Given the impending doom that is the World Bank headed by Mr. Wolfowitz, the Mobilization for Global Justice calls the people of the US to continue to resistance to the policies of the World Bank. It is a scary and tragic thought that under the helm of Wolfowitz the bond Bond A bond is a stake in a debt issued by a company or governmental body. The holder of the bond, the creditor, is entitled to interest and reimbursement of the principal. If the company is listed, the holder can also sell the bond on a stock-exchange. between economic and military suppression will grow even stronger.

Contact: Morrigan Phillips - 202-783-3566 (office) 202-258-1822 (cell)



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