Oxfam: friend of the world’s poor?

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Many years ago I used to donate quite a bit of the money I donate to charity to Community Aid Abroad. It seemed like a good idea to try to combine charity and aid with some attempt to address some of the political causes of poverty. Empowering poor communities seemed like a good idea. There was a fair bit of soft left spin which didn’t particularly impress me, but it didn’t bother me too much. I figured they were probably doing a good job in the circumstances – and they probably were. I don’t know.

I was invited to subscribe to New Internationalist which I duly did and found it dull, clichéd and predictable. But I still kept giving. On one occasion I got some paraphernalia from them which pushed various anti-trade buttons. Of course it’s entirely worthwhile for them to lobby as hard as possible for ‘fair trade’ if that means better access for poor countries to import into Western markets. But there was a fair bit that wasn’t really saying that. It was dog-whistling to anti-trade, anti-globalisation campaigns.

I sent off an angry letter and got back a long rather hurt hand written note from the then head of the place in Australia whose name I think was Brian Loffler. I think I kept donating. But a while back I stopped. I still don’t know who to give money to – but I give money to Fred Hollows – hard for that not to do some good and to Medicine Sans Frontiers. I could think of good grounds to criticise these choices and one purpose of this post is to ask if anyone can suggest any successor to Community Aid Abroad – which has merged with Oxfam. Because I certainly won’t be giving any money to Oxfam.

All aid organisations need to find catchy ways of engaging their constituencies. WWF might be able to do more for the environment by saving some slugs or bacteria in the Amazon, but it needs pandas on its advertising and so off it goes saving pandiferous wildlife. I can’t really argue with that. If people want to cough up the money for the pandiferous pleurodont * then WWF helps channel it towards them so they can be saved and what people want and are prepared to pay for gets done.

With aid agencies like Oxfam it’s no different. But it’s striking how far their agenda is now given over to what I might summarise as ‘tabloid justice’. We have bad multinationals who are doing mean things and so Oxfam goes and campaigns against them in poor countries.

Other than the ‘close the gap’ campaign they’re cranking up regarding Australian Aborigines, about which I won’t comment here, their campaigns overseas are:

  • Make Poverty History
  • Labour rights
  • Make Trade Fair
  • Mining, oil and gas

Make Poverty History

I loathe the slogan ‘make poverty history’ but you can ignore that gentle reader as I know that this kind of slogan is the way things are done today. If I were working for Oxfam I’d probably call it that too, despite the fact that it invites the usual cycle of overhyping what you’re going to achieve only to leave the predictable disillusion in its wake. Other than that fuddy duddy objection I guess I can’t complain too much. This is after all what Oxfam should be about – trying to get aid to the poor and do it better than it and others have in the past. But I wonder if it mightn’t be worthwhile having one arm of the project being to monitor and report truthfully on aid efforts – what’s working and what’s not.

Labour rights.

Well, lets just say that as emotive as the issue is, I wouldn’t want to be spending too much of Oxfam’s money on it. Labour practices in poor countries are pretty awful by our standards. So it won’t be hard to dig up some nasty stories. But why are we targeting multinational companies whose labour practices tend to be better than the locals? And in a general sense, does doing so do more good than harm? I’d never be confident that one wasn’t doing more harm than good – by driving up costs and so reducing the speed of development – driving up Peter’s wages at the expense of Paul who ends up on subsistence back on the farm. Nikewatch is a sub-program of itself – likewise Adidas.

Lets have some booing for how nasty Nike and Adidas are – and how much money they’re making the evil bastards.

Make Trade Fair

This is the old chestnut that got me going. Full marks for agitating for freer access to Western markets. Note that in addition to the West opening its markets to the developing world Oxfam says that we should support “revision of WTO rules to give developing countries the power to decide if and when to open their markets to ensure food security, rural development and long term growth.” Now in fact Dani Rodrik argues something like this, but I like to think what he’s saying is that a country with a few developmental clues of its own and the political commitment and institutions to support them can gain from strategic infractions against the WTO disciplines. Amongst the basket cases I expect the WTO disciplines would be a godsend to many countries whose rulers would be taking money from the favoured industries.

