Oreilly Article On Bono & Africa - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > Lypton Village > Free Your Mind > Free Your Mind Archive
Click Here to Login
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-06-2002, 11:41 AM   #1
MBH
Acrobat
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: wantagh, ny usa
Posts: 392
Local Time: 05:31 AM
Oreilly Article On Bono & Africa

The following is an article written by political/news commentator Bill O'reilly detailing the problems in Africa and Bono's intentions. I posted an article written by Rush Limbaugh last week based on the same subject. Although I thought that Limbaugh's article made some valid points(to which most of you disagreed), you may find this one more objective, level-headed and fair. Look forward to discussing the article with all of you.


What does Bono want from us?

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Posted: June 6, 2002
1:00 a.m. Eastern


© 2002 WorldNetDaily.com


You have to love this guy Bono. The lead singer for U2 really wants to help the world, and I admire that. His trip to Africa with Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill was a great photo opportunity for both men. But behind the glittering 8-by-10s, Africa is still a major mess.

The problem is that in most African countries there is no infrastructure. Tribalism has crippled coordinated attempts to improve the standard of living for the 800 million or so people who live there. Life expectancy on the continent is the lowest in the world – about 50 years – and the main reason is because ancient hatreds rule, cooperation among people even in the same nation is rare.

Bono and many others want the United States to send more money to Africa. The New York Times screams that America sends less aid than any other developed area. On a per capita basis Canada sends more and so does Europe.

But in real dollars America has been a generous player in Bono's band. In the past 25 years, American taxpayers have contributed almost 40 billion dollars to help Africans. And what do we have to show for our money?

Nothing, that's what.

Now some of that is our fault. We sent millions to brutal dictators to keep them out of the Soviet orbit. We bribed killers so they wouldn't become commies. But it didn't matter whether they embraced Leninism because thieves are thieves no matter what ideology they spout. Much of the aid that America sent to Africa went directly into the bank accounts of the Robert Mugabes of the world. Thugs, pure and simple.

Bono and some American media people would have us believe that things are different now, that the African governments are ready to "evolve" as they say in California. Well I'm from Missouri on this one: Show me.

One of the biggest fallacies going is that America can afford to send a lot more money to Africa. American workers are taxed to the hilt and the war on terror is costing the U.S. about 2 billion dollars a month. That's real money – not loans or credit.

In case Bono and everyone else with their hands out haven't noticed, America is protecting the world here. We are hunting down terrorists and rebuilding pathetic countries like Afghanistan. It is enormously expensive.

Should we rebuild other pathetic countries in Africa? The answer is no. But we can help Africans help themselves – if they stop the nonsense.

First off, all American aid should go toward specific projects overseen by the American Embassy in the country receiving our money. If Nigeria needs a highway, then American officials should oversee the project. If South Africa needs money for AIDS education, then Americans should sign off on the nature of that education.

With all due respect to Bono and other concerned rich guys, most Americans work hard to pay their taxes and having aid money stolen by greedy thugs is not only insulting, it is criminal. The days of wine and roses are over for corrupt, coup-installed "generals." Do it our way or you don't get the highway.

A few years ago another Irish rock guy, Bob Geldof, put on a big benefit to help victims of a terrible African famine. Millions poured in. Did the money get to the starving people? Not according to many associated with the project. The African bureaucracy overwhelmed Geldof's good intentions.

So I hope Bono and Secretary O'Neill had a nice time running around Africa. It is a fascinating place to visit. But you wouldn't want to live there because it is so easy to die. Millions of Americans would like to help improve that situation. But African nations must stop the chaos and corruption and begin to help themselves. That is the only way things will ever get better over there and everybody should know it. You too, Bono.
__________________

MBH is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 12:02 PM   #2
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Tempe, Az USA
Posts: 12,856
Local Time: 10:31 PM

Hmm.
I think Brother O Rielly is missing the pt.
I still like him tho.

