Sunday 9 October 2011

So, Hang On A Minute Here....

...if it's so absolutely vital that we pour ever increasing sums of money down the drain in the form of overseas aid, which apparently 'shows "compassion" as it would help the world's poorest people', then how can we turn around a few months down the line and do this?
International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell has already cut aid to Malawi by £19 million after two gay men were sentenced to 14 years hard labour.

And he has warned the country's leaders to scrap plans to introduce draconian new anti-lesbian laws.

Mr Mitchell, one of Mr Cameron's closest allies, is also threatening to impose further aid 'fines' against Uganda and Ghana for hardline anti-gay and lesbian measures.
Hmmm, something stinks. Either this is vital aid for the world's unfortunates, or it's a bribe to be withheld when their governments do something we don't like.

So, which is it, iDave?


Pat said...

Or, just possibly, it is felt to be politically necessary to have an excuse before aid can be withdrawn- so as to keep appearing compassionate in the right circles.

Anonymous said...

International Aid has never ben anything other than a bribe. A bribe to be withdrawn, reduced or increased dependent on results.

Anonymous said...

Is Mitchell a mincer?

Anonymous said...

I am a different anonymous to the previous but I heartily agree that "international aid" is the biggest slush fund going, and anyone who reads Private Eye will know that it is a slush fun d which benefits the recipients and the donors, although Mitchell is of course punlicly committed to "cleaning things up" at both ends. I for one am not holding my breath in anticipation of him delivering on either, as indeed nor will his successor nor his or her successor... But on a pragmatic level it is of course far far better to have a roundabout, it can be dressed up as something very different means of providing the sorts of bungs that get companies a bad name and v bad press for them, and thereby keeping their images sparkly clean (well almost, with some companies of course....)

Paul in Nottingham said...

Gay Rights is more important than whether people live or die. Do keep up.

Paul in Nottingham said...

See Julia, see below the liners. Who has been lobbying here

"You will be a very naughty boy," says Iain, "if you don't do as I tell you Andrew."

See Andrew cut the aid.

SBC said...

"'cleaning things up' at both ends."
"sorts of bungs"

...rather unfortunate choices of phrase, considering the topic, i feel.


And the double entendre:
"Gay Rights... Do keep up." is hardly subtle.

Captain Haddock said...

Overseas Aid should be halted now .. once & for all time ..

This country is in dire econonmic straits and we simply cannot afford to give money away any longer ..

Not when ordinary families and pensioners, who have paid into the system all their working lives, are now struggling to make ends meet ..

Compassion & Charity begin and end at home ..

Overseas Aid cannot be justified ..

James Higham said...

Not something "we" don't like but something "the govt" don't like. Big difference.

Swiss bank account said...

as far as i know Overseas Aid is in fact a bribe so that the country we are giving cash to will either a) spend it on British goods or b) spend it 'hiring' British people to work over there.

it is in those cases a sophisticated form of aid to Britain, but under a guise of caring about the world. of course some of it helps dispel the 'guilt' for once being in charge, but that's a minor issue.

Now I am not daft; I know full well a lot of these shabby countries take this sort of gift from anyone and everyone and even harbour various spies and agents to work against the UK, as well as spending our largesse on arms from China and private jets from the States for their 'leaders.'

But should it continue? Nope... If we want to give money to UK firms then let's do it openly. As for providing holiday work for our people, well we could just invite the illegal immigs to leave and keep our people here.

Anonymous said...

If you dont give them aid then they might not let their people become asylum seakers etc.
How would you like that?

JuliaM said...

"Or, just possibly, it is felt to be politically necessary to have an excuse before aid can be withdrawn..."

I wish I could believe them that cunning. But I don't.

It think it more likely that, as Paul notes, there's a powerful lobby behind this.

"Overseas Aid should be halted now .. once & for all time .."


"Not something "we" don't like but something "the govt" don't like. Big difference."

Or something a very powerful and vociferous minority lobby don't like...

"How would you like that?"

Quite a lot, actually!

Mick Turatian said...

If we wanted to help developing countries we would allow free access to our markets for their exports.

Yes, this would have to be agreed at EU level, alas.

Foreign aid, just like domestic aid in the form of benefits, promotes dependency and corruption.

Mr Grumpy said...

Does the term "collective punishment" ring any bells? No doubt there will be strong protests from Oxfam, Christian Aid et al.

Ed P said...

Any IAid to any country richer than the UK is almost by definition a bribe.
But I suppose they spend at least some of it on our products.