Interesting article on the debt-ceiling debate. Unlike most of the alarmist presentations in the television media, AlterNet actually gathers information on the potential and current consequences of the debt-ceiling talks. The article argues that the debt-ceiling discussion is merely a ruse to force the collapse of downward wealth redistribution in favor of upward wealth extraction. This really is a serious strike against the major narratives in the television media.
It is clear that austerity measures are just beginning…
Austerity is an economic policy that limits spending and eliminates public services with the purpose of reducing national budget deficits. In the United States, the plans to reduce or eliminate social security, Medicaid, unemployment benefits, education funding, and other programs are examples of austerity policy in the United States. When the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank gave Latin American countries loans, austerity measures were stipulated, this forced austerity is known as structural adjustment. Therefore austerity in developing countries is often attached to neoliberalism.
In Bolivia, neoliberalism and its austere social model, were overthrown by the “Water War” that began in 2000. The “Water War” was a rebellion against privatizing the public water company. Privatization of the water system was an austerity measure because the public water company burdened the national debt and was an expensive service, so in an effort to reduce the deficit, the program was sacrificed.