Diamond
__________________

diamond is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 12:08 PM   #3
The Fly
 
404 Not Found's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: the heart
Posts: 119
Local Time: 12:31 AM
Re: Oreilly Article On Bono & Africa

Quote:
Originally posted by MBH

Bono and some American media people would have us believe that things are different now, that the African governments are ready to "evolve" as they say in California. Well I'm from Missouri on this one: Show me.
wasn't that the point of the Africa trip? For Bono to show O'Neill where aid is working?
404 Not Found is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 12:11 PM   #4
War Child
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 526
Local Time: 05:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by diamond

I think Brother O Rielly is missing the pt.
Diamond
Agreed.

A more spot-on editorial by Jeffrey Sachs appears in today's issue of the Wall Street Journal.
mug222 is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 12:12 PM   #5
MBH
Acrobat
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: wantagh, ny usa
Posts: 392
Local Time: 05:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by diamond
Hmm.
I think Brother O Rielly is missing the pt.
I still like him tho.

Diamond
O'reilly is not missing the point. He totally understands it and has made an objective opinion on the issue. He is not an extreme conservative like Limbaugh who constantly bashes liberals and enjoys putting down others. He makes his decisions and opinions on the facts and he totally has it right on this issue. Face it: Bono has good intentions but his methods have not worked in the past(fact) and most likely will not work in the future. Although his intentions are in the right place, his methods are not.
MBH is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 12:18 PM   #6
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Tempe, Az USA
Posts: 12,856
Local Time: 10:31 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by MBH


O'reilly is not missing the point. He totally understands it and has made an objective opinion on the issue. He is not an extreme conservative like Limbaugh who constantly bashes liberals and enjoys putting down others. He makes his decisions and opinions on the facts and he totally has it right on this issue. Face it: Bono has good intentions but his methods have not worked in the past(fact) and most likely will not work in the future. Although his intentions are in the right place, his methods are not.
MBH-
What I understand is..that GW is willing to help Bono a insomuch as the money is accounted for and being well spent.
In the past this WAS NOT the case-it was more like 'throw gobs of money at the problem out of guilt w/no accountabilty'.
Recently Bono even said that was WRONG.
Bill O missed this pt. tho.

your friend-
diamond
diamond is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 12:36 PM   #7
Rock n' Roll Doggie
ALL ACCESS
 
sulawesigirl4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Virginia
Posts: 7,416
Local Time: 12:31 AM

Sounds like O’Reilly and MBH are both missing the point.
sulawesigirl4 is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 02:26 PM   #8
I'm a chauvinist leprechaun
 
Lemonite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Notre Dame, IN, 46556
Posts: 1,072
Local Time: 05:31 AM

I think I know the true reason.. Deep in the depths of Bono's mind on this Africa Aid. He gave us a clue into what this was really about in one of his quotes.. It is something that is spectrum wide and extends beyond just the Africa Aid situation, but I haven't the time to begin this discussion.

L.Unplugged
Lemonite is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 02:53 PM   #9
Rock n' Roll Doggie
VIP PASS
 
kobayashi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: the ether
Posts: 5,142
Local Time: 01:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by Lemonite
is something that is spectrum wide and extends beyond just the Africa Aid situation, but I haven't the time to begin this discussion.

L.Unplugged
are you discussing his plan to colonize the african continent with the newcomers ?
__________________
im the candyman. and the candyman is back.
kobayashi is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 02:55 PM   #10
Refugee
 
oktobergirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: the middle
Posts: 1,874
Local Time: 09:31 PM
I think if there is one thing missing from the Public Relations standpoint on the recent trip to Africa and it's subsequent media coverage, it's that IN THE FUTURE that money is NOT going to fall into the wrong hands. If the powers that be can convince the average Americans of that fact, there will be overwhelming support. Most of the criticisms I have read so far ( be it from the general pubic or the media) are not well informed enought to realize this. And that is frustrating.

I liked most of Bill O'Reilley's article for the most part tho.

