Monday, July 04, 2005

Throwing Good Money To Bad People

I did not pay much attention to the Live 8 shows on the weekend. From what I've heard, I missed out on quite a bit. But I'm more than skeptical, I'm cynical as to how much these shows and forgiving African debt really helps the most needy people in the world. I followed some reports in newspapers after the original Live Aid show in '85, and it seemed even then that African governments were making it as difficult as possible for aid to be distributed to the starving masses. In fact, there are some convincing arguments that too much charity does not help, but hurt the people who need it most. Some of these arguments are cited in this article on MSN Slate, but it does offer some solutions that the author hope will be adopted. The moral here is basically that Western governments should be able to decide how aid is distributed, and if they are not allowed, which has often been the case, the poorest of the poor will starve anyway, but the parasitic scum running these poor nations, be they local governments or transnationals, won't be pocketing any more of our hard-earned tax dollars and stealing the future of their nations and their people.

3 comments:

James Koole said...

You missed some good music, and yes, some of it even originated in Barrie, Ontario, Canada.

Pink Floyd was well worth the wait, and Gordon Lightfoot did a nice set on the Canadian stage. The Tragically Hip were anything but hip - someone has to put that Gord guy out of his misery.

As for whether it made a difference? I doubt it. The majority were there for the music, not the cause, as evidenced by the fact that they claimed 2 billion watched the show, but a mere 26 million signed on to the petition at the website.

Talk is cheap, and considering that Bono, McCartney and the rest are the individual equivilent of the G8 countries in terms of personal wealth, I would expect them to do more than sing a few songs and talk about the cause.

Don said...

I agree with you and I also missed most of the activity. I did add a few links to live8 on my blog because everyone must at the very least know the horror occuring in South Africa. Only freedom ends hunger. Freedom to speak and act for oneself. Freedom to exist, choose, and become independant.

Looney Canuck said...

James, for me, the Hip are an acquired taste, and since I have three of their CDs now, I'm glad I didn't see their performance. Even then, the best bands have their off days, particularly when there's little preparation, just like Led Zeppelin's performance at the origional Live Aid. And you're right about Bono and "Macca", they should put it where their mouth is.

Don, what horror are you speaking about in South Africa? Could you be confusing it with Zimbabwe? Not to say that SA does not have its problems (like a sky-high crime rate), but there are some people who beleive that Africa's fortunes are starting to turn around. I think that there was a link on MSNBC somewhere, I'll look for it if you want me to.

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