Wednesday, July 06, 2005

AFRICAN AID AND LIVE8

I've been thinking about famine aid lately, and debt reduction. If the original problem in the 80's was a failure of the farm crop, due to weather & war, and the food aid that poured into the country caused the farmers to go broke, due to the competition, then, why didn't we follow a different strategy?

Why did we give the aid to the government? Which caused the farmers to lose out? Why didn't we give the food to the farmers, to sell? Then, they could have stayed in business, and the people wouldn't have paid any more for the food, and the government wouldn't have used the food as a weapon in their fight against the rebels.

I realize that I'm not an economist, but could someone explain to me why that wouldn't work?

I'm not planning on donating to the African relief effort, unless I can understand why our donations won't, again, cause more trouble than not.

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