We also have the ‘fair trade coffee’ agenda. Why you would want to ‘help’ poor farmers by subsidising them to produce a crop at uneconomic prices is beyond me. Still perhaps there are some wins even in this silly agenda. Oxfam seems to have bullied Starbucks into some kind of agreement to moderate intellectual property claims over brands of Ethiopian coffee. Sounds like quite a good thing, but I don’t really know. I guess it’s all about Oxfam trying to turn itself into that conduit between the donors who like to give to pandiferous things and some beneficiaries at the other end.

Mining, oil and gas

Oxfam has set up a Mining Ombudsman to do what it can to provide some avenue of appeal for local communities to assert their rights against mining companies. It also campaigns for mining companies to ‘publish what they pay’. Thinking about this, it may do some good. If there are strong resource rents, trying to get locals paid more is one way of getting the money to the communities.

So all and all, it’s a mix of activities that irritate me, but then there you go – in the process of writing this post I’ve calmed down a little. I could put a bad spin on most of the activities and there are things I strongly disagree with, but some good may come of some of the things that look a bit dodgy at first glance – even though I think some are pretty bad moves.

And since they’ve got so into accountability – the accountability of multinationals – how about a bit of real accountability of government and their own aid. As Bill Easterly argues, the lack of accountability is one of the defining and foundational scandals of aid. Why couldn’t Oxfam fund some really hard headed on the ground analysis of what aid programs have worked, and what have not and why. Why couldn’t they publish a decent analysis not just of things that have worked well, but those things that have wasted donors money and/or possibly been counterproductive? Perhaps they have and I’m being very unfair.

* Look who’s just bought WordWeb Pro – I don’t think the panda is a pleurodont, but it turned up in one of the tabs. By the way, the panda is genus Ailuropoda. And yawning and stretching (as when first waking up) is pandiculation.

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Mark Richardson
14 years ago

Last year I visited the Oxfam website and was surprised to discover the political ambitions of the organisation.

For instance, Oxfam set itself the task of “transforming gender relations” in poor countries, in particular by “changing masculinities, changing men”. There was a lot of political theory adopted in support of this political claim; even Gramsci was cited as a relevant authority.

conrad
conrad
14 years ago

You should cc: this post to Oxfam. I’d be interested in what they to say about it.

Chris Dodds
Chris Dodds
14 years ago

Thanks for this post. I have tended to avoid donating to aid organisations because I dont believe that bandaging wounds is of much use. the solutions are found in avoiding the in of the wounds in the first place. Until I linked to the site I hadnt realised the extent of Oxfams activities. I will now be making a weekly donation so that campaigns to reduce structural poverty can be undertaken, so that campaigns around labour rights and fairtrade can be funded and so that there is an organisation keeping an eye on miners exploiting remote communities. Thanks again for the tip off

Andrew Reynolds
14 years ago

I would have to agree with you, Nicholas. Oxfam and most of the rest of the aid agencies have become, if they were not at the start, self-perpetuating bureaucracies. In any desperately poor area the best cars are owned by the agencies, not by the government. Walk around Dhaka or most of sub-Saharan Africa and you can bet you bottom dollar that the flash brand-new white Landcruiser that just blew past you was an aid worker being driven to a meeting with a Minister.
Some of the work they do is good – but much of it, like the anti-globalisation stuff, actually hurts.
The mobile phone companies for example, out of self-interest, are doing more for the world’s poor than either their governments or the aid agencies.
The best of them, IMHO, is MSF – direct, targeted action with a clear mandate. I wish more of our governments were as focussed. I will be interested to see how the new French foreign minister, a former head of MSF, goes.

Ken Lovell
14 years ago

So free markets don’t do charity all that well?

Maybe it’s a job for governments :-D

Ken Lovell
14 years ago

Nicholas I’ve got some useful insights into international aid at a practical level from this blog … maybe if you want to pursue your question you could do worse than asking it there. The writer and commenters seems very aware of the shortcomings of aid programs and not at all doctrinaire.

skepticlawyer
14 years ago

Very focussed charities tend to be most effective. Charities with a batch of diffuse aims (like Oxfam, and, sad to say, Amnesty) have really lost much of their punch.

MSF is the best of the ‘international’ aid agencies, while the disability focussed charities in the first world are an excellent place to put your charitable dollar – Guide Dogs/Seeing Eye Dogs, Fred Hollows etc.

