Skip to main content

IMF says ... "neoliberalism"!


Miraculously, a recent IMF paper appeared to be challenging the dominant neoliberal doctrine. As described by Yves Smith of nakedcapitalism :

While the IMF’s research team has for many years chipped away at mainstream economic thinking, a short, accessible paper makes an even more frontal challenge. It’s caused such a stir that the Financial Times featured it on its front page.

[...]

The article cheekily flags the infamous case of the Chicago Boys, Milton Friedman’s followers in Pinochet’s Chile, as having been falsely touted as a success. If anything, the authors are too polite in describing what a train wreck resulted. A plutocratic land grab and speculation-fueled bubble led quickly to a depression, forcing Pinochet to implement Keynesian policies, as well as rolling back labor “reforms,” to get the economy back on its feet.

Indeed, a few IMF executives start to decline from the neoliberal orthodoxy and some evidence can be found in the paper. For example, although they refuse to abandon their faith to the neoliberal doctrine stating that “There is much to cheer in the neoliberal agenda”, they reach the conclusion that “there are aspects of the neoliberal agenda that have not delivered as expected”.

Indeed, they are very polite against the destruction that the IMF policies brought to many economies, lately in Greece. However, it is interesting that they start to question two fundamental aspects of the neoliberal agenda: removing restrictions on the movement of capital across a country's borders (so-called capital account liberalization); and fiscal consolidation, sometimes called “austerity,” which is shorthand for policies to reduce fiscal deficits and debt levels.

Specifically, in the paper it is mentioned that “Austerity policies not only generate substantial welfare costs due to supply-side channels, they also hurt demand—and thus worsen employment and unemployment. [...] in practice, episodes of fiscal consolidation have been followed, on average, by drops rather than by expansions in output. On average, a consolidation of 1 percent of GDP increases the long-term unemployment rate by 0.6 percentage point and raises by 1.5 percent within five years the Gini measure of income inequality ...”, which is totally opposite from the positions of the neoliberal doctrine gurus and from Berlin's "unexplained" sacred devotion to fiscal discipline.

We may have to consider this paper as another attempt by the IMF to mitigate the cumulative negative criticism that it faces from the public, due to its devastating policies all over the world. Greece has been the latest victim, through a 6-year uninterrupted destruction imposed by the IMF, ECB and European Commission - through various, even undemocratic methods - based on the IMF neoliberal agenda.

As has been pointed already since 2013 through the article IMF new tactics: It is better to appear unreliable than to let people understand that you serve specific interests: “... it was the turn of Olivier Blanchard, chief economist at the Fund, to admit through a report which was given to the public a few days ago, that the Fund, together with all European leaders, finance ministers, European Commission and ECB, made a serious mistake in their calculations, underestimating the devastating consequences of austerity policies imposed on indebted countries. [...] the admission that there was a mistake in calculations with the reference to a specific factor known as the "multiplier", is an IMF tactic to convince the public that it is a purely calculation error, which is based on wrong estimates. Through this tactic, IMF is trying to establish the false picture that operates purely technocratic and that the catastrophic effects are solely due to wrong calculations and estimates and not due to an attempt to serve specific banking and speculative interests.

Besides, the IMF should have learned from its mistakes a long time ago, at least since the 90s where its policies have brought absolute destruction in Russia, SE Asia and elsewhere. If the IMF executives had real intention to fix their totally problematic recipes, we would have seen alternate policies in the Greek case.

Yet, what's most impressive in this latest IMF paper, is that its authors use the term "neoliberalism" and "neoliberal agenda"!

George Monbiot started his article Neoliberalism – the ideology at the root of all our problems , two months ago, with the aspect of the anonymity of neoliberalism: “Imagine if the people of the Soviet Union had never heard of communism. The ideology that dominates our lives has, for most of us, no name. Mention it in conversation and you’ll be rewarded with a shrug. Even if your listeners have heard the term before, they will struggle to define it. Neoliberalism: do you know what it is? Its anonymity is both a symptom and cause of its power. It has played a major role in a remarkable variety of crises: the financial meltdown of 2007-8, the offshoring of wealth and power, of which the Panama Papers offer us merely a glimpse, the slow collapse of public health and education, resurgent child poverty, the epidemic of loneliness, the collapse of ecosystems, the rise of Donald Trump. But we respond to these crises as if they emerge in isolation, apparently unaware that they have all been either catalysed or exacerbated by the same coherent philosophy; a philosophy that has – or had – a name. What greater power can there be than to operate namelessly?

The IMF and other major carriers of the neoliberal doctrine avoided for decades to call it by a name. IMF itself struggled for decades to impose the neoliberal agenda away from publicity lights. But now, because these policies have been imposed to a developed economic area, called eurozone, the IMF didn't manage to avoid publicity. The destruction of the Greek economy is beyond doubt. People's lives as well as numbers reveal a total failure.

