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category international | anti-capitalism | press release author Friday January 28, 2005 17:53author by WSM Report this post to the editors

World Bank president delivers on poverty agenda on visit to Ireland

Next Sunday, the 30th of January the president of the
World Bank is due to visit Dublin. The President Mr.
James Wolfensohn is here to talk to the World Council
of Churches. The Meeting is part of the on going talks
between the bank and the council of churches about
'faith and development' in the third world.

"Their [IMF and World Bank] policies have not only
failed to bridge the gap between rich and poor and
achieve greater equality, but rather contributed to a
widening gap, the virtual exclusion of an increasing
number of the poor and widespread social
- Rev. Dr. Konrad Raiser, General Secretary, World
Council of Churches; Letter to Kofi Annan, June 28,

What is the World Bank?

The World Bank works in tandem with the International
Monetary Fund to 'readjust' third world economies to
suit the neo-liberal view of world economics. Their
'readjustments' although sounding pretty harmless has
involved the forced relocation of thousands of people
in India when their readjustments advised on the
construction of dams on Naramada River. The World Bank
is the organization that loans money to carry-out
readjustments. These loans become what most of us know
as the crippling Third World Debt. Over the past
decades some of the poorest countries world has paid
up to half their yearly GNP to the World Bank. Perhaps
one of the most sickening figures is that in 1997-1998
the World Bank extracted over _1 billion from Africa
whilst the continent is desperate for money to fend
off starvation and try and halt the aids epidemic. Now
they come to Dublin to consult religious organizations
on development which is contemptuous to the people
like those living on the Naramada River considering
they weren't even consulted.

International Effects

The effects of the policies pursued by the World Bank
and the International Monetary Fund on the lives of
people living in the 'developing world' have been
nothing short of catastrophic. It is sobering to
realise that even now in 2005, huge numbers of people
live in dire poverty. In India, for example, more
than half of all children do not have enough to eat
while in Sierra Leone, 28 percent of all children die
before the age of 5.

In talking of many poorer countries, it is in fact
wrong to describe them as 'developing' because in fact
no real development or progress is taking place in the
lives of ordinary people. Of the 50 countries where
per capita income was lowest in 1990, 23 actually had
lower average incomes in 1999 than they did in 1990.

'Structural Adjustment Programmes', insisted upon by
the International Monetary Fund in order for countries
to be advanced loans by the World Bank, are the
principal cause of this. In his book 'Globalization
And Its Discontents', Joseph Stiglitz - a former Chief
economist with the World Bank - argues convincingly
that these SAPs and other policies pursued by the
IMF/World Bank systematically act in the interests of
the rich so-called 'donor' nations and against the
interests of workers, peasants and other poor people.

Stiglitz points out in his book that food subsidies
and other ways of cushioning the hardships suffered by
the poor are among the first programmes that the
IMF/World Bank tells countries to cut when they need
to "balance their budgets". The IMF/WB policies, he
argues always follow the same agenda - that of the

"Stabilization is on the agenda; job creation is off.
Taxation, and its adverse effects, are on the agenda;
land reform is off. There is money to bail out banks
but not to pay for improved education and health
services, let alone bail out workers who are thrown
out of their jobs as a result of the IMF's
macroeconomic mismanagement."

Since the mid 1980s over 70 countries in the world
have been forced to adopt these 'Structural Adjustment
Programmes'. They have led to disaster and massive
poverty. Because of SAPs, local economies and wages
have collapsed; basic services like sanitation, water,
education and health have fallen apart. Meanwhile the
burden of debt has been forced onto the poorest of the
poor with the result that poverty has increased, life
expectancy has deteriorated and infant mortality has

While it's not difficult to see why the SAPs have done
so much damage (instead of promoting investment they
sucked the money supply from local economies), it is
important to remember that they were never intended to
be anything other than harsh. SAPs have actually
played a very important role in the long-term economic
strategy of Western capitalism. This strategy is all
about making the economies of the 'developing world'
more dependent (more 'integrated' in IMF/WB-speak) on
Western needs and thus more open to exploitation by
western multinationals, while at the same time opening
up a massive supply of cheap labour for Western

For the poorest nations in the world, the IMF and
World Bank are the largest creditors. Because these
institutions are 'preferred creditors', they have
first call on repayments. The external debt of
sub-Saharan Africa has increased by nearly 400% since
1980 _ to more than $200billion. Many of these
'debts' have already been repaid again and again. The
'debt crisis' set in when interest rates skyrocketed
and compound interest made repayment impossible. For
example, Nigeria borrowed $5billion from official and
private creditors, paid $16billion to date, and still
owes $32billion. (source: 'The World Bank: Lending In
Whose Interest? By Centre for Economic Justice -

The Thief calls it help - We call it stealth

"I would like to use my time to highlight the
respective roles of the Fund and the Bank in the
development process and the extent to which we are
delivering on the poverty agenda in the developing
so said Charlie Mc Creavey when he was
minister for finance. He was speaking about the World
Bank and the IMF. The World Bank and thanks to the
SAP's (Structural Adjustment Programs) which are the
strings that come attached to the loans it can be said
they they deliver on the poverty agenda 'by INCREASING

In Ireland we have been members of the World Bank
since 1957. In that time we have theoretically
contributed $636 million but of course this being the
high falluting world of accountancy it means that we
really only contributed 6% of that. A little bit of
creative accounting for you. So we must support this
organisation. One that is blatantly undemocratic and
that has come in for a storm of criticism for the last
decade or more.

