Michael O’Leary, Courtesy of Lanka Monthly Digest, 11 October 2011 edn … also see http://lmd.lk/
The World Bank’s (WB) official goal is the reduction of poverty and its function is to provide loans to developing countries for capital programmes. In the 1940s and ’50s, the bank adopted a conservative approach and its level of lending was low. From 1968, its President Robert McNamara shifted policy towards measures like building schools and hospitals, improving literacy and agricultural reform. Keynesianism was the ideology of the lender’s bureaucrat-economists, whose ideals echoed the domestic policies of the US governments of the time – LBJ’s Great Society, with its emphasis on growth and redistribution as a remedy for poverty.
McNamara’s Treasurer Eugene Rotberg acquired capital from the global bond market. Ironically, Swiss banks (many of which hoard much of the money looted by dictators from developing nations) contributed a substantial share of these funds. Unfortunately, from 1976 to 1980, debt levels in developing nations rose at an average annual rate of 20 per cent. Continue reading