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US Policy in Haiti Over Decades "Lays the Foundation for Why Impact of Natural Disaster Is So Severe"


US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Haiti, USA, coup, coup d'etat, imperialism, UnitedNations, unitednations, capitalism, oppression, exploitation, sweatshops, impoverishment, poverty, natural disaster, disaster, earthquake, Refugees&Relief, emergency, relief, Venezuela, Cuba, socialism )

Simon
- 3466 days ago - democracynow.org
While the U.S. was merely assessing the situation in Haiti from above, China had already landed with supplies & equipment all the way from Asia; Cuba already had 400 people in Haiti on a medical mission; & Venezuela landed firefighters & doctors in Haiti.



   

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Comments

Laurie W (189)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 4:29 am
Noted. Thanks Simon
 

Simon Wood (207)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 4:33 am
You're very welcome, Laurie : )

Good on you for noting this article, and so fast! : )
 

Michele DiGiorgi (320)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 5:20 am
I'd like to know what the heck is taking the USA so long to bring these beautiful folks the supplies & help that they need? Many other countries have come to their aid, they need it NOW, ASAP...This is humanity, taking care of our sisters & brothers in this world.

Thank you so much for this highly important & needy article Simon.

Blessings to all those in Haiti,
I would fly there myself with supplies if I knew how to fly a plane, honestly.

In peace,
FreeSpirit
 

Naoko i (257)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 5:42 am
Thanks Simon for posting. And I'm ashamed of Japanese government that took sooooo long to decide to send an almost "tiny" troop (medical team) to Haiti. (Although I believe they work hard to gain people's trust)
 

Joycey B (750)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 6:11 am
Thanks for posting this informative article Simon. The people of Haiti are in my prayers.
 

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 6:13 am

Thanks so much for this extremely informative article, Simon!
 

Simon Wood (207)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 6:39 am
Heh... yeah, I haven't heard anything about Australia (where I live) helping the people of Haiti.

Good on you everyone for noting and visiting the newspage! : )

And good on you for your comments, FreeSpirit Running and Naoko! : )
 

Simon Wood (207)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 6:41 am
You're very welcome, Carole! : ) It's great to see you here! : )
 

Simon Wood (207)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 6:54 am
You're welcome, Joycey : ) You know you can do more than pray, yeah? You can educate people about Haiti, and lobby your government representatives to end their pro-corporate interference in Haiti's politics, and force U.S-based multinational corporations to give workers' rights to their in Haiti, to allow Hiati's most popular President (the egalitarian Aristide) and his egalitarian Lavalas Party (Hiati's most popular political party), to return to Haiti, and be allowed to participate in elections again.

And if your representatives refuse to do that, then you can support other political parties who will (e.g. the Greens Party and socialist parties), in future U.S. elections. ; )
 

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 8:18 am
 
Petition from International Action Center (accepts international signers):
 
Food Not Troops - End the U.S. Military Occupation
 
"To: President Barack Obama, Former Presidents Bush and Clinton, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, Congressional leaders, U.N. General Assembly President, U.N. Secretary General Ban, and major media representatives including the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the Associated Press, and Reuters.
 
The People of Haiti need food, water, and medical aid, not military occupation
 
According to news reports, the Pentagon has been given complete control over the Port Au Prince airport and is responsible for all air traffic control. There are increasing reports that aid organizations have accused the U.S. military "of focusing their efforts on getting their people and troops installed and lifting their citizens out." (New York Times, Jan. 17)
 
Under the pretext of stopping alleged looting, the U.S. has now forced the government of President Rene Preval to pass emergency measures that would delegate all security to the Pentagon.
 
The U.S. military presence has expanded from 3,500 soldiers of the 82nd Airborne Division, 2,200 U.S. Marines, to an estimated 10,000 troops. It is outrageous that the Haitian people are being forced to endure even greater hardship so that the U.S. can expand their military occupation.
 
Haiti's airport must be devoted to humanitarian relief flights. Haiti needs food water and medical aid, not a U.S. military occupation. Haiti's sovereignty and democratically elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide must be restored!"
 
 

Tim Redfern (581)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 9:24 am
Aside from the content of the story
from DemocracyNow!, which speaks for itself,
let me say this:
IF the United States military is ever going to be sent
overseas, THIS is the only circumstance of which I would
approve.
In the 90's, during the Clinton Administration, the military was being used for
alot of missions such as what's happening in Haiti right now.
That giant gas-bag, and Oxy-Moron, Rush Limbaugh (yuk!) used to say then
that the military was being used as an "international meals-on-wheels".
Well, IMHO, it's sure beats how they're being used overseas right now:
murdering innocents, children, elderly, etc., etc..........
Thank you kindly, Simon! :)
noted
 

Simon Wood (207)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 11:11 am
Thankyou for those details, Just Carole : )

Pastor Tim, the problem with supporting a capitalist military going into another country is that, whatever the media propaganda about them, they always do the type of thing hinted at by Just Carole: they act in accordance with capitalist values, the agenda of their government, which is dominated by a wealthy capitalist class elite (in this case, the U.S. elite, and any local elites who collaborate), to the detriment of the majority of people (us people, the working class).

The U.S. military and other foreign capitalist militaries in Haiti are there to enforce their political-economic agenda, of the oppressive Preval regime. That regime does nothing to develop Haiti's economy for its people, nor to help the people of Haiti in any way (no free health care, for example), and that regime merely allows foreign corporations to exploit the workers of Haiti in extreme sweatshop ways, paying less than $2 per day to workers!!! The Preval regime also does not allow the democratically-elected and egalitarian President Aristide to return to Haiti, and does not allow his egalitarian political party, Lavalas, to participate in elections, even though Aristide and his Lavalas party are the most popular politician and party in Haiti!!!

