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Old 10-01-2003, 09:20 AM   #31
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Israel????

No one at the UN gets a newspaper?

Anyway, looks like I now have one more reason to move to Ireland -#12 ain't bad at all.

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Old 10-01-2003, 11:44 AM   #32
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Sherry Darling,

"Israel????"

"No one at the UN gets a newspaper?"

What are you getting at? Israel was at #22 on the list.
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Old 10-01-2003, 01:11 PM   #33
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Right, it just seems like near weekly suicide bombings would lower that a bit. LOL.

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Old 10-01-2003, 02:17 PM   #34
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Hey! STING2 is checking the UNDP website!

Wow

The HDI post is, indeed, very interesting.

To add some fuel I will repeat what I canīt find on Interland no more, so forgive the double posting.
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Old 10-01-2003, 02:26 PM   #35
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The "development optimism" of the 50s and 60s was based on the formula development=economic growth=industrialisation. R. Kapuscinski f.e. tells us of a debate between Walt R. Rostow and Rene Dumont in Addis Abeba in 1963, in which they were discussing if Africa would reach the development status of Switzerland in 20 or in 40 years (Kapuscinski 1995). So, 40 years have passed, and the economical status of Africa is further away from the one of Switzerland than ever. If the GDP per person was 10% of Switzerland in 1950, in 1998 the GDP p.P. was only 6,4% of Switzerlands GDP p.P. (Maddison 2001). Also the difference in terms of life expectancy has grown. If, at the start of the 70s, a man that lived in Sub - Saharan Africa, was dying an average 28,5 years before of a Swiss man, the difference in the second half of the 90s was 29,8 years (United Nations Development Programme UNDP 2001).

So, has development been a dishonored promise? You could answer that question twice. In absolute terms, we can see some positive changes.

Life expectancy of the third world has risen in the 70s - to an average 64 years - , child mortality rates were sinking, from 11% to 6,1% (which is still a lot). Then, the rate of illiteracy amongst
adults went from around a third to around a fifth. Income, defined as GNP p.P. (in real purchase power) of countries of the third world has nearly doubled between 1975 and 1998. Also the number of people that have to make a living with less than one US$ per day, has decreased from 28,3% in 1987 to 24% in 1998. All states except of Zambia were able to advance their HDI (human development index), - BUT the absolute number of poor people ascended from 1,18 billion to a depressing 1,98 billion (UNDP 2001, World Bank 2001).

Now, the successes of development that you could read out of this data, are spatiotemporally unequally distributed. Life expectancy increased in all the third world, but in South Asia it increased disproportionately, compared to Sub - Saharan Africa. Measuring income increase, we can conclude that South Asia and Africa are below average, whereas Latin America and East Asia are above average.

And apart from that, rise of income doesnīt mean improvement of
living standard. Worldwide, cash requirements have substantially
increased, meaning that a double income is far from double consuming possibilities. Historically we can see that the improvement of development indices was decreasing with the start of the 80s; in the 90s numerous countries had to accept losses. Twenty states, all of them situated in Africa and part of the Comecon in the past, were showing decreased Human Development Index in 1999, compared to 1990 (UNDP 2001, Table 2,8 Feat. 1.1; World Bank 2001/ 1.1)

Another possibility to answer the question, if there have been substantive development successes, is comparative: Has the third world made up leeway in relative comparison to the first world?

Life expectancy was 16 years below the one of the first world in the 70s, 25 years later the difference was "only" thirteen years.
Different from the child mortality rate, which, in developing countries, was four times higher than in the first world in the 70s;
25 years later the child mortality rate - even if there was an absolute reduction - was nine times as high as the one of developed countries.

So, UNDP data tells us of an increase of real income. As to the
question whether those increases could reduce the gap between poor and rich countries, - the answer is a simple No.

In 1960, the average GNP p.P. in the third world was 4,7% of the
average (100%) GNP of a citizen living in the first world, in 1999 it
was astonishing 4,8% (World Bank). This minimal improvement only happened because of East Asia - in all other regions of the third world income, in compare to OECD - countries, has dropped down in the last 40 years (World Bank 2001: Table 1, UNDP 2001: Fig. 1.5). Third world countries could improve their income standards in compare a little in the 60s and 70s, but since then the polarisation between center and periphery has deepened again (Firebaugh 1999).

