We are thrilled at Mr. Wolfowitz's nomination to head the World Bank.
Superficially, this may look like a replay of Lyndon Johnson's appointment of the then Secretary of Defence Robert McNamara. In reality, this is quite different.
Mr. McNamara went to the Bank having lost the Vietnam war. Mr. Wofowitz goes there with his neo-conservative ideas in full ascendence.
Our hope is that he will now force the bank to emerge an instrument for revolutionary reform in third world kleptocracies -- rather than the currently prevailing "lets accept the ugly status quo and work with it" approach.
The only sustainable path to development is the hard work and initiative of a free people in a free economy. To them the bank must find ways to offer a hand up, replacing the hand outs it currently offers to their corrupt governments. Mr. Wolfowitz uniquely can make the bank do this.
The liberal "multilateral" establishment is now protesting -- well, this only publicly unmasks the sad truth long whispered about -- that multilateral agencies are peopled by liberals (which is fine) who are pushing their liberal agenda with US taxpayer Dollars (which is not fine).
There are alternate voices and other ideas than the failed development orthodoxies of the past. How will we hear them if the status-quoist continue their knee-jerk intolerance of ideas and people that don't fit their fatally narrow tunnel vision?
Its good that, with Mr. Wolfowitz's appointment, we'll finally have this debate. When the dust clears, either the bank will shape up, or it will wither away. Either way, the world will come out ahead.
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