Aid to tsunami victims: Greece 0.12-USA 0.07 in permille GNP

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tom.d.stiller
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Post by tom.d.stiller » Sun Jan 09, 2005 10:33 am

Tim wrote:you appear to be mistaken about what a forum is; you were talking to everyone, not just Dem, Tom, Tim (there is a difference, please note) or any other individual.
There's a difference indeed, of course. Rowing the boat together, kepinig the same direction today, Tim and I might well disagree on another topic next week..

And Tim's right. You're not talking to Dem, or to "Tom" or to Tim or to me. The nature of the forum is: you're talking - virtually - to the whole world, Marcel.

I hope that your abilty to judge in political issues far exceeds your ability to distinguish between different members of this forum. Someone who can't tell Tim from me, or maybe Tom Sakic from tom.d.stiller, really shouldn't be caught bashing the U.N.

Just try to think instead of falling in love with what you believe to be your peers.

Tom
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mdidier
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Post by mdidier » Sun Jan 09, 2005 11:14 am

"....keeping the same direction.... "what direction?

Well, thanks for that brilliant elucidation for my sake..... but I really did want Dem to tell me where he lives and/or is from ?...not exactly addressing the world with that question, am I?... but in the end it does not matter..... since y'all are cut from the same socialist cloth, and socialists are not allowed to think for themselves, only repeat what the chiefs have laid out....

the UN is still and always will be a corrupt money-sucking One-World Mafia, with an occasional but furtive good deed (under the UNICEF banner)... I object to my tax dollars flowing into that abominable black hole...
Life is the final riddle, we all give up on it eventually...
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tom.d.stiller
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Post by tom.d.stiller » Sun Jan 09, 2005 11:48 am

Oh my...!

Dem is Greek, and he lives in Greece. That's obvious for anybody who knows more than his own prejudice. Just read around a bit, Marcel...

Socialist? Do you know what you're saying? The socialist Rosa Luxemburg once wote;
Freedom is always and exclusively freedom for the one who thinks differently.
You will have to go a long way to arrive there, my sad and angry friend...

However... those who presumed to know right from wrong killed Rosa in 1919. I hope you won't cheer them...

The UN is as corrupt as their most influential members are. Three guesses how white the House is....

Cheers
Tom

PS: Try to find the "li'l gray cells" instead of platitudes...
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Post by jurica » Sun Jan 09, 2005 1:41 pm

mdidier wrote:since y'all are cut from the same socialist cloth, and socialists are not allowed to think for themselves, only repeat what the chiefs have laid out....
think what you will about communism, socialism, marxism, parecon...
think what you will about the UN...

but this is the biggest load of rubbish i've seen in years.
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tom.d.stiller
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Post by tom.d.stiller » Sun Jan 09, 2005 2:30 pm

yep, jurica :D
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Post by Tchocolatl » Sun Jan 09, 2005 4:58 pm

Whatever political opinions one has, he/she could always think by him/her self. It is evident.

Maybe Marcel was traumatized by the Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Who knows...

However, there is a touch of truth in his statement.

If we look at the the beginning of all this. Quickly. I'll try to be brief, so excuse in advance for the chunky parts. They put down Kings and Queens and other crowned heads. They created capitalism wich was suppose to free makind but in fact created another kind of social injustice when the society get rapidly divided into, mostly, 2 social classes (even though it was (still is) much more complex than this, I symplify a bit). One class has all the power on the other, the business was the only goal, law, the sole purpose of life and it rules everything. The other social class became reduced to slavery so to speak, most of the time treated like merchandise with any regard for human values (that was left to religions). End of the preamble, I enter the core of the point, now.

Then came the necessary political actions like socialism, communism, etc. to make a counter part of the polical and economic almighty power.

So far so good.

But the problem was the lack of time, money, and education to take efficient actions. So the workers elected a representative, gave him money, this man became an expert and... end of democracy. Because democracy implies that every and each individual is part of the system. In fact, and because the structure of the organizations, this expert was never, could never be put into question, and he often had the stature of a real dictator, even if himself did not want it, and even if the philosophy of the movement was against dictatorship.

Nonetheless, (the failure of those systems) it rests that something must exist to make a counter-part of the rather schyzophrenic like profit-for-the-profit system, and it could came from the experience of those movements, more adapted to reality, maybe.

Now we are far away from Sumatra.

This disaster stresses the fact that we need strong humanitarian organizations all year long. Because in the emergency only very thigh-well-organized people are mostly efficient.
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"He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love."

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Linda
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Post by Linda » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:31 am

VIEWPOINT : The land of penny pinchers


NEW YORK - By Nicholas D. Kristof

So, is the United States "stingy" about helping poor countries?

