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the_nature_of_mass_poverty [2009/02/11 02:42]
dan
the_nature_of_mass_poverty [2010/02/03 12:00] (current)
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 > An end to injustice, to remind, is not necessarily or even usually an end to poverty. ---page 133 > An end to injustice, to remind, is not necessarily or even usually an end to poverty. ---page 133
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 ====== How Poverty Is Now Explained ====== ====== How Poverty Is Now Explained ======
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 | Governmental and economic system |The relative poverty of East Germany, Czechoslovakia,​ Slovenia, Croatia, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Russia have been stubbornly consistent over the last hundred years, as governmental and economic systems have changed back and forth: "For assessing the causes of poverty in Eastern Europe, it is obviously more important to ascertain whether the country or region in question belonged before 1914 to the Austro-Hungarian (or German) empire than to assess the modern impact of Communism."​((p9.))| | Governmental and economic system |The relative poverty of East Germany, Czechoslovakia,​ Slovenia, Croatia, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Russia have been stubbornly consistent over the last hundred years, as governmental and economic systems have changed back and forth: "For assessing the causes of poverty in Eastern Europe, it is obviously more important to ascertain whether the country or region in question belonged before 1914 to the Austro-Hungarian (or German) empire than to assess the modern impact of Communism."​((p9.))|
 ^ Relatively poorly thought out explanations ^^ ^ Relatively poorly thought out explanations ^^
-| Lack of capital (otherwise phrased as, 'this country is poor because it lacks money!'​ |A confusion of cause and consequence --- poor countries don't have these things because they cannot afford them.  If they could afford them they wouldn'​t be poor.|+| Lack of capital (otherwise phrased as, 'this country is poor because it lacks money!'​|A confusion of cause and consequence --- poor countries don't have these things because they cannot afford them.  If they could afford them they wouldn'​t be poor.|
 | Lack of trained, educated and experienced talent |Ditto. | | Lack of trained, educated and experienced talent |Ditto. |
 | Ineffective,​ erratic, corrupt or otherwise inadequate government |Ditto. | | Ineffective,​ erratic, corrupt or otherwise inadequate government |Ditto. |
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 ^ The poor world'​s explanations ​ ^^ ^ The poor world'​s explanations ​ ^^
 | Legacy of colonialism ​ |The main problems are (a) the diverse impacts of colonialism on different countries (particularly considering the USA, Canada and ANZ) and (b) the length of time that Latin America has been free of Spain (ignoring US influence). ​ Also a comparison of independent Ethiopia and Thailand with their neighbours.| | Legacy of colonialism ​ |The main problems are (a) the diverse impacts of colonialism on different countries (particularly considering the USA, Canada and ANZ) and (b) the length of time that Latin America has been free of Spain (ignoring US influence). ​ Also a comparison of independent Ethiopia and Thailand with their neighbours.|
-| Producers of agricultural products and raw materials "​suffer persistently in the terms of trade with the industrialised lands" |The main problems are the USA and Australia. ​ "There is merit in this range of argument, as I will later suggest... but "If to be a producer of primary products... places a country in the Third World, then the United States... is, by a wide margin, the first of the Third World nations."​((p20.))|+| Producers of agricultural products and raw materials "​suffer persistently in the terms of trade with the industrialised lands" |The main problems are the USA and Australia. ​ "There is merit in this range of argument, as I will later suggest" ​but "If to be a producer of primary products... places a country in the Third World, then the United States... is, by a wide margin, the first of the Third World nations."​((p20.))|
  
  
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 In sum, the poor world is faced with a stable equilibrium of poverty; in the rich world conditions are much the opposite, and an equilibrium of increasing income prevails. In sum, the poor world is faced with a stable equilibrium of poverty; in the rich world conditions are much the opposite, and an equilibrium of increasing income prevails.
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   - There is a history of the rich using the contentment of the poor as an excuse for resisting charity --- "​civilised and compassionate people seek naturally to avoid the guilt of association with such doctrine."​((p68.))   - There is a history of the rich using the contentment of the poor as an excuse for resisting charity --- "​civilised and compassionate people seek naturally to avoid the guilt of association with such doctrine."​((p68.))
  
-Nevertheless, ​provided that the reality of accommodation ​can be understood without it being taken as a justification for accepting poverty, or as a sign that the poor are in some way lazy, unmotivated or stupid.+Nevertheless,​ the reality of accommodation ​needs to be understood without it being taken as a justification for accepting poverty, or as a sign that the poor are in some way lazy, unmotivated or stupid.
  
 > Poverty remains a painful thing whether people have accommodated to it or not. ---page 69 > Poverty remains a painful thing whether people have accommodated to it or not. ---page 69
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 Galbraith declines to comment in detail on the content of education, deferring to those with more relevant experience. ​ He only says that there is no viable short-cut in attempting to teach advanced agricultural methods to the otherwise uneducated. ​ It has been tried repeatedly and failed. ​ It is through more gradual and subtle processes that education combats accommodation. Galbraith declines to comment in detail on the content of education, deferring to those with more relevant experience. ​ He only says that there is no viable short-cut in attempting to teach advanced agricultural methods to the otherwise uneducated. ​ It has been tried repeatedly and failed. ​ It is through more gradual and subtle processes that education combats accommodation.
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 ===== Escape within Poverty ===== ===== Escape within Poverty =====
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 Two features of agricultural extension programmes are necessary: they must follow improvements in education, not precede them, if they are going to exploit the increased number of farmers rejecting accommodation,​ and they should target those most keen to adopt them rather than trying to reach the poorest, or to attempt universal coverage. ​ This runs contrary to the conventional wisdom: Two features of agricultural extension programmes are necessary: they must follow improvements in education, not precede them, if they are going to exploit the increased number of farmers rejecting accommodation,​ and they should target those most keen to adopt them rather than trying to reach the poorest, or to attempt universal coverage. ​ This runs contrary to the conventional wisdom:
  
-> Nothing in the past has so criticised efforts at agricultural improvement as the charge that "they are reaching only a small minority of producers. ​ They are not reaching the poor farmers. ​ There should be no such effort to reach the indifferent farmers. ​ Agricultural extension should reach only those who resist accommodation... ---page 104 +> Nothing in the past has so criticised efforts at agricultural improvement as the charge that "they are reaching only a small minority of producers. ​ They are not reaching the poor farmers." ​ There should be no such effort to reach the indifferent farmers. ​ Agricultural extension should reach only those who resist accommodation... ---page 104 
  
 ====== The Industrial Escape ====== ====== The Industrial Escape ======
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