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One man and a $60 billion-dollar checkbook

February 6th, 2013
11:37 AM ET

By Ken Olshanksy, CNN

Dr. Jim Yong Kim may have one of the best jobs in the world, but also the hardest.

As head of the World Bank, he has almost $60 billion to spend to fight poverty and boost the middle class. But poverty isn't giving up without a fight.

About 2.5 billion people live on less than $2 a day, a number that hasn't changed much in more than 30 years. And successful growth of the global middle class comes at a cost: A massive income disparity as the poorest are left behind.

Raising the standard of living across the world is crucial to keeping the world safe and secure. But Jim Yong Kim is not your typical banker. He is a doctor and anthropologist, with an extraordinary track record fighting disease in the poorest corners of the world.

READ MORE: Selling little girls to pay back debt in Afghanistan  

Filed under:  Economy • Latest Episode
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. empresstrudy

    Why is it when White People lead the WB all the liberals scream and gnash their teeth that it's a tool of The Man?

    February 6, 2013 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • Joe

      They are all tools of the rich and imperialists. This one will be no different.

      February 6, 2013 at 2:24 pm | Reply
  2. joylogo

    upto I looked at the check which had said 5910, I accept that my brothers friend had been truley bringing in money in their spare time on their computer.. there sisters roommate started doing this less than 13 months and resantly paid for the morgage on there villa and purchased themselves a Land Rover Defender. read more at, fly38.ℂOM

    February 6, 2013 at 1:55 pm | Reply
  3. desert voice

    I invite Jim Jong Kim to give my idea a try! World Bank is in ideal position to test my equivalent money bluebacks! They would act like leaven in the world poorest economies, allowing to revolutionize services like basic foodstuffs and healthcare! Doctors would accept tghem, if tghey new that they get all kinds of discounts throughout the world in echchange for them. So would the food stuffs producers. Just get an agreement with the U.S. Central bank, and distribute these dollars which do not devalue the real dollars (greenbacks), but act as a vital tool to spure economic growth!

    February 6, 2013 at 2:03 pm | Reply
  4. Open Condom Style

    make it rain

    February 6, 2013 at 4:36 pm | Reply
  5. Anpadh

    The US alone spends $16 trillion every year. $16 trillion is more than $60 billion. And still, the US has not been able to eliminate poverty.

    February 6, 2013 at 10:05 pm | Reply
    • public shmolicy

      Simple solution, give each person $20. All the money was spent and they received 10 days pay. There is nothing else more efficient for immediate (and temporary) relief that one can do to better 2.5 b people with $60 b. And as for America's 16 trillion, that's not much. Just wait 4 more years.

      March 6, 2013 at 5:26 am | Reply
  6. aroth

    "About 2.5 billion people live on less than $2 a day, a number that hasn't changed much in more than 30 years."

    Now there's a misleading statistic if ever there was one. The problem is that in the past 30 years, the total number of people living has increased by more than 2 billion. So proportionally, there are many, many more people living above that threshold today than there were 30 years ago.

    To put it another way, 30 years ago there were "only" 2 billion people living above that threshold. Today there are now 4.5 billion living above the limit. So we've more than doubled the number of people living above the line, without increasing the number of people living below it. We may still have a long way to go, but we're definitely doing better than we were 30 years ago.

    February 6, 2013 at 11:31 pm | Reply
    • brando

      I'm sorry, that is far too rational for CNN or the internet.

      February 7, 2013 at 12:04 am | Reply
    • Jeff

      Not sure if you can say that until we know at what level those new 2 billion people are living. If 30yrs ago there were 5B people in the world and 0.5B lived on $2/day, then that would have been 10% of the global population. If now there are 7B people in the world and 2.5B live on $2/day, then that is ~35% of the global population. Obviously in reality some of those new 2B are above the threshhold and some are below, but given the far lower birth rate in higher GDP nations than in lower GDP nations, I would actually guess that proportionally more people are living on less than $2/day today than was the case 30 years ago.

      February 7, 2013 at 1:18 am | Reply
  7. André

    The poorest is often poor because they are given things instead of being taught to make or earn it themselves: Give a man a bread, and you feed him for one day. Teach him to bake bread.... You know the quote (I hope!).

    February 7, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Reply
    • Glenn

      Give a man an AK-47 and it won't matter much what you do.

      February 8, 2013 at 11:54 am | Reply
  8. public shmolicy

    Teach a man to fish, so he can fish while you teach another man to grow, and another to bake bread. tell them about each other so they can trade. A market is created !

    March 6, 2013 at 5:31 am | Reply
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