Do you know what I wish? For Bono to be on Bill O'Reilly. I think Bono could stand his own and MUCH MORE. He'd probably never do it tho...

oktobergirl is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 04:35 PM   #11
MBH
Acrobat
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: wantagh, ny usa
Posts: 392
Local Time: 05:31 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by sulawesigirl4
Sounds like O’Reilly and MBH are both missing the point.
]

Sula,
You are so predictable. I have never seen you disagree with ANYTHING that U2 or Bono does. (I'm sure you have, I just haven't witnessed it). I constantly bring up well-thought, FACTUAL statements and evidence to the contrary and you always seem to disagree. That is your perogative. I acknowledged that many political pundits(ie Limbaugh) are somewhat off-base and others just simply wanna take shots at Bono. However, much of what is written by Oreilly(et al) is a fact: much money has been wasted in 3rd world nations and it must change. Granted, Bono is doing a good thing and he has a big heart; however, you simply seem to ignore the obvious. I am middle of the road when it comes to politics; I try to view both sides objectively and fairly and make a cognizant opinion based on the facts(as I'm sure you do as well). However, the facts cannot be ignored simply because you disagree with something. You come across as the stereotypical liberal who gets annoyed and ignores the facts for the sake of a political point of view.
MBH is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 04:38 PM   #12
MBH
Acrobat
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: wantagh, ny usa
Posts: 392
Local Time: 05:31 AM

Quote:
Originally posted by oktobergirl
I think if there is one thing missing from the Public Relations standpoint on the recent trip to Africa and it's subsequent media coverage, it's that IN THE FUTURE that money is NOT going to fall into the wrong hands. If the powers that be can convince the average Americans of that fact, there will be overwhelming support. Most of the criticisms I have read so far ( be it from the general pubic or the media) are not well informed enought to realize this. And that is frustrating.

I liked most of Bill O'Reilley's article for the most part tho.

Do you know what I wish? For Bono to be on Bill O'Reilly. I think Bono could stand his own and MUCH MORE. He'd probably never do it tho...

Wasn't Bono on Oreilly back in November of 2001(the 20th or 21st I believe, prior to U2's performance on Jay Leno)? If you or anyone else has details about this, please pass it on. Thanks.
MBH is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 04:56 PM   #13
Rock n' Roll Doggie
ALL ACCESS
 
sulawesigirl4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Virginia
Posts: 7,416
Local Time: 12:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by MBH
Sula,
You are so predictable. I have never seen you disagree with ANYTHING that U2 or Bono does. (I'm sure you have, I just haven't witnessed it). I constantly bring up well-thought, FACTUAL statements and evidence to the contrary and you always seem to disagree. That is your perogative. I acknowledged that many political pundits(ie Limbaugh) are somewhat off-base and others just simply wanna take shots at Bono. However, much of what is written by Oreilly(et al) is a fact: much money has been wasted in 3rd world nations and it must change. Granted, Bono is doing a good thing and he has a big heart; however, you simply seem to ignore the obvious. I am middle of the road when it comes to politics; I try to view both sides objectively and fairly and make a cognizant opinion based on the facts(as I'm sure you do as well). However, the facts cannot be ignored simply because you disagree with something. You come across as the stereotypical liberal who gets annoyed and ignores the facts for the sake of a political point of view.
MBH, you are also extremely predictable. You seem to revel in trying to stir up controversy simply for the sake of controversy. (which may also be merely my misunderstanding, but that’s how it looks). It is also your prerogative to do so of course, but don’t be surprised when people disagree with you.

Ok, so I do happen to agree with a lot of what the members of U2 have to say, Bono in particular. Does that mean I don’t think for myself, or does it mean that perhaps I just happen to concur with many of their views? I would say it’s the latter, and I would hope that I’m in the best position to judge. Furthermore, I find it highly amusing that you are labeling me as a “stereotypical” liberal, when I’m actually someone who generally votes Republican and holds pretty conservative views on a number of issues. I have studied economics and at an institution that holds capitalism and free market wisdom to be practically gospel, so believe me that when I disagree with you on the issues surrounding debt relief and aid, I am not doing so out of a liberal biased vacuum.

What I disagree with is your insistence on putting Bono’s position into this little box labeled “aid.” What I have gleaned from articles and comments and interviews is that, yes he is definitely pushing for continued aid towards Africa, but that he’s not merely saying that we should give free handouts and then abandon these countries to their own devices. What I hear him saying (and what I tend to agree with) is that while we should definitely be trying to help these countries move towards economic freedom and accountability, we cannot expect it to happen overnight and we cannot abandon them to the luck of the open market without taking into account the huge amounts of debt they carry, the ravaging effects of HIV/AIDS, the instability of many of their economic structures, and the inequity of trade tariffs. We owe it to ourselves to help and if that help takes the form of both aid and trade, then so be it. Personally, I won’t be upset if a cent of every dollar I pay in taxes goes to help people in the Third World. I’ve lived there, and I know that they can probably use it a helluva a lot more than I can.

