Nick Dearden vs. the “vultures”

Yesterday we met Nick Dearden, head of an anti-capitalist British group called Global Justice Now and frequent contributor to the Guardian. As recently as January of this year, Dearden described Venezuela as a “beacon of hope.” He’s also blamed the poverty of countries like the Democratic Republic of the Congo on American “vulture funds.”

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Nick Dearden

The word vulture appears frequently in Dearden’s work. In a 2011 piece, he wrung his hands over the economic plight of Argentina, which, again, he blamed not on the Kirchner regime’s massive corruption and financial irresponsibility but on the creditors who actually dared to expect the Buenos Aires government to honor its debts. Dearden gave a thumbs-up to Argentina’s 2001 default (which “was undoubtedly the right thing to do”) and slammed creditors (a.k.a. “vulture funds”) for refusing to walk away meekly and let Kirchner & co. screw them over. He further accused Argentina’s main creditor, NML Capital, of “harassing” Argentina – by which he meant that NML, in order to try to collect the money it was owed, had had to take the Kirchner government to court .

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Cristina Fernández de Kirchner

Meanwhile, the closest he would come to admitting the deep, endemic problems afflicting the Kirchner regime was to say that “Everything is not perfect in Argentina to this day.” He acknowledged that Argentina shouldn’t have borrowed such massive sums in the first place – but instead of criticizing the Kirchner regime for taking out loans, he blamed the banks for making them. Fighting poverty, Dearden asserted, requires profound systemic change: “The financial system…needs to be directed for the benefit of people everywhere.” And part of this change is that “[c]reditors must accept the downside when investments go wrong just as they happily accept the upside when they go right.” Meaning, apparently, that when debtors choose not to pay their debts, creditors should just shrug and walk away.

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Joseph E. Stiglitz

We’ve written at length about Joseph E. Stiglitz, the economist, who, among other things, is a big U.N. booster, championing the idea that the U.S. and other countries should effectively hand over their sovereignty to the international organization. Dearden is in the same camp, contrasting the G8 – which he views as a gang of imperialist, colonialist bullies that “should by rights be dead and buried” – with the U.N. itself, which he see as a compassionate force for the world’s poorer and less powerful countries.

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Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann

In a 2009 article for the Guardian, Dearden cited Stiglitz approvingly and at length on the need for thoroughgoing “reform” of “the international trade and financial system,” including extensive debt cancellation, a “new reserve currency to replace the dollar.” Dearden also quoted, with hearty agreement, the then-president of the General Assembly, Nicaraguan priest Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann, to the effect that “[t]he anti-values of greed, individualism and exclusion should be replaced by solidarity, common good and inclusion” and that our “profit-centred economy” should give way to “a people-centred economy.”

Presumably like the terrific, robust one in Nicaragua. Or Venezuela, that “beacon of hope.”

Joe Stiglitz, Soros “point man”

Yesterday we started looking at Joseph Stiglitz, the massively influential Columbia University economist who derides “American-style capitalism” while preaching government intervention as the key to prosperity. We ended up by stating that while Stiglitz has been called a liberal, it really makes more sense to call him a socialist. Why?

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The Socialist International Commission on Global Financial Issues. Stiglitz can be seen along the right side of the table, leaning forward, between the windows

Well, to begin with, quite simply, he’s a card-carrying member of the Socialist International. In 2008, he chaired a Socialist International commission charged with “tackling the global financial crisis.” The commission’s other members included not just socialists but out-and-out Communists from around the world.

UNStiglitz is also a fervent enthusiast for the UN, a supporter for a dramatic increase in its power, and an advocate for the view that the U.S. and other sovereign states should be subordinated to that power. He’s one of those people who believe, perversely, that when you scrape together the (at best) dicey representatives of a hundred or so corrupt, poor, unfree, incompetently managed nations and pack them into a building on First Avenue in Manhattan, they magically turn into a body of wise, noble, upright sages who are equipt to restructure the world order – and reorder the world economy. Among the UN officials with whom Stiglitz has closely collaborated is Miguel D’Escoto, a hard-line Marxist who was foreign minister for the Communist Sandinista regime in Nicaragua, who won the USSR’s Lenin Peace Prize, who’s an outspoken enemy of both the U.S. and Israel, who has publicly hugged Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – and who, a few years back, appointed Stiglitz “to chair a high-level U.N. task force to review the global financial system.”

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Miguel D’Escoto

As great as Stiglitz’s enthusiasm for the UN is his contempt for the International Monetary Fund. In his 2002 book Globalization and Its Discontents, according to Irwin M. Stelzer, Stiglitz “almost equates the consequences of policy failures by the International Monetary Fund with the consequences of Nazi Germany’s final solution.” What, in Stiglitz’s view, needs to be done to fix the IMF? Easy: give more power to the African countries that are the chief beneficiaries of its largesse. As Stelzer put it, “in a perfect world it would be sensible to confer more power on the recipients of IMF assistance so that the funds might be deployed more effectively. But we don’t live in that world. Ours is one in which kleptocratic African regimes impoverish their nations with a combination of misrule, military adventures, and policies that discourage inward investment.”

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George Soros

Then there’s Stiglitz’s connection to George Soros, the far-left multibillionaire who is actively seeking to use his wealth to transform the world – and, not least, as we’ve seen in previous posts on this site, diminish American power and American freedom. Soros, as Cliff Kincaid has observed, “wants to phase out the U.S. dollar as the international reserve currency and bring the U.S. into a system of international socialism, with new and more powerful global agencies deciding our economic and financial fate.” And who is Soros’s “point man” on this alarming project? None other than Joe Stiglitz – who, as head of a Soros-funded NGO called the Initiative for Policy Dialogue, is fighting for the institution of “a new international currency” and of an international taxation system.

Yes, you read that right: an international taxation system.

More tomorrow.