“Recall the face of the poorest and weakest man you have seen, and ask yourself if this step you contemplate is going to be any use to him.”
The flood of elegiac articles on former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher is in itself a good measure of how we have all become Thatcherites without realising it. Only those who are not graced by a young age can see how the world and politics have changed so deeply since her days that it is correct to call her a “great revolutionary”.
World Bank President Jim Kim has unveiled a series of new institutional goals aimed at ending extreme poverty by 2030 and focusing on the promotion of “shared prosperity” – increasing the incomes of the poorest 40 percent in each country while placing increased focus on dealing with climate change.
A leaked copy of a major World Bank strategy paper, outlining a new institutional approach to tackling poverty through 2030, has worried some humanitarian groups and anti-poverty advocates, who say the bank has failed to suggest mechanisms that would allow it to adequately track or deal with growing levels of income inequality around the world.
For those who think that Occupy Wall Street, the Indignados in Spain, the World Social Forum and the numerous manifestations of protest worldwide are expressions without concrete outcomes, the result of the Swiss referendum on Mar. 3 on capping the salaries and bonuses of banks executives should make them think twice.
Chile's positive economic performance in 2012 is not enough to boost President Sebastián Piñera's waning popularity, as many Chileans believe the country's much-touted growth does nothing to compensate or solve decades of accumulated injustices, several analysts told IPS.