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Old 07-07-2005, 03:05 PM   #1
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I'm sick of it...!

not sure if this is the right forum....


I was talking to my dad about Bono's work with Live 8 and how he is in Scotland now for the G8, etc. Then I get this email from him:



I am awfully tired of pop culture icons such as Bozo making lame, very public attempts at massaging their egos via self righteousness. Very nice to put on Live8, fun to watch from a musical perspective for fans of their craft like me and it had the potential to benefit a good cause but why should a concert, no matter how "important" it is (most people that aren't big music fans didn't even know about it this weekend!) give them the right to preach about how much money we should or shouldn't spend as a people on whatever the charitable cause of the day is.

In the 80's, Live Aid, Band-Aid and Farm-Aid et al did not solve the problems in Ethiopia or whatever starving children/country du jour cause they were trying to save at the time (probably to make up for their own miserable, selfish existences.....did you know that before Live Aid the Boomtown Rat {they sucked, btw} Bob Geldof was most famous for uttering, and I paraphrase here: "I only got into music for the sex, drugs and money").

So my point is why not keep going with your original, albeit FAILED solution to the problem/charity you originally set out to conquer, which is to make a vague attempt to throw other people’s money at a problem that money cannot solve.

Intelligent people will have many more questions than Bono has answers for. Questions such as:


1. How much money is enough to "wipe out poverty" in Africa? I heard one of these people say $50 Billion dollars. I want to see the evidence that justifies that magic number. I need to see empirical studies that clearly show how $50B wipes out poverty on the African continent. Not $45B, not $25B, not $80B but $50B. Hmmmm.......

2. How can I be sure the money gets spent properly once it gets there, let alone that it gets into the hands of altruistic, charitable people that will actually use it for its intended purpose and not in the hands of the corrupt, political despots that exist in every single one of these countries we are apparently so desperate to throw the money at. People who will undoubtedly use it to maintain the status quo and buy drugs and booze and bombs and hookers with it? No one I have heard can guarantee me that our contributions will be spent properly. Is Bono going to personally oversee the implementation of whatever program rolls out with the billions and billions of dollars he's hoping the world will invest?

3. Why should I as an American contribute or ask my country to contribute to save the nations of Africa when we have similar, massive problems in our own backyard? (Aids, Hunger, Homelessness and Poverty are rampant right here in the good old USA). Many African nations, like the Middle-Eastern nations we have come to know and love, HATE the United States, don't forget that. They despise our success and our perceived waste and consumption of the world’s resources and running water because they are jealous, plain and simple. They would sooner bomb us, invade us and steal our resources for themselves rather than ask us for what they need and want but they have to only because they are too impoverished, disorganized and corrupt to take it.

4. State sponsored genocide in sub Saharan African nations is worse than in any other region on Earth, and these are the leaders, the countries and the people Bono and Bob want to throw incalculable riches at in the HOPE that they'll suddenly straighten up and fly right and use their lottery winnings for good and not evil? Somalia, Uganda, Madagascar, The Sudan, Ethiopia. The list of corrupt countries with starving people goes on and on. You don’t really believe they’re impoverished because of their location or the weather, do you?

Charity begins at home so I'll tell you what: Tell your bleeding heart idol Bozo, and Boomtown boy and Brad Pitt (each one of them who by himself already has enough money to feed half of the African continent for the rest of his life without sacrificing anything that would limit his current lifestyle) to DONATE THE NEXT 5 YEARS OF HIS INCOME to his cause. 100% of it, every last penny he will make through working (if you can call it that), licensing, royalties, merchandising etc. will be handed over tax free to the impoverished nations of Africa he so desperately wants to help. I mean he won't buy a hamburger at McDonalds with one penny of newly minted money he receives from U2 sales or royalties or any other source he can take it from because every last red cent goes to Africa from this day forward. Plus he has to prove it with monthly statements provided to a neutral respected body such as the UN or the Red Cross and his donations and income must be made available for public inspection.

Once he does that and verifies it to the world’s satisfaction at the end of the 5 years we all may be inclined dig into our wallets and send our $20, or $100 or $10,000 donation to wherever he tells us to.