Without naming a former employer, I will point out that thoroughly researching a charity before donating – whether at home or internationally – is vital. Ask questions, see if the charity has engaged in recent litigation, if so find out if the litigation was managed pro bono. Good charities publish annual financial reports that are as detailed as the reports publicly listed corporations have to prepare under ASX/ASIC rules.

That aside, charity/aid is really not the way to address poverty, which tends to be structural (based on gender, corruption, poor governance). All it can really do is provide ‘poor relief’, much like the Salvos or the Smith Family do here.

backroom girl
backroom girl
14 years ago

I first started giving to Community Aid Abroad back in the old days before they merged with Oxfam, because they seemed to be primarily concerned with helping people on the ground to be more self-sufficient and have better lives. Was that a con, or did they really do that in the old days?

Do you think they changed when Oxfam took over, Nicholas, or was it earlier than that? I must admit that I have tended to tune out their overtly political campaigns and messages and have just kept on giving, but perhaps I should rethink all that. I must admit that the alternative ‘sponsor a child’ type of program has always made me a bit squeamish, somehow – partly because many of those charities seem to be overtly religious, partly because I think the cute child angle is a bit of a con and you don’t really know where your money is going.

Ironically, on the domestic front, I give regularly to the Smith Family Learning for Life program, because I believe strongly that education is the way out of poverty for kids. But over the years, I don’t think I have sponsored a single kid who wasn’t clearly developmentally delayed in some way, and most (all boys from memory) seemed to drop out of the program before finishing Year 10. So again it is hard to see that my money has made a real difference.

Until now – my current sponsoree is a young women (I suspect from a refugee family) who believes in improving the status of women and seems clearly focused on doing something with her life. So I have high hopes that at last my money will help one person to escape from poverty. (Though the cynic in me suspects that she may have made it with or without my help – the old problem of deadweight that bedevils all such social programs.)

Matthew Gardiner
Matthew Gardiner
14 years ago

Have you considered APHEDA? ( http://www.apheda.org.au )an organisation that is supported by the ACTU and to use their own quote about “self reliance, not charity”

skepticlawyer
14 years ago

If it’s any consolation, one of my students in 2005 was graduate of the Smith Family’s ‘Learning for Life’ program (I tutored Trusts). She’d used it as a springboard to get into law – no little thing at UQ – and was doing very well. Her family was just poor – no lack of brains at all.

Mangoman
Mangoman
14 years ago

Nicholas, while limited, my experience of Oxfam has been that it does aim to address structural issues. The field workers who I have come into contact with have generally been pretty effective and committed community developers. In the CAA days there was a clear emphasis on this.

I have tended to dismiss the more campaign oriented publicity as simply an attempt to provide packages that will be attractive to a type of sponsor – obviously not you, and not me either.

Your post interested me enough to cause me to have a look at Oxfam Australia’s Strategic Plan and their latest Annual Report. The plan seems to hit some reasonable marks but I was disappointed with the report. They talk about accountability but it seems to me that the only real performance indicator reported on is the amount of money they raise.

MSF is the one that gets the majority of my charitable dollar along with Fred Hollows.

Amanda
14 years ago

FYI in IE6 the pictures make Troppo go all funny.

patrickg
14 years ago

Nicholas, I understand where you’re coming from, but ironically I think your big picture focus has made you a little blind to the realities.

As someone with a strong NGO background I can assure you that every dollar you give to OXFAM does indeed make a difference. The idea that charities aren’t accountable or open is a little bit of a furphy imho.

In Australia most all charities rely on Ausaid grants in one form or another, and the requirements for getting these (unless you’re in AWB!) are very strict. OXFAM itself has very strict rules about where and how aid dollars and can be spent, and the majority is not directed at campaigning/staff/advocacy. It is directed specifically at community projects and must be spent on, by and for said community.

Whilst working in the NGO sector can be very frustrating at times (the pay is so terrible you tend to get a mixture of very dedicated and very incompetent people), rest assured, most of the policy setters do, in fact, know what they are talking about. Certainly know a vast amount more than the average joe in the street about what works and what doesn’t in aid – and I would dare say know more than you.

Even organisations that I don’t think are so cool because of their missionary activities (eg World Vision) are definitely doing good, real work that makes a good, real concrete different to people’s lives.

I agree with you about New Internationalist being a bit on the shrill side (I no longer subscribe myself), but if you read regularly you will see many articles about aid projects that have been very successful. It’s rare to hear about the success stories sometimes because the problems are so big, but they are out there, most definitely, and they are happening.

