18 June, 2018

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Sri Lanka Has Lost Economic Sovereignty, Target Of Neoliberal Economic Hitmen: Tamara Kunanayakam

By W.A Wijewardena

Dr. W.A Wijewardena

Newly formed SLAPE to generate public discussion

Tamara Kunanayakam, formerly a UN official and Diplomat and presently, civil and human rights activist cum public voice maker, presented last week a well-researched paper on the theme ‘Dynamic Inter-relationships among Economic Policy, International Relations And National Sovereignty’ before a fully-packed audience in Colombo.

The event had jointly been organised by the newly formed Sri Lanka Association for Political Economy, abbreviated as SLAPE, Colombo University’s Economics Department and its Economics Students Association. A summary of her presentation has been published in Sunday Times.

Loss of economic sovereignty

Kunanayakam’s thesis was that Sri Lanka has lost economic sovereignty, implying that it cannot decide on its economic destiny anymore. Her accusation was in general levelled against all previous administrations, but, in those accusations, a larger weight was placed on the present Good Governance Unity Government. Even then, the accusation was primarily on the Prime Minister’s side of the government and not on the President’s side. All the examples she had documented related to decisions taken by the Prime Minister and his leading Cabinet colleagues.

Tamara Kunanayakam

Formation of Mont Pelerin Society 

She had laboriously collected material relating to her thesis and analysed it carefully, highlighting its relevance to present Sri Lanka’s case, before synthesising that Sri Lanka has already lost its economic sovereignty. She traced Sri Lanka’s present problem back to the Mont Pelerin Society or MPS, formed in 1947.

The reference here is to the formalisation of liberal economic thinking by a group of leading economists in the mid-twentieth century, at a meeting in Mont Pelerin in Switzerland. Though Kunanayakam named Friedrich Hayek as the man behind MPS, it was not a creation by a single man. There were other leading economists of the day such as Frank Knight, Ludwig von Mises, George Stigler and Milton Friedman, in addition to the philosopher Karl Popper. Their aim was to promote, among others, the freedom of expression and free market economy system. Their aim was to create a forum of free exchange of views, and not to function as a propagandist movement. In their view, the happiness of mankind arises from its freedom to do what it feels as desirable and MPS would, therefore, look into all areas where such freedom is restricted or violated.

Three of the above, Hayek, Stigler and Friedman, were Nobel laureates in economics, while one of them, Knight, who had taught Friedman and Stigler, was the guru of two of the Nobel laureates. The non-economist Karl Popper is generally regarded as the leading figure who pronounced the foundations of scientific inquiry in the 20th century. Hence, by any standard, the initial founders of MPS were not greenhorns but giants in the science of economics in the 20th century. Hence, Kunanayakam should be commended for her bold attempt at critiquing such a society of giants.

Influence of Mont Pelerin Society on world nations

According to Kunanayakam, it is this MPS which has influenced the thought leaders in Sri Lanka when it comes to deciding on appropriate economic policies for the country. The theoretical basis which these thought leaders use is the neoliberal economic thinking. Neoliberal economic thinking advocates free movement of capital from developed countries to developing countries. It then calls for the preparation of the developing country economies to accommodate such capital funds.

This policy package consists of shrinking the government sector, privatisation of the state enterprises, deregulation and liberalisation of economies, and introduction of free and open trade and external sector policies. Multilateral lending institutions, specially the International Monetary Fund or IMF, use their lending powers to enforce this policy package on developing country economies. They then influence the local thought leaders to influence their governments to go for such neoliberal economic policies.

Kunanayakam had identified two such Sri Lankan institutions, which have been the leading advocates of neoliberal policies in the country. One is the Institute of Policy Studies or IPS, established with the Dutch Government’s financial and technical support in 1989 as an independent policy think-tank. The other is the recently established Advocata Institute, which seeks to accomplish the same neoliberal mission as the Fraser Institute in Canada and Atlas Institute in USA. To Kunanayakam, the appointment of the neoliberal economist Razeen Sally as the head of both these institutes is a proof of her point.