But probably the thing that bothers me most about the articles is that they seem no more than a conservative knee-jerk reaction and one that overgeneralizes the issues and oversimplifies the solution. Not to mention the highly arrogant tone that screams condescension. I don’t know when calling African countries “pathetic” came into vogue, but I find that word choices like that in an article do tend to shred my opinion of the writer’s credibility.

So in conclusion, I don’t think that the above article is objective at all. It does validate one point of view, one that you seem to share, and of course you are welcome to it. But please don’t try to convince me that it’s an unbiased and fair assessment of the situation, because as far as I can tell, it doesn’t even scratch the surface.

Hopefully that helped clarify my position and where I’m coming from. Sorry if I was vague before, and I do look forward to debating this issue civilly in the future.
sulawesigirl4 is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 05:09 PM   #14
you are what you is
 
Salome's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 22,043
Local Time: 06:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by sulawesigirl4
But probably the thing that bothers me most about the articles is that they seem no more than a conservative knee-jerk reaction and one that overgeneralizes the issues and oversimplifies the solution. Not to mention the highly arrogant tone that screams condescension. I don’t know when calling African countries “pathetic” came into vogue, but I find that word choices like that in an article do tend to shred my opinion of the writer’s credibility.
and the crowd roars

I have also studied enough economy and picked up enough of Bono's (+ Co) ideas to come to the same conclusions as Sula did

__________________
“Some scientists claim that hydrogen, because it is so plentiful, is the basic building block of the universe. I dispute that. I say there is more stupidity than hydrogen, and that is the basic building block of the universe.”
~Frank Zappa
Salome is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 05:13 PM   #15
ONE
love, blood, life
 
melon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 11,782
Local Time: 12:31 AM

Sula's a "stereotypical liberal" now??? LOL...I think I've heard everything now. I can tell you, from speaking to her as long as I have, she is anything but "stereotypical." She certainly researches her opinions ahead of time.

I'm also quite dismayed over your comment:

"However, the facts cannot be ignored simply because you disagree with something. You come across as the stereotypical liberal who gets annoyed and ignores the facts for the sake of a political point of view."

Conservatives, especially Rush Limbaugh, are very much guilty of this. You should really check Limbaugh's own factual record, as they often "ignore the facts for the sake of a political point of view" most certainly. If you wish for me to dig up his backlog, just say the word...

Melon
melon is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 05:36 PM   #16
War Child
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 526
Local Time: 05:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by melon
Conservatives, especially Rush Limbaugh, are very much guilty of this. You should really check Limbaugh's own factual record, as they often "ignore the facts for the sake of a political point of view" most certainly. If you wish for me to dig up his backlog, just say the word...

I agree with you, but please stop referencing Limbaugh--it has long since ceased to accomplish anything except long, meaningless, thread wars of attrition.

By the way, can anyone find/post the Sachs column from today's WSJ? It's the most informative and most informed treatment of the subject yet. (It's entitled "Bononomics Rocks.")
mug222 is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 05:49 PM   #17
Rock n' Roll Doggie
ALL ACCESS
 
sulawesigirl4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Virginia
Posts: 7,416
Local Time: 12:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by mug222
By the way, can anyone find/post the Sachs column from today's WSJ? It's the most informative and most informed treatment of the subject yet. (It's entitled "Bononomics Rocks.")
mug, I can't access the WSJ article because it's on a subscription basis, but here is a recent interview with Sachs from MSnbc that has some relevance to the discussion at hand.