THAT is what the U.S.-led militaries are doing in Haiti. The interviewees talk about this in the video and transcript, and as is written in a previous article I posted about U.S.-led imperialism in Haiti: < http://www.care2.com/news/member/860103097/1359384 >

So please do not imagine that the U.S. military and other militaries are helping the people of Haiti. On the contrary! The U.S.-led occupation of Haiti is PREVENTING real democracy, egalitarian reforms and economic development that would benefit the people of Haiti!!!
 

Tim Redfern (581)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 11:28 am
Simon,
you always manage to fine-tune my initial
opinion of a thing, and make me think outside the box..........
which I deeply appreciate! :-)
 

Simon Wood (207)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 11:44 am
Hi again Pastor Tim : ) Well, I used to think that capitalist militaries sometimes do humanitarian missions.

But I have since learnt that that "humanitarian" label is propaganda to cover up what they really do. At the very least, they enforce the rule of capitalist regimes that are subservient to mutinational corporations, and capitalist globalisation, to maximise exploitation of people by multinational corporations and unfair trade deals.

The U.S. military's "humanitarian missions" in Yugoslavia were worse than that. Ask my Yugoslavian friends, such as Melita, or read what Michael Parenti and Noam Chomsky have written about that. Bombing civilians was called a "humanitarian intervention".

The Australian "humanitarian mission" in East Timor is similar. It is to enforce the rule of the regime there, which bows down to Australian bullying, to give Australia much of the wealth from East Timor's oil and gas in the Timor Sea.

And the situation in Haiti is worse. You can learn about it in the above interview, or in that earlier article that I posted:

http://www.care2.com/news/member/860103097/1359384
 

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 11:49 am

So true, Simon . . .

And "they" rely upon the ignorant acceptance of their propaganda to continue.

Folks, please wake up!
 

Joycey B (750)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 2:01 pm
I now understand that Haiti needs our help more than ever. I will work harder on helping this country. I have donated to many sites to help in aiding them. I will continue to do so. Thanks Simon.

Thanks for the petition link Carole.

Haiti Petition Thanks
Thank you for telling Presidents Obama, Bush and Clinton, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Clinton, Congressional leaders, U.N. leaders and members of the media that Haiti needs Food Water and Medicine, Not Military Occupation!
 

MsR S (189)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 2:18 pm
Some of the Brazilian soldiers who were already in Haiti said that the US convoy seemed amazingly disinterested about the situation. My interpretation is that these people are more used to seeing the needy as "the other", especially when we have someone like Pat Robertson inciting the idea that they made some evil pact. I saw Naomi Klein here in Los Angeles last year and was so impressed w/ her clarity of thought abt how corporations/governments take advantage of disasters to push through their agenda. And I listen to Amy Goodman almost every day, for a real handle on the news. May blessings come to these poor people that they may finally bring their country and lives together for good.
 

Anne T (180)
Tuesday January 19, 2010, 3:20 pm
Signed and shared! :)
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 2:51 am
Hi Joycey :)
What do you think of the rest that I wrote? -

"You can educate people about Haiti, and lobby your government representatives to end their pro-corporate interference in Haiti's politics, and force U.S-based multinational corporations to give workers' rights to their in Haiti, to allow Hiati's most popular President (the egalitarian Aristide) and his egalitarian Lavalas Party (Hiati's most popular political party), to return to Haiti, and be allowed to participate in elections again.

"And if your representatives refuse to do that, then you can support other political parties who will (e.g. the Greens Party and socialist parties), in future U.S. elections. ; ) "

And please remember, the NGOs in Haiti have lot of power, and at least some of them abuse that power. One of them even participated in the coup against the democratically elected president of Haiti, Aristide (who is still the most popular politician amongst the people of Haiti), to end and reverse his egalitarian reforms and to bring to power regimes that enable U.S. corporations to maximise their exploitatin of the workers of Haiti.

Please be VERY careful which NGOs you support. I recommend Oxfam.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 3:07 am
Thanks for noting and checking out this article, and thankyou for your comments everyone! : )
 

Past Member (0)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 3:33 am
I've noted, thanks :).

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Christoffer B (18)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 3:45 am
Guess this is one of those "blame the US for whatever they are doing" pieces. Either the US isn't doing enough, or it is doing too much, either way some people will whine about it.
No matter what the US is doing it always wrong.

American scientists come up with new invention that will give kids anything they want.
Response, those stupid Americans, kids have to earn what they get.

American scientists come up with new inventions that will give kids anything that they have earned.
Response, those stupid Americans, kids should get what they want.

Obama saves kitten from drowning.
Response, well he didn't save all the animals.

Obama saves all the animals.
Response, well he didn't save all the people.

Obama saves everybody.
Response, well he didn't do it fast enough.

And so on...
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 4:10 am
"Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" wrote:

"Guess this is one of those "blame the US for whatever they are doing" pieces. Either the US isn't doing enough, or it is doing too much, either way some people will whine about it.
No matter what the US is doing it always wrong.

"American scientists come up with new invention that will give kids anything they want.
Response, those stupid Americans, kids have to earn what they get.

"American scientists come up with new inventions that will give kids anything that they have earned.
Response, those stupid Americans, kids should get what they want.

"Obama saves kitten from drowning.
Response, well he didn't save all the animals.

"Obama saves all the animals.
Response, well he didn't save all the people.

"Obama saves everybody.
Response, well he didn't do it fast enough.

"And so on..."


"Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" ignores the article, ignores other people's comments, and as a result, he writes a comment under the article that is is full of the "strawman" fallacy of logic, and full of metaphors that don't apply to the issue.

Before you comment, please READ THE TRANSCRIPT or WATCH THE VIDEO!!!

What "Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" has written ignores what is in the article. What "Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" has written also ignores what is in several comments after the article.

First of all, as I emphasised in the summary of the news article: other, poorer and more distant countries did more (and started earlier) to help the people of Haiti than the rich and close USA did for the people of Haiti!!! THAT was one of the main points of the article. "Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" did not address that point.