Third-Worldism to counter western economic ideas

The line of arguments made by Kunanayakam is not new. Before her, many Third World country thinkers like Egypt born Samir Amin, German-American economist Andre Gunder Frank, and American sociologist Immanuel Wallerstein, have written on the capitalist exploitation of Third World countries by the Western economic and political powers. The type of ideology propounded by these thinkers is loosely called ‘Third-Worldism’. The Venezuelan journalist, Carlos Rangel, in a book published in 1985 and titled ‘Third World Ideology and Western Reality’ (translated into English as Third-Worldism and hence, credited for coining the term), listed the main features of Third World ideology as follows:

nFirst, the development of the Western world and the underdevelopment of the Third World are mainly attributed to the old colonial rule exercised by the developed West over the Third World countries;

nSecond, there is no way for achieving wealth and prosperity by one country without harming another country;

nThird, the developed world exploits the developing countries by selling their industrial products at inflated prices and buying the primary products of the developing world at suppressed prices;

nFourth, the external debt is a way for both the Western world and the multilateral lending organisations, like IMF, World Bank, ADB, etc., to exercise neo-colonialism on the Third World countries;

nFifth, there is a cultural colonialism on the Third World countries through downgrading the local and indigenous practices and values and superimposing the values of Western culture on them, and

nSixth, the brain drain from the Third World countries to the West is another way of robbing the intellectual wisdom of the former by the latter, thereby denying the developing world the opportunity to attain its true growth potential.

Rescue of dead Third-Worldism by national leaders 

These are of course debatable representations. They are also not substantiated by real world economic data and facts. Yet, they continued to dominate the thinking of Third World thought leaders, until the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the simultaneous dissolution of the Soviet Bloc that removed the Second World from the scene. Since the Third-Worldists drew much of their ideology from the Second World, the collapse of the Second World saw the collapse of Third-Worldism too. However, in some parts of the world, political leaders continued to propagate Third-Worldism to protect their power base till recently.

In the case of the Middle-East, that too saw its demise with the revolutions that took place in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, removing those national leaders from power. But in Asia, especially in Sri Lanka, leaders and opinion makers still cling onto Third-Worldist ideology by taking a pro-nation and anti-neoliberal stand. Their opposition is then extended to any foreign nation that tries to harness the available economic opportunities in the country. Any concession given to them is viewed as a gross betrayal of national interests. Any such attempt is viewed as a conspiracy perpetrated against the nation.

Conspiracy theories are a galore

Throughout history, mankind has been susceptible to the claims of conspiracies perpetrated against them by many unseen enemies. One important conspiracy is that foreigners are always bent on destroying their culture, economy and civilisations. In the past, the enemy was the rich West. Now, in addition to the rich West, growing Asian economic powers in Asia are also considered enemies. This is demonstrated by popular sentiments often expressed against the Indians and the Chinese in contemporary Sri Lanka.

Economic nationalism 

This is again fertile ground for breeding economic nationalism by crafty national leaders in developing countries.

Economic nationalism rejects the market and preaches the virtues of self-sufficiency in everything. At household levels, irrespective of the nature of occupation in which one is engaged for a living, self-sufficiency in food is promoted as a way to beat the rising cost of living and perceived irregularities of the market.

But, the old adage is that ‘Jack of all trades is Master of none’ and therefore, when one devotes his time for an activity for which he has no speciality, he loses on every count, because his outcome becomes inefficient. For instance, if a manufacturer of brass fixtures is asked to grow his own vegetables, he will not do well in his traditional occupation as well as the new engagement.

Rejection of international trade

At a national level, economic nationalism rejects international trade. Buying goods manufactured by other nations is considered an activity promoting incomes of peoples in those countries. Hence, imports are considered a taboo. But, on the other hand, selling one’s goods to foreigners is considered virtuous. But, what matters is that one cannot sell unless one is prepared to buy from others too. If all nations try to become sellers as upheld by economic nationalism, no nation would be able to sell; the solution is for all nations to do both buying and selling simultaneously.

Demonisation of IPS 

Kunanayakam’s demonisation of IPS as a cat’s-paw of a neoliberal conspiracy is not borne out by its track record in the past. Its reports, specifically its State of the Economy Report released every year, have presented only sound economic principles for adoption by economic policy makers of the country. These principles have been upheld by all economists, not necessarily by neoliberal economists.

For instance, one principle which IPS has upheld throughout has been that a nation cannot generate sustained prosperity by borrowing from itself as well from external sources, unless it chooses its investment options prudently. It has pointed that Sri Lanka should, as a long-term policy option, divert its resources from consumption to investment. To do so, it has to increase its savings. That initiative should be started by the Government, which at present consumes more than what it earns, by generating a surplus in its revenue account. Anyone who does not follow this will buy himself bankruptcy, no matter whether he is neoliberal or non-neoliberal. It is common-sense known to any layman, and not a preserve of the species that practices the profession called economics.