The richest tenth of world population could rise its part of the
world income about 20% to a total of 56,1% between 1965 and 1990, while the income part of the poorest 60% of this planets population has fallen from 9,3% to 5,3% - same timespan. The "global lower middle class" had to accept a bisection of their income as well, increase of income was reserved for seven developing states: Portugal, Greece, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore (Korzeniewicz/ Moran 1997).

The continuing deep gap in the diversification of richness is even
more noteworthy if we acknowledge that, in big parts of the third
world, substantial industrialization progresses have been undertaken.

Especially Asia and Latin America could reduce their industrial "production-backwardness" compared to the U.S. and Western Europe. The World Bank shares data that the part of industrial production of the GDP is higher (35%) in periphery than (30%) in the center. Industrial exports make up 52% (low income countries) of all exports and 71% (medium income countries), compared to 82% industrial (of all) exports in rich countries... so there is a difference, but the gap is significantly smaller than the income/ property gap.

From this it follows that the old formula development=economic
growth=industrialization was wrong. Even if there is some development in certain areas, like life expectancy or education, after half a century of development aid, the world is still characterised by "a fundamentally stable global hierarchy of wealth" (Arrighi/ Silver 2001). The gain/ catchup race by copying free market economy and industrialisation has been proven to be an illusion. Even the Financial Times admits that (but only in its Christmas issue): "About two thirds of the worldīs population have gained little or no substantial advantage from rapid economic growth" (Financial Times, 24.12.1993, cit. Hobsbawm 1995).
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Old 10-01-2003, 02:39 PM   #36
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Lets take a look at development policies. The "classical" economists, like Adam Smith (1723-1790) or David Ricardo (1772-1823), thought that free world trade would be a precondition for rising wealth. All nations who were supporting free world trade, should follow Ricardos theory of comparative cost advantage and to specialize in production of what they were best at. In Ricardos example, England concentrates on the production of clothes/ drapery, Portugal on the production of wine - so finally both profit.

But the practical experiences show that free trade - different from theory - only advantages and benefits the economies that are already strong; some rulers realized that as early as in the 17th century, and if their economies were weak, they tried to protect themselves with mercantile practices. Consequently, 19th century Germany, which was still economically weak compared to England at this time, formulated a different position on free trade: protective duties/ tariffs were essential, to keep growing industries protected from almighty foreign competition (details see the economist Friedrich List, 1841).

Now, thatīs a quarrel that continued far into the 20th century; two different positions, protectionism vs. free trade, the instrument of economically weak against the instrument of economically powerful.

Those strategies only had an inferior role at the time of the worldwide economic crisis ī29, and WWII, when trade and commerce broke down and the powerful centers had to concentrate on "their own business". The peripheral countries that produced raw materials were trying to build their own production capacities, because imports werenīt available or couldnīt be afforded. With that strategy they were able - with all their structural weaknesses - to spread their own economic base until the start of the 60s. The economic code of practice was theoretically based upon the New Deal: active state role, strategic planning, and industrialization concentrated on the domestic market (after the reactivation of world trade).

Import-substituting industrialization was theoretically established by the CEPAL (Comision Economica para America Latina), a UN commission, in 1948. An important part of this theory was defined by Raoul Prebisch, a conservative economist, who researched on the terms of trade, and concluded that the average prices of industrial goods in compare to the average prices of raw materials were heading in different directions, meaning that industrial goods get more expensive while raw materials stay on the same price level, are reduced or get "less more expensive" (lower inflation rate).

This is why developing countries, in order to be able to import the
same amount of industrial goods every year, have to rise the amount of raw materials they export continually. The way out of that trap was importsubstituting industrialization, regional economic cooperation and, coming with this, a change of the rules of international division of labor.

Also other growth theories of the 40s-60s tried to achieve a "catch-up" industrialization for developing countries, one example being Walt R. Rostow (1960), who said that "traditional societies" - hierarchic, fatalistic, much agriculture, less technology - would finally reach mass consuming status after three steps. The take-off phase, Rostow said, would be crucial for success.