Furthermore, I posted the article in response to the person who claimed under a different Haiti news article, that "only the USA is helping people in Haiti". This article showed that what that person wrote was clearly false.

And most importantly, the article reminds us that the USA and other first world countries are using their coup againast Aristide, and their military occupation of Haiti, and now this new disaster, to maximise their control of Haiti's politics, to prevent the participation in elections of the most popular politician for the Haitian people (the egalitarian Aristide) and his political party (Lavalas), and to enable U.S.-based multinational corporations and other foreign corporations to maximise their exploitation of teh people of Haiti (paying them less than $2 per day in sweatshop factories). "Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" also did not respond to that main point of the article.

THEREFORE, I give you this information, so that you will stop supporting media and politicians who denigrate the people of Haiti, stop supporting the U.S.-led military occupation, puppet regime oppression and corporate exploitation of the people of Haiti, and support U.S. political parties (such as the Greens Party and the Socialist Workers' Party), who will let the people of Haiti control their own destinities!!!

Cuba, Venezuela and China don't try to control or exploit the people of Haiti, AND they are giving disaster aid to Haiti. It is time for you citizens of the USA to get your "bastion of democracy" to do the same!!!
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 4:19 am
Please understand that I wrote that angry response, because "Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" ignored the article and our comments, and then he wrote "in response" to the article, as if he knew what he was talking about.

Furthermore, I am angry because he wrote a comment which denigrates the article without reading it, and thus he spreads an ignorant line which supports the propaganda campaign that enables the U.S. government to enact the agenda of U.S. corporations in Haiti, oppressing, exploiting and impoverishing the people of Haiti!!!

Thus, "Christoffer IsNotMyAlias" aids the oppression, exploitation and impoverishment of the people of Haiti, all while he pretends that he and the USA are "doing a good thing".

THAT is why I wrote in an angry tone. Any reasonable person will understand this. And I believe that any compassionate person will feel angry, as I am, too.
 

Terry B (649)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 4:38 am
So what has changed? The United States has always been a self-serving bully (as have some other countries like Britain, France, Russia, Germany), the difference being that the gullible public is sold the bill of goods that the United States, holier than god, is always acting altruistically.

Ask any old Haitian who was around the last time the US Marines were there.
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 6:38 am
US funding of aid to Haiti currently tops all other countries. The chart in the UK Telegraph does not breakdown the private donations by country, but it is highly probably the bulk of those are from Americans or Non-Profits based in America. Here's a link

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2010/jan/14/haiti-quake-aid-pledges-country-donations
 

Mark G (36)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 7:28 am
Sounds like we shouldn't have gone down there at all. We should have just let Cuba, Venezuela, and China handle it. Maybe we should just come on home and save the money?
I guess we are doing it so we can "exploit" Haiti, but nobody has been able to really explain what they have to exploit that we would be spending $100's of millions on. Perhaps they have some hidden treasure there no one is talking about.
Does anybody really believe that if the US and its military wanted to occupy Haiti, that it would have to wait for a devastating earthquake to do it. My gosh the country has few natural resources, little infrastructure, no skilled labor, a few run-down factories, a corrupt government, and a high illiteracy rate in the best of times. Why the heck would we want it now?
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 7:44 am
Hi Terry : )
Yes, and France and Canada were involved in the coup a few years ago, against democratically-elected President Aristide, too, actually. As you hint at, the capitalist classes of first world countries in general all have an interest in controlling Haiti, in order to severely exploit the workers and land of Haiti with their multinational corporations, for maximum profits for teh shareholders, and maximum misery for the people of Haiti, who want free and fair elections, to choose a government that will aise the minimum wage, increase workers' rights, provide free health care and education, etc..
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 7:58 am
Paul Pucket wrote:

"US funding of aid to Haiti currently tops all other countries. The chart in the UK Telegraph does not breakdown the private donations by country, but it is highly probably the bulk of those are from Americans or Non-Profits based in America. Here's a link

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2010/jan/14/haiti-quake-aid-pledges-country-donations"

Oh, really? You mean the U.S.-led military occupation, U.S. support for NGOs like the one that participated in the coup against the democratic government of Aristide, and loans that take more than they give, etc.? That is the type of thing that the USA and other first world countries claim are "aid".

On top of that, U.S. corporations plunder Haiti terribly (paying less than $2 per day, etc.), which is why the people of Haiti are in dire poverty. IN contrast, the people of Cuba and Venezuela, free from U.S. plunder for a number of years, are NOT in dire poverty. And this is despite the U.S. economic blockade of Cuba, which prevents all trade with Cuba that involves U.S.-owned multinational corporations (which are in many countries around the world) at any stage in the process (e.g. products which had any input from U.S.-owned corporations at any stage in their production), and prevents ships that have gone to Cuba from docking in U.S. ports.

The countries of the first world, led by the USA, plunder U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the people of the Third World each year!!! That is a plunder of U.S.$550 billion, subtracting the aid - of about U.S.$50 billion - that the first world gives back to the Third World each year. I.e. the first world only gives to the Third World a tiny fraction of what the first world plunders FROM the people of the Third World!!!

I am very confident that the USA plunders alot more form Haiti than it is giving in "aid". I would bet A LOT of money that I am correct on this point.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 8:03 am
By the way , to those who think that the government of the USA is helping Haiti alot, how about you look at what the government of the USA is giving RELATIVE TO POPULATION, RELATIVE TO ECONOMIC POWER (e.g. GNP), and RELATIVE TO WHAT EACH COUNTRY PLUNDERS FROM HAITI.