The Buddha paraphrased it in Singalowada Sutta as follows: “The wise will divide his income into four parts; the first should be used for his and his family’s consumption; the second should be used for treating pious wise men; the third should be kept away for use in a disaster; and the fourth should be invested for earning more wealth.” This is a too-strict allocation of one’s resources, since it requires one to save and invest a half of his income. What is true for a single individual is true for a nation as well. In modern times, only countries like Singapore and China have followed this Buddhist principle of household resource allocation.

Advocata institute going after sound economic principles

The same argument is true for Advocata Institute or its Chairman Razeen Sally. What both have proposed in the last three-year period is that Sri Lanka should consolidate its budgets because it is beyond the country’s resource endowment, state enterprises should be run efficiently because the taxpayers cannot continue to bear their losses, and if the economy is to attain its competitive efficiency, it should give up restrictive regulations and rules. These are again common-sense economics, and not a preserve of those who are known as neoliberal economists. It would have been better had Kunanayakam carefully studied the writings of IPS, Advocata Institute and Common Chairman Razeen Sally, before branding them as conspirators to destroy Sri Lanka’s economy.

Countering of Kunanayakam by Colombo University Economics students

Kunanayakam had a mixed reaction from the audience. Some appeared to be visibly moved by her revelations. However, in the discussion time, the audience showed that not all were in agreement with her conspiracy theory. A member in the audience making a comment reminded her that she was just exaggerating that USA was all bent on launching an economic conspiracy against other nations in the world.

It was two undergraduates from the economics department of the University of Colombo who made the best contribution. Speaking in fluent English, one female undergraduate brought to her notice that she was not comfortable with Kunanayakam’s conspiracy theory, which is being repeated ad nauseam like a mantra by some. Her implication was that there is no novelty in this theory which they have heard enough.

The other undergraduate, speaking again in fluent English, drew her attention to the interdependence of economic relationships in a complex economic world, in which no single unit could function independent of each other. Kunanayakam, like a matured researcher, thanked all those who had critically probed into her presentation.

Pragmatic approach to economic issues

Pragmatic approach requires one to shed all ‘isms’, be it neoliberalism, Third-Worldism, capitalism or communism. An economist today is like a technician with a box of diverse tools. If one tool does not work, he will choose another tool. If it also does not work, he will go for another. Likewise, there is no permanent loyalty to any particular theory or set of theories.

This was pragmatically put by modern China’s economic revolutionary Deng Xiaoping, when he said that he did not mind whether the cat was made of clay as long as it could catch mice.

*W A Wijewardena, a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, can be reached at waw1949@gmail.com

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Latest comments

  • 4
    9

    I think both of those colombo University Students arfe very naive and stupid. what Ms. Kunanayakam said must be true. Do you know the word Deep state, five eyes, rockefellers and the Bank Mafia and other hidden reports which I can not remember now, people write very often about those. I have seen, I think, even in CT. Besides, one think should have added is the production of SHANTY COUNTRIES all around the world. See Indonesia breakig into Timor; now East and west timor and one of those becoming the supply line cheap gas, petroleum, minreals and precious metals such Gold and daimond. Tmor people do not the know worth of their country and by the time when they understand their country is uselss to them. that had happened in Africa, south America. the most recetn example is Sudan and Yeman. for sudan there are two one is Oil rich and the other poor. The west stsrting with british and dutch did that to Ottoman empire which they do even now. then they handled Middle aast but they arer struggling to finish it. They di dit to USSR. they wanted to break it more more because of Gas, PEtroleum, Minerals, PREcious metals and Nortehrn sea routes
    In the case of Sri lanka, Ranil and Mangala Samaraweera are simply anti-Sri lankan sociopaths No one is discussing what they both have done and are doing. Even news papers are not publishing the real truth and even when there is an investigative journalsit publish t some thing, as sson as some one discusses it they remove it. both Mahinda Rajapakse and Unity are very destructive. In reality they should be in Jail. See wehat Mangala Samaraweera is doing with the help of MCC/IMF. In Kumar David’s article I wrote. As a banking professional you know the system. Why there should be banking institutions under the politicians when the normal system is to go everything through the bank.

