Beyond all of the misery suffered by those of us who are either in the West, or those of us who are part of the middle-class of less-developed countries, the aching, gnawing poverty experienced by billions of poor people in non-industrialized parts of the world is surely the most important issue of our times.
21% of Children under the age of 5 live below the Poverty Level - IN THE UNITED STATES!
You don't need to travel the world to find poverty it's everywhere. Yet people grasp on to a two party system and keep voting in people that perpetuate the problem.
any words i type in reply feel horribly inadequate, so i will just say that you're right
Tell the Wealthy nations to abandon Capitalism. That would do it.
That would be foolish. But, a better solution would be that more people live their life with a purpose for the betterment of mankind, then those people would be guiding themselves and the more driven people there will be in the world, so problems like this can be addressed properly, instead of being shifted from one country to another.
Yes, a long statement, but I can't win them all.
How will a wealthy man (or for your purpose, a wealthy country) accept to shed their wealth? They toiled and amassed wealth. Let the poor people also do it. Distribution of wealth to idle, lazy and poor people will prove dangerous for a country.
Let capitalism flourish. Let all poor people become capitalists.
Anti-capitalism is communism which is now dead, except in China.
All poor people should have the opportunity to become capitalists, I agree with that. To do that, as is true for Western entrepreneurs, their basic needs should be met so that they can flourish -- basics like most Westerners enjoy: clean running water, effective sewage systems, access to food banks and welfare payment for emergency situations, free education up to the teen years: all Westerners enjoy these benefits, freeing up their time to become entrepreneurs if they wish to... all people should have access to these basics therefore, so they can take part effectively in vibrant commerce...
redristribution of wealth, Marxist approach,
I really dont know the answer...
The level of income among the people in developing countries is ten fold times in the developed countries but on the other hand, they seemed to be not happy still,
I would say, in response to the suggestion to abandon capitalism, that it might be more useful to introduce a more regulated form of capitalism, where large corporations are given less muscle (and less lobbying power in Washington, the World Bank, and the IMF), while at the same time encouraging small-scale capitalism among the very poor.
Of course, in order for poor people to have any chance of running a business of any sort, they need clean water, food, sewage systems, and basic health services... without these, they don't have a hope. I've written a few hubs on this idea that small-scale capitalism might help... the micro-credit movement of Muhammad Yunus is a step in that direction...
The U.S. was born of small business. Big business killed the true sense of Capitalism. It also made sure that the poor masses remained that way; just wealthy enough in developed countries to purchase the goods of said entities. World poverty is good for Big Business. Period.
There is an alternative for Americans, and that is self sufficiency. America has enough land, and the world has the technology, for you to provide your own energy and food and completely withdraw yourself from the system. I hear Americans daily moaning about capitalism, or the government, or the traffic.... well the land costs next to nothing.... and the European settlers built homes and ranches. Why dont you all go and do it? Abandon your materialistic world, throw away your laptops, and live a life without money. Sorry, but it just bugs me that Americans of all people moan about these things.... Materialistic and greedy lives even in Europe are referred to as 'Americanisation'.... there are people in America doing it already; they are called 'Survivalists' and there are already tens of thousands of them....
There are more Americans going down that path than the world realizes. Oh, those nasty Americans, how dreadful they all are, causing all the messes in today's world. There are a great many of us who do something about it and that is why we 'moan' about it; to get our fellow Americans off their asses and fix the problem. As far as Europeans think of America; we got what we know from them. With unlimited resources they'd have done the very same thing.
I am a European who lives in Canada. I don't hear Canadians moaning very much, to be honest, though I do have memories of a fair bit of moaning in the UK, when I lived there... Either way, and this goes for Canadians too, there seems to be a blindness to the world's poor among many in the West.
No personal offence intended with my comment, although the principle remains; self sufficiency is more than possible in the whole of North America. I even know people who have achieved that here in the UK - albeit with an initial investment and without a doubt some cash tucked away should it all go wrong. As for unlimited resources, I wont even comment on that; North America and Europe, and capitalism and globalisation, have been the primary reasons for deforestation. America has less than 10 years worth of Oil left.... without wanting to sound too critical of America, because trust me I see Europe as much the same evil, you certainly do not have 'unlimited resources' and it is this simple attitude that has seen us fail to face up to the problems of scarcity of resources.
Mind you, I really would rather not be an American, if it meant I might be excluded from receiving medical care by the health insurance company I have been paying... To me, basic health is a human right. This is of course, the tragedy of the non-developed world... How do you get yourself out of poverty if you are sick? But it is also a tragedy when so many Americans declare bankruptcy because of unpaid medical bills...
I completely agree. A true free-market capitalist should recognize that the existence of large corporations undermines competition... and "free competition" is the part of "free" market capitalism that is supposed to run the whole engine!
subsistence farming or pastorialism or hunter gathering should not be included in the poverty category. just because they dont have money doesnt make them poor. chinese farmers have been rioting for years because they are being driven off their land by the chinese government or they are having polluting factories located near their farms and their water and fields become toxic, then they become poor. these changes are driven by chinas growing industrialisation. often people around the world are driven into slums and off their land, they only become poor when off their ancestral land. this often happens due to a combination of foreign investment multinational corps and the government of the country involved.
one can be driven off ones land and into sweat shops, the GDP goes up but the quality of life goes down.
a lot of poverty is like a see saw the northern hemisphere goes up the southern goes down. to see the whole picture, you have to include many elements like aid, consumerism, militarism, resource extraction, competition between powerful nations to maintain and advance their interests and sphere of influence, also you have to see it all in the context of the past of the european expansion through the world and imperialism and colonialism. imperialism has morphed into a orwellian world of double speak, like development aid, free trade, globalisation.
