At Annual Meetings, IMF/World Bank Concerned About America Turning In On itself

At the IMF/World Bank Annual Meetings in Washington D.C., Ksenija Pavlovic Mcateer observes the world leaders remain concerned about political turmoil and America turning in on itself. 

At the IMF World Bank Annual Meetings, the world came together. Brought from all continents and nations, the leaders of the world  came together in the American capital, Washington D.C., to exchange views and look for points of collaboration instead of division.

Happening against the backdrop of Trump’s isolationist doctrine,“America First,” even if the Annual Meetings failed to achieve anything in economic terms, they managed to reestablish competence, global solidarity and basic decency with the words: “thank you and have a nice day.”

As someone who regularly experiences the rudeness and hostility of the Trump administration, including the security officers treating the press and visitors at the White House like cattle, what struck me was that as the IMF/World Bank Security guarding all the world leaders and ministers let world leaders, ministers, and everyone else through the security check, they offered an ”have a nice day.” What a concept. The culture of any institution starts at the entrance, and the White House does not have much to show. 

While Trump claims that the American economy has never been better, it is also true that the damage he is doing on the foundational values of American society is going to damage the future economic picture. Trump cannot be trusted. Today, he will tell you one thing, the next minute, he will pretend it never happened. Because of the gray mode in which he operates, trust in America will erode. 

Staying the course

Failure to act on global policy front coupled with structural weaknesses in the global economy may lead to a new financial crisis. David Malpass, World Bank Group President issued the following statement on the 2019 World Bank/IMF Annual Meetings: 

“Discussions this week have been focused on challenges in the global economy. Growth is slowing, investment is sluggish, manufacturing activity is soft, and trade is weakening. Climate change and fragility are making poor countries more vulnerable. But the good news is, broad-based growth is still possible.

My message to our shareholders has been simple: The choices you make now matter. With the right mix of policies and structural reforms, countries can unleash growth that is both sustainable and broadly shared across all segments of society.  This is especially true in emerging markets and developing countries, where well-designed reforms can deliver meaningful gains."

It is morally unacceptable for America to stay politically dissociated from global challenges. We live in a world where 7.8% of the global population live in extreme poverty. According to the WHO’s estimate,  200 million people spend more than a quarter of their income on healthcare. What’s Trump's public policy and more importantly, where does his administration stand on the major political issues such as poverty, education, fight against terrorism and climate change?

America deserves more

America must thrive, and it is impossible for that to happen if Trump is closing it off and if he makes enemies instead of friends. What president, what prime minister, what politician, except for Trump, goes on twitter to upload a plethora of insults about American military officers who served under different presidents with all they had? What economic and trade policy can be made by caprice? Who wants a trade war instead of win-win cooperation in the 21st century?

America needs to engage more constructively with the world. The current, overall frame of reference the Trump administration lives by is “Get over it”. That is not how the world operates and humankind deserves better than these primitive, cruel, absolutist approaches, in the 21st century.  Despotism cannot be the modus operandi of the Land of the Free. Trump should be paying closer attention. 

There is no one who understands what he is doing that can approve of him. It’s our job to increase the level of public discourse and explain to the people he has brainwashed what is going on.

Trump is a jewel thief, and his crown is American democracy.  America deserves more. It will take many brave hearts and courageous fighters to save America from destruction, to keep the light of our freedoms shining on.

***

Read also: The White House Diary: I Did Not Sign Up To Live In Trump's World

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