    • 3
      0

      Tamara is right on!
      Advocata Institute is funded by the right wing Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) that brought down Ricardo Hausmann to talk at LKI. Hausman’s talk was appallingly lacking in political economic analysis and a full of neo lib platitudes

      No mention of nexus between Corruption and neoliberal growth tho’ there is a big international dimension to the corruption epidemic (or “pay to play” global pandemic), in Lanka today with Fake Development Aid and advisers as the main cause of the Debt Trap..

      Washington DC “pays to play” in Lanka for Corrupt UNP politicians like Senasinghe who got a trip to Harvard U to write a book justifying Ranil’s bond scam that was master-minded in Washington DC with help of IMF and right wing MCC!

      The current Fake Reconciliation pact with UNP-SLFP, Ranil- MR, to protect US citien Gota is also brokered by US embassy in Colombo, which wants a US citizen as Prez of Lanka to fight China in Indian Ocean.
      Fake development experts from Washington DC, and the US Deep State are promoting its US-SL Diaspora Citizens in Lanka to further US strategic interests in Indian Ocean. Aid game is part of the security game.

      Also, Right wing Millennium Challenge Corp. (MCC) that drafts Bondscam Ranil’s economic policy, recently brought Ricardo Haussman from Harvard (where Sujiva Senasingha drafted the book to justify Ranil’s Bond scam ), to talk about Diaspora Talent like Nilan Fernando formally Asia Foundation, and today MCC, Gota. A. Mahndran, ICTA’s Kanagy etc. for Lanka’s development at LKI!

      Avant guard was gun running from Ukraine and Israel via Sri Lanka, after US citizen Gota Jarapassa, privatized the SL Navy;s Indian Ocean Marine Security arm to his US handlers.
      Just like Sira’s Russian MIGs and MR’s China Hambantota airport! Aid games are corruption rackets.

      Name of Washington’s game in Lanka: “Heads I win, Tails you loose!

      • 5
        0

        Never mind High-falutin’ economics, neo-liberalism or whatever. Any kussiamma knows that you can’t spend more than you earn.
        Why does nobody want to talk about that millstone around the neck of the economy, the 300,000 able-bodied members of the armed forces soaking up a third of the budget?
        What are they defending, and from whom?

        • 2
          0

          oldcodger

          What is this Tamara Kunanayakam Waduge typing about?
          Please read and let me know if there are any evidences to her numerous unsubstantiated accusations and also does it make any sense?:

          SRI LANKAN SOVEREIGNTY, NON NEGOTIABLE!
          Posted on May 17th, 2018
          by Tamara Kunanayakam An intellectually inspired Sri Lanka Viyathmaga Workshop on International Relations Colombo, 13 May 2018


          Are you able to read the entire typing without a murmur?

        • 0
          0

          You’re quite right old codger.
          .
          Also drawing the economy down are increasing numbers of old guys, like you and me, who linger on.
          .
          These selfish politicians are damaging young lives!
          .
          How many of us will have the courage (or the good fortune) to leave like this?
          .
          https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/10/world/europe/david-goodall-australia-scientist-dead.html
          .
          That’s about a 104 year old man. At the end you have the last bit of music that saw him out – with Joy.

      • 2
        0

        Don Stanley

        Before we go into the merits of Tamara Kunanayakam’s typing don’t you think she should be allowed to chose another hair stylist free of Washington Consensus.

        • 1
          0

          N.V,
          Tut, tut, there may be people who admire Madam Tamara’s beauty as well as her politics.

        • 0
          0

          Kunanayakam, seems to be adorning MR.Why?

    • 4
      1

      Dr. Wije, It has been revealed that State Minister of International Trade, Sujeewa Senasinghe accepted three cheques to the tune of Rs. 3 million from W. M. Mendis & Company, belonging to Arjun Aloysius, after the 2015 general election.,

      Bondscam Ranil’s economic hit men – Harsha, eran, Rosy, all got funds from PT which scammed CB so that UNP could bribe MPs in the Diyawena Parliament of corrupt clowns.
      Why does IMF and USAID corruption Fake experts not trace and return funds looted to pay off national debt, instead of devaluing LKR and magnifying national debt trap?

      • 3
        0

        Tamara is brave and dead on.
        1. Sri Lanka’s think tanks and Colombo NGOs are totally colonized and controlled by neo liberal economic thinking and funds and Fake Xperts and “advisers” from WDC and Harvard’s Neo con, Center for Int. Dev.

