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Unholy Trinity: The IMF, World Bank and WTO, Second Edition / Edition 2

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Overview

Who really runs the global economy? The triad of "governance institutions"—The IMF, the World Bank and the WTO. Globalization hugely increased these undemocratic institutions’ power, drastically affecting the livelihoods of peoples across the world with their particular kind of neoliberal capitalism. Their 'Washington Consensus' proposed that poverty was to be ended by increasing inequality. This new edition of Unholy Trinity is completely updated and revised. It argues neoliberal global capitalism has produced an unstable global economy, rife with speculation and structurally prone to crises. Indeed the crisis is now so severe that governance will become impossible. The IMF is in disgrace, the WTO can hardly meet and the World Bank survives as a global philanthropist. Is this the end for the Unholy Trinity?

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise for the first edition:

"This is a terrific book...It is politically committed, theoretically sophisticated, analytically incisive, empirically rich, thoroughly engaged, and full of devastating one-liners that greatly enliven its reading."—Roger Lee, Economic Geography

"This is a great book"—David Harvey, CUNY

"Unholy Trinity provides an important history lesson of how the IMF, World Bank, and WTO were twisted from their original mandates to serve the interests of corporate globalization."—John Cavanagh, Director, Institute for Policy Studies

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781848132528
  • Publisher: Zed Books
  • Publication date: 7/7/2009
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 754,045
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard Peet is Professor of Geography at Clark University.

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Table of Contents

Globalism and Neoliberalism
• Bretton Woods: Emergence of a Global Economic Regime
• The International Monetary Fund
• The World Bank
• The World Trade Organization
• Global Financial Capitalism and the Crisis of Governance

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 6, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Fine critique of the IFIs

    Richard Peet. Professor of Geography at Clark University, Worcester, Massachusetts, has written a splendid study of the unelected, US-run international financial institutions (IFIs).

    He surveys current globalism, the Bretton Woods agreement, which set up the key IFIs, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation, and their roles. He ends by looking at finance capitalism and the present crisis.

    The big question is, what is the link between the IFIs and the state of the world's economies and societies? Jubilee 2000 estimated that 7 million African, Asian and Latin American children die every year as a direct result of the burden of debt repayment. The IFIs ensure that the world's workers and peasants pay the debts incurred by their rulers to US and EU banks.

    The IFIs are bad for us all. Countries do better when they ignore them. Peet notes, "In September 2003, Argentina announced a temporary default to the IMF, until the Fund backed down. The result was rapid economic recovery." Argentina's economy grew at least 8.5 percent annually from 2003 to 2007.

    The IFIs lie to try to justify their rule. Peet writes, "IMF projections of future economic growth were consistently wrong for Argentina, overestimating 'projections' of future growth when Argentina was following Fund prescriptions, and underestimating them when the country was in dispute with the Fund over debt renegotiation."

    The IFIs prettify capitalism. Peet cites a US Government Accounting Office report: "From 1991-2001, out of 134 recessions that occurred in developing countries, the [IMF's] World Economic Outlook correctly forecast only 15, while actually predicting an increase in GDP in the other 119 recessions, including major ones leading to the Mexican and Asian crises."

    Huge incomes for the mega-rich have produced a crisis-ridden, speculation-driven and unstable global economy. Peet ends by asking, what it to be done? He suggests, "speculation should be replaced by planning as organizer of the economy." He concludes, "We find hope for the future in the construction of alternative economic models in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia and Cuba."

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