In this new and expanded edition of Chossudovsky’s international best-seller, the author outlines the contours of a New World Order which feeds on human poverty and the destruction of the environment, generates social apartheid, encourages racism and ethnic strife and undermines the rights of women. The result as his detailed examples from all parts of the world show so convincingly, is a globalization of poverty.
This book is a skilful combination of lucid explanation and cogently argued critique of the fundamental directions in which our world is moving financially and economically.
In this new enlarged edition –which includes ten new chapters and a new introduction-- the author reviews the causes and consequences of famine in Sub-Saharan Africa, the dramatic meltdown of financial markets, the demise of State social programs and the devastation resulting from corporate downsizing and trade liberalisation.
Michel Chossudovsky is Professor of Economics at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), which hosts the critically acclaimed website www.globalresearch.ca . He is a contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. His writings have been translated into more than 20 languages.
I was wrong.
The IMF and World Bank
orthodoxy is increasing global poverty
In November 1999, during the World Trade Organisation ministerial conference in Seattle, I watched from my hotel room as thousands demonstrated against the evils of globalisation.
Anarchists clad in black marched alongside grandmothers dressed as turtles and steelworkers from Philadelphia. They saw international trade as a threat - to their jobs, the environment or simply as part of a capitalist conspiracy.
As leader of the delegation from the United Kingdom, I was convinced that the expansion of world trade had the potential to bring major benefits to developing countries and would be one of the key means by which world poverty would be tackled.
In order to achieve this, I believed that developing countries would need to embrace trade liberalisation. This would mean opening up their own domestic markets to international competition. The thinking behind this approach being that the discipline of the market would resolve problems of underperformance, a strong economy would emerge and that, as a result, the poor would benefit. This still remains the position of major international bodies like the IMF and World Bank and is reflected in the system of incentives and penalties which they incorporate in their loan agreements with developing countries.
But my mind has changed.
I now believe that this approach is wrong and misguided. Since leaving the cabinet a year ago, I've had the opportunity to see at first hand the consequences of trade policy. No longer sitting in the air-conditioned offices of fellow government ministers I have, instead, been meeting farmers and communities at the sharp end.
It is this experience that has led me to the conclusion that full trade liberalisation is not the way forward. A different approach is needed: one which recognises the importance of managing trade with the objective of achieving development goals.
No one should doubt the hugely significant role that international trade could play in tackling poverty. In terms of income, trade has the potential to be far more important than aid or debt relief for developing countries. For example, an increase in Africa's share of world exports by just 1% could generate around £43m - five times the total amount of aid received by African countries.
This has led President Museveni of Uganda to say: "Africa does need development assistance, just as it needs debt relief from its crushing international debt burden. But aid and debt relief can only go so far. We are asking for the opportunity to compete, to sell our goods in western markets. In short, we want to trade our way out of poverty."
The World Bank estimates that reform of the international trade rules could take 300 million people out of poverty. Reform is essential because, to put it bluntly, the rules of international trade are rigged against the poorest countries.
Rich nations may be prepared to open up their own markets, but still keep in place massive subsidies. The quid pro quo for doing this is that developing countries open up their domestic markets. These are then vulnerable to heavily subsidised exports from the developed world.
The course of international trade since 1945 shows that an unfettered global market can fail the poor and that full trade liberalisation brings huge risks and rarely provides the desired outcome. It is more often the case that developing countries which have successfully expanded their economies are those that have been prepared to put in place measures to protect industries while they gain strength and give communities the time to diversify into new areas.
This is not intervention for the sake of it or to prop up failing enterprises, but part of a transitional phase to create strong businesses that can compete on equal terms in the global marketplace without the need for continued protection.
Just look at some examples. Taiwan and South Korea are often held out as being good illustrations of the benefits of trade liberalisation. In fact, they built their international trading strength on the foundations of government subsidies and heavy investment in infrastructure and skills development while being protected from competition by overseas firms.
In more recent years, those countries which have been able to reduce levels of poverty by increasing economic growth - like China, Vietnam, India and Mozambique - have all had high levels of intervention as part of an overall policy of strengthening domestic sectors.
On the other hand, there are an increasing number of countries in which full-scale trade liberalisation has been applied and then failed to deliver economic growth while allowing domestic markets to be dominated by imports. This often has devastating effects.
Zambia and Ghana are both examples of countries in which the opening up of markets has led to sudden falls in rates of growth with sectors being unable to compete with foreign goods. Even in those countries that have experienced overall economic growth as a result of trade liberalisation, poverty has not necessarily been reduced.
