(Reviewed by JD Jung)
The “integration of the global economy” began over five centuries ago with European colonization, but has accelerated over the past thirty years with the increase of technology to move goods and capital. This has not taken place without consequences.
Wayne Ellwood explains through recent history and statistics how large corporations make decisions to benefit shareholders and not the social, environmental or economic well-being of the underdeveloped countries involved. Instead of investing in the production of real goods and services, speculators make money from money in the global economy with little interest in or ties to the local communities.
Ellwood provides a tutorial on the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the World Trade Organization (WTO). He shows the effects of deregulated and privatized trade and explains how poorest countries pay enormous debt to lender countries. Attempts to address the causes of poverty, violence and growing inequality have been abandoned. There is little concern for the environment and people.
His commentary endorses Keynesian (demand-side) economic theory, while many developed countries— especially the United States— continue to rely on supply-side, “Reaganomics”.
As an American, I know the unfortunate situation that “trickle down” economics has led us to as a country (that is, it doesn’t work), but it was a real eye-opener to see how it affects the underdeveloped world. As I was reading, I felt helpless as our government officials and those who elect them just “don’t get it” or just don’t care, as forces for deregulation increase power for multinational corporations and financial institutions. I don’t see a change in thought coming soon.
I do see a spark of light at the end of the tunnel, as Ellwood gives specific solutions to this global crisis.
I recommend The No-Nonsense Guide to Globalization so people can understand how we got to this point which has been a cause of poverty and violence throughout the world. Hopefully they will realize what is at stake if we don’t change our policies.