Someone once said that America is the greatest country on Earth by default, but if we just tried to live up to principles for which we were founded just imagine how great we would be? I don't know how we solve the world's problem, but as a human being seeing a starving child in Africa hurts my heart just as much as it would here in America.
As indeed it should, of course. I agree with what you wrote, that if Americans lived up to the principles America was based upon, we'd all be better off. Children in Africa have the right to clean water, effective sewers, basic health provisions, and food, just as much as any European, American, or Canadian child. When politicians really take this fact seriously, perhaps we might see some changes.
This is not popular with people - but more than one in seven adolescents in Africa gives birth each year. This is more than two and a half times the rate in the United States. Help the people of Africa get education and this problem will be solved.
I agree with a lot of this but as a lot of politicians say, what about the oil?
To end or sufficiently put a dent in world poverty you would need to have a meeting of the minds. The wealthy would have to be convinced there is a profit in participating which is an oxymoron and you would need to share in the poverty as well. All wages would be lowered to be fair and profits would need to be shared in less productive countries.
I don't think you will see a whole lot of Americans getting in line to live in a tin shack with a little rice and rat meat for dinner.
And what about the oil?
As a first aid, poverty can be shared. But the needy people should be made to understand that every wealthy man was not wealthy by birth.
Never happen my friend. You are asking a lot when you ask people to share that much. Too socialist and not practical. What is in it for a wealthy person to share in some one elses poverty? America does not operate that way. Perhaps a co-signer would help
That last sentence is right on: for poor people to become capitalists, they need access to credit. But banks will not normally lend to them. So access to startup capital is also a basic need (Muhammad Yunus' micro-credit system has been shown to work here).
On the other hand, there is in fact profit to be had in helping the poor. Imagine raising the standard of living of an extra billion people to the level where they have disposable income: this would mean A BILLION EXTRA POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS. This would be "stimulus" of an epic nature... By the way, America does distribute some of its wealth, that's what taxes do...
In the 6th and 7th decade of 20th century (1950-70), I remember American medicines, tinned food, wheat, etc. coming to India. (Thanks on behalf of those who were benefited). We became sufficient in the next decade onwards and now oveflowing. I can accept that American aid helped to uplift the living standards in other countries to an extent. But now, its aid is in the form of arms, ammunition, financing the terrorists and encouraging military governments, neglecting the suppressed and the underprivileged.
Alms will feed the hungry; arms will kill them.
consumers should know where their stuff comes from and demand that it not come from war zones or causing war or poverty.
Ryanket, I like your idea of self sufficiency but disagree with your comment about land being cheap. It's not cheap around here, and I live in a rural area!
I used to live on a farm and we grew our own vegetables, fruits, and nuts. We also had beef cows, chickens, pigs, goats, and a milk cow. We also hunted and fished a lot. Our freezers and pantry were always full of food we had produced ourselves. I miss that lifestyle!
The priorities of our world are out of order, when the lives of people are neglected for the abuses and profits of war.
From serfdom to slavery from greed to power of things like natural resources to the epidemic turned pandemic called HIV/AIDS.
Even on our currency we sin by printing "IN GOD WE TRUST".
If we followed GODS laws and not make them up as life goes on from one administration to the next the heat gets hotter and hotter this is hell on earth and we are living on impulse not necessity how can we counter act the damage done of a life time. Population control agendas only market the continued death and disease as money is still the root of all evil.
One finds it hard to help those people when their gov'ts are so corrupt the food we send is used for bribes and for their own gains. Too many wars and much tyranny lead to the starvation also.
'Fear can only prevail when the victims are ignorant of the facts' Thomas Jefferson
'Only when the last tree has died and the river been poisoned, and the last fish been caught, will we realize, we can not eat money' Chief Seattle of the Dwamish Native American tribe
Most American (at least the ones I know) are more than willing to reach out their hand to those in need (so evidenced by the downturn of the economy & the manner in which so many Americans have turned to assist friends, family, and neighbors in these curious times). The problem is one of perspective, those who 'have' can not always see those who 'have not'. Until we have to wake up every morning to scrounge for food for our survival, for the survival of our own children, it is difficult for most to fully comprehend the peril much of the world lives in.
We've (us AMericans) have allowed ourselves to be misled into believing (compounded through the social progress of the seventies, eighties, and nineties) that our definition of success in life has everything to do with the accumulation of wealth and materials - we've forgotten about that essential part of being an American: the ability of providing opportunity for those in need. Fear of loss has caused us all to lose face.
I have known members of the elite who have worked hard (grew up outside of Aspen, Colorado) and I've known members of the poor who have worked hard. The argument I hear continually that people are starving because of laziness is a false statement born by a lie supported by fear of loss. If you've ever had to beg for your food, sleep outside because you didn't have a home, or rely on the kindness of strangers in order to survive you would see this. Cripes, even the criminal work hard within the career paths they've chose for themselves.
It's not about what you have; it's about what you can give. Don't worry about loss - when you give of yourself the world has a funny way of balancing the equation.
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