In Mexico during the first half of the 1990s there was economic growth, yet the number of people living below the poverty line increased by 14 million in the 10 years from the mid-1980s. This was due to the fact that the benefits of a more open market all went to the large commercial operators, with the small concerns being squeezed out.
The evidence shows that the benefits that would flow from increased international trade will not materialise if markets are simply left alone. When this happens, liberalisation is used by the rich and powerful international players to make quick gains from short-term investments.
The role of the IMF and World Bank is also of concern. The conditions placed on their loans often force countries into rapid liberalisation, with scant regard to the impact on the poor.
The way forward is through a regime of managed trade in which markets are slowly opened up and trade policy levers like subsidies and tariffs are used to help achieve development goals.
The IMF and World Bank should recognise that questions of trade liberalisation are the responsibility of the WTO where they can be considered in the overall context of achieving poverty reduction and that it is therefore inappropriate to include trade liberalisation as part of a loan agreement.
This represents a departure from the current orthodoxy. It will be opposed by multinational companies who see rich and easy pickings in the markets of the developing world. But such a change would benefit the world's poorest people and that's why it should happen.
· Stephen Byers is Labour MP for North Tyneside. He is a former trade and industry secretary and was a cabinet member from 1998 to 2002.
Globalization is the march of international capitalism and
corporatism. It is a force of oppression, exploitation and injustice -- an
international one-world fascist government. It exploits all of mankind so that
an international cabal of the rich and powerful can subject us, because they
believe that they know better what is good for us. This is not an extreme
synopsis - it is what they espouse in their own publications, such as Foreign
Affairs and the Economist.
Fact sheets aim to provide analysis of the World Bank and IMFs activities and how they affect the world. The Network has produced fact sheets on the following:
You say the
billionaires have stolen your future?
It is a bitter pill for middle-class baby boomers that their parents are dying without seeing the fabulous future which they once reasonably expected would emerge, certainly by now, from their years of collective sacrifice and toil.
No one can deny that some marvels have been developed more or less as predicted fifty years ago. Consider, for example, the ease, speed and reliability with which computers gain access to incredibly informative websites and newsgroups .
Nevertheless, one need only peruse a few old magazines to see how very far today's world falls short of the old prospective "World of Tomorrow" our parents and grandparents were living to see.
How tragic that the average American adult today has 30 percent less leisure time than the day those words were written; that at this moment millions of people, too tired and otherwise constrained to enjoy once normal social lives, fill their spare minutes with autistic sexuality (catch the euphemism here) fanned by curvacious pattens flashing on cathode-ray tubes or by hot-button words carried over Alexander Graham Bell's somewhat older invention, as the controlling few rake in the cash.
The mind simply boggles at this and plentiful other evidence of the gigantic larceny that, blasting all dreams of futurity, has plunged the world's middle classes into today's debt-slavery backwash; the predictably non-utopian result of trying to tread standard-of-living water in foredoomed labor-service competition with the throw-away New Coolies of the billionaires' 'global plantation.'
How is it that we have inherited this world that we never wanted, a world more resembling C.M. Kornbluth's vision (in his 1953 novel, The Syndic) of a society shaped and directed by organized-crime and aiming only at affording maximum individual sovereignty to its "friends?" ('Individual sovereignty' is Lord Rees-Mogg's honorific term for the liberty of billionaires no longer bridled by governments of the people, by the people,... etc.)
What happened? Ironically enough, it was H.G. Wells, the 20th century's leading apostle of Mankind's potential for a limitless future, who 50 years ago fully answered that question. During the first half of this century he assiduously championed the idea of 'putting things in order' for the speedy attainment of a highly desirable worldwide scientific utopia.
But Wells was also a well-connected and astute more-populist-than-Fabian social critic and the first popularizer of nonchauvinistic history from a species perspective, a vantage point from which he eventually came to see the darker fate overtaking his civilization. His last two books, are, unfortunately, his most prophetic. In his 1939 book, The Future of Man (in the USA; it is The Future of Homo Sapiens elsewhere), Wells explained how the Anglo-American elites had recently grabbed the reigns of the collapsing liberalized world order of his time--that great, good, but never-fully perfected achievement of nineteenth-century optimism and good will-- and did so for their own self-serving-and-to-hell-with-everyone-else ends:
"The disintegrating British Empire is now, one has to recognize, a system of government almost completely out of popular control. Practically it has undergone a reactionary revolution in the last decade, and a loose-knit combination of court, church, army and wealth, intensely class conscience, intensely self-protective, has resumed control of affairs.