He aint no mother Theresa. It's time for all of these wanna-be activists who are realistically nothing more than ENTERTAINERS (not that there’s anything wrong with that) to stop shoving whatever charity of the week that makes them feel better about themselves down the throats of hard working stiffs like myself and put up or shut up! The only reason he can even make this public a stand for his charity of choice is because you and I buy his music. How DARE he be disappointed that the G8 isn't doing enough to help Africa? Who the fuck is he to decide how much enough is, or to stick his nose into International Affairs in the first place? Unlike the G8, he wasn’t elected to do or say anything. He can have a voice as is his right in MOST country’s of the world, but he's still a fucking singer in a very fortunate rock and roll band and bottom line, that's ALL he is.

When he bankrupts himself helping others and wears the same pair of sandals every day for 10 years like Mother Theresa did because every dime he ever had went to helping Aids baby's in Africa then MAYBE he'll have earned the right to tell us what nations or people we should empty my wallets on. I'm sure all this public charity work makes him feel better about his greed and guilt over having all that money to spend on whatever he wants, but he shouldn't feel guilty about it. He's earned it and I don't begrudge him his success. Just don't tell us how to spend our very hard earned money and then make us feel guilty when we don't spend it as HE sees fit.




how can I get it through his head. he has a point in some parts but I just wanna scream and rip my hair out!!! I'm so frustrated because I know that he isn't the only person who feels this way. and this email is coming from someone who I know for a fact donates more money than he needs to to charities etc. I don't think there is anything wrong with Bono, Bob, or anyone who wants to use their celebrity status to try and do something like Bono is trying to do. I think it's great that that's what he wants to do with his time.
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Old 07-07-2005, 03:12 PM   #2
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lol, its okay...he's got some good points, although he seems a little bitter at parts
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Old 07-07-2005, 03:13 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
lol, its okay...he's got some good points, although he seems a little bitter at parts
i know...I just needed to vent a little!!
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Old 07-07-2005, 03:17 PM   #4
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$50 Billion? I know Bono's rich, but I'm pretty sure he isn't this rich.

Bill Gates might be, but his wealth consists primarily of Microsoft stock, which would no doubt plunge in value if he were to sell it. And so forth.
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Old 07-07-2005, 04:13 PM   #5
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He certainly has some good, well-thought out questions, so I can admire that. In fact, many of those questions are mine, as well.

His bitterness towards celebrities is quite apparent too...lol.

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Old 07-07-2005, 05:25 PM   #6
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Sorry but that letter is filled with the usual ignorant remarks which continue to dominate our society.

Firstly, this is about alleviating EXTREME poverty, households which cannot meet basic needs for survival. They are chronically hungry, unable to access health care, lack the amenities of safe drinking water and sanitation, cannot afford education for some or all of the children, and perhaps lack rudimentary shelter - a roof to keep the rain out of the hut, a chimney to remove the smoke from the cook stove- and basic articles of clothing, such as shoes.

There are reports, studies, documents, whatever you want to call them out there with the information about how much money is needed to " wipe out poverty". These documents have analyzed the long-term needs of countries, and acknowledge that it is a staggering amount of money but less than 0.7% of donor incomes. If he wants to find it , he has to go get it. It is there but there is no specific number, they are estimates. The assessments have acknowledged that the countries can only absorb so much assistance at once which eventually will be lowered as improvements occur in these countries. This is a long term strategy, not an instant fix.

No Bono will not personally oversee the distribution of money. This plan to eliminate extreme poverty calls on unique strategies which have not been implemented in the past. Needs assessments, auditing, coordination between NGOs and governments and each country has different needs. The money will be not be simply thrown at the countries like in the past, this is specifically targeted funding designed to alleviate poverty through aid programs.

His third point is totally laughable. The US does not face any of the problems faced by the world's impoverished. The US does not have 30 million people infected with HIV, millions of people living on less than a $1/day, millions of people without access to electricity, clean water or basic housing, and the poverty he refers to is relative poverty compared to the other citizens in the US. His assessment of countries in the Middle East and Africa is totally stereotypical mimicing the very behaviour he believes exists in those countries.

