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Patrick Bond Suggests New World Bank President Jim Yong Kim Should Resign

Politics of Climate JusticeWriting for Counterpunch, political economist and environmental activist Patrick Bond berates the World Bank for its policies, which he believes have a deleterious effect on the poorest in the world. He suggests that its newly appointed president, Jim Yong Kim, should simply resign, if he is to remain an effective agent for change. Bond is the author of the book Politics of Climate Justice, among others.

The situation for the many constituencies hopeful about Jim Yong Kim’s ‘election’ as World Bank president is comparable to early 2009.

Barack Obama entered a US presidency suffering institutional crisis and faced an immediate fork in the road: make the change he promised, or sell out his constituents’ interests by bailing out Wall Street and legitimizing a renewed neoliberal attack on society and ecology, replete with undemocratic, unconstitutional practices suffused with residual militarism. As president-elect, surrounding himself with the likes of Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, Paul Volcker, William Gates, Rahm Emmanuel and Hillary Clinton, it was obvious which way he would go.

Unlike the corporate-oriented politician Obama, by all accounts Jim Kim is a genuine progressive, a wunderkind Harvard-trained physician and anthropologist with a terrific track record of public health management and advocacy, especially against AIDS and TB. So unlike predecessor Robert Zoellick, who in the service of power broke everything he touched since the late 1980s,[1] Kim spent the last quarter century building an extraordinary institution, the Boston NGO Partners in Health, and improving another by working at its top level, the ultra-bureaucratic World Health Organisation in Geneva.

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