However, modern theories were not thinking to historical pre-conditions, or to worldwide trade structures (defined throughout
history). They stated that the reasons development didnīt work out were based on endogenous factors, f.e. not enough plans for raising efficiency (social psychology) or (an important point of economic theorists) blamed it on the absence of enough capital.
Economical stagnacy was every countriesī own fault, and always had its reasons in having not enough of something: of motivation, of education, of rationality, of democracy, of capital.

About the start of the 70s - after the crisis of 68, Vietnam, and oil
crisis - it became obvious that importsubtituting industrialization
had its borders as well, that capitalism didnīt guarantee development for everyone, and was far from keeping its promises of fast paced economical development for everyone.

Development theories started to concentrate on (socio-)economic
general conditions that were defined by the interdependent and
asymmetric capitalist world system. Structural dependency theories, neo-imperialistic theories, theories of unequal barter,...

The most important "think tank" was the dependence theory, which was formulated mostly by representatives of countries of the periphery, from India, from Northern Africa, and from Latin America. Many authors (including F.H. Cardoso, R. Cordova, R.M. Marini, O. Sunkel, A.G. Frank) dealt with questions like

a) how economical and social structures were influenced/ directed by colonialism

b) international division of labor on the third worlds account

c) the roles and methods of foreign capital and multinational
corporations.

(Collective) self - reliance or de-linking were concepts to sheer out of the world market dependencies. But apart from theoretical debates, development planning acknowledged a problem: even if (or because?) there were industrialization and modernisation measures in peripheral regions, the unequality of income and land distribution continued and grew, and the big part of the population stayed in absolute poverty.

The answer to that problem seemed provision of work, fight of
poverty, and more attention on the agricultural sector.

In the middle of the 70s, the World Bank introduced its "basic needs development" strategies. By openly stating that everyone has basic needs, the World Bank had to admit that industrialization in a western form, or Rostowsī mass consuming status, were unreachable goals for peripheral regions; that in fact development (first and above all) meant the achievement of absolute minimum standards, like food, water, probably housing. This pessimistic view was not only strengthened by economic data, but also by the idea of the "Limits to Growth", like the document by the Club of Rome 1972, stated.

In the 80s, the positions that quoted capitalism as the root of all
evil, slowly disappeared. With restauration of the dominant
capitalist governance system, neo-liberalism and the expertises of its think tanks were on the rise. Their model, pretending to show a way out of the crisis, was based (very different from the dependence-theoretical assumptions) on extensive integration into the capitalist world market. Exports should be accelerated, goods traffic and monetary transactions liberalized, foreign investments be eased and supported,... another phase of globalization hit peripheral countries. Deregulation should not only shape the economic relations of peripheral countries to the central countries, no, also home-policy-wise every economic activity had to follow the machinery of the market.

This model was implemented about everywhere and the reason for its "wide acceptance" is that most of the highly indebted countries of the third world had no other chance than to accept the adjustment of structural (economy) programs that were forced upon them by their creditors and international finance institutions.

With the end of the Cold War and strengthened world trade,
development now is an inner problem of each and every country again. The neoliberal model postulates conformation and economic adjustment, while it doesnīt offer any specific development goal. There seems to be no place for development strategies based on the needs of peripheral countries.

The widespread protests (Seattle, Göteborg, Genova etc.) against the representatives and beneficiaries of globalization show that capitalism is in doubt and questioned again, not only by peripheral countries, but also by citizens in the so- called first world. We will see if that leads to a renaissance of development theories.
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Old 10-01-2003, 03:43 PM   #37
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First, success or failure in the third world in regards to development should not be based on the difference between the first world and the third world. Progress over a certain time period should be based on the improvement or lack of improvement in the third world itself.

How did Ireland go from being the poorest country on the planet in 1845, to the third richest country on the planet per capita in 2003? It was not through protectionism. The value of Irelands exports are 90% of its GDP and the value of its imports are 80% of GDP. The Celtic Tiger Roars because of Free Trade, not protectionism.

Much the same could be said of Portugal, Greece, Spain, Italy, Tawain, South Korea. Countries that several decades ago, people looked upon as being poor, have thriving economies and high standards of living in 2003.