Is it time for the IMF and the other mechanisms of the elites to abandon neoliberalism? Probably yes, but that doesn't mean that they have something better in mind for the majority. On the contrary, we are already witnessing the transformation of Capitalism into a global brutal Feudalism with neoliberalism as the intermediate stage. As long as societies remain apathetic to this rapid transformation, no "sincere" admissions by the IMF or other mechanisms would prevent it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Confirmed: Alex Jones' popularity rises after Infowars banning from social media

globinfo freexchange
We wouldn't expect to be confirmed so fast on this.
A few days ago in the article IT and social media supergiants have just made Alex Jones a hero in the eyes of the ultra-conservative audience, we wrote that Alex Jones' wet dream has just become reality thanks to the combined move by Facebook, Apple, YouTube and Spotify to ban Infowars. These private IT and social media companies couldn't give a better gift to him right now. At a time where Infowars was going through a saturated period according to the best scenario, the corporate giants actually saved it with that stupid(?) strategy.
Suddenly, a corporate branch of the liberal establishment gave real value to Alex Jones' awful performance, pretending to be the 'anti-establishment' hero - just like Donald Trump - and made him a real hero in the eyes of the ultra-conservative audience that has been brainwashed by his absurd conspiracy theories.
Only a couple of days later, Kyle Kulinski of the…

Corporate media begin typical operations to make progressives comply with the establishment

The operations will multiply and become more aggressive towards 2020
globinfo freexchange
Corporate media of the ultra-conservative side made already a ridiculous attempt to present Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as totally unreliable. In the video, TYT hosts analyze very well the specific strategy followed by Conservative Review TV.
The strategy is quite simple: you create a fake video, you upload it on social media and after being watched by thousands you admit that it was created for satire purposes. Yet, the propaganda will be definitely effective because only a small portion will notice that this was satire. Most of the viewers (especially from the conservative audience that has been heavily brainwashed for decades to love corporate America and believe whatever comes from the Fox apparatus) will believe whatever transmitted from the ultra-conservative propaganda machine.
But the corporate media of the liberal side have a very big problem right now. It is almost impossible to start an open …

While you've been occupied with that Infowars-banning story, the establishment machine already started a covert censorship operation against leftist independent media

globinfo freexchange
Developments are coming like storm. Just when the prediction that Infowars banning will actually strengthen Alex Jones' popularity became true, it seems that our second 'prophecy' (and prediction by many progressives), also becomes true. According to this, Infowars banning will be used as a blueprint by the establishment machine to shutdown progressive independent media and voices, based on that 'fake news' narrative.
We wrote that a corporate branch of the liberal establishment gave real value to Alex Jones' awful performance, pretending to be the 'anti-establishment' hero - just like Donald Trump - and made him a real hero in the eyes of the ultra-conservative audience that has been brainwashed by his absurd conspiracy theories.
Max Blumenthal speaks with Aaron Mate and gives details about Alex Jones' dark role in the whole story:
Alex Jones has always served establishment priorities. First, by taking the 9/11 truth movement, whi…

‘I knew and approved the assassination of Maduro’ claims TV show host

globinfo freexchange
Peruvian journalist Jaime Bayly claimed in his TV show Bayly, that he was aware and had personally approved the attempted assassination of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.
"My reliable sources have called me and told me 'on Saturday we will assassinate Maduro' and I told them 'do it'," he said in his show and added: "When they asked me if I would condemn their move I replied that if they want I can buy them another drone."
Referring to Maduro, the journalist called him to be on alert. "My friends," he said, "are very capable, they have already scared you and there are more to come".
In a press conference, Maduro wondered how it is possible a host of a show in the US stating openly that he was aware of the attempted assassination.
Info from:
https://info-war.gr/gnoriza-kai-enekrina-ti-dolofonia-madoyro-ischyrizetai-paroysiastis-sto-maiami/

Meanwhile, Venezuelan Attorney General, Tarek William Saab, announced Wedn…

How normal human behavior became a false mental disorder epidemic

globinfo freexchange
In the early nineties, an epidemic of mental disorder was sweeping America and Britain. It had been uncovered by a new system for identifying disorders. Psychiatry had been attacked for relying on the personal and fallible judgement of psychiatrists.
But instead, a new objective method based on checklists had been invented. These listed only the objective symptoms, and deliberately did not enquire into why the individuals felt an anxiety. In the late 80s, nationwide surveys had revealed an incredible picture: more than 50% of Americans suffered from mental disorders.
But at the very same, the drug companies had announced that they had created a new type of drug, called an SSRI, which they claimed, targeted the circuits inside the brain that were causing these malfunctions. The SSRIs were marketed under names like "Prozac". What they did was alter the amounts of serotonin that flowed across the circuit connections within the brain, and they readjusted the …

