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A member of Occupy London poses for media outside the High Court in London January 18, 2012.
A member of Occupy London poses for media outside the High Court in London January 18, 2012.
(Stefan Wermuth/Reuters)

The latest group opposing inequality: The IMF?

Something must be done about rising income inequality, says the International Monetary Fund, and the solution is redistributive taxation. You read that right – the IMF in Washington, the same people who dole out free-market medicine and put fiscal hairshirts on insolvent governments. Their latest idea, announced yesterday by the Fund’s deputy managing director, David Lipton, sits oddly with the Fund’s reputation as global capitalism’s establishment club. But if the IMF is beginning to focus on statistics about wealth disparity rather than good old GDP, it is because the figures look alarming and, more importantly, because governments – the Fund’s members – now fear political conflict and social unrest.