Cuba, Venezuela and China are, AS I SAID ALREADY, not rich like the USA is (compare each country's GNP per capita!) - especially Cuba and Venezuela - and China is far away from Haiti, AND none of those 3 countries are plundering Haiti, and yet they give so much more than the USA is giving to Haiti (relative to population and economic power)!!!
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 8:18 am
Mark G wrote:

"Sounds like we shouldn't have gone down there at all. We should have just let Cuba, Venezuela, and China handle it. Maybe we should just come on home and save the money?
I guess we are doing it so we can "exploit" Haiti, but nobody has been able to really explain what they have to exploit that we would be spending $100's of millions on. Perhaps they have some hidden treasure there no one is talking about.
Does anybody really believe that if the US and its military wanted to occupy Haiti, that it would have to wait for a devastating earthquake to do it. My gosh the country has few natural resources, little infrastructure, no skilled labor, a few run-down factories, a corrupt government, and a high illiteracy rate in the best of times. Why the heck would we want it now?"

I am very angry at this "Mark G" person! Mark G repeated the same bogus claims here AGAIN as in a previous comment thread under a different news article.

< http://www.care2.com/news/member/860103097/1359384 >

I ALREADY answered this in that other comments thread where Mark G wrote it, AND this article AND the comments above ALL disprove what Mark G has said, and yet Mark G repeated the same lies again!!!

As we say in Australia, ONE MORE TIME FOR THE DUMMIES:

U.S.-based multinational corporations (and corporations based in othe first world nations, such as France and Canada) are exploiting the LAND of Haiti, and the WORKERS of Haiti, in FACTORIES that pay LESS THAN $2 PER DAY!!!!!!!!

Can you READ, Mark G????? Did you read it this time?????

And, as has been written numerous times in previous articles and comments, the U.S. government overthrew the democratically-elected government of Aristide years ago, installed a puppet government that serves U.S. corporate interests (to the detriment of the people of Haiti), and U.S.-led military forces have already been occupying Haiti for many years, to enforce that status quo!!!

So yeah, please, citizens of the USA, please get your CIA, your military and your corporations OUT of HAITI!!!

Please don't let them continue to oppress, exploit and impoverish the people of Haiti in your name!!!
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 8:23 am
Mark G wrote: 'I guess we are doing it so we can "exploit" Haiti, but nobody has been able to really explain what they have to exploit...'

That is a complete and utter lie!!! Every article I posted about Haiti EXPLAINED IT, and I wrote NUMEROUS COMMENTS THAT EXPLAINED IT!!! The problem is that Mark G IGNORED WHAT WE WROTE!!!!!

Lying for the corporations to exploit the workers of Haiti and keep them in poverty, eh, Mark G??? Who are you? CIA??? A goon for the Republican Party??? KKK???
 

Simon Wood (207)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 8:23 am
I hate fascists!!!
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 11:57 am
If you had read the link, it shows per capita. Your bias against the US and anything it does is not based on any supported facts. You haven't explained how the US exploits Haiti and why we would exploit them. In your opinion the US is a capitalist parasite that steals from the poor, which is consistent with most Marxist. You love Chavez and Venezuela but consistently ignore the difference between the Chavez lifestyle and that of it's people. This is your thread, so I'll stop bothering you. But, you could not be more incorrect about the reasons for the US to be in Haiti currently or the amount of money and services being provided by the American people, American businesses, and the US Military. I only posted the info on contribution levels because I thought something on this thread should contradict the message that the US is taking something from the Haitians.

On a complete side note, and maybe you have this info, do more Haitians immigrate to the US or to other countries. Based on the Haitian population in Florida, my guess is that when they can, they come to the US where they are welcome. I don't think your opinion represents that of the people of Haiti or for that matter, much of the world. The US is not perfect, but we are far from the evil parasitic country that you describe regularly on the threads.

I read the article and everything else linked to this thread. It isn't that I ignored it, it is that I don't buy your explanation, just as I'm sure you don't buy mine.
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 11:59 am
Oh, almost forgot, Pastor Tim, I agree with your comment regarding this as a valid humanitarian use of the US Military. Unfortunately, You cannot currently send a star to Pastor Tim because you have done so within the last week.
 

Joycey B (750)
Wednesday January 20, 2010, 6:53 pm
Thanks for your advice on this Simon. I'll do it.
 

. (0)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 1:16 am
lets just hope that this disaster will bring in times of refreshing and renewal of friendships across the nations as they work together for a good course...we need to refocus and look to al what is good..
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 5:32 am
Paul Puckett wrote: "If you had read the link, it shows per capita."

So? The USA is RICH, as I said. And the USA takes more than it gives. And the U.S. "aid" is things such as:

the U.S.-led military occupation, U.S. support for NGOs like the one that participated in the coup against the democratic government of Aristide, and loans that take more than they give, etc.. That is the type of thing that the USA and other first world countries claim are "aid".

Anyway, I don't believe the corporate media, so that is why I didn't bother looking at it. As I have pointed out numerous times before, the corporate media is owned and controlled by the capitalist class - the owners of most of humanity's capital, the major shareholders who own shares in other corporations (if they are interested in diversifying their share portfolios, as most shareholders are). It is generally part of huge corporate conglomerates such as the GE conglomerate and the Westinghouse conglomerate. And it only gives information that entices advertisers (almost all corporations) to advertise in it, because that is one of the major sources of revenue for the corporate media. The result is that the corporate media gives an extremely skewed, false picture of reality, in favour of the political-economic interests of private corporations, and to the detriment of everyone and everything else.

You can learn about this in the documentary, "Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media", the book: "Manufacturing Consent" by Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman, or simply by researching the corporate media yourself.

So, yeah, I don't believe the corporate media - it is basically propaganda for corporations and for their capitalist system. And since the capitalist system is one in which the owners of capital exploit workers, robbing the wealth that workers create by their labour, I don't support it.

And furthermore, the capitalist system results in 3 billion people struggling to survive on less than $2.50 per day, 1.5 billion people without access to clean water, 1 billion people malnourished, and 11 million children dying each day from poverty. All in a world which produces more than enough food for everyone, and plenty of wealth in general (enough to provide a decent standard of living for everyone), but this wealth is very unequally distributed, with a few people owning and controlling much of the economy, and some people gaining alot of wealth they don't need. Capitalism is an inhumane system, and I don't believe any media that promotes that system.

