Saturday, September 07, 2002

An Inside Look at the Earth Summit
In the latest Laissez Faire Electronic Times, Jim Peron has the third in a lengthy three part (so far) series on the Earth Summit which he attended as an NGO delegate. The title is "My Encounter with the Poverty Pimps" which is a good description of the Earth Summit all by itself. Some excerpts:
By the time the registration's were over something was apparent. The number of delegates was no where near the promised amount. The UN issued a press release saying how thrilled they were that delegates numbers were far in excess of projections. In truth the turn out was less than 50% of prior projections. Yet the UN said the large turnout proved the importance of an environmental agenda for the world.
I wondered about that. Before the hoedown, 65,000 delegates were "expected" but as it commenced the number kept getting revised downwards. There's much hilarity in Peron's tales of attending this botch job in the combat zone which is modern Johannesburg, but in the interests of brevity, I'll cut to the chase.
When the Summit actually got underway it became clear that South Africa would use it to push for massive amounts of international welfare. President Mbeki played the race card again?some suspect it's the only card in his deck. He talked about "international apartheid" . SA's Finance Minister Trevor Manuel went on television to lament how globalization had benefited some?the rich nations of the west. The World Bank released a report saying that the 20 wealthiest nations in the world were 30 times richer than the 20 poorest nations in the world. Every left-wing lunatic, fringe Green groupie, trade unionist, communist and eco-feminist was soon bleating the same tune.

Of these groups only the World Bank was technically correct though its spin was a bit deceptive and the gullible media couldn't figure out what this meant. Mbeki, Manuel and the chorus of Leftists were just plain uninformed about the facts. And if they knew the facts they were intentionally lying for political gain.

The World Bank has noted that the average "rich" nation of the world was growing by only about 2% per annum. This is not a growth rate to crow about by any means. On the other hand Third World (or poor) nations that globalized by reducing tariffs, increasing foreign trade, privatizing and deregulating were growing at a rate more than twice as fast as the rich nations: 5% per annum. If anything the real winners in globalization are poor nations that adopt market policies. Trevor Manuel's claims were the exact opposite of the facts. President Mbeki was just trying to use guilt to shame the West into more funding for corrupt African leaders.

The World Bank's statistic is true but misleading. The 20 poorest nations are nations that have centralized control over the economy, protectionists trade policies and corrupt governments. The Bank has admitted elsewhere that poor countries that refuse to globalize are seeing their economies shrink by 1.5% per annum. So globalization ends up getting blamed for the results in nations which refuse to globalize. Considering that rich nations with liberal market policies are growing at 2% and poor nations with authoritarian policies are shrinking at 1.5%, then the differences in wealth between them will continue to grow. But poor nations adopting market policies are catching up with the West very quickly.


Of course such facts go contrary to the policies being promoted by the Poverty Pimps of the NGOs and the Vampire Elite who rule African nations. These groups want aid not trade. The Poverty Pimps earn their living acting as the conduits by which the West passes aid to Third World nations. The Vampire Elite are the people to whom the aid is given. This allows them the luxury of lucrative Swiss bank accounts, fancy cars, the latest defense weapons and other goods. They can channel money to favored causes, regions or tribes for personal political gain?much the way Mugabe's land redistribuiton policy has enriched his wife and closest friends. Aid becomes a tool by which the Vampire Elite subjugate their own people. It is a means of controlling the masses while enriching oneself. Trade is a bit more difficult to control since Individual companies or entrepreneurs tend to trade with each other. This doesn't leave much for the Poverty Pimps or Vampire Elite. Their bias will always be for more aid since that is what directly benefits them. Bugger the poor.
Indeed. More by following the link.