The Relationship of IMF Structural Adjustment Programs to Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights: The Argentine Case Revisited

Perhaps as important as what this Note is, is what it is not: Economic theories abound concerning the causes of the Argentine crisis, some of which directly analyze the IMF’s causal connection to the Argentine catastrophe. A Note on this subject would be one of economic theory, not international human rights law. While at certain points in the analysis of the human rights implications of SAPs, it will become difficult to avoid some speculation of economic theory, it is not the primary focus of this Note. Rather than implicate the IMF as part of the cause of the crisis, this Note explicates the ways in which it is an imperfect solution from the standpoint of ESC rights. It does not attempt to argue against the prevailing economic theories for the crisis, but rather discusses ways in which certain provisions of SAPs-provisions also often present in stronger economic periods-are inconsistent with ESC rights. To the extent that the ESC rights law discussed in this Note may appear contrary to the theories embodied in the economic studies cited above, this may reflect an underlying inconsistency between ESC law and macroeconomic scholarship, an inconsistency which should be dealt with in greater detail in future scholarship.