If the bien-pensants are against it, you can be pretty sure it's a good idea. The Wall St Journal (subscriber-only) explains why Paul Wolfowitz is an inspired choice to head the World Bank:

The Bank faces plenty of challenges. It is a dysfunctional organization. It has hundreds of programs but little understanding of which are effective, where they work well, and why. At present, it does not need a development expert to lead it. It has in its ranks some of the most knowledgeable members of that tribe. What it lacks is effective leadership -- someone who asks for, and gets, answers to critical questions, and who marshals the Bank's resources to achieve a limited number of important goals.

Development assistance works best when local officials commit to making it work. The success stories are rarely, if at all, the result of outside experts leading the way. The critical word is "incentives." If a local leader wants to improve living standards and the quality of life, the Bank can provide support and technical assistance. It must give up the myth that it can negotiate some conditions on its loans and expect them to be implemented. It doesn't happen unless local leaders choose to make it happen. Often they take the money and run from reforms.

|||Clive|||http://clivedavis.blogspot.com/2005/03/wolfie-if-bien-pensants-are-against-it.html|||3/18/2005 05:29:00 pm|||||||||