Haiti: "The people do not buy liberty and democracy at the market"
by Kevin Pina/Haiti Information Project
Saturday, Aug. 08, 2009 at 11:01 AM
Not unlike recent events in Honduras, it resulted in a president being taken out of his home against his will under the cloak of darkness and forced onto a plane as the killing began in earnest to insure the success of the plotters.
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That the Lavalas political movement opposed the neo-liberal economic model of development that is currently unfolding in Haiti today is without question. The insistence of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank on structural adjustment that included eliminating import and export tariffs, selling off State-owned industries and businesses, a low minimum wage and an obsessive reliance on the private sector as the motor for economic development was called the "death plan."
The major obstacle to the plan of the International Financial Institutions (IFIs) for Haiti was democracy itself in the form of the Lavalas movement representing the interests of the majority of the poor and the president they elected twice, Jean Bertrand Aristide. The government refused to privatize key industries like the Telephone Company (Teleco) and the Electrical company (EDH) and while the IFIs also insisted that social programs be cut, the Fanmi Lavalas party would take profits from these State-owned businesses to invest in a universal literacy program and to provide millions of subsidized meals for the poor. For the first time in history Haiti had a safety net in place to insure against widespread hunger and malnutrition. Over the objections of the IFIs and Haiti's predatory economic elite, the minimum wage was doubled twice during Aristide's first and second terms for the lowest paid work force in the hemisphere. Not so coincidentally, both of Aristide's terms were cut short by a coup.
FULL ARTICLE: http://haitiaction.net/News/HIP/8_7_9/8_7_9.html