Session 4: Multinational Companies, the IMF/World Bank, HMOs, and Others

Facilitator: Dr. Alan Meyers

Readings:

Questions to consider for discussion:

1. Supporters of the efforts of multinational companies often cite the jobs that these companies create and the subsequent wages paid to communities. Additionally, they assert that the jobs provided by these companies, however poor the working conditions, are better than unemployment. Do you agree or disagree?

2. Critics point out that these companies often have detrimental effects to the environment (eg, pollution), disrupt local economies, and have no regard for health of employees. They argue that the monetary cost of these negative effects (so-called negative externalities) is much more difficult to characterize, but almost certainly exceeds the amount of money invested into the community. Do you agree or disagree? How do you think this varies by industry? (ie, Nike, Coca-Cola, oil companies, etc)

3. How does Roy feel about "progress"? What does she say happened to people displaced by "progress"? 

4. What parallels exist between the South Bronx and dam building in India? (see: the Cross Bronx Expressway, built between 1948-1972 which gutted the Tremont neighborhood and continues to depress property values; the Browning-Ferris Industries/Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center regional medical waste incinerator; the New York Organic Fertilizer Company)

5. Those advocating privatization of Medicare and Medicaid cite conventional wisdom that private companies function more efficiently and with lower costs than government. Yet, the data almost universally show higher costs and worse outcomes with for-profit care. Why do you think this is? Why might health care be different than, say, car manufacturing?
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PC/SM Chief Resident,
Oct 4, 2012, 7:01 PM
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PC/SM Chief Resident,
Oct 4, 2012, 7:01 PM
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PC/SM Chief Resident,
Oct 4, 2012, 7:01 PM