        2. So too, Bond scam Ranil’s economic policy documents (Vision 2020 in 2017 and Regaining Sri Lanka backing in 2004), were drafted by MCC tosh xpts in Washington DC who skype every Thursday with PM’s economic Hit man Team in Flower Road. Sri Lankan experts are marginalized.
        This is also why there is a big brain drain from Lanka today, which Hausman wants to fill with Fake xprts once immigration policy is liberalized after MCC drafts it..!
        Central bank and Bond scams have happened in many South American Countries too. This is all part of the “pay to play” global corruption pandemic that originates in the name of International Development Fake AID from WDC !

      • 0
        0

        Dear S. Modaya,
        .
        I’m very much an amateur in all this. Has any evidence surfaced that Eran Wickremaratne got funds from Perpetual Treasuries?
        .
        I’ve been trying hard to identify guys in Parliament who have not, so far, had their honour besmirched by the Bond Scam, and I had imagined this to have been one.

  • 6
    2

    Tamara knowingly misinterpreting that American & EU’s GSP+ is the one keep country keep going and pay for debt servicing. West, who accepted the refugees, is allowing a remittance of “unearned income” to Lankawe. Lankawe, as country is not due of those remittances. Middle East workers, instead of working professional or higher grade jobs at homeland, are doing menial jobs in Middle East.

    ” Even then, the accusation was primarily on the Prime Minister’s side of the government and not on the President’s side. “

    Kathirgamar, Tamara, Radhika, Thuraiappah, Mahendran…… I can mention as many names as one wants, but this school of thought of coolie propagandist is a new strange Phenomena in Tamils.

    But Tamils’ class is still maintained in Singapore. Many times they were the DPM, FM and FAM. When I read news todays it made me proud, Singapore current FAM is Tamil decedent and he is the one will be receiving the warring Parties Trump and Kim. Wikipedia has his name in Tamil too. “ Vivian Balakrishnan MP, FRCS விவியன் பாலகிருஷ்ணன்”

    • 2
      1

      Dumb MAllaiyuren: We discussed here in CT, the europe’s importation from us is only 0.15 of their total imports. that is about One billion EUROS. From american it is another Story. Thier stuff is lways expensive.

  • 5
    1

    Let me tell about couple of dumb explanation of past flourishing growths. But many feel they are true. When Senior Bush’s period ended, American economy was down and many predicted Japan would overtake soon. On the other side Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry was jealously guarding the Japan’s growth. Clinton came as president. He doesn’t know economics but he is cunning. What he did was he did not touch anything unwanted (or he didn’t understand), i.e. practically every aspect of the economy. He had good relationship with neighbors and the trade started to flow free. Basically he let the economy for its own shaping and it kept growing for 8 years. Japan had one government for 40 years after the war. They explain this was one of main factor of Japan’s growth. What happened there was Japan did not have the problem SLFP doing and UNP undoing and doing another thing and vise versa. Japan’s economy was, so started from Industrial side and kept growing undisturbed. Little by little all other sectors came up and caught up with it. Japan’s later fall though Baking can be cited, Japan drew all the expertise to science and Industry and Banking was left behind. When Sirimavo brought the harsh ration, as usual, it was Tamils who were paying the undue share. So before the problems were over in the other part of country, North had invented a technique called Home Hardening. This made almost all available Northern lands were cultivated and exported to South. North’s hardship in Sirimavo time taught them how to thrive. It later destroyed by JR and War.

    • 2
      1

      [Let me tell about couple of dumb explanation of past flourishing growths]

      Now listen all what High Achiever Mallaiyuran saying is “I’m A Know It All” by the way any chance of letting the masses know about your cunning Mega achievements in Industrial, financial , educational fields. I’m sure they are far to many to pen down in one page just few outstanding accolade’s that been bestow upon you in the West will be suffice for now.

    • 0
      0

      Malla:

      ” So before the problems were over in the other part of country, North had invented a technique called Home Hardening. This made almost all available Northern lands were cultivated and exported to South. North’s hardship in Sirimavo time taught them how to thrive. It later destroyed by JR and War.”

      How right you are except that the joker who did the most damage was that idiot Lalith A.

