Joseph Stiglitz Left's Favorite U.S. Nobel Economist
by Andres Oppenheimer
U.S. Nobel laureate
Stiglitz, who won the Nobel prize in economics in 2001 and a year later wrote Globalization and its Discontents, is not backtracking from his earlier assertions that the
"I'm a critic of the way certain versions of capitalism have been developed,'' the
He added that many Americans are having second thoughts about the U.S. economic model, and that there are growing concerns that "special interests are having a great deal of influence in stopping reforms that are needed.''
"It's a kind of corporate welfare ,'' he added. "So what I've actually been arguing is for a purer form of market economy, but one which focuses protection not on corporations, but on people.''
But Stiglitz, who has been given red-carpet welcomes by Venezuelan President
"The IMF is much better than it was in the past, absolutely. It has changed in many ways, and I think everybody needs to recognize it,'' he told me. "It has said that it's going to give money to certain countries, at good rates, without the kind of conditionality that turned recessions into depressions.''
When I asked him what Latin American countries should do to grow and reduce poverty faster, he said that they have to become more competitive in the global economy.
And contrary to many of his fans in the hard left, he seems to think that globalization is here to stay.
"One hidden aspect of this crisis is that while it is a financial crisis, it is an economic crisis: it marks a point in the transformation of the global economy, a shift in comparative advantages,'' he said. "If Latin America is going to prosper, it has to upgrade its skills, improve its technology to become more competitive in the global economy.''
Why? Because the pie of the world economy is shrinking as a result of the crisis, and there will be greater competition among developing countries to sell their goods to the wealthiest markets, he said.
"The pie is shrinking, and people are competing fiercely for market share,'' he said. "We are moving now from manufacturing into a service economy, and this crisis may be a global demarcation point. And that means that countries really have to prepare for globalization have the skills with which to compete in a global marketplace.''
Citing the case of
He added, "
My opinion: Stiglitz is often taken out of context by Chávez, Kirchner and other populists who make him sound as if he were anti-globalization. Judging from what I heard from him, he's not.
He knows that world poverty has come down from 40 to 19 percent of the planet's population over the past two decades, since
Childhood Tragedy May Affect President Rafael Correa's Policies
by Andres Oppenheimer
I'm not a great fan of using psychological profiles to explain people's political leanings, but a report on Ecuador's rabidly anti-U.S. President Rafael Correa, which I read during a visit to Colombia last week, left me wondering.
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