Trade not Aid?

31 Mar

http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1884779_1884782_1884769,00.html

“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”

– Misattributed to Lao Zi

Buy fish from him and he can send his kids to school, open up a shop, fix his roof and buy a bicycle, make his wife and in-laws happy.

– Casey Wong after reading this and other articles on Aid.

Time article on the how China is investing in Angola, Congo, Togo.

Basic points:

– Aid develops dependence, corruption, silences local initiatives

– Aid is humiliating, creating nations of beggars, disenfranchised

– Trade is partnership, not patronage

…aid not only “undermines the creativity to lift yourself out of poverty” but also “undermines the integrity and dignity of the people. It says, These are people who cannot figure out how to develop.” Aid even manages to silence those it is meant to help. “African governments become accountable to Western donors,” says Rugasira, “and Africa finds itself represented not by Africans but by Bono and Bob Geldof. I mean, how would America react if Amy Winehouse dropped in to advise them on the credit crisis?”

There is definitely a pro China slant in this article.  Most of us can say from personal experience that free meals don’t do us any good, and we can agree that the things we earned are the most valuable.  And since Aid doesn’t come free anyway, making the give and take transparent, i.e. a trade, makes both parties active.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: