Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Watch out Ireland - Here comes aid

The Irish economy has well and truely crashed and the situation looks dire.  That much is clear.  Now the news is that aid is arriving, thanks to the good graces of the European Union and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).  If that sounds like good news to you, well think again.  A research paper published by academics from the University of Cambridge and Yale University this summer concludes that IMF aid in the former communist countries of Eastern Europe resulted in an increase in tuberculosis, including increases in mortality form tuberculosis.  The higher the IMF loans, the higher the increase in death from tuberculosis.  Countries that took bigger loans experienced a proportionally higher rate of TB than countries that took smaller loans. When the "aid" stopped, the TB levels returned to their pre-IMF level. This should not surprise us; IMF aid usually comes in a package which invariably includes a process euphemistically called "restructuring", whereby public spending in areas like education, welfare benefits and public heath are cut.  IMF loans aim to save capitalism, not lives. An incompetent Irish prime minister (he is the former minister of finance - can we expect a man who is part of the problem to provide a solution?) can now throw up his hands and cry that Europe and the IMF are forcing him to make the further cuts that will be coming.  If the researchers from Cambridge and Yale are correct, we will see the number of cases of death from TB rise.  You can read their report here. If the full report is a bit much, you can read this article from Scientific American.

1 comment:

  1. I think claiming that we are living in a plutocracy is a justifiable argument. It is pretty easy to outline how this happened:

    First bankers spread physiocratic rhetoric through sponsoring coroporate media like CNN and NYT.

    Then they got rid of all capital restrictions through charismatic individuals like Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan.

    Then they gave out as much as credit as possible.

    Then they made billion dollar profits, and when they realized that some of those real estate speculators couldn't pay back their loans and that they risked going bankrupt, they asked Ronald's and Margarat's successors for cash so they can keep on doing what they do.

    Of course this is funded by implementing austerity to punish the people. And at the same time the "bibles" of the bussiness community like the Wall Street Journal and The Economist keep on claiming that classical economics is the solution; the key to ending recession is "cutting red tape" and implementing more austerity.

    What we are witnissing is the coup of the banks. Obama, Merkel, Samaras, Monti, Cameron...They are all representatives of the banks!They all want to end the recession by implementing austerity, to make sure that the banks get their returns on their sovereign bond investments, so that they can keep on paying bonuses to their employees.