Monday, April 16, 2007

Wolfowitz Ambushed, Financial Times Shows its Cravenness

My inclination to give capitalism two cheers instead of three sometimes puts me at odds with the WSJ editorial page. However, no media outlet has followed the story regarding alleged improprieties by World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz as carefully, and has exposed the cravenness of Wolfowitz's enemies with greater energy as the Journal. Two recent editorials (here and here) tell the story of how Wolfowitz properly disclosed his personal relationship with a bank staff member and followed recommendations regarding the situation of her employment. Efforts to oust him amid allegations of improprieties stem from disagreement over his anticorruption campaign. Apparently, Wolfowitz has the temerity to think the bank's loans shouldn't wind up in corrupt officials' personal accounts, and should actually help the poor.

Kudos to the WSJ as well for remarking how cynical the press corps is in thinking that Wolfowitz must be guilty without reading relevant documents. The Journal doesn't name names, but I will. The Financial Times has been particularly spineless in running multiple editorials against Wolfowitz while displaying no evidence of having read the documents pertaining to the case. Europe's leading business paper is so hot to pile on an ambushed American World Bank President that it has neglected to read exculpatory documents and is willing to defend the miserable status quo, whereby wealthy countries line the pockets of corrupt officials in the developing world.


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