As Ireland has shown, progress is possible, but politics and other types of intereference can easily interfere with any process. It is to much of generalization to say plan x is failure simply because certain Sub-Sarahan African countries have not improved. There are factors instead of economic plans that have prevented development in many area's through out Africa.
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Old 10-02-2003, 02:42 PM   #38
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Quote:
I'll explain, FW. Sting's kindly making my case for me. Not a single African, and scarcely an LA country on the list. Not even many "transistion" economies, except for Poland and Turkey. Man, the debt has GOT TO GO and the wealthy nations have GOT to bite the bullet and open their markets to people OTHER than fellow rich, powerful nations.
I agree with you entirely. However I still don't think that posting a list of the countries with the largest economies is relevant to a discussion about free trade or debt relief. We all already know that the US has a larger economy than Cameroon, but posting that information doesn't do anything to address the questions being discussed in this thread.
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Old 10-02-2003, 03:46 PM   #39
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"We all already know that the US has a larger economy than Cameroon"

Ahhhh, I think I now know why you didn't like the list
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Old 10-03-2003, 12:49 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
First, success or failure in the third world in regards to development should not be based on the difference between the first world and the third world. Progress over a certain time period should be based on the improvement or lack of improvement in the third world itself.

How did Ireland go from being the poorest country on the planet in 1845, to the third richest country on the planet per capita in 2003? It was not through protectionism. The value of Irelands exports are 90% of its GDP and the value of its imports are 80% of GDP. The Celtic Tiger Roars because of Free Trade, not protectionism.

Much the same could be said of Portugal, Greece, Spain, Italy, Tawain, South Korea. Countries that several decades ago, people looked upon as being poor, have thriving economies and high standards of living in 2003.

As Ireland has shown, progress is possible, but politics and other types of intereference can easily interfere with any process. It is to much of generalization to say plan x is failure simply because certain Sub-Sarahan African countries have not improved. There are factors instead of economic plans that have prevented development in many area's through out Africa.
Why not on the difference in between? I think thatīs fair enough, being one of many ways to look at this issue. Like I have said, progresses have been made, but when the number of very poor persons has risen to 2 billions,, it is clear that policies like only-industrialization do not work.

Apart from Africa and "certain Sub-Saharan African countries" - indeed the only exception is South Africa, the rest of Aricea is poor- take a look at West Africa. - we are also talking about India (South Asia), Bangladesh etc.

To use Ireland and Portugal as examples where free trade worked out fine, is ok. But if you take a look at Portugals policies you will see that there is a balance too, between opened free trade and protectionism.

Portugal also played a big part w colonization, and could steal
some of its resources out of other countries. Ireland has so many imp/exp because of its geographical position between Europe and the New World. In Spain and Greece, many things improved in the last 20 years because it was part of the European Union, and all the Union pumps money into those regions. Italy never was as poor as south Asia, and never hab one billion of people to feed. In Italy, the first forms of capitalism were born. I do not know where you get the info that Italy was so very poor - some parts of the population surely were, the countries itself- for Italy started to exist only in 1867 - were rich, especially the north.

One of the few positive regions may be South East Asia. But to imply that the methods that were used there, could be used in other countries with different demogaphics, climate, products, resources, history, social circumstances etc. etc. is not a very diversified approach to tackle the problem.
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Old 10-03-2003, 02:09 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
"We all already know that the US has a larger economy than Cameroon"

Ahhhh, I think I now know why you didn't like the list
I thought the list was completely irrelevant to the debate, which is why I made my original comment of "how is this relevant?"

I really have no idea what you're implying with that comment though.
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Old 10-03-2003, 03:59 PM   #42
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whenhiphopdrovethebigcars,

"Why not on the difference in between? I think thatīs fair enough, being one of many ways to look at this issue. Like I have said, progresses have been made, but when the number of very poor persons has risen to 2 billions,, it is clear that policies like only-industrialization do not work."

Because a growing gap between certain countries does not necessarily mean things are getting worse in the poorer country. The Success of certain rich countries does not necessarily impact a poorer country. It is far more accurate to measure progess in the third world by comparing it to where they were at one time as compared to where they are now. The Difference between the first world and third world as a model to show whether their progress in the third world or not is inaccurate. The Difference or increased differences can often be explained by gains made solely by the first world country and is not a reflection of decline in a third world country. More importantly such comparisons can cover up progress that is being made in the Third World. The more I think it about it, such comparisons should never be used.

