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The Tally Ho

Monday, March 21, 2005

Stiglitz: Wolfowitz a Problem for World Bank

Joseph Stiglitz is perhaps one of the most influential, if not visible, economists in the world today. His comment on the Wolfowitz nomination was that it is "either an act of provocation or an act so insensitive as to look like provocation". He continued on Wolfowitz
"He has no training or experience in economic development or financial markets," Stiglitz said. The Bank was the most important institution addressing poverty, he said. "We need someone in charge who knows. . . development."

He continues by saying the World Bank would
"become an explicit instrument of US foreign policy". He added: "It will presumably take a lead role in Iraqi reconstruction, for instance. That would jeopardise its role as a multilateral development body."

Sadly, the Daily Show once again nails it. Another highly controversial figure in the American government's Iraq policy being promoted to a highly visible position of domestic or international influence. Dr. Rice to head the State Department. Turture advocate Judge Gonzalez to head the Justice Department. Negroponte to Homeland Security Director. Now Wolfowitz to the World Bank. But Professor Stilglitz is not alone in his concerns. Apparently this poses a problem for Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, as Robert Preston of the Telegraph writes
The choice of Wolfowitz has also created a dilemma for Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. They fear he would stand in the way of their high-profile initiative to alleviate African debt and poverty. However, they are reluctant to spark a dispute with the White House by going public with their concerns. "This is a big problem for us," said an official close to the chancellor. "We are still working out what to do."

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