Quote:
A Call for African Aid

Harvard economist Jeffrey Sachs on global poverty issues

NEWSWEEK INTERNATIONAL

June 10 issue — Harvard economist Jeffrey Sachs made a name for himself tackling tough economic problems around the world. In the 1990s he advised Russia on how to move to a free market. He helped Mongolia to privatize a herd of 24 million yaks, and Bolivia to turn around its economy. In recent months Sachs has turned to a broader challenge: reviving the moribund economies of some of the world’s most impoverished nations. Earlier this year Sachs agreed to take a post as an adviser to U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan on global poverty issues, and will leave Harvard to head Columbia’s Earth Institute, where he hopes to bring scientists into development debates. Sachs spoke with NEWSWEEK’s Adam Piore last week. Excerpts:


PIORE: U.S Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill and Bono the rock singer have been in the headlines visiting development projects in Africa. O’Neill has been quoted basically saying “This is a waste of money.” Bono has looked at the same projects and said “This is great, we need more like it.” You took Bono on his preparatory trip to find projects that were successful. Who’s right?

SACHS: Of course Bono’s right and Paul O’Neill’s going to learn! I think the basic point that Bono was making is that we’re going to have to put some effort into some of the extreme problems, like hunger, epidemics, that the two of them were seeing this week. We had hoped this could be done basically for free, that it was just a matter of African governments’ governing themselves, focusing on corruption, reform... But O’Neill and Bono went to places like Ghana and Uganda—places that are governing well but can’t face these enormous problems on their own. It’s what the Treasury secretary saw with his own eyes, and I know he was absolutely shocked. He went into a hospital ward and met people who were dying not because they have to be dying but because they couldn’t afford drugs that cost about a dollar a day.One thing we learned over the last 20 years is that traditional development recipes—focusing on market reform and good governance—are far from enough. Our approach is like telling a starving person to stand up and walk through the desert for 10 kilometers to get your food.

But what is your response to critics who say you can throw all the money you want at some of the problems in Africa and they won’t go away?

I have studied these problems in more detail than any person on this planet in recent years and I know that the amounts of money going to fight AIDS, TB, to address hunger issues or for primary education have been grossly insufficient compared to any real estimate of the need. When you ask Americans what they think they’re doing, they think they are spending [lots of money]. In fact we’ve been spending about one penny out of every $100. Do you think that’s enough to get the job done with the world’s largest pandemic? The answer is no.

So you don’t think the money has been squandered through corruption and inefficiencies?

The programs that are being funded are working. The problem is that when you give very little—as we have done in the last 20 years—then the immunization coverage is very low, or the children don’t go to school, or the hunger intensifies. If rich countries turn their backs, of course you’re going to get mass death. And Secretary O’Neill stared it in the face.

If you could wave a magic wand and change two things about the way development aid is doled out, what would they be?

Sums of money that are commensurate with the scale of the problem, and that donors pool their money instead of doing it project by project, donor country by donor country. When you get a large enough pool of funds, whether it’s to eradicate polio, African river blindness, or to get leprosy under control you produce real results. But if instead you’re pretending—if every country puts flags up, with nobody producing real resources—you get a lot of people dying and a lot of people blaming victims.

Let’s talk about science. You have said that one of the reasons you are moving to Columbia is to try and get scientists involved in development. In recent years some development experts have come to the conclusion that there are large swaths of the world in Africa and Central Asia that are simply beyond help due to environmental conditions. You seem to be saying that science can transform these environments and fix these problems.

I think that all over the world it’s now possible to help children be born healthy, to be raised in good health and to get an education that can help them be productive members of the world community—and that can be true from Central Asia to Central Africa. But the kinds of problems that the poorest countries are facing require major investments in science to find solutions and understand them. There’s very little research in malaria, on tropical drought, on how to handle climate change or soil degradation that is causing the collapse of economies.
sulawesigirl4 is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 06:02 PM   #18
ONE
love, blood, life
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Tempe, Az USA
Posts: 12,856
Local Time: 10:31 PM

Mug-
Something tells me youre dialed into Brother Sachs quite well.
Would you care to elaborate?


diamond
diamond is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 06:04 PM   #19
War Child
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 526
Local Time: 05:31 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by sulawesigirl4


mug, I can't access the WSJ article because it's on a subscription basis, but here is a recent interview with Sachs from MSnbc that has some relevance to the discussion at hand.

