Sunday, November 30, 2008

And Larry Summers as ..."Treasury Secretary"...actually head of National Economic Council

The man who said that Africa was "Under polluted", who implemented neoliberal shock therapy for Russia. Mark Ames reports in the excellent "Larry Summers: a suicidal choice"article in "The eXile" that Summers was put in charge of Lithuania's transition from socialism to capitalism and that within that time period the suicide rate of the country doubled and the Communists were reelected, kicking Summers and company out of the country. I didn't know that it was Summers himself who oversaw Russia's dismemberment and the selling of its industries to the highest bidder....which lead to economic collapse and the average lifespan of male Russians fall more than that of any industrialized country in the post-World War II era.

I remember when the "Under Polluted" memo came out. The argument that Summers and a partner advanced was that because Africa wasn't as polluted yet as Asia or North America it could use the lure of unregulated pollution to get business to invest there. This would lead to economic development and a raise in the standard of living. I think they specifically mentioned dumps for first world toxins as one of the potential growth industries.

This is the man that Obama is appointing Secretary of the Treasury. The Secretary of the Treasury is the most important appointed economic figure next to the Chairman of the Federal Reserve. There are other advisory bodies and teams, like the team Obama has tapped Paul Volcker, destroyer of the early '80s U.S. economy, to head, but the Secretary of the Treasury has executive power.

Change we can't believe Obama is initiating

*on edit: looks like Summers is heading the National Economic Council.

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