Sunday, March 06, 2005

Top 10 Reasons Why Paul Wolfowitz Would Make a Good World Bank President

By John Cavanagh

1. He would follow in the great tradition of World Bank president Robert McNamara, who also helped kill tens of thousands of people in a poor country most Americans couldn’t find on a map before getting the job.

2. It helps to be a good liar when you run an institution with employees who earn over $100,000 a year to pretend to help billions of people who live on less than $1 a day.

3. With all his experience helping U.S. companies grab Iraq ’s oil profits, he's got just the right experience for doling out lucrative World Bank contracts to U.S. businesses.

4. After predecessor James Wolfensohn blew millions of dollars on "consultations" with citizen groups to give the appearance of openness, Wolfowitz's tough-guy style is just what’s needed to rid the World Bank of those irritating activists.

5. Unlike former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, another one of the four leading candidates, at least Wolfowitz hasn't failed at running a Fortune 500 company.

6. Unlike the Treasury Department’s John Taylor, another leading candidate, at least Wolfowitz doesn't want to get rid of the institution he would head.

7. While earning a University of Chicago Ph.D. , he was exposed to the tenets of market fundamentalism that have reigned at the World Bank for decades.

8. He has experience in constructing echo chambers where only the advice he wants to hear is spoken.

9. He knows some efficient private contractors who build echo chambers for only a few hundred billion dollars (cost plus, of course).

10. He can develop a pre-emptive poverty doctrine where the World Bank could invade countries that fail to make themselves safe for U.S. business, modeled on the U.S. pre-emptive war doctrine he helped craft.


John Cavanagh is the director of Institute for Policy Studies. For more information about contenders for the World Bank’s presidency, visit http://www.worldbankpresident.org

(from:Institute for Policy Studies)

Can We Stop the Coming Fascism?

Absolutely Chilling Analysis By Justin Raimondo

"The neoconservative movement represents the quintessence of fascism, as expressed by some of its intellectual spokesmen, such as Christopher Hitchens, who infamously hailed the Afghan war as having succeeded in "bombing a country back out of the Stone Age." This belief in the purifying power of violence – its magical, transformative quality – is the real emotional axis of evil that motivates the War Party. This is especially true when it comes to those thuggish ex-leftists of Hitchens' ilk who found shelter in the neoconservatives' many mansions when the roof fell in on their old Marxist digs. Neocon ideologue Stephen Schwartz defends a regime notorious for torturing dissidents, shutting out all political opposition, and arresting thousands on account of their political and religious convictions – in Uzbekistan. How far are such people from rationalizing the same sort of regime in the U.S.?"

"The legal, ideological, and political elements that go into the making of a genuinely fascist regime in America are already in place: all that is required is some catalytic event, one that needn't even be on the scale of 9/11, but still dramatic enough to give real impetus to the creation of a police state in this country."

"The legal foundation is already to be found in the arguments made by the president's lawyers in asserting their "right" to commit torture and other war crimes, under the "constitutional" aegis of the chief executive's wartime powers. In time of war, the president's lawyers argue, our commander-in-chief has the power to immunize himself and his underlings against legal prosecution: they transcend the law, and are put beyond the judgement of the people's representatives by presidential edict. Theoretically, according to the militarist interpretation of the Constitution, there is no power the president may not assume in wartime, because his decisions are "unreviewable." On account of military necessity, according to this doctrine, we have to admit the possibility that the Constitution might itself be suspended and martial law declared the minute war touches American soil." READ MORE