"It is an oligarchy skillful in assimilation of useful or formidable individuals but without the slightest disposition to amalgamate with anything else on earth. Its ruling motive is fear of dispossession. Decisions of peace and war are made without consulting any surviving popular will, and the whole capitalist press, the cinema, the radio and indeed all possible means of influencing opinion, concentrate upon the assertion of the rightness and inevitableness of these decisions. Dissent is a muffled and ineffective squeaking, and any inconvenient facts are kept from the public by requests for suppression that are in effect commands."
Such a development, spells death to any hope of the majority of mankind to live any kind of rewarding personal-achievement oriented middle-class life. In his last book, Mind at the End of its Tether (1945), Wells 'signs off' with these words:
"Homo Sapiens in his present form is played out. The stars in their courses have turned against him and he has to give place to some other animal better adopted to face the fate that closes in more swiftly upon mankind. ...The cinema sheet (i.e., screen --DE) stares us in the face... Our loves, our hates, our wars and battles are no more than phantasmagoria dancing on that fabric, themselves as unsubstantiated as a dream. ...There is no way through the impasse.
The point of the present essay is not, as Well's final words might suggest, that we give up and trust fabled space aliens to genetically engineer mankind's more-promising replacement.
Nor is it that we must avenge our betrayed parents by killing off the billionaires, as not a few today doubtless privately contemplate. Rather, we must attack the root of why our future was lost and do what must be done to get it back again. To that end I conclude with these words, written at about the same time as those of Well's above, the creed of a little man who excelled even Wells as a true friend of mankind's future:
The moment the slave resolves that he will no longer be a slave, his fetters fall. He frees himself and shows the way to others. Freedom and slavery are mental states. Therefore the first thing is to say to yourself, "I shall no longer accept the role of a slave. I shall not obey orders as such but shall disobey when they are in conflict with my conscience."
The so-called master may lash you and try to force you to serve him. You may say, "No, I will not serve you for your money or under threat."
This may mean suffering. Your readiness to suffer will light the torch of freedom which will never be put out." Certainly there is unfailing hope for a future in that.
Dick Eastman Yakima, Washington United States of
The American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellow fin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.
The Mexican repled, "only a little while".
The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish?
The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs.
The American then asked, "But what do you do with the rest of your time?"
The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos. I have a full and busy life."
The American scoffed, "I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave the small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise."
The Mexican fisherman asked, "But how long will this take?"
To which the American replied, "15-20 years". "But what then?", asked the fisherman.
The American laughed and said that's the best part. "When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions."
"Millions, then what?"
The American said, "Then you would retire, move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."
The TRUTH about Democracy
In the western world approximately 95% of the wealth is possessed by
approximately 5% of the people. That means, using these same figures, that 95%
of the people, the overwhelming majority, possess only 5% of the wealth.
Self-actualized people are characterized by:
Maslow later differentiated the growth
need of self-actualization, specifically naming two lower-level growth needs
prior to general level of self-actualization (Maslow & Lowery, 1998) and one beyond that level (Maslow,
1971). They are:
Not a conspiracy…worse!
What is the World Bank?
Created at the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944, The World Bank Group is comprised of five agencies that make loans or guarantee credit to its 177 member countries. In addition to financing projects such as roads, power plants and schools, the Bank also makes loans to restructure a country's economic system by funding structural adjustment programs (SAPs). The Bank manages a loan portfolio totaling US$200 billion and last year loaned a record US$28.9 billion to over 80 countries.
What is the IMF?
Also created at the Bretton Woods Conference, the mission of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is to supply member states with money to help them overcome short-term balance-of-payments difficulties. Such money is only made available, however, after the recipients have agreed to policy reforms in their economies-- in short, to implement a structural adjustment program.
Is structural adjustment working?
No. Structural adjustment has exacerbated poverty in most countries where it has been applied, contributing to the suffering of millions and causing widespread environmental degradation. And since the 1980s, adjustment has helped create a net outflow of wealth from the developing world, which has paid out five times as much capital to the industrialized countries of the North as it has received.
I know there are a lot of qualified people at the World Bank and IMF who are experts in economics and other fields. If structural adjustment doesn't work, then why are they promoting it?
