IMF and debt: a new consensus?

15 April 2021 — Michael Roberts Blog

by michael roberts

There is much talk among ‘progressive’ economists that the IMF and the World Bank have turned over a new leaf.  Gone are the days of supporting fiscal austerity, demanding that national governments get public debt levels down and insisting on conditions for countries borrowing IMF-WB funds that their governments privatise their state assets, deregulate markets and reduce labour rights.

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Indian Farmers on the Frontline Against Global Capitalism

1 February 2021 — Global Research

In a short video on the empirediaries.com YouTube channel, a protesting farmer camped near Delhi says that during lockdown and times of crisis farmers are treated like “gods”, but when they ask for their rights, they are smeared and labelled as “terrorists”.

He, along with thousands of other farmers, are mobilising against three important pieces of farm legislation that were recently forced through parliament. To all intents and purposes, these laws sound a neoliberal death knell for most of India’s cultivators and its small farms, the backbone of the nation’s food production.

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Lockdown Catastrophe: The Need for Resilient Food Systems Agroecology

8 June 2020 — Off Guardian

Encouraging small, local producers is the way forward, but will Big Ag let that happen?

Colin Todhunter

There is no doubt that, contingent on World Bank aid to be given to poorer countries in the wake of coronavirus lockdowns, agrifood conglomerates will aim to further expand their influence.

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The Show Must Go On. Event 201: The 2019 Fictional Pandemic Exercise [World Economic Forum, Gates Foundation et al.]

19 March 2020 — 

Questioning the ruling class narrative should never be seen, nor framed, as reckless. It should never be subjected to shaming. Rather, it should be a prerequisite and respected as such. The imperative to always question the ruling class narrative is not the responsibility of a small handful of individuals, but the responsibility of a thinking society as a whole. A working class society. With media, global institutions, NGOs, academia, and science, all in the pocket of capital, as draconian measures set in, this prerequisite has never been more important or more urgent.

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Death of South Africa’s Lonmin Mining House. “Murder by Money” By Prof. Patrick Bond

30 May 2019 — Global Research

Autopsy reveals the British-South African corpse’s poisoning by microfinance, ‘development finance’ and corporate finance

The death of the 110-year old mining house Lonmin at a London shareholders meeting on May 28 occurred not through bankruptcy or nationalisation, as would have been logical at various points in time. It was the result of a takeover – generally understood as a rip-off of investors and workers – by an extremely jejune (7 year-old) South African corporation, Sibanye-Stillwater. The latter’s chief executive, Neil Froneman, is known for extreme aggression in both corporate takeovers and workplace cost-cutting, with by far the highest fatality rate in the mining industry.

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Dossier 16: Resource sovereignty—the Agenda for Africa’s exit from the state of plunder

10 May 2019 —  Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research – MROnline

In May 2011, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) published a Working Paper by Burcu Aydin called ‘Ghana: Will It Be Gifted Or Will It Be Cursed?’ (WP/11/104). Oil had just been discovered off the shore of Ghana. This anticipated a bounty of revenue for the country. Aydin asks whether Ghana will face the ‘resource curse’. The resource curse – also known as the Dutch Disease – occurs where revenue from sale of this resource rushes into a country, appreciates the currency and causes a major crisis in other parts of the economy. Looking at 150 middle- and low-income countries, Aydin came up with a strong finding: ‘Results show that there is a poverty trap for poor resource-rich countries due to their low institutional quality’. Bad governance and poor macroeconomic management, Aydin suggests, diminish the possibility for the onrush of revenues from natural resources to enhance a country’s development. There is no mention, in the IMF’s Working Paper, of the other actors in the process – namely, the multinational companies that dominate the natural resource extraction business. The pro-corporate literature explains problems in the resource economy in two ways: 1) poor macroeconomic management that allows revenues to flood the economy and appreciate the currency, 2) bad governance because of corruption and theft by government officials.

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Leaked Wikileaks Doc Reveals US Military Use of IMF, World Bank as “Unconventional” Weapons By Whitney Webb

8 February 2019 — Mint Press

This “U.S. coup manual,” recently highlighted by WikiLeaks, serves as a reminder that the so-called “independence” of such financial institutions as The World Bank and IMF is an illusion and that they are among the many “financial weapons” regularly used by the U.S. government to bend countries to its will.

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Report to Davos meeting points to deepening contradictions of global capitalism By Nick Beams

18 January 2019 — WSWS

The report prepared by the World Economic Forum (WEF) for its annual gathering in Davos, Switzerland, next week presents a picture of the ongoing disintegration of all the mechanisms—economic, political and ideological—that have served to sustain the global capitalist order in the post-war period.

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South Africa Searches for a “Financial Parachute”, A $170 Billion Foreign Debt Cliff Looms. IMF “Economic Medicine” By Prof. Patrick Bond

19 December 2018 — Global Research
Johannesburg – This week’s hush-hush visit by International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde to Pretoria (between stops in Ghana and Angola) is mysterious. In contrast to last week’s IMF press briefing claim – “Madame Lagarde will hold meetings with the authorities, as well as fairly extensive meetings with the private sector, civil society, academia, women leaders, and of course the media” – there’s a complete information void here, with no public events scheduled.

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Africa: New evidence of ongoing corporate looting By Patrick Bond

5 February 2018 — Climate & Capitalism

World Bank report shows massive depletion of Africa’s natural wealth by transnational corporations. Only mass action can block the extractivist plunder


A brand new World Bank report, The Changing Wealth of Nations 2018offers evidence of how much poorer Africa is becoming thanks to rampant minerals, oil and gas extraction. Yet Bank policies and practices remain oriented to enforcing foreign loan repayments and transnational corporate (TNC) profit repatriation, thus maintaining the looting.

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