It seems to me actually, that you don’t really object with what oxfam is doing per se – you say as much when you break down the campaigns – you just don’t like how they say it. But, you know, dude, you’re a grown up. It’s marketing. Who cares is they use sound bite concepts to talk about making trade fair? Everyone uses soundbite marketing. Look at what they’re actually doing, you would be hard-pressed to disagree, I’m sure. These is not a (politically or otherwise) radical organisation.

That said, in keeping with your request for another charity, beyond MSF, you might like KIVA (http://www.kiva.org), a micro-lending organisation that works very closely with community groups in said countries, and lets you pick the projects you want to finance, and gives you regular updates, etc.

patrickg
14 years ago

Egads. Sorry for the typos.

conrad
conrad
14 years ago

I think people are a bit negative here about big broad-based charity groups. If you consider the publicity and political impact that the groups have, then most of the groups that are getting anywhere are the big ones. If, say, Greenpeace wasn’t a huge bueracracy with large numbers of lawyers, bueracrats and so forth, then I think it fair to say that many of the issues that they help highlight (whether you happen to be for or against them), would not have of seen the light of day. Because of this, I presume some people make donations to organizations for longer-term political changes rather than immediate action, and thats not neccesarily a bad thing.

Roger Migently
14 years ago

I have been very impressed with The Hunger Project which, as I understand it, doesn’t give money but help communities to solve their own problems, to make the differences that they see they need. They have a particular interest in empowering women because that is where poverty can be defeated. They are active particularly in Bangladesh, India and parts of Africa and Latin America. They have some extremely high profile, credible people on the board, including Javier Perez de Cuellar, ex Sec. Gen of the UN, and Nobel Economics Laureate, Prof. Amartya Sen. Certainly worth a look I think, if you’d prefer not to just throw money at people.

patrickg
14 years ago

That’s okay Nicholas, I like to be quite egalitarian with my dudes. I think you would find, mostly, the reason why you don’t see unsuccessful projects reported are mainly because there aren’t very many of them.

I know that sounds ridiculous, but with most reputable aid projects, the aims are quite limited in what they can and can’t do, the majority of ‘failures’ as such are due to government interference/changes or natural disasters, etc. Things mostly beyond the scope of any aid organisation, and usually factors that said organisations are well aware of before they launch any project.

Also the nature of the aid itself is sometimes in the literal sense, aid. It’s giving starving people food to eat, helping refugees by giving them a shack to live in. In this regard it’s pretty hard to eff it up.

I’m not saying there aren’t failures, but you’ve gotta think about these things in the context securing donations. Charities literally live and die by their successes. The big ones certainly don’t want to take meaningless gambles, and risk losing their donation streams when bad PR gets out. It can and has happened – happens all the time with smaller charities.

This is my point re: radicalism. They’re not radical, by a long stretch. They advocate free trade, you say you agree in principle. You are clearly opposed to denigration of women, labour abuses, etc. These are not radical things, and let me assure you, these organisations weigh up the consequences very clearly before they start doing any action.

I guess my point is, you are letting a marketing exercise put you off, and you’re also assuming marketers run aid organisations: not so. These are very smart people, some with phd’s in the field, that have devoted their lives to it.

It doesn’t make the problems any less complicated or thorny, but most aid organisations are definitely qualified to make these decisons, and largely they make the right decisons, and they do most definitely debate them, and look at successes and failures, and what works where and how.

You seem to be operating from a perspective that aid organisations don’t know aid, don’t understand it or study etc. But it would be like me – who doesn’t really know very much about it, despite being a generally well-educated fellow – saying that Peach Home Loans doesn’t know anything about the mortgage market, because I don’t like the layout of their website. I’m not really in a position to judge in the first place, because I certainly don’t know much about the mortgage market, and even if I did, the layout of the website ain’t the standard to be assessing. Does that make sense? (I _do_ think you know about the mortgage market, btw!)

I mean, there are peer-reviewed journals devoted to this stuff, and they are read. To be honest, the biggest mistakes in aid are usually committed, not by organisations – conservative and qualified by their very nature – but by governments, because politics will overshadow policy, and policy-makers.

patrickg
14 years ago

Sigh, three hail mary’s and a wedgie for me then.

