Good Governance Begins At Home

The infraction that may cost Paul Wolfowitz his job as president of the World Bank pales in comparison to the endemic corruption entailed by the Iraq war, of which he was a principal architect. But that doesn't make his dismissal any less justified.

The whole sorry Wolfowitz affair looks like it is finally drawing to a close. It is hard to believe that he will stay on much longer at the World Bank, and it is time to start thinking more closely about the future of that institution. From the first, I was critical of the way he was chosen because I have long opposed the “old boy” agreement between the United States and Europe, by which the US always appoints the head of the World Bank and Europe the head of the IMF. This unspoken arrangement dates from the founding of the Bretton Woods institution at a time when colonialism was still alive, and makes no sense in the twenty-first century.