lost time

Geez. I have been missing a lot of days lately. School is out for summer (for me at least) and I have been doing absolutley nothing productive. I did finish reading John Perkins Confessions of an Economic Hit Man which i found enjoyable.

For those who have not heard of this book, it is the story of a man who was employed by a corporate boss who had intimate ties with the US federal government. Perkins spent almost two decades working for this company, performing electricity load forecasting in developing countries. Sounds harmless eh? But what Perkins reveals is the covert way companies like his create debt in developing countries like Peru and Ecuador.

As he tells it, his job was to manufacture tremendous economic and electricity growth rates for the country in question. These forecasting models were then presented to aid agencies like the Inter-American Development Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Based on these forecasts these agencies would then loan huge amounts of money to the host country for infrastructure improvements and such. These monies were then used by host countries to hire American firms to build, train, and/or maintain all of this new material. Since the predictions were inflated these companies made huge amounts of money building power plants and other structures and the host countries were left with huge loans that were impossible to pay back because the economic growth never materialized. The federal government would then use the loan situation to their advantage by “convincing” the defaulting states to go along with American foreign policy goals.

Good story.

’til next time

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