The reason that the raw number of poor people has risen is because the population has grown. Again, an inaccurate way of measuring progess. Poverty Rate percentages should be used rather than raw numbers which are inaccurate in measuring progress and simply act as a way to shock certain people into supporting their political agenda.


"Apart from Africa and "certain Sub-Saharan African countries" - indeed the only exception is South Africa, the rest of Aricea is poor- take a look at West Africa. - we are also talking about India (South Asia), Bangladesh etc."

True, but this is more because of political instability rather than free trade and industrialization.

"To use Ireland and Portugal as examples where free trade worked out fine, is ok. But if you take a look at Portugals policies you will see that there is a balance too, between opened free trade and protectionism."

Portugal's growth rates and standard of living have improved faster since they dropped protective measures than before.

"Ireland has so many imp/exp because of its geographical position between Europe and the New World."

If thats the reason Ireland is the 3rd richest country in the world now, then why was Ireland perhaps the poorest country in the World in 1845. Ireland did not move and its geographical position is the same now as it was in 1845.

"In Spain and Greece, many things improved in the last 20 years because it was part of the European Union, and all the Union pumps money into those regions."

The level of money pumped is not enough to explain all the improvements that have happened in these countries.

In the past, Southern Italy has had unemployment rates as high as 50%. I would not call that rich.

"One of the few positive regions may be South East Asia. But to imply that the methods that were used there, could be used in other countries with different demogaphics, climate, products, resources, history, social circumstances etc. etc. is not a very diversified approach to tackle the problem."

Ahh, but the methods have been applied and used successfully in different places through out the world.
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Old 10-03-2003, 04:10 PM   #43
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STING,
I had to be a nuisance, but is there any way you could use the quote tags when you're replying to someone. It's just that it's much easier to see what you're replying to and what you're saying when the original message is in the quote tags. (I would have sent this by PM, but it says you can't receive PMs so I couldn't. Sorry!)
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Old 10-07-2003, 03:05 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
whenhiphopdrovethebigcars,

"Why not on the difference in between? I think thatīs fair enough, being one of many ways to look at this issue. Like I have said, progresses have been made, but when the number of very poor persons has risen to 2 billions,, it is clear that policies like only-industrialization do not work."

Because a growing gap between certain countries does not necessarily mean things are getting worse in the poorer country. The Success of certain rich countries does not necessarily impact a poorer country. It is far more accurate to measure progess in the third world by comparing it to where they were at one time as compared to where they are now. The Difference between the first world and third world as a model to show whether their progress in the third world or not is inaccurate. The Difference or increased differences can often be explained by gains made solely by the first world country and is not a reflection of decline in a third world country. More importantly such comparisons can cover up progress that is being made in the Third World. The more I think it about it, such comparisons should never be used.

The reason that the raw number of poor people has risen is because the population has grown. Again, an inaccurate way of measuring progess. Poverty Rate percentages should be used rather than raw numbers which are inaccurate in measuring progress and simply act as a way to shock certain people into supporting their political agenda.


"Apart from Africa and "certain Sub-Saharan African countries" - indeed the only exception is South Africa, the rest of Aricea is poor- take a look at West Africa. - we are also talking about India (South Asia), Bangladesh etc."

True, but this is more because of political instability rather than free trade and industrialization.

"To use Ireland and Portugal as examples where free trade worked out fine, is ok. But if you take a look at Portugals policies you will see that there is a balance too, between opened free trade and protectionism."

Portugal's growth rates and standard of living have improved faster since they dropped protective measures than before.

"Ireland has so many imp/exp because of its geographical position between Europe and the New World."

If thats the reason Ireland is the 3rd richest country in the world now, then why was Ireland perhaps the poorest country in the World in 1845. Ireland did not move and its geographical position is the same now as it was in 1845.

"In Spain and Greece, many things improved in the last 20 years because it was part of the European Union, and all the Union pumps money into those regions."

The level of money pumped is not enough to explain all the improvements that have happened in these countries.

