"We act as a potent deterrent against government
actions that may adversely affect investments."- World Bank website
be given credit for having invented and successfully marketed the concept of
'structural adjustment,' a concept that packaged together microeconomic and
Structural adjustment was sold as the process
that countries needed to undergo in order to save their economies from the
For governments that bought into the package, the distinction
between sound macroeconomic policies that maintain external balance and stable
prices, on the one hand, and policies that determine openness [like free
trade], on the other, was obfuscated." - Dani Rodrik, Harvard
"The World Bank is
increasing its financing of fossil-fuel projects worldwide.
is the coal-powered Tata Ultra Mega power plant in western India, a $4.14
billion project scheduled to go online in 2012.
When it is fully
operational, it will become one of the world's 50 largest greenhouse-gas
emitters and "will emit more carbon dioxide annually than the nation of
Tunisia," according to the US Department of Energy.
The World Bank will
provide "$450 million in loans and guarantees for the project and also may buy
a $50 million stake in it." - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, August 24, 2008
"The World Bank is simply not slowing down its significant funding
to fossil-fuel projects that will emit greenhouse gases for 20 to 40 years." -
International Monetary Fund and the
World Bank are devised
at the United Nations Monetary and
Financial Conference in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire.
1980s " Chicago School believers tend
to portray the mid-eighties onward as a smooth and triumphant victory march for
their ideology: at the same time that countries were joining the democratic
wave, they had the
collective epiphany that free people and unfettered free markets go hand in
That epiphany was
What actually happened is that just as citizens
were finally winning their long-denied freedoms, escaping
the shock of the torture
chambers under the likes of the Philippines'
Ferdinand Marcos and Uruguay's Juan
Maria Bordaberry, they were hit with a perfect storm of financial shocks - debt
shocks, price shocks and currency shocks - created by the increasingly
volatile, deregulated global economy." - Naomi Klein
1993 When the Russian Parliament
rejects structural adjustment Boris
Yeltsin unilaterally dissolved parliament and launched a military assault
on Parliament that kills 500 people and injures over a thousand more.
Boris Yeltsin would have become a successful dictator had the World
Bank and International Monetary Fund just
kept its side of the bargain by allowing the structural adjustment to be
implemented over time and had not failed to remit the aid of $15 to $30 billion
that Jeffery Sachs claimed was necessary to secure the Russian state's economic
"While Jeffery Sachs saw the
collapse of the Soviet Union as a liberation from
authoritarian rule and was ready to roll up his sleeves and start helping,
his Chicago School colleagues saw it as a freedom of a different sort - as the
final liberation from Keynesianism and the
do-gooder ideas of men like Jeffrey Sachs.
Seen in that light, the
do-nothing attitude that so infuriated Jeffery Sachs when it
came to Russia was not "sheer laziness" but laissez-faire in action: let it go,
By not lifting a finger to help, all the men charged with
Russian policy - from Richard
Bruce Cheney, as defense secretary to
George Herbert Walker Bush , to
Larry Summers, Treasury
undersecretary, to Stanley Fischer at the International Monetary Fund - were indeed
doing something: they were practicing pure
Chicago School ideology, letting
the market do its worst.
Russia was what Friedian
ideology looked like in practice, a foreshadowing of the get-rich-or-die-trying
dystopia that many of these same players would create
a decade later in Iraq." - Naomi
1994 Boris Yeltsin starts a war in
economics professor Andrei Scleifer and his deputy Jonathan Hay help the
Russian oligarches design the "new economy."
The "Oligarches" gain
control of the Russian economy as industries are sold off for a fraction of
Norlisk Nickle, fifth largest producer of nickle in the
world, is sold for $170 million - profits reach 1.5 billion annually by
Yokos, which controls more oil than Kuwait, is sold for $309
A 51% stake in Sidanko, worth $2.8 billion in 2007 is sold for
A huge weapons factory is sold for $3 million to -
Viktor Bout perhaps?
Harvard ends up paying a settlement of $26.5
million, Andrei Scleifer agrees to pay $2 million and Jonathan Hay agrees to
pay $1 million after a seven year court battle found that Harvard had breached
its contract with the US as Andrei Scleifer, Jonathan Hay and Hay's wife each
had personally profited from their "economic design."
Boris Yeltsin's re-selected.
Viktor Vekselberg*, whose wealth originates
in the privatization of the Soviet aluminum industry, becomes co-owner and
chairman of Tyumen Oil.
1998 "Like most of Russia's
nouveau riche, Goussinsky, a 45-year-old former theatrical director, made his
money quickly and mysteriously.
From a modest start in 1986 with a
small company specializing in metal works, he expanded his holdings to include
a bank and, later, a financial-industrial group called Most.
credit much of Goussinsky's meteoric financial rise to his close ties with
Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov - and when it appeared possible that Communist Party
candidate Gennadi Zyuganov would defeat Yeltsin in the 1996 presidential
election, Goussinsky and six other key financiers banded together to fund
Yeltsin's victorious re-election campaign.
[Vladimir] Goussinsky is more than just one of Russia's
As the president of the Russian Jewish Congress,
he is the public figurehead of Russian Jewry and the leading
Russian sponsor of Jewish communal projects." - Jewish News of Greater
Phoenix, August 21, 1998
World Bank grants
Armenia $30 million to upgrade
the water supply in its capital city of Yerevan, provided that it hand over the
public water utility to a transnational corporation.
Despite massive subsidies, the
private operator fails to improve basic water delivery in Yerevan.
parliamentary investigation discovered that through a series of crooked deals
the corporation misappropriated an estimated $35 million from the Armenian
people and amassed over $50 million in debt.
Today, water flows from
the tap only a few hours a day, and residents live in fear of outbreaks of
The World Bank refuses to recognize the corruption,
and instead continues to insist that the project - and the private contractor -
surpassed all expectations.
"This case raises difficult questions about the
legitimacy of development projects all over the world where so-called
'public-private partnerships' are involved, The World Bank's complicity in
corruption calls the whole of the Bank's water lending into disrepute." - Patti
1999 "Only a
blitzkrieg approach during the 'window of opportunity' provided by the 'fog of
transition' would get the changes made before the population had a chance to
organize to protect its previous vested interests." -
Joseph Stiglitz, chief
economist at the World Bank
Boris Yeltsin was played as the fool,
promised structural adjustment occurred without any cushions.
Corporate boards of directors
gleefully rejoice that the juggernaut of communism has finally been
"I can guarantee again that it is easier for a
camel to go through
the eye of a needle
than for a rich person to enter the
A handful of international
corporations, led by Vivendi Universal and
Suez, aggressively take over the management of public water services in
countries around the world, dramatically raising the price of water to local
In 2001 the water services industry made a trillion dollars
2000 More than 100,000 people in
Kwazulu-Natal province, South
Africa become ill with cholera after water and sanitation services to local
communities are cut off for nonpayment.
The World Trade Organization
now prohibits the use of export controls for any purpose.
bans on the export of water imposed for environmental reasons will be
challenged as a form of protectionism.
Paul Dundes Wolfowitz, a
former steering committee member of the Bilderberg group, ascends to World Bank
Wolfowitz resigns on May 17.
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