Paul Pucket wrote: "Your bias against the US and anything it does is not based on any supported facts."

I dont have a bias about the USA. I am against ALL oppression, exploitation and impoverishment. However, the fact is, the USA does most of it - and most of the members of Care2 are from the USA. Any fair, just, reasonable, rational and compassionate person in my position will therefore do the same as me: focus on the USA, to educate the people of the USA, so that they will change their government from capitalist and imperialist, to socialist.

The USA is this global parasitic hegemon because, as everyone knows, since the USSR collapsed, the USA is the world's only remaining superpower, and the rulers of the USA (and many of its people) think that they have the right to interfere in other countries and "make money" the capitalist way (i.e. exploit workers and natural resources)!!!

Here are some examples of the harm that the USA causes:

E.g. the USA is the most warmongering nation on Earth, with a higher military spending than any other nation on Earth - almost 50% of the world's total military spending - i.e. almost as much as the rest of the world combined!!! And with that military, the USA has attacked more than 30 countries since the end of WW2 (more than any other country has done).

Despite the fact that citizens of the USA are kept in the dark by their own government and corporate media, it is also common knowledge in Latin America that the USA has supported every coup in Latin America since the 1800s. There were heaps of U.S.-sponsored coups. They include, in order of number of coups:

Bolivia first, with 56; Guatemala, 36; Peru, 31; Panama, 24; Ecuador, 23; Cuba, 17; Haiti, 16 until 1995; the Dominican Republic, 16; Venezuela, 12; Brazil, 10; Chile, 9; Colombia and Argentina, 8, and Uruguay, 5.

It's all about the USA controlling what arrogant U.S. rulers call "the USA's own backyard".

Some evidence for you:

http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/analysis/5069

The USA also gives military aid, sells arms, and gives other support to dozens of oppressive, brutal and corrupt regimes around the world, including: Colombia, Egypt, Haiti, the coup regime in Honduras, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Mexico, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, the U.A.E., etc., etc..

And the USA has hundreds of military bases in dozens of countries around the world, to ensure that local people and their governments cooperate with the U.S. agenda of corporate exploitation.

E.g. the first world plunders U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the people of the Third World each year. And much of that goes to the USA, because the USA is the wealthiest country in the world, with the most powerful economy in the world, and more of the world's richest 500 people, and the biggest 500 multinational corporations than any other country in the world.

E.g. the USA has 5% of the world's people, but consumes and pollutes 25% of what humanity consumes and pollutes!!!

Paul Pucket wrote: "You haven't explained how the US exploits Haiti and why we would exploit them."

I did explain that, multiple times. HOW MANY TIMES DO I NEED TO SAY THIS? I DIDN'T WRITE IT IN INVISIBLE INK YOU KNOW??? I wrote this:

"U.S.-based multinational corporations (and corporations based in othe first world nations, such as France and Canada) are exploiting the LAND of Haiti, and the WORKERS of Haiti, in FACTORIES that pay LESS THAN $2 PER DAY!!!!!!!!"

Paul Pucket wrote: "In your opinion the US is a capitalist parasite that steals from the poor,"

All capitalism is like that. The capitalist class owns the capital, the workers do the labour, creating the wealth, the capitalist class pays the workers a fraction of that wealth, and the capitalist class take the rest for themselves. It's pretty simple to understand. Even brains muddled and addled with years of capitalist propaganda can understand this simple economic relationship.

Paul Pucket wrote: "which is consistent with most Marxist."

Exactamundo, Paul. This is the marxist analysis of capitalism - i.e.the SCIENTIFIC description of capitalism. Marx is famous because he was the first person to describe how capitalism functions.

Paul Pucket wrote: "You love Chavez and Venezuela but consistently ignore the difference between the Chavez lifestyle and that of it's people."

The people of Venezuela love Chavez and their revolution, too. They chose Chavez as their representative, and he is representing them as they want him to. Chavez grew up poor, and he has always had little interest in wealth.

With Chavez as president, the people of Venezuela have achieved great things in their revolution:

* Doubled the minimum wage IN REAL TERMS, gained free health care in a country where huge numbers of people had no access to health care before the revolution.

* Ended illiteracy by teaching a million adults how to read and write (and thus participate in democracy and get better jobs),

* Free education for everyone (including at tertiary levels) and welfare for poor adult students and free meals at school for poor school students (to ensure that poor children can go to school instead of working to survive), in a country where huge numbers used to drop out during or before highschool. The effect of this is that many more children are now completing highschool, and the total number of Venexzuelans in education has DOUBLED.

* Rural land redistribution from people who have excess land, to rural workers who have no land.

* Nationalisation of strategic industries, so that the people now control them democratically, for everyone's benefit, instead of a few shareholders controlling them for private profit.

* Subsidised food and price controls to keep food costs down.

* Development of Venezuela's industries, which were neglected by capitalist governments, who left Venezuela to become a one-industry economy dependent on other countries for food and most other products, with terrible economic and political effects on the people of Venezuela. The people of Venezuela are now getting what they always wanted: a diversified economy, with food security, a stable economy, etc..

* And much more!

Paul Pucket Wrote: "This is your thread, so I'll stop bothering you. But, you could not be more incorrect about the reasons for the US to be in Haiti currently or the amount of money and services being provided by the American people, American businesses, and the US Military."

You are the one who has written incorrect information. Multinational corporations are paying less than $2 per day to workers in Haiti. What evidence would convince you? And don't ask for corproate sources - they won't rat on each other. I am talking about offering you information from non corporate sources, such as the U.N., Oxfam, labour unions, the non-capitalist media, the Lavalas political party (which the puppet government has banned, despite it being the most popular party in Haiti - go ask the people of Haiti yourself if you don't believe me!), etc..