James Rice
14 years ago

Sorry, I don’t have any useful suggestions about aid organisations (in the past I’ve always gone with Oxfam). But if anyone needs convincing that they should donate some money to these organisations (or do something else to address global poverty), they could do worse than read Peter Singer’s “The Singer Solution To World Poverty“.

Link
Link
14 years ago

I’m pretty poor and I’ve been thinking of emigrating. Would I qualify?

melaleuca
14 years ago

I’ve sponsored kids thru Plan International in the past : http://www.plan-international.org/

Plan International do practical stuff like dig wells, improve sanitation, ensure kids can go to school etc.. Their Bulletin is free of soft-cock lefty bullshit.

Nowadays I save my charity dollars for groups involved in practical conservation projects like Arid Recovery http://www.aridrecovery.org.au/ and Australian Wildlife Conservancy http://www.australianwildlife.org/

Francis Xavier Holden
14 years ago

I don’t mind the idea of giving a village a goat or a water pump – at least I didn’t mind until one of my sisters said that her xmas present last year to me would be a goat in an african village. Thats all oxfam I think.

Francis Xavier Holden
14 years ago

I also help another sister who looks after refugees and TPVs not in a very organised political way but more in an emotional sending of chain emails. Her model is: she fights to get them out of Baxter (mainly) and takes them in to her home after they are let out. And feeds them, gives them a place to sleep and call home and helps them get jobs and schooling. She has Falun Gong refugees, Somalians and a whole bunch of West Papuan Rebels. We help out with contqcts, school text books, books, computers, net access, and me I record a lot of Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, Burning Spear and such CDs for these cats t keep them happy. They show me how to make white lightning distilled spirit from coconut juice. BAMMM! I give them old guitars they sing at BBQs and family get togethers at xmas. They share a love of raggae and Lucky Dube with the Somalians but the Papuans were upset when someone called them BLACK. “Mr FX you can see we as Melanesion we are a warm brown colour not blue black like those Somalians.”

Francis Xavier Holden
14 years ago

If you want to help you can give us money or furniture or cheap registered cars or pushbikes or guitars and CD players, and, football boots, basketball equipment, especially CDs of soul, R&B, and Raggae and we will pass it on to a refugees studying with us in Ausralia. Donate a phone card for an overseae phone calls.Fresh fish appreciated. If you can take the guys fishing with you all the better.

Other good things is donating unwanted eye glasses for overseas aid. Easy to do but has big impacts for recipients.

I know someone who is about to take over the Fred Hollows work in Australia – maybe they could use some professional skills of economists or legals or submission writers pro bono – now thats a donation that counts.

Me, besides helping my family livin refugees with study, software and music I occassionanly take them to concerts.

In the city I hate beggars but occassinally one catches my eye and his or her pitch convinces me to give time.. I make a deal. Here come into this macdonalds – I’ll buy a $5 meal for you. When you eat it I’ll give you $10 to go out and buy grog or horse or whatever you want with it, but first eat.

johng
johng
14 years ago

I have a particular bias with my giving in that I would like to give to projects in the poorest of countries (ie mostly Africa) which focus on improving health, because in general I think that is the most cost-effective way to give aid.
But its hard to be so directed in one’s giving particularly in Australia where there is not much focus on Africa, because we are so focussed on our neighbours in Asia & the Pacific. Occasionally I find a project to my taste but its not easy.
But perhaps I should not be so fussy. The most cost-effective project I have heard of was not one I would have picked as such a priori.
I’m referring to reforestation in Niger. Or Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration as it is called. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Farmer_Managed_Natural_Regeneration
(You can ignore the Wiki quality concerns. Its an accurate article).This work was initiated by Tony Rinaudo an Australian missionary/agricultural scientist with Sudan Interior Mission. This work succeeded when hundreds of millions spent by the US on traditional forestation programs failed. And there are now at least 7 million acres of trees where previously there was almost nothing. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/11/world/africa/11niger.html?ex=1328936400&en=7bd7a234c9fbad51&ei=5124&partner=digg&exprod=digg

mikey
14 years ago

In Australia most all charities rely on Ausaid grants in one form or another, and the requirements for getting these (unless youre in AWB!) are very strict. .