The wealthy Northern countries which control the World Bank and IMF dictate the agendas of these institutions, and their interests are best served by defending the status quo. Furthermore, the Bank's staff is currently dominated by economists who have spent their careers defending the validity of neoclassical economics, the foundation of the World Bank model of development. This orthodox view holds sacred the efficiency of free markets and private producers and the benefits of international trade and competition. Given the lack of accountability to outside parties, there is little incentive for the Bank and IMF to alter the design of structural adjustment, even when faced with mounting evidence attesting to the failure of these programs.
I hear a lot about the debt crisis in the Third World and know that many of the loans are owed to commercial banks and Northern governments. People say that some or all of this debt should be canceled to give developing countries a chance to recover economically. Shouldn't they pay?
Much of this debt dates back to 1970s, when it was lent irresponsibly by commercial banks and borrowed recklessly by foreign governments, most of which were not popularly elected and which no longer hold power. The advent of the debt crisis, which occurred in the early 1980s due to a worldwide collapse in the prices of commodities that developing countries export (e.g., coffee, cocoa) and to rising oil prices and interest rates, forced these countries into a position where they were unable to make payments. Yet there's no such thing as bankruptcy protection for a country, regardless of the circumstances. When the U.S. department store Macy's filed for bankruptcy under chapter 11 in January 1992, it received instant protection from creditors and working capital to keep open. At the same time, when Russia told the West that it could not meet government had to wait for more than a year before the IMF provided financial help.
What is relationship the between debt and structural adjustment?
Since the 1980s the debt situation has steadily worsened, so that now the total debt of the developing world equals about one-half their combined GNP and nearly twice their total annual export earnings. Because of this crushing debt-service burden, foreign governments have virtually no bargaining power when negotiating a structural adjustment program and must accept any conditions imposed by the World Bank and the IMF. And SAPs themselves, by orienting economies toward generating foreign exchange, are designed to ensure that debtor countries continue to make debt payments, further enriching Northern creditors at the expense of domestic programs in the South.
How's the World Bank's record on responsible lending?
In 1992, an internal World bank review found that more than a third of all Bank loans did not meet the institution's own lending criteria and warned that the Bank had been overtaken by a dangerous "culture of approval." Bank officials, in other words, felt heavy pressure to push through new loans even when presented with overwhelming evidence that the project in question was ill advised.
Who makes decisions at the World Bank and IMF?
Decisions at the World Bank and IMF are made by a vote of the Board of Executive Directors, which represents member countries. Unlike the United Nations, where each member nation has an equal vote, voting power at the World Bank and IMF is determined by the level of a nation's financial contribution. Therefore, the United States has roughly 17% of the vote, with the seven largest industrialized countries (G-7) holding a total of 45%. Because of the scale of its contribution, the United States has always had a dominant voice and has at all times exercised an effective veto. At the same time, developing countries have relatively little power within the institution, which, through the programs and policies they decide to finance, have tremendous impact throughout local economies and societies. Furthermore, the President of the World Bank is by tradition an American, and the IMF President is a European.
How is it that U.S. business and other companies benefit from the lending programs at the World Bank?
Development projects undertaken with World Bank financing typically include money to pay for materials and consulting services provided by Northern countries. U.S. Treasury Department officials calculate that for every U.S.$1 the United States contributes to international development banks, U.S. exporters win more than U.S.$2 in bank-financed procurement contracts.
Why is this bad?
Given this self-interest, the Bank tends to finance bigger, more expensive projects--which almost always require the materials and technical expertise of Northern contractors--and ignores smaller-scale, locally appropriate alternatives. The mission of the World Bank to alleviate poverty, not provide business for U.S. contractors.
Harmonization is the name given to the effort by industry to replace the variety of product standards and other regulatory policies adopted by nations in favor of uniform global standards.
The harmonization effort gained a significant boost with the approval of several new international agreements, particularly the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the Uruguay Round of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), which established the World Trade Organization (WTO).
These trade agreements have also established an ever-increasing number of committees and working groups to implement the harmonization mandate.
Unfortunately, most of these working groups are industry dominated, do not provide an opportunity for input by interested individuals or potentially-affected communities, and generally conduct their operations behind closed doors. Yet, under current trade rules, these standard-setting processes can directly affect our national, state and local policies.
The Lima Agreement
I can remember when it was considered barbaric to buy goods from people who lived on a handfull-of-rice-a-day-wages.
They were barbaric repressive governments to deal with. Its still barbaric but we got salamied into it by the UN. It was done through a Treaty in 1974 called the Lima Agreement.