The US empire was always conducting trade wars that even included deliberately created cartels

globinfo freexchange
Donald Trump is using his trade wars to support the part of the US capital that has heavily lost from free trade globalization, which is more powerful than ever in our days. This is also part of the Trump agenda to persuade Americans for his "patriotic devotion" based on his "America First" slogan.
The reality is that the US empire was always conducting trade wars that included not only tariffs on specific products, but even deliberately created cartels.
In the early 90s the Clinton administration uncritically adopted the neoliberal doctrine from Ronald Reagan and continued the big fraud against the majority of the Americans.
On the one hand, the Clinton administration was selling the big fairy tale of neoliberalism to the American public: free market capitalism would bring prosperity for all through that trickle-down fiasco. And it was translated, as always, in further cuts in public spending - more tax-cuts for the super-rich. On the other hand, …

Retired US army colonel implies that a war with Iran could start with a Vietnam-type false flag operation

globinfo freexchange
After Tucker Carlson brought additional embarrassment to the pseudo-Left warmongering liberals with his anti-war positions, he tried to make Trump appear, more or less, as a kind of peace defender. He was joined by Douglas Macgregor, a retired US Army Colonel.
Both Carlson and Macgregor attempted to blame Trump's warmongering officials and the war lobby for the fact that another devastating war, this time with Iran, becomes more and more possible. The truth is slightly different because Trump has enormous responsibilities for this development too. He was from the start very hostile against Iran, he did everything in his power to kill the Iran nuclear deal and put the most bloodthirsty, anti-Iran neocons in key positions.
Yet, it would be worth to focus on a peculiar statement by Macgregor at the end of this short interview. As he said:
           You and I know that there are lot of people who would welcome conflict with Iran, that's obvious. I think the presi…

Why the rapidly escalating and most disgusting propaganda against Jeremy Corbyn is actually a good sign

failed evolution
In the UK front, the liberal establishment machine is escalating its propaganda campaign against Jeremy Corbyn through that 'anti-Semitic' smearing. In reality, his only 'crime', of course, is that he is too lefty for the totally-occupied-by-neoliberalism Britain.
After the collapse of that ridiculous Skripal case - that ended to an embarrassing fiasco for the Western clowns - the establishment machine in the UK gave up its campaign to smear Jeremy Corbyn as a Russian stooge.
The new 'brilliant strategy' of the establishment tools is simply to paint Jeremy Corbyn as 'anti-Semite'. Which is actually the permanent smearing by the mainstream media and the liberal political center - many have been bought by the Israeli lobby- against anyone who has the ‘audacity’ to condemn the Israeli crimes against Palestinians.
The logical leap in this case is literally ridiculous: if you condemn the Israeli crimes against Palestinians, immediately means tha…

WikiLeaks paper shows France & UK pioneers behind Libya breakup

On March 16, 2016 WikiLeaks launched a searchable archive for over 30 thousand emails & email attachments sent to and from Hillary Clinton's private email server while she was Secretary of State. The 50,547 pages of documents span from 30 June 2010 to 12 August 2014. 7,570 of the documents were sent by Hillary Clinton. The emails were made available in the form of thousands of PDFs by the US State Department as a result of a Freedom of Information Act request. More PDFs were made available on February 29, 2016, and a set of additional 995 emails was imported up to February 2, 2018.
globinfo freexchange
A letter from Clintons' top advisor Sidney Blumenthal to Hillary Clinton in early March, 2012, reveals that two of the Western neocolonial powers, France and UK, were trying to breakup Libya in order to secure a privileged place upon the Libyan corpse for their big companies. It appears that both Sarkozy and Cameron, as well as their intelligence services, were working closely…

The financial system of chaos: no one can tell the 'when', 'where' and ‘how’ of the next financial meltdown

globinfo freexchange
In previous article we wrote that, the last mutation of capitalism, which has started about four decades ago, appears to contain the tools of its final demolition. Financial capitalism, accompanied with the corresponding neoliberal ideology, created a deeply unequal and unstable system.
Another study by The Democracy Collaborative comes to confirm that we live in the most unstable times, where financial crises become more frequent and more devastating. According to the study:
It appears that, contrary to the great moderation theory, the occurrence of financial crises has been accelerating in the neoliberal era.
An important 2001 paper by a number of economists from Rutgers, Berkeley, and the World Bank found that "since 1973 crisis frequency has been double that of the Bretton Woods and classical gold standard periods and is rivaled only by the crisis-ridden 1920s and 1930s. History thus confirms that there is something different and disturbing about our age.&qu…