This is true and not even the half of it. The government aid system has a lot to answer for, it both hamstrings ngos and encourages the worst (boomerang aid for example) in both Ngo’s and the private sector. If you’re interested in accountabiliy Nicholaa, it might be worthwhile looking into the accountability of the private firms which garner the large majority of Ausaid grants and then comparing that with the accountability requirements of NGO’s. Of course that’s just Australia and oxfam is after all a multinational.

I almost immediately forgot everything I learnt about the sytem, so (deliberately?) byzantine is it, but i think there is a research project at UNSW.

mikey
14 years ago

also, for refugee/displace people type projects you could do worse than try austcare

swio
swio
14 years ago

I have to say that Micro-credit has to be one of the best ways to contribute, especially if you believe in the power of free enterprise. The economic empowerment it gives to women in particular has more potential to improve women’s rights than anything I can think of. On top of that your money keeps working over and over again.

James Rice
14 years ago

Jacques: If you actually read what Peter Singer writes, you’ll see that he advocates donating money to overseas aid organisations (like Oxfam or Unicef), and argues why he thinks we should through analogies involving Dora from the Brazilian film “Central Station” and Bob and his Bugatti. Singer also focuses on assistance to children, rather than adults (who might possibly be unduly influenced by incentive effects). Maybe not everyone finds what Singer writes compelling, but how what he writes links with ruined lives in the Northern Territory completely escapes me.

Tanya
Tanya
14 years ago

Nicholas, I have the same difficulties with Oxfam and other organizaitons. However – from talking with friends that have worked with them and by examining where they put the majority of their resources – it is clear that much of the political statements do not make it far beyond the statement stage.

If you are interested in lending a hand through micro-credit, you might consider the Acumen Fund: http://www.acumenfund.org/ The NY Times ran an interesting article on them a while back: http://select.nytimes.com/search/restricted/article?res=F30B1FFD3D5A0C708DDDA80994DE404482
You probably won’t be able to pick up a tax deduction but you can get your money back if you don’t think they achieve much.

Stephen Bounds
Stephen Bounds
14 years ago

One of the things I learnt about OxFam when I looked into them recently was that donations are not tax-deductible — this was explained to me on the grounds that if they don’t have to abide by government regulations on the conduct of “official charitable organisations” they are more free to advocate against government policies which they feel are inequitable.

I’m just wondering whether Troppodillians see this as a positive or a negative for their credentials as serious providers of aid?? I’m still in two minds about it.

skepticlawyer
14 years ago

It means they don’t have to abide by a very important common law principle: that ‘purpose trusts’ must not agitate politically. In many respects, the law of trusts shields a range of equitable instruments from both political and tax intervention. This has its origins in the Charitable Uses Act of 1601, a piece of Elizabethan law that acknowledged that trusts (for all that they were often used to defraud the revenue) were going to be a major element of legal and financial arrangements for the foreseeable future.

The kicker was that purpose trusts could not be used for political advocacy; and any political activity must be ‘incidental’ (to use the word beloved of equity lawyers) to the primary purpose of the trust, which had to be educational, for the relief of poverty, for education, religion and so on.

There are two eccentric exceptions to the rule: purpose trusts for the care of named animals and the upkeep of named tombs. That’s why sundry rich old people are able to devolve large sums of money (and not always their own, either) on the family pet.

I like the distinction drawn by the law of trusts: politics and charity are two different things, and I do not like charities that purport to be charities while they engage in politics. If Oxfam have forgone their charitable status without having litigation brought against them, then at least their organisation has the merit of honesty. Having charitable status stripped as a result of litigation is a singularly humiliating experience.

Deus Ex Macintosh
Deus Ex Macintosh
14 years ago

I’m a bit curious why you only consider supporting an international charity. No ‘deserving’ cases in Australia anymore? I have to Habitat for Humanity as it works at home (UK) AND abroad building both in cases of poverty and natural disaster.

Andrew Leigh
14 years ago

Nicholas, if you believe William Easterly’s new book (“White Man’s Burden” – a cracking read), perhaps you should donate to the MIT Poverty Action Lab, who run randomised trials to find out what works to alliviate poverty.

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Helen
14 years ago

Why you would want to help poor farmers by subsidising them to produce a crop at uneconomic prices is beyond me…

As long as you acknowledge, Nick, that that is exactly what is happening with American corn farmers and Australian woodchippers. What’s good for the goose developed world..

Helen
14 years ago

Should have been a strike through on “goose”.

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