Countries have to qualify for the money. Good governence is a requirement for receving assistance. Of course it is more complex than that but there are guidelines in place to ensure the fair and effective distribution of money.


Here is a fact to ponder regarding if we can afford to help Africa. In 2000, the four hundred richest US taxpayers has a combined income of $69 billion dollars which works out to $174 million per taxpayer. The total income of the countries of Botswana, Nigeria, Senegal and Uganda withthe combined population of 161 million people that year was $57 billion or an average of $350 per person. 400 hundred people earned more than 161 million people. Something needs to give. Bono has put his money where his mouth is, send your father Jeffery Sachs book The End of Poverty, it is a good start to understand what the problems are as opposed to having an uninformed opinion about what is happening. Also, don't forget there are 50 countries in Africa, and yes some have corrupt governments but many are doing their best to survive in our world.

I'm no expert but that's how I see it.
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Old 07-07-2005, 05:29 PM   #7
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thank you trevster2k. hope you don't mind I'm going to use some of those points to write him back
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Old 07-07-2005, 05:41 PM   #8
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if I were you I would try not to come off as too defensive when you email him back...I once got in an email feud after my dad mentioned something about U2 (or U-2 as he insisted on writing it) lip-synching. I got a little too upset and needless to say felt very stupid afterward.

just tell him you see his point, but that you don't think everyone has to be mother theresa to do their bit, and that you'll give the celebs the benefit of the doubt.
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Old 07-07-2005, 05:44 PM   #9
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I agree with VertigoGal, don't start a fight over this
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Old 07-07-2005, 06:06 PM   #10
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He sounds just like my Mom. Don't feel bad, Sami. I can't get it through her either. I tell her that Bono began his activist work shoveling S**t in an Ethiopian refugee camp in 1985, a trip he went on secretly, long before he became a superstar. He went with just his wife and in secret, the media didn't even find out they were there for 2 weeks. They worked keeping the camp latrine clean until the media finally foumd out who they were and thus alerted the locals to their musical talent, and then they were invited to help in the orpanage after that.

I've shopwed her all the quotes from the band's earyl years, aobut their compassion for the poor. I've showed her all the articles, where Bono talks about being accosted by homelss people in the street and he'd empty his pocket of $200 and give them everything, and one day when he had no money on him, he took the shirt off his back and autogrpahed it and gave that to a homeless guy.

I could give her a college lecture on U2 and she wouldn't care. Her big thing is Bono meeting with Bush. She sees the pics and it;s allover. Policitcs has no meaning to her. I don;t likeit wither, but I understand he has to at least try.
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Old 07-07-2005, 06:06 PM   #11
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and you might not want to tell him that Bono bought an 18 million dollar appartment in NYC (according to something in pleba)

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Old 07-07-2005, 06:21 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
if I were you I would try not to come off as too defensive when you email him back...I once got in an email feud after my dad mentioned something about U2 (or U-2 as he insisted on writing it) lip-synching. I got a little too upset and needless to say felt very stupid afterward.

just tell him you see his point, but that you don't think everyone has to be mother theresa to do their bit, and that you'll give the celebs the benefit of the doubt.
yeah, I won't be too defensive I have gotten into email fights too, especially because I haven't been home for the past month...maybe I'll post my email here when I finish it..I'm putting a lot of thought into this lol
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Old 07-07-2005, 10:26 PM   #13
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He's got some very good points.

Throwing money at poverty has never, ever worked.

I believe a solution exists, but not the one Bono advocates.
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Old 07-07-2005, 10:31 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Zoocoustic
He's got some very good points.

Throwing money at poverty has never, ever worked.

I believe a solution exists, but not the one Bono advocates.
Well you haven't really looked at Bono's solution have you, no one's throwing money at the solution.
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Old 07-07-2005, 11:00 PM   #15
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I'm actually very skeptical of celebrity "causes" -- any celebrity's cause. If I'm interested in a cause a celebrity supports -- and I verify through a variety of sources to my satisfaction that it's both lehit and viable -- then I will support the cause, irregardless of what celebrity supports it.

So I do understand not being able to just accept what Bono says as fact just because he says he has the facts. After all Tom Cruise says he knows all about the history of psychology.
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