Paul Pucket wrote: "I only posted the info on contribution levels because I thought something on this thread should contradict the message that the US is taking something from the Haitians."

Why? We here that pro-U.S. propaganda EVERYWHERE in the corporate media, and from people who are folled by the corporate media. Why do you insist on spreading that lie HERE, too???

Paul Pucket wrote: "On a complete side note, and maybe you have this info, do more Haitians immigrate to the US or to other countries."

Is that a question?

Paul Pucket wrote: "Based on the Haitian population in Florida, my guess is that when they can, they come to the US where they are welcome."

If that is true, why was there a petition in Care2 asking Obama to not force Haitian immigrants back to Haiti???

Paul Pucket wrote: "I don't think your opinion represents that of the people of Haiti or for that matter, much of the world."

Most of what I write are facts. And all rational and compassionate peoeple will come to similar me conclusions about what to do about those facts.

I also post words from the people of Third World countries - from their popular movements, popular political parties, and non-corporate media. Perhaps your idea of "representing" the people of the Third World is "writing something to praise the USA and oppress, exploit and impoverish the people of the Third World, and pretend that the majority of Third World people agree with it."

Hugo Chavez gets standing ovations from working class people in the street, and from Third World governments at the UN. When I post articles or write things like he writes, then, yes, this is representing the Third World. And nothing you can say will chnage that fact, no matter what corporate media lies you believe.

Paul Pucket wrote: "The US is not perfect, but we are far from the evil parasitic country that you describe regularly on the threads."

All powerful capitalist countries are parasitic. It's called IMPERIALISM:

http://www.michaelparenti.org/Imperialism101.html

That is clear when you remember that act that I have often reminded everyone of:

The first world plunders U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the people of the Third World each year!!!

Paul Pucket wrote: "I read the article and everything else linked to this thread. It isn't that I ignored it, it is that I don't buy your explanation, just as I'm sure you don't buy mine."

My explanation is IN the articles (and in numerous other articles that are not from the corporate media). But you haven't responded to it. However, I have responded to your "explanation". However, yours was merely a claim, without any explanative value, nor credible evidence. Nevertheless, I made clear how your claims are bogus.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 5:32 am
Good on you Joycey! : )
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 5:34 am
Chaz Gaily Berlusconi wrote: "lets just hope that this disaster will bring in times of refreshing and renewal of friendships across the nations as they work together for a good course...we need to refocus and look to al what is good.."

Hope won't achieve it. However, YOU can take action, like us anti-capitalist activists are doing. ; )
 

Michele DiGiorgi (320)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 5:40 am
Good on you Simon, you go boy!

I like that you know your facts, have them straight and are TRUTHFUL about everything, besides your caring for all of our fellow human beings, I just love your spirit Simon!

I do take action, I will continue to do so as a fellow human being that truly cares, and I thank you so much for this forum to speak the truth my friend.

In peace always my friend,
FreeSpirit ~
 

Michele DiGiorgi (320)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 5:49 am
Signed:

Thank you for telling Presidents Obama, Bush and Clinton, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Clinton, Congressional leaders, U.N. leaders and members of the media that Haiti needs Food Water and Medicine, Not Military Occupation!

Blessings to all,
FreeSpirit...
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 6:11 am
Thankyou for your kind words, Freespirit : )

I applaud your compassion, and the fact that you are taking action to benefit our brothers and sisters in Haiti, by working to shape U.S. government policy! : )
 

. (0)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 7:42 am
Thannnxx Simon... but hope is what gives us a future... as a South African in Africa... not to sure that they would want to listen to a voice crying out in the Wilderness... we do not have American senators here where we can report to.. or information ... perhaps there should be more information given as to whetehr we can have a say in this toooooo... otherwise I can only keep comments to this page unfortunately...
 

. (0)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 7:54 am
Having the military in Haiti is not a bad thing at all... having being swamped by thousands of starving kids on a mission to Mozambique.. It can be very scarey...When people are desparate, one needs to put themselves in that situation, and ones needs to realise that one can land up in trouble, I would say this is a good thing having the military in... as an army brings in some sort of discipline.. we have not seen any soliders or police of the Haitian forces taking action so at the end of the day... there were actually a few.. totally inadequate.. there does need to be some help, having lived in Africa, I can assure you, your army would be very welcome here... they are organised, and are not like some of the rebels that are found in Uganda, Congo and some of those countries, who pillage kill and do all sorts of things to terrible to mention... Time to be proud of what America has... this is just my opinion and I do not intend to stand on anyones toes... you have a great country and great people..
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 7:54 am
Hi Chaz Gaily Berlosconi : ) Thankyou for replying. I do not have American senators here where that I can report to, either. I live in Australia.

However, we CAN get information - I gave you some of the vast amount of information that is available on the internet, and does not come from the capitalist class and their capitalist media.

And we CAN educate the millions of U.S. members of Care2 about this.

And we CAN get our governments to do what we want them to do regarding Haiti - e.g. get our governments to join those governments (such as the governments of Venezuela, Bolivia and Cuba) that are giving REAL help to the people of Haiti, and that are condemning what the U.S. government and corporations are doing in Haiti.

And in the long run, you can support socialist parties and get the government of South Africa to transform South Africa from capitalist to socialist.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 8:35 am
Paul Puckett's capitalist media information source ignores what Venezuela and Cuba and the rest of the A.L.B.A. countries have given to the people of Haiti. The A.L.B.A. countries are perhaps the most generous of all countries, because they operate according to the principle of SOLIDARITY, not capitalist competition and exploitation.

In the absence of the complete truth from the capitalist media, I present you the facts from elsewhere:

Approximate aid given so far (20th January 2009) -

The USA has given U.S.$130 million to Haiti on behalf of ~300 million U.S. citizens = $0.43/ U.S. citizen.