That accusation by a U.N. official provoked indignation here. After all, we're the most generous people on Earth, aren't we?

No, alas, we're not. And the tsunami illustrates the problem: When victims intrude onto our TV screens, we dig into our pockets and provide the massive, heartwarming response that we're now displaying in Asia; the rest of the time, we're tightwads who turn away as people die in greater numbers.

The 150,000 or so fatalities from the tsunami are dwarfed by the number of deaths every year from malaria. Probably 2 million people die annually of malaria, most of them children, or maybe it's 3 million - we don't even know.

But the bottom line is that this month and every month, more people will die of malaria (165,000 or more) and AIDS (240,000) than died in the tsunamis, and almost as many will die because of diarrhea (140,000).

And that's where we're stingy.

Americans give 15 cents per day per person in official development assistance to poor countries. The average American spends four times that on soft drinks daily.

In 2003, we increased such assistance by one-fifth, for President Bush has actually been better about helping poor countries than President Clinton was. But as a share of our economy, our contribution still left us ranked last among 22 top donor countries.

We gave 15 cents for every $100 of national income to poor countries. Denmark gave 84 cents, the Netherlands gave 80 cents, Belgium gave 60 cents, France gave 41 cents and Greece gave 21 cents (that was the lowest share, beside our own).

It is sometimes said that Americans make up for low official aid with private charitable donations. Nope. Private donations add 6 cents a day to the official U.S. figure - meaning that we still give only 21 cents a day per person.

One reason for this stinginess is a sense that foreign aid is money down a rat hole. True, plenty has been wasted. But there's also growing evidence of what works and is cost-effective - such as health programs and girls' schooling.

One of the most unforgettable people I've met is Nhem Yen, a Cambodian grandmother whose daughter had just died of malaria, leaving two small children. So, Nhem Yen was looking after her four children and two grandchildren, and she could afford only one mosquito net to protect them from malarial mosquitoes. Each night, she had to choose which of the six children would sleep under the net.

Do we really think that paying $5 for a mosquito net to keep Nhem Yen's children alive would be money down a rat hole?

"The really big money can be better and more usefully absorbed by developing good health and education programs in the poorest countries," noted Nancy Birdsall, president of the Center for Global Development. "But that's not as visible or heroic."

With America's image tarnished around the world, one of the most effective steps Bush could take to revive it would be to lead a global effort to confront an ongoing challenge such as malaria.

The best response to accusations of stinginess is not to be defensive, but to be generous. And the measure of generosity is not what you offer when the spotlight is upon you, but what you do when the spotlight moves on.
Linda
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lizzytysh
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Post by lizzytysh » Tue Jan 11, 2005 4:38 am

I believe the writer of this article makes many, balanced, good points. There's a lot to be said about 'the dramatic' motivations for giving vs. the everyday, less visible ones ~ where the ongoing need is devastating day in and day out. Thanks for putting this article here, Linda.
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Kush
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Post by Kush » Tue Jan 11, 2005 7:24 am

That is a very good article. Nice to see you post Linda.
Tom also makes a very good point earlier on about "continuity in helping survivors re-establish....", when the media spotlight has moved on.

An additional point I'd like to mention is that its not enough to donate to Doctors Without Borders (or similar organizations) which focusses mainly on emergency type situations but also to such organizations like UNICEF which focus on long-term development.
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Post by mdidier » Wed Jan 12, 2005 7:05 am

the Kristof article (NY Times) has one sentence I agree with.... the very last sentence...

"And the measure of generosity is not what you offer when the spotlight is upon you, but what you do when the spotlight moves on"
_________________

although the rest of the article seems to say just the opposite.... am surprisesd he did not rake Colin Powell over the coals for saying essentially that we hope Muslims will take notice of our good will......

Now if we added up all the "foreign aid" and loan forgiveness decisions and other forms of "abuse" of US generosity, do you suppose they would still bitch at America?..... of course they will. That's why I object to these black holes like the UN sucking up our tax dollars... (22% of the UN budget, why?)
Life is the final riddle, we all give up on it eventually...
Linda
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Post by Linda » Wed Jan 12, 2005 7:52 pm

Thank you Kush

I don't agree with everything in that article but found it interesting to read.
I think selfish is a better word than stingy.
Linda
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Post by linda_lakeside » Wed Jan 12, 2005 9:57 pm

Hi Marcel, I'm just passing through on my way to another thread, still at 'er, eh?

Linda: Before I signed on to this site, I was just going to use my first name, then I saw your board name, so I added a tag to mine to avoid confusion - nice to meet you.

Sorry to interupt the conversation.
~ The smell of perfume in the air, bits of beauty everywhere ~ Leonard Cohen.
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