The End of Jeffrey Sachs

Just been reading a paper in the European Economic Review by Elizabeth Brainerd (2001:1007-1019), on the relation between suicide and those inequities, thefts, corruptions and killings that are sanitised by the name “Economic Transition”. I know I’ve opined about Jeffrey Sachs on these pages before (though I don’t believe that I recorded that Columbia University students, in their end of year review, performed a broadway musical number in his honour to the tune of “Jesus Christ, Superstar”, the chorus being “Jeffrey Sachs, Jeffrey Sachs, Turn your PR Machine to the max”). But one can never be reminded too often of the horrors that Sachs and his Harvard-based colleagues inflicted on Russia, particularly as Sachs has since tried to reinvent himself as Bono’s guru, and White Wizard of Poverty Alleviation.

Brainerd’s article puts the consequences of Sachs’ economic prescriptions slightly differently. The graphs show the male suicide rates for a range of countries. If memory serves, Sachs had considerably more to do with the countries in (a) than in (b).