Venezuela has given more than U.S.$18 million to Haiti on behalf of ~26 million Venezuelan citizens = $0.67/ Venezuelan citizen.


The USA has delivered 40 metric tons of aid.

Venezuela has sent 616 metric tons of food aid and 116 metric tons of equipment, including water purification systems, electrical generators and heavy equipment for moving rubble.

The Venezuela-Cuba initiated A.L.B.A. (Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our Americas) fair trade bloc, which also includes Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Dominica, Antigua and Barbados, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, has also sent two ships carrying 4,761 metric tons of food aid.

You can get that information, and more, from this news article, which is NOT from the capitalist media:

"Venezuela Steps Up Aid Effort to Haiti, Questions U.S. Military Deployment"
http://www.care2.com/news/member/860103097/1365531
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 8:42 am
Simon,

Thank you for your honest and civil response. We disagree fundamentally in our economic philosophies. I see Marxism as an ideal that ignores human behavior, concentrates power in an unelected dictator, abuses all people equally, and ultimately produces nothing except major shortages for those who live under it. You see the same attributes as a result of capitalism.

As a Marxist, is Obama a disappointment since he has simply talked policy while continuing the same policies of his predecessors?
 

. (0)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 11:19 am
Thannnxx Simon... lets not forget all the other good aid that America has sent around the world recently..... one to cannot keep giving to a country on a continual basis.. Aid in a time of crisis is fantastic.. and it is not the size that counts but what comes from the heart... eventually Haiti will need to stand and create... So much aid has been given to Africa and it has not worked.. large parts of it are actually worse off, because they have never been taught to fish.. it has made these countres more corrupt and the government officals have become richer whilst the people have not prospered from it.. I have seen this over and over again.. I have seen businessmen trying to do busines in these countries, only to be told that they have to give bribes... in Mozambique during the floods.. American aid did not get to the people on the ground, but found its way in stores to be sold to the very people that needed it.. Lets help Haiti to help itself, to become a free and democratic society for all, they need help. and if we do things differently this time they will be able to stand on their own feet and be a proud people once again.. South Africa s doing extremely well today, without aid and help, and under a democratic society.. we have people from all over the world wanting to invest... and everyone is treated as an equal.. lets do this for Haiti, and to remember what we think will work for them may not necessarily be the answer...
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 11:35 am
Hi Paul Puckett,
Marxism is economic science. There is no "ideal" in it. It is materialism, not idealism.

Marxism understands human behaviour - that is why it is so useful in predicting politics and economics. YOu claim that it doesn't, but you show no evidence for that claim. I cite all the evidence of marxism and the world in support of my claim. As an example:

Marx describes how the basic economic relationship of capitalism divides humanity into 2 major economic classes: the bourgeoisie (capitalist class) and the proletariat (working class). As he says, this is because the capitalist class owns capital (farms, mines, factories, supermarkets, shipping companies, etc.), while the working class does not own capital, and so must work for the capitalist class in order to survive. And while workers create all wealth by their labour, the capitalist class only pays us a fraction of that wealth, while taking the rest of that wealth that we working class people produce. And the result of this exploiation and concomitant inequality of wealth and power, is of course working class anger at the capitalist class, with resistance in the workplace, such as people pretending to be sick, workers doing their work in lazy ways, workers stealing from their workplace, etc..

Marx predicted that each class would campaign for its own class interests: thus we have continual industrial struggles, with the uniting of workers into labour unions to fight for workers' rights, clashing with bosses who try to extract as much profit as possible from workers by minimising workers' rights.

Marx predicted that this would result in working class parties - as happened. Marxists like Gramsci described the capitalist class domination of the sources of information, and capitalist demagoguery: politicians and media encouraging of prejudices such as sexism, racism, national chauvinism and religious bigotry, in order to distract the working class from their real enemy (the capitalist class), and in order to divide the working class to enable maximum exploitation by corporations, especially when exploiting the weakest groups, such as illegal immigrants.

So, marxists have now entered the battle of ideas, against all working class prejudices and divisions (such as racism), and we working class people have created alternative media to regain our freedom of expression.

Etc..

Thus you can see, marxism explains human behaviour and other things very well.

Marxism never concentrates things in an unelected dictator. That is what some people would like you to believe: stalinists (who lied about marxism in order to gain power), and capitalists (who want us to imagine that there is no alternative to capitalism).

In reality, marxism promotes 2 systems:

socialism and communism.

The marxist definition of socialism is "society owning and conrolling the mans of production, distribution and exchange" - i.e. an expansion of democrscy to include that sphere of life that dominates politics and everything else: the economic sphere... and a DEMOCRATISATION of democracy, to become much more participatory and direct, like that of ancient Athens (though unlike ancient Athens, in socialism all of society is involved, not only some men).

And the marxist definition of communism is like socialism, but in communism there is no state, only a system of democratic communes, in cooperation with each other.

Thus you can see, marxism is NOT like that totalitarian, dictatorial fake "socialism" in the USSR (Stalinism), Mao's China (Maoism), etc.. Marxism is profoundly democratic - far more democratic than capitalism.

And, to the extent that any country has put socialism into practice (i.e. shared out wealth and power more equally in society), there has been MORE freedom, LESS abuse, and LESS shortages, and much more human rights (including the right to a decent standard of living, and more equal access to a voice in the media).

Thus people in Third World Venezuela and Cuba are better off in terms of human rights, than their Third World neighbours.

Paul Pucket wrote: "You see the same attributes as a result of capitalism."

The inhumanity of capitalism is obvious:

The first world plundering U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the people of the Third World each year. 3 billion people struggling to survive on less than $2.50 per day, 1.5 billion people without access to clean water, 1 billion people malnourished, and 11 million children dying each day from poverty. All in a world which produces more than enough food for everyone, and plenty of wealth in general (enough to provide a decent standard of living for everyone), but this wealth is very unequally distributed, with a few people owning and controlling much of the economy, and some people gaining alot of wealth they don't need. Etc....