At home we can see their tricks by their championing
of the partnership agreements between trade unions,
bosses and the governments. We know how that hasn't
greatly benefitted workers whilst many companies have
gone on to make astounding profits. Meanwhile the WBO
and the IMF push the GATT line via the EU. The
General Agreements on Tarrifs and Trade (GATT) cover
160 services' sectors including telecoms, transport,
distribution, postal services, real estate, insurance,
construction, environment, tourism and entertainment.
Just as poorer countries end up having to open up
their economies when they get an IMF loan, in Ireland
our leaders are pushing us down the nightmare of

What few people realised when the deal was first done
is that the GATTS also includes healthcare,
education, housing, water, waste management and other
basic services usually run by government agencies. The
agenda of the GATS agreement is quite simple: to
privatise as many services as possible opening them to
international competition. This is the brainchild of
the invisible boffins behind the closed doors of the
World Bank. Privatisation leads to an increase in
wealth for the bosses and a increase in the peoples
poverty. Our former public services, which we pay
taxes for already are stolen via the public-private
partnership iniatives. So we can be like the
citizens of Ghana who thanks to the IMF saw their
water supply privatised.

Watching the World Bank operate is like watching the
FBI in a siege. The Fed's cut the water and the
electircity supply. The World Bank uses the IMF's
stipulations for loans to carry out the following
four things

1. Open's the economy
2. Fiscal austerity - reduce government spending which
leads us to the next point
3. Balance Budgets though cuts - we've seen this
before, remember McCreevy's was once known as the
butcher of social welfare before he went on to Finance
4. Privatise Public Entities - Bin's, Dublin Bus, Aer
Rianta, and soon water I would guess.

The world bank delivers on the poverty agenda alright,
it widens the gap between the poor and the rich.

Make sure to thank that banker when you see him! He's
making Capitalism work for the bosses.

Related Link: http://struggle.ws/wsm
author by Ois - WSM - 1st of Maypublication date Wed Feb 02, 2005 20:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The story is...

The Dublin branch got so damn big (golly we had around 20 members!!!) that having discussion where everyone had a say became almost impossible at our branch meetings. Also there were 4 or 5 people who could make the day of the week we met . So... we split the dublin branch in two so now there is the 1st of May Branch and the Jack White Branch. Both are based in Dublin.

author by Jaypublication date Sat Jan 29, 2005 17:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Whats the story with the first of may?

author by jack white - wsmpublication date Sat Jan 29, 2005 15:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

are going along to the swp demo on Sunday evening http://www.indymedia.ie/newswire.php?story_id=68366

author by Joe - WSM '1st of May' (pers cap)publication date Sat Jan 29, 2005 13:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We're mostly using his visit as an opportunity to talk to people about the World Bank. The text above is from an anarchist news we will be distributing in the city center this afternoon.

There was some discussion of organising a demonstration but a lot of people - including myself - felt it would be a mistake to put ourselves in the position of feeling we had to have some sort of token demo every time one of those chancers came to town. If there are the resources to do it well its worthwhile but a dozen people standing around with placards in the rain would just be an exercise in tokenistic misery.

Related Link: http://struggle.ws/wsm/global.html
author by Marypublication date Fri Jan 28, 2005 23:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

So what are you going to do about the world bank President coming here?
Not alot I guess,and who really cares.

author by iosaf - o as fecking if - sofia - its not funny its global revolution you tossers. we might as well talk to the wallpublication date Fri Jan 28, 2005 20:49author address 3rd world.author phone Report this post to the editors

entitled "Resistancía" which means resistance.
Today was an account of the Chiapas community of Zapatistas in Mexico, who as you really all ought now, be you in indymedia land or in irish independent land or irish times land or irish government land or UK imc or the daily telegraph or the guardian....


The Zapatistas reminded us of their resistance.
To the army. To the government which attempted to force water privatisation policies on them.

Only 3% of the Planet's water is drinkable.
And guess what big swinging mickey and surprise, 75% of the drinkable water is consumed by the richest nations of the earth who make up less than 25% of the global population.

Is that fair?
It isn't.
as a zapatista would say.
followed by RESISTANCÏA!

Members of the Chiapas zapatista community of autonomous collectives have in the last years provided their own lands with water, they do that in celebration of resistance, by facing down soldiers, by facing down the government who try and take that water from them, to make oh I dunno, something sweet and expensive which sounds good at dismal economic conferences.

Yet every year 33% of newborn children in the Chiapas corner of the world die from lack of clean water. (H2o for you technical types.)

This is a pattern reflected all over the world.

The other day the spanish RC bishops met with the Pope, and he said "water is a right for all". The local press thought he was being led by the spanish pro-PP bishops to say something about a water project in España. he wasn't.
He was reminding us all that a world where only 25% of the population can count on clean water is a wicked world which is not cherishing its children equally. BASTA! Today the WEF heard arguments in dismal science land on water,
is it better to privatise it?
is it better to create state corp partnerships?
how many angels can dance on a fucking needle?

Part of your expensive future in New World Order Europe and North America is sharing water with the babies of Africa, Asia and South America.
You do that by giving them plastic piping. Believe it or not they know how to use them. They don't want nor need soldiers or executives telling them how to access water, their grandparents knew, their great great grandparents knew, and I tell you "we in spooky land" trust their capabilities to secure a future or a back to the future road map more than we trust the mediocrities of meritocracy of the XX century. And we are more than capable of helping them ( & you) to the back to the future stage if need be.

Sigue la Ducha!
Vaccines for all!
Water for all!
use your imagination.
Dinero Gratis!

you can check the archives of OVNI video and documental and watch all the interesting stuff at
they go back to 1993. "the year of the Flood" ;-)
And maybe organise a festival of culture around it you effin langers.

OVNI means "observatori de video no identificat" and is a play on words coz it means UFO as well.
UFO can mean ( if you want ) unknown frame observatory.

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