Thanks Sula, I hadn't seen that interview--it's a good one. He has the right response, it seems, to the charge that all of the money we've given has been completely squandered, as O'Reilly says. The truth is that you simply cannot expect results from nickels and dimes: quantitative results vs. financial aid given is not at all a linear graph (i.e. 1 billion dollars will NOT be a tenth as beneficial as 10 billion dollars, but far less. This seems to be true, for instance, because you cannot combat half of malaria: if you do not eradicate the entire disease then it will always return with renewed force.) You can't touch the problem whatsoever until you are giving money on the right order of magnitude.

Thanks again. If anyone has a WSJ online prescription, Sachs' column would be a good one to post.
mug222 is offline  
Old 06-06-2002, 06:06 PM   #20
Rock n' Roll Doggie
ALL ACCESS
 
sulawesigirl4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Virginia
Posts: 7,416
Local Time: 12:31 AM

Here's an analysis from the Financial Times that also has some bearing on the discussion. Has a bit more technical jargon, but nothing anyone in here can't understand, I'm sure.

Quote:
O'Neill's African tour

Published: June 4 2002 5:00 | Last Updated: June 4 2002 5:00

Paul O'Neill, the US Treasury secretary, should have learnt at least two things as a result of his trip round Africa with the rock musician Bono. One, he looks better in silly hats than he might have expected; and two, development may not be as simple as it looks.

He can be applauded for his courage in undertaking the trip, especially with such a media-savvy companion adept at manipulating each visit to press for more aid than the extra $5bn that the US has already announced.

But when it comes to starting a new relationship between the US and sub-Saharan Africa, Mr O'Neill's powers are limited.

Out of what the US has to offer Africa's development - more trade access, more aid and more debt relief - the greatest of these is trade. It was unfortunate that Mr O'Neill's trip started just days after the White House backed the disgraceful US farm bill, a further distortion to global agricultural markets and a handicap for Africa's farmers. This was not Mr O'Neill's fault. A convinced free- trader, he conspicuously failed to defend the principle behind the bill when a succession of African leaders and campaigners brought it up. But he also did not manage to prevent it.

On the aid front, the trip was intended to flesh out the US's plans to direct the ring-fenced $5bn fund towards well performing countries. Traditionally, US aid to Africa has largely been used to reward political allies in the corrupt and murderous tradition of Mobutu Sese Seko in Zaire or Samuel Doe in Liberia. Even directed towards its proper purpose, its effectiveness is limited: US aid is often inflexibly tied to specific projects and, shamefully, to the use of US contractors.

Rewarding good policy

During the trip, Mr O'Neill made welcome sounds about shifting towards directly underwriting the budgets of trust-worthy countries. The US will also try to come up with metrics for rewarding good policy with aid.

Both these policies are already being pursued by some of the more progressive bilateral donors, particularly the Nordic countries and the World Bank. There is a legitimate debate about how effective they have been. Critics say, for example, that the World Bank's selection criteria depend too much on subjective judgments by its staff and that there is still insufficient discrimination between the Ugandas and Ghanas towards the top of the class and the Kenyas and Zambias towards the bottom.

Unhelpful unilateralism

But although it makes noises about learning from all past work in this area, the US administration seems to retain an unhelpful unilateralist bias. Early signs are that, rather than aligning aid allocations with existing mechanisms such as the poverty reduction strategy paper (PRSP) process, which increasingly co-ordinates International Monetary Fund and World Bank help with that of other bilateral donors, the US intends to go it alone. This may be a shrewd tactical move, since multilateralism plays badly in Congress. But it risks bringing back the bad old days when African ministries had literally hundreds of bank accounts to comply with complex donor reporting procedures. Poor countries should not be forced to create swelling bureaucracies to satisfy prejudices in donor countries' legislatures.

Moreover, Mr O'Neill should curb his tendency to offer homespun development advice based on initial impressions. It could just be that the solutions he has thrown out during the trip - dig more wells, plant better tomatoes - are as effective as he makes them sound. But the history of top-down technocratic solutions to development problems is littered with embarrassing errors.

A fresh and intellectually honest pair of eyes looking at the problems of African development, particularly from a country whose aid delivery has lagged behind best practice for so long, will be welcome. Continued hypocrisy on trade, ideological unilateralism and policy by anecdote will not.
__________________

sulawesigirl4 is offline  
 

Tags
africa, bono, bono africa

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:31 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com
×