The public knew nothing about it. The governments of the world who signed into it did though. The news only got out a few years back on the Internet. No Newspaper ever touched it. Nothing on the TV...ever...and still none. We were sold out to a philosophy that no-one knew about.
The Dark Side Of Globalism
There are many faces of globalism and it comes with many names, but in all cases the goal of globalism is to erase national borders, eliminate national sovereignty, reduce national identities and move toward global governance through the United Nations.
The European Union is the prime example of the results of globalism, where once-proud nations have surrendered famous currencies like the deutsche mark, the franc and the lira. It's where ancient cultures like Greece and Rome have erased their borders and buried their cultures to be led by a Union of Socialists with loyalty to nothing but the drive for more and more power. Yet it's done in the name of equity, economic prosperity and ecological integrity.
Globalism is sold to the unsuspecting public with words like free trade, open borders and environmental protection, but it's really about redistribution of wealth; your wealth. It's about erasing national borders and national sovereignty. And it's about top-down control, not necessarily by elected officials, but by special interests called non-governmental organizations (NGO's), which are only sanctioned by the United Nations.
Globalism calls for a wrenching transformation of our society, away from representative government and independent nations to the establishment of a global village with global citizens. The entire plan is outlined in detail in the UN's Agenda 21, a treaty signed by then-President George Bush at the UN's Earth Summit in 1992. You've heard some of the terms used to implement that treaty. The Wildlands Project is one. Smart Growth is another. The Wildlands Project calls for the "re-wilding" of 50% of all of the land in every state, restoring everything back to the way it was before Christopher Columbus stepped foot on the continent. In other words, the elimination of human presence on over 50% of the American landscape.
Smart Growth is the plan to herd us all into specific human habitat areas, out of the suburbs and our beautiful yards and into crowded cities and high rises. As one smart growth advocate gleefully put it: "It will be the humans in cages with the animals looking in." Both of these schemes are part of an overall agenda called "Sustainable Development." If you remember nothing else, remember these words. Sustainable Development. And remember that Sustainable Development is your enemy. What is it? Imagine an America in which a specific "ruling principle" is created to decide proper societal conduct for every citizen. That principle would be used to consider everything you eat, what you wear, the kind of home you live in, the way you get to work, the way you dispose of waste, the number of children you may have, even your education and employment decisions. That "ruling principle" is Sustainable Development. The goal of Sustainable Development is to transform the world into feudal-like governance by making NATURE the central organizing principle for our economy and society.
This is what Sustainable Development policy advocates: "Nature has an integral set of different values (cultural, spiritual and, material) where humans are one strand in nature's web and all living creatures are considered equal. Therefore, the natural way is the right way and human activities should be molded along nature's rhythms." This quote comes from the UN's Biodiversity Treaty. An international agenda has been set in motion, beginning with the United Nation's treaties and agreements. That agenda is now working its way down through federal to state to local government policy. It is now the official policy of the United States government and every single city, town and small burg in this nation are working on plans to implement it. There are no exceptions.
Wherever you live there are an average of 10 to 18 Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) working directly with your elected councilmen and commissioners on plans for your community to determine:
The plan is to change your way of life to fit into the new global society. According to Sustainable Development policies, air conditioning, convenience foods, single-family housing and cars are among the products, habitats and modes of transportation that have already been determined to be "unsustainable." Add to them, ski runs, grazing of livestock, plowing fields, logging, dams and reservoirs, and power line construction, as outlined in the UN's Biodiversity Treaty (also a product of the Earth Summit) and you can get the full picture of America under Sustainable Development. Across this nation people are already suffering under Sustainable Development policies as they are losing their homes, their jobs and, in some cases, whole communities under this wrenching transformation of our society in the name of the global village.
There has never been a single vote in Congress to create Sustainable Development. It's all done through cleverly rearranged wording of existing programs and budgets, using UN treaties as guidelines. It's all under the radar. Sustainable Development is anti-property rights. Anti-free enterprise. It is anti-individual liberty. It is anti-national sovereignty and national borders. It is anti-Western culture. There can be no hope of living in a nation of limited government with Sustainable Development as official government policy because the two are diametrically opposed. Americans would never concede their liberty to Swastikas or Hammers and Sickles, but tuck it in a green blanket for environmental protection and we' ll toss it all on the fire like an old-fashioned book burning. This is about totalitarianism. It's about controlling every aspect of our lives with decisions made by non-elected committees that will get more powerful and more oppressive with each passing day and each new regulation proposed by newly empowered special interest groups.