In the past, Southern Italy has had unemployment rates as high as 50%. I would not call that rich.

"One of the few positive regions may be South East Asia. But to imply that the methods that were used there, could be used in other countries with different demogaphics, climate, products, resources, history, social circumstances etc. etc. is not a very diversified approach to tackle the problem."

Ahh, but the methods have been applied and used successfully in different places through out the world.
Our opinions are different.


Sure, to measure some progresses that have been made, it is realistic to compare the situation of a country now and 20, 30 years ago.

I think measurements such as comparing first and third world standards and the gap in between are necessary for a social reason, not pure economic reasons. I think that with all the pain that poverty causes, it is justified to ask why the first world gets richer and richer, while some regions of the third world improve a little, and others get poorer and poorer.

I also think it is politically incorrect (because in my definition, political correctness includes social correctness) to shrug the problem of 2 billions of people living in poverty off by saying "well thatīs just for the population explosion". Why didnīt the +600 millions of people grow up normally and get their chance to eat a piece of the cake?

Is that just kind of... natural fate, the rich stay rich, the sick stay poor? I do not think so.

Comparing the progresses of the first vs. third world is a way to raise social awareness. A way of saying "ok, so a bigger percentage of people in this country can read, but all in all, 600 millions more are living in absolute poverty". So you may question the success, and the energy amount put into development policies.

The same type of comparison will be used when you are working as a manager. Say, you work for Coca Cola and you were lucky enough to sell 5% more in the span of a year. While some may see this as a success, your boss will ask you why the manager of Pepsi was able to sell 20% more in the same timespan. Youīll probably be fired.

So, I really canīt see anything wrong with using some different ways of comparing successes. Especially when it is also about social correctness.

I also want to ask you a question: if we agree that the first world got a lot richer, why didnīt we invest a bigger percentage of the GDP into development? Please, donīt answer "The U.S. sends so and so many tons of crop to this and that state"- sure it does, and I am not questioning the brave hearts of those who donate. But, if we got so much richer in compare to others, why not invest more GDP into helping those who need help more urgent than anyone else on this planet?

With this question, other questions could arise. I could ask how many children could be fed if France didnīt invest its money into another nuclear device, but get the food down there. I know those questions itch, because this is about social responsibilty. I know that most of the times they are just shrugged off with a certain first-world-nonchalance "well you canīt compare security issues to development policy issues". I think we can. I think it is the right thing to ask those questions. Who makes profit by producing another nuclear device in France?

Back to development, before being carried off.

You say that Sub-Saharan African countries, West Africa, India and Bangladesh stay poor because of political instabilities, rather than free trade and industrialization.

First, I didnīt say industrialization was bad per se. I tried to explain that industrialization does not necessarily reduce poverty. And also free trade does not necessarily resduce poverty. Under the right circumstances, it can reduce poverty, but it is not a healing instrument in itself. It is NOT ENOUGH to say "weīll try it with free trade now - we are sure weīll profit, we hope theyīll profit too". This is not enough in terms of social correctness. Therefore, it is not politically correct.

Please, also explain the political instabilities in India (apart from the little quarrels on the border to Pakistan). Are you saying that Mahatma Gandhi contributed to political instability? No, I know I just misunderstood you.

It is true that political stability is important for long-term development, but political instability is not the main reason behind poverty. It has become a politically incorrect, morally bankrupt tradition in some first-world countries to point the finger only on endogenous factors when explaining the reasons for poverty.

Iīll leave the rest of Europe out of the discussion for now, because Europe is rich anyway. We are not discussing about wealthy and more wealthy.

STING2, you must know, I am neither an enemy nor a defendant of free trade, or globalization. For example, in the European Union, it works quite well. It is a good thing that Sweden got many woods, makes easy-to-use furniture and ships into all Europe. It is good, because in Europe there are customers who can afford Swedish furniture. Plus, all European countries have their own (relatively) strong economy, so it will not hurt their economy that much if Sweden gets furniture producer No.1.

But it would be socially (not legally - what a pity) incorrect to ship it to a third-world country that (supposedly) has many own woods, sell it there for low prices (and make profit anyway), destroy the domestic third world production because it canīt compete with those prices, destroy the lives of the lumberjacks and their families because they are without job, income, canīt educate or even feed their children, and stop the development process of this country.