  • 2
    0

    I think the USA has plans even for the next govt depending on th eperson who becomes the president. I think they initiated the bond scam in order to crash the rupee. YEt, Ranil and Arjun Mahendran can not escape saying it is the MCC/IMF which did it. Ranil is in politics for 40 years and is the party leader for 23 years. IF he says Arjun Mahendran di dnot know what he did. HE should ask Arjun aloesisus and Ravi karunayake met so many times in singaproe. Why Ranil flew every where in the world to talk MCC boss and why MCC boss came often to Sri lanka from Belgium. Their plan is to buy sri lankan businesses cheaper. One Prominenent lawyer well used the BOC also tried to bring TWO billion dollars via some Investment fund when the dollar is 160 rupees. think about they byinf Railway and Sri lankan air lines for 160 rupees per dollar and lay off most of the UNP card holders. Ranil will have not an Arab xspring but what happened French Queen of 14th Louis. So Mangala Is busy. Selling the Real Estate to REMAX and I heard politicians are waiting to participate in the scam when they set up housing schmes in Mountain tops in the upcountry or near river basins where you have the sceanery. Some tourist hotels that the previous govt gav up because the Fraud was caught once they lost the govt, are being sold cheaper. S+ I think that happened to some colombo hotels. On the otherhand, they themselvesmay by via outside bidders as that was happening to Hingurana. I think that was caught and stopped.

  • 3
    0

    We are totally dependant for everything including Rice, wheat flour of which the consumption is increased three fold since the last govt. WE do not have self sufficiency in food even though we boast of growing rice since the ancient times. We earn about DOLLARS 7 – 9 BILLION from Madis in middle east and boys working in Korea, In brief all foreign remittances. How much we import PEtroleum products including Fertilizer and motore vehicles and motor vehicle parts. We have only imports. so out ruppe is worth nothing and there is nothing to bum up the value of it. Inother words, we are dependant on other for keeping our rupee high. Maithripala sirisena pretends he is a little baby who can not understand anything. Ranil is avoiding like a Cat who caught stealing. Mangala Samaraweera is anothe rPresident cum PM and he is destroying the country on his own. HE is among the worst liars, Simply no shame..

  • 3
    2

    Be careful; it is well known this lady in the early days was actively promoting the eelam. Managalaya has all evidence

  • 4
    4

    is kuna also looking out for a job like dayan if and when the rajas come back

  • 4
    0

    Mr. Wijewardene, thanks very much for presenting a balanced analysis of what Ms. Kunanayakam and your critique of the gist of her presentation. No man is an island and similarly no nation can live in isolation. The new mantra that is fashionable today is the Chinese theory of Economic Prosperity which is totally focused on GDP growth and restrictive of personal freedoms. The Chinese are exporting their way to record growth levels annually. How this will evolve will be interesting. Perhaps Ms Kunanayakam could have touched upon this aspect as well

  • 2
    0

    The process started with the Open Economic policy in 1978. By 1994 it would take a fundamental political change to reverse the pattern of things.
    Transforming the national question into war only helped to increase dependency.
    It was too much to expect of a post-1977 SLFP to make a serious difference.
    It is a long slippery slope that we will keep travelling along— unless something very radical happens.

    • 2
      0

      SJ

      “It is a long slippery slope that we will keep travelling along— unless something very radical happens.”

      Lets declare this island another autonomous region of peacefully rising China.
      Every problem would be solved if each and every citizen of this island is forced to memorise Mao’s Little Red Book and recite morning, afternoon, evening and night.

      • 0
        0

        You never stop amusing man

  • 3
    1

    When hunter-gatherer humans chose to live in groups, then tribes and then within territories, countries as we know evolved. Wars gave rise to nationalism. Tribal instinct brought ethno-nationalism and in due course religio-nationalism. Entrepreneurs have exploited these nationalisms.
    But as trade evolved, countries became interdependent. In modern world NO COUNTRY is sovereign. Economic sovereignty is a myth.
    .
    The countries world over faced problems – some general some specific. SL has gotten bogged down and Tamara Kunanayaham invented this ‘target of Neoliberal Economic hitmen’. Tamara searched and searched and found this Mont Pelerin Society (MPS).
    Come on Tamara. Ethno-nationalist created the language/religion-divide. Unscrupulous politicians gained but the people lost. Our problem now is corruption/nepotism/impunity. You were ditched by a group. You are breaking your silence because time is just right. Good luck Tamara.
    .
    The penultimate para says ~ “…….An economist today is like a technician with a box of diverse tools. If one tool does not work, he will choose another tool. If it also does not work, he will go for another…….”.
    This applies to political commenters/critiques as well.