Sustainable Development is anti-science. It is anti-knowledge. It is anti-human. It is the creed of the mindless savage who seeks brute force over reasoned thought. And if we don't learn of its evil now, if we don't heed the warning, if we don't rip it out of every level of government policy by its well entrenched roots, then American life, indeed human existence, as we know it, will enter a new dark ages of pain and misery unlike any ever experienced by the community of man.
There is one sure way to stop Sustainable Development and the globalist movement. I tell it to everyone I meet, everyday of my life. I tell it to you now. Get the United States out of the United Nations.
DEVASTATING IMPACT OF BIG CORPORATIONS ON PEOPLE AND THE
EARTH: Al Anderson, of USA, in his MAI Page, writes: "Worldwide, the
super-rich and their multinational corporate empires are inflicting a
devastating impact on the rest of the earth's residents, and on their
environment. So, while an elite few live in luxury, increasing millions are
either homeless in their 'home' countries or unwanted refugees in foreign
countries, often under life-threatening conditions." See his arguments in A
Critique of the MAI at http://www.efn.org/~andersen/paine.html
MONEY MARKET OVERWHELMING OUR SOCIAL IMMUNE SYSTEM: Book The Cancer Stage of Capitalism. "Our social immune system is being overwhelmed by growing out-of-control money market cancer. In this bold new look at the recent uncontrolled spread of global capitalism, John McMurtry, professor of philosophy at the University of Guelph [Canada], develops the metaphor of modern capitalism as a cancer. Its invasive growth, he argues, threatens to break down our society's immune system and -- if not soon restrained -- could reverse all the progress that has been made toward social equity and stability. This essay is a condensed version of an article Prof. McMurtry wrote for the American journal Social Justice [22(4): 1-25, 1995.]." Click: http://www.policyalternatives.ca/articles/article58t.html or for fuller details, including the title of another recent book Unequal Freedoms: The Global Market as an Ethical System, Toronto: Garamond, 1998, click the link given above at his name, which is: http://www.uoguelph.ca/philosophy/McMurtry.html
"FREE MARKET" FALLACIES: John McMurtry also wrote "Free Market" Fallacies. "The corporations, in other words, are assumed not only to have the right to a free ride on costly services and infrastructures paid for by the citizens of free-trade countries, but the right to be held non-liable for any costs and damages they inflict within these countries." John McMurtry's work in social and political philosophy, political science and sociology has been widely published internationally in journals, textbooks and public forums. His latest book, The Invisible Prison: The Global Market as an Ethical System, will be published by Garamond Press this fall [1998 northern autumn]. The article at the above-linked Webpage was excerpted from a longer essay he wrote for the Journal of Business Ethics.
MULTINATIONALS RELY ON GOVERNMENTS, PAY NO TAX:
"But despite their brash free-enterprise ethos, TNCs [=Transnational
Corporations = Multinational Corporations] rely very heavily indeed on the
state. When a TNC thinks of setting up a plant it holds an auction, commanding
competitive bids from nation states with ofrings of tax-breaks, grants, roads,
power supplies, a compliant, 'flexible' labour force, a 'sympathetic' regime.
Huge public subsidies prop up TNCs everywhere.
FROM MELBOURNE TO PRAGUE: THE STRUGGLE FOR A
DEGLOBALIZED WORLD (extract)
We must consider "disabling the transnational corporations ... that constitute the core of the global economic system."
WHAT IS DEGLOBALIZATION?
I am not talking about withdrawing from the international economy.
- I am speaking about reorienting our economies from production for export to production for the local market;
- about drawing most of our financial resources for development from within rather than becoming dependent on foreign investment and foreign financial markets;
- about carrying out the long-postponed measures of income redistribution and land redistribution to create a vibrant internal market that would be the anchor of the economy;
- about de-emphasizing growth and maximizing equity in order to radically reduce environmental disequilibrium;
- about not leaving strategic economic decisions to the market but making them subject to democratic choice;
- about subjecting the private sector and the state to constant monitoring by civil society;
- about creating a new production and exchange complex that includes community cooperatives, private enterprises, and state enterprises, and excludes TNCs;
- about enshrining the principle of subsidiarity in economic life by encouraging production of goods to take place at the community and national level if it can be done so at reasonable cost in order to preserve community.
SWINDLE OF MULTINATIONALS PAYING
LITTLE OR NO TAX