Marxism is science, not morality. How can I speak of "disappointment as a marxist"?

As for Obama, I did not support him, except as the "lesser of 2 capitalist evils". Better than McCain and Palin. I knew Obama's policies before Obama was elected, because I looked at the policy details, and I ignored the propaganda. So how could I be disappointed?

I always support greens parties (e.g. Cynthia McKinney in the 2008 presidential election), and even more than that, I support socialist parties.

And as a citizen of Australia, I am a member of Australia's largest socialist party, the Socialist Alliance.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 11:37 am
But yeah, Paul Puckett, Obama has "simply talked policy while continuing the same policies of his predecessors".
 

Simon Wood (207)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 11:40 am
Chaz Gaily Berlusconi,

please read the article above, and the other articles that I posted about U.S. imperialism, and please read my comments above.

If you do read them, then you will see that the USA takes much more than it gives.

I will write it again, because you seem to have ignored it:

I dont have a bias about the USA. I am against ALL oppression, exploitation and impoverishment. However, the fact is, the USA does most of it - and most of the members of Care2 are from the USA. Any fair, just, reasonable, rational and compassionate person in my position will therefore do the same as me: focus on the USA, to educate the people of the USA, so that they will change their government from capitalist and imperialist, to socialist.

The USA is this global parasitic hegemon because, as everyone knows, since the USSR collapsed, the USA is the world's only remaining superpower, and the rulers of the USA (and many of its people) think that they have the right to interfere in other countries and "make money" the capitalist way (i.e. exploit workers and natural resources)!!!

Here are some examples of the harm that the USA causes:

E.g. the USA is the most warmongering nation on Earth, with a higher military spending than any other nation on Earth - almost 50% of the world's total military spending - i.e. almost as much as the rest of the world combined!!! And with that military, the USA has attacked more than 30 countries since the end of WW2 (more than any other country has done).

Despite the fact that citizens of the USA are kept in the dark by their own government and corporate media, it is also common knowledge in Latin America that the USA has supported every coup in Latin America since the 1800s. There were heaps of U.S.-sponsored coups. They include, in order of number of coups:

Bolivia first, with 56; Guatemala, 36; Peru, 31; Panama, 24; Ecuador, 23; Cuba, 17; Haiti, 16 until 1995; the Dominican Republic, 16; Venezuela, 12; Brazil, 10; Chile, 9; Colombia and Argentina, 8, and Uruguay, 5.

It's all about the USA controlling what arrogant U.S. rulers call "the USA's own backyard".

Some evidence for you:

http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/analysis/5069

The USA also gives military aid, sells arms, and gives other support to dozens of oppressive, brutal and corrupt regimes around the world, including: Colombia, Egypt, Haiti, the coup regime in Honduras, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Mexico, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, the U.A.E., etc., etc..

And the USA has hundreds of military bases in dozens of countries around the world, to ensure that local people and their governments cooperate with the U.S. agenda of corporate exploitation.

E.g. the first world plunders U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the people of the Third World each year. And much of that goes to the USA, because the USA is the wealthiest country in the world, with the most powerful economy in the world, and more of the world's richest 500 people, and the biggest 500 multinational corporations than any other country in the world.

E.g. the USA has 5% of the world's people, but consumes and pollutes 25% of what humanity consumes and pollutes!!!

Please READ IT!!!
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 3:41 pm
Simon, just to make you happy, I'd like you to know that most of Marx's books are on a shelf in reach of my left arm, which seems appropriate. And, yes, I have read them. However, Adam Smith and a bunch of other economic books are there as well.

Not that it will surprise you, but I lean more towards the Chicago School and the Austrian School, and one of my favorite books is Atlas Shrugged. So, still don't agree, but I enjoy the discussion.
 

. (0)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 9:09 pm
Simon... I cannot agree with your comments.. if one has to look at back... Africa to was given back to the people... what did Mugabe to Zimbabwe.. it hs now become the begging bowl, where as the black people are suffering, have been murdered beaten and chucked off their land, this pattern has spread like a blanket over this continent, with wars, corruption, greed and anothe host of evils being the order of the day... america has given billions in aid and helped ... but these countries still stay in a quagmire of rot.. From Somalia who have destroyed their own country without the Americans being there.. The genocides that have plaqued this continent, the US having nothing to do with any of the above.. so except that America is a blessed nation.. they have built up their country and true the poor you will always have with you... we cannot all walk in wealth, but should be happy for those who do, as they are then a blessing in giving the people jobs...
 

Frank G (211)
Thursday January 21, 2010, 9:35 pm
Simon, I agree that the U.S. ought to pull its (multinational?) corporations out of foreign countries, and leave indigenous peoples to their own ways and their own governments. However, the fact that these corporations exploit cheap labor does not necessarily mean that they have caused the general levels of poverty that exist in countries such as Haiti. Such poverty has predated the foreign interventions. The money that these corporations "take" is not simply stolen from the native peoples. Raw land, resources and unskilled labor does not necessarily equal wealth; valuable products have to be developed via skillful application of technology, something that foreign companies have, for better or worse, provided. Even if exploited native workers are paid only a small portion of the wealth created, it still may be as much as they would have produced otherwise. Whether such productivity is in the long-term best interests of the native peoples is another question. Corporations often disrupt local economies, traditions and social orders in their quest for profits, sometimes at the point of a gun.

I do not believe that the U.S. and other nations take more out of Haiti than they give. The U.S. provided a total of $850 million in direct assistance from 1995-2003 [1], and the annual aid has risen since. The regular annual appropriations for Haiti aid the last couple of years have been $287 million and $292.8 million, respectively. [2] The U.S. has recently given Haiti tens of millions of additional emergency food aid ($45 million) and hurricane relief and reconstruction assistance ($30 million plus). [2] Haiti has been the second-biggest aid recipient of Canada, which has allocated $555 million to Haiti