Saturday, May 31, 2003

The General had computer problems on Friday, so that means a bit of a backlog for today's blogging.

It appears Peru has clearly entered step three-and-a-half of their IMF/World Bank structural adjustment plan. Remember Joe Stiglitz's cheeky depiction of the four-step process the Fund and Bank together use to nurse their patients back to health. Step one is privatization; step two is capital market liberalisation; step three is market-based pricing; and then comes Stiglitz's step 3.5 -- the IMF riot. As the BBC reports,
At least 95 people have been arrested since the state of emergency was imposed on Tuesday night to contain strikes by teachers, farmers and health workers. The protesters have been pressing for pay increases, which the government says it cannot afford while implementing austerity policies agreed with the International Monetary Fund.
Let's not get lost among trees of HIPC debt initiatives and Millennium Challenge Grants forgetting to see the same old forest.


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