Morally, that sort of free trade is not correct.
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Old 10-07-2003, 05:20 PM   #45
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HIPHOP,

First, I'd say measuring the progress of one country from where it was 10 years before to where it is now is the only way to accurately measure progress in the developing country.

I think that the how well the first world does is because of its current possition. Everyone knows that the richer you get, the easier it becomes to make money. The developing world only looks like it is getting poorer if you make an inaccurate comparisons with the first world. Strip that a way and on the whole, the Third World is improving. You Can't compare a 12 year old doing his first Weight Lifting Session to a proffessional Olympic Power Lifter. The Power Lifter will have the abilities to make increases in weight that are just not possible for the 12 year old despite improvements that the 12 year old makes. Comparing the two is simply inaccurate.

Its not politically incorrect to state the facts behind why the raw numbers of those in poverty have increased from say 600 million to 2 billion. There is no economy in the world that is growing fast enough to absorb that level of population growth, so its unfair to label free trade and industrialization a failure when there is not economic system that could ever handle that level of population growth under any circumstances. The best one can do in these exploding area's of population is get the explosion under control. It really is inaccurate to measure the success or failure of a particular economic model when such condition hampers everything.

Sorry, but most managers are not fired for achieving a high level of growth, despite failing to beat a competitor. If the company is still making a good profit and growing, the managers are not going to be sacked. Company survivability, profitability come long before concerns about ones market share.

I doubt U2 will fire Paul McGuiness if their next album sells less than Coldplay's next album. Record companies typically keep artist that make them a profit, even if they sell less comparitively to other artist.

I feel actually that it is socially incorrect to blame the first Worlds rapid Growing success, on the increasing difference between the First and Third World. Rather, its simply a fact of where the first world currently is compared to the third world. The First World is on a Jet Airplane while the Third World is on Horses and Wagons and starting to convert to cars. Improvements are being made in the thirdworld, but this gets distorted and not seen when you compare Jet Airplanes to Cars and Horses. The First World is on a different track, but one day the third world will be on that track to. It is wrong to attack the first worlds success simply because it increases the difference it has with the third world in terms of Wealth.

Its not right for me as an individual to attack U2 simply because their next album will increase the difference between my total wealth and their total wealth!

I agree that Countries that rapidly increase in GDP should be contributing more to economic development in the third world. The USA with its reconstruction investments in Iraq and Afghanistan has Trippled just this year alone, the amount of money it gives to Third World Countries for Economic development.

But at the same time, one has to realize that there are still many other problems besides simple humanitarian aid to the third world. A worse security situation worldwide would definitely not benefit the third world and would strip away any development aid being given in order to solve the huge security problem. Economic development cannot happen overnight in the thirdworld and those that try to do that risk their own security and environment back home, which would eventually put third world countries in even more desperate situations.

One has to realize that there are consequences to not investing enough in Defense and National Security, and those consequences could eventually prove to be devestating to the third world. The inability of the first world to successfully resolve certain security issues would mean there would be even less money available for economic development in the third world.

You may view the Political instabilities in India as small, but many other people do not. There has been political instability through out the country for some time up until the mid-twentieth century. It then fought 3 wars with Pakistan and has had to sustain a massive defense budget to maintain its security. Take the three wars and the Cold War between Pakistan and India away and I would argue the standard of living in both countries would be more than double of what it is today, after only 50 years.

A lack of National Security, Political instability, and Politically unwise investments by particular leaders in third world countries, and the population explosion, are the chief reasons behind poverty in the third world today.

Europe has had many differences among its countries in the past in terms of economic wealth and although the European Union through free trade and integration have helped to lessen these differences, there are still many differences with the new Eastern European countries coming into the EU. Over time though, Free Trade and Globilization will lessen these differences as the developing Eastern European Countries catch up to the West. Ireland at one time was as far behind of Switzerland as Seria Leone is behind Switzerland today. But today Ireland is ahead of Switzerland in terms of GDP per capita. Free Trade and Industrialization do work and they will eventually work for the Third World, but its going to take politically stability and time for it to occur.
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