Format: video with audio, printable comic (PDF)
Running time: approx. 3 min 17 sec.
Summary: Bunny tells Mimi about how the World Bank and IMF can be used as extremely useful tools for the cultivation of Third Word poverty. Bonus: words & phrases such as "structural adjustment", "austerity programs", and "conditionalities" are not used in this episode!
The Pinky Show presents: Banked Into Submission (The Globalizationist's Guide to Developing Poverty). Narrated by Pinky.
Mimi: I'm kind of having mixed feelings about all this aid we're giving away to these Third World countries... I know they're desperately poor, but can we really afford all this charity?
Bunny: Umm... Let me explain something to you. The way we have the system set up, we can't afford not to give them 'aid'!
First of all, take a look at who controls the World Bank & IMF - the U.S., the Western Europeans, Japan - it's basically the old colonial powers. Obviously that's not coincidental. After decolonization, we all had to find new, more subtle ways to extract wealth from our former colonies...
...People with power aren't just going to wake up one morning and say, "Gee, I feel like giving away all my power today!"
After several hundred years of exploitation, one thing is certain: we have money and they don't. And we can use this rather enormous head start to cultivate long-term dependency. We encourage them to take out loans, then tie the acceptance of those loans to certain 'conditions'. Believe me - these people are so hungry they'll basically agree to anything!
We tell them if they want the money, our corporations get to go in and work their people for pennies. We want zero environmental controls. We give ourselves massive 'development' projects - they pay us with the money we just loaned them! It's also good to steer their economy away from self-sufficiency; it's better for us when their productivity is tied to a 'global economy' and geared towards making nothing but cheap exports.
If the poor people resist, just deal with a minority elite within their country. Give them kickbacks. Or replace their government if you have to, it doesn't really matter. Because even if the people overthrow that government later on, they still have to repay their debt! And when the interested on that debt exceeds the country's entire GDP, that's when you know you really own their asses!
Mimi: That's so cool... Isn't this pretty much how banks operate in the ghettos? I never realized it could also work so good on a global scale...
Pinky: Is anybody watching these guys?
drawings & illustrations: Pinky
music: Erik Satie, Gymnopedie 1 (stock music, processed by Bunny). RFCM Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Dr. Keith J. Salmon.
sound effects: Bunny
other images: titles by Pinky
a note regarding the formal inspiration of this episode:
This comic was inspired a comic by one of my favorite artists, Charles M. Schulz. The original sequence has Lucy drawing on Charlie Brown's head as she explains how globes work to Linus. ~p.