  • 6
    0

    Tamara was a mouthpiece of the LTTE in the 80s and 90s. She operated from Europe. In 2000s she CHANGED and even became an Ambassador for Sri Lanka in Geneva. That was thanks to his mentor Dayan Jayathillake. Both are ardent marxists. Has Tamara CHANGED forever, only time will tell

  • 5
    0

    Wijewardena,
    Sir,
    I respect all your economic knowledge as you have been the deputy governor of the CB. It’s a prestigious post.
    Lay people like me try to learn what happens to us by reading what you all write. But I happened to read some books which were lent to me by a friend and the list included “confessions of an economic hit man” and some others.
    You’d want to read Noam Chomsky, John Perkins, John Pilger and Howard Zinn. These are authors from the first world that you worship. And read what they tell us about how we are controlled.
    And if you don’t believe me, check whether you’ve got an ad on your browser, which appeals to you, or related to something you searched. They’ve already brainwashed you my dear sir. Unfortunately, I don’t have the fluency that you admire which the econ students had in the audience on that day to explain this to you and that’s why I gave you a reading list.
    Take care

    • 2
      0

      Balan

      “They’ve already brainwashed you my dear sir.”

      One does not need Westerners to brainwash South Asians.
      Take this island for example,
      Majoritarianism/rascism is already embedded firmly in their heart, mind and brain.
      Demelas and Thambiyas are considered and believed to be Kallathonies.
      In some corners of this island Dr Mahinda and his siblings worshiped being the vanquishers of Demela terrorists.
      Members of Sri Lankan armed forces are believed Heroes.
      Free rice from moon was widely believed to be possible.
      This is Sinhala/Buddhist country.
      The Sri Lankan leaders freed the country from colonial rulers and capable of making this island free once again from Neo Colonialism, Neo-liberalism, Neo Hindianism, … Neo That, Neo This, Washington Consensus, ……………… and survive without import/export of goods and services, without foreign technology, expertise, markets, knowledge, communication, ……………………… and believe ….
      ….


      Let us start boycotting the tools of Neo Liberalism, yahoo, google, whatsapp, texting, viber, imported technology, services of foreign satellites, imported arms, ammunition, ………… planes, ships, machines, sewing machines, stop exporting labour, stop buying oil, …………………………………..
      Our Wimal Sangili Karuppan Weeransa could play a leading role the monitoring MP for Lankxit – Lanka s**t.

      Achchige Patali Champika Ranawaka should be asked to withdraw the worldwide supply of ZERO.

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    I don’t like this lady, Tamara K. She is a shallow rat that worms its way into any hole that provides her with some stale cheese. Why we have lost economic sovereignty is not due to neoliberalism. I do not think any of our leaders had such an understanding of what it meant. The truth is that all the politics in Sri Lanka has been about Sinhala-Buddhism as a state language and religion. This issue has masked stupendous corruption by leaders who have outdone each other in both narrow nationalism and stealing from the state coffers. Socialism, neo-liberalism or whatever ism was never given a chance to work. Take the great socialist Colvin R de Silva. The man eventually made a constitution with Sinhala as the state language and Buddhism as the state religion. For a few crumbs. Let us not have pseudo-learned discussions about neo-liberalism by people who may not themselves know much about it. Like Tamara and Razeen Sally. Neither of them have any credibility in mainstream economics. They are truly what Trump calls fakes who manage to survive well by fooling the crooked politicians in SL.

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    Isms do matter if we can understand them. The only ism which matters now is Buddh-ism. The writer also makes this mistake. What the Buddha said was so simple that most people could have said as much. The loss of sovereignty occurred many years ago. Sri Lanka’s economy is a dependent economy driven into dependence not by the machinations of foreigners but by the designs of its own rapacious politicians. We have hocked the country to the IMS through loans and now, Rajapakka has hocked it to the Chinese to ensure that an airport and a port are built in his constituency. Vast rackets have taken place under every administration. Tamara K and Dayan J. have had crumbs from these proceeds thrown their way. They help to make these frauds through essays about neoliberalism which they and their political masters know little of. It is good to know that some young people do not believe what these rats have to say.

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    Sri Lanka never had an economic sovereignty….. for the last 70 years Sri Lanka was always at the mercy of IMF and Word Bank and hand outs from the West.

    Under Rajapakse regime Sri Lanka surrendered its economic , political sovereignty to China through corrupt mega white elephant projects that propelled Mahinda Rajapaske and his family to one of the richest political family in the world.

    what more Sinhala Sri Lanka inflicted a 70 year pseudo war with the Tamils and a brutal 30 year war with the armed Tamils to protect their Sovereign Sinhala Buddhist nation, only to lose it to the Chinese who helped them to defeat the Tamils.

    The gullible Sinhala people think they defeated the Tamils ……they dont know their country has been sold off to defeat…a mere two million Tamils

    But that is not the end …the Sinhala politicians still fear the Tamils, so a huge slice of the GDP and borrowing form China is deployed to ensure that the Tamils wont arise form their ashes…..

    what a waste….for if that funds can be invested in the NE to develop the NE and provide employment for the Tamils the country will prosper …but the Sinhala politicians thinking is blurred ….by racism…to think postively

    .

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    They are joking that if a Lankaweyans sees a foreigner his greeting is “how much would you pay?”. It can be just to share cigarette, it can be for a transport Hitchhiking or hiring, it can be for kudu, or for even a new investment.

    Where is Neo-Liberalism defined as that kind of immoral behavior?

    The engineering, Marist Professor is exporting his Brain Wash for the readers too. Now the readers got the plague from only antique Tamil “Left”, prof. Kumar.

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    Dr. wijewardane: Sri lankan politicians themselves have worked to bankrupt Sri lanka. I heard that America Told Ranil wickramasinghe that it is Mahinda Rajapakse who instructed LTEE to blow up the Avro Prop Plane that Sri lanka ahd and thereafter to complain to Geneva about human rights. I heard JVP also knows about this. I think Ranil has talked this even with Maithripala sirisena. Some very reliable source in THihariya village knows it. He is related to D.B. Makuloluwa the artist. Guy has some Occult powers.

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      Jimmy boy,
      You seem to hear so many things. Do you have occult powers?

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    “I’m Glad To Represent My Country Again If Formally Requested: Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka”

    ME TOO SAYS:
    Tamara Kunanayakam

    I thought unlike the good doctor / parasite you were able to make your own living without state handout.

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      Burt

      Has the public racist Dayan been appointed Ambassador to Russia?
      I have scanned almost all the news media published in Sri Lanka. and find no news about the public racist.

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        Did not see it anywhere other than CT.

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          Burt.

          As I suspected Dayan the public racist must have planted the story.

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    Whether Tamara Kunanayakam has been drawing too gloomy a picture or not is something that deserves serious discussion.
    .
    Nine years after the war was over must three or four commenters slander her on ethnic grounds.
    .
    She’s been called all sorts of things by those commenters. What is the reality?
    .
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tamara_Kunanayakam
    .
    Surely this single woman is a person who can still contribute to this land which is her home. Her fate sums up the tragedy of Sri Lanka. The Bond Scam Report is not going to be seen for 30 years, but this woman is not considered a Sri Lankan by some.
    .
    Thank you Dr Wijewardena for continuing to ferret out individuals whose thinking deserves to be better known.

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      But NEVER forget, this Dr Wije and that Thennakoon are are picked men by Sirasa to sling mud on RW.

      They should have NOT reborn since 2015.

      Prior to that too, there had been even high profile money grabs even going beyond to the size of current bond scam,… but just to ATTACK RW only, you guys work today.

      That I think is very unfair.. very very unfair Mr SM.

      These men were let sleep during the high days of Mr Medamulana.
      Even today, none of them would ever utter a single work about MAL PRACTICES of former Minister of Finance none other than Mafia KING MR.

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      Dear SM,
      Yes Ms. Kunanayakam is a clever and intelligent woman. But you can’t deny that like many clever and intelligent people, she is woefully inconsistent. You can gauge that that from who she associated with in 1983 and who she connives with now. Uncannily similar to Dr. DJ.

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        old codger

        “Yes Ms. Kunanayakam is a clever and intelligent woman. “

        I still think she needs to have her hair done urgently.
        I am told she is a self hating Tamil on the one hand and a narcissist on the other. Isn’t she confusing.
        She was the pathfinder to Dr Mahinda when he was lost in Geneva while betraying Sri Lankan state to his white masters on behalf of the home grown terrorists JVP.

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    No doubt Tamara was a Tigress. But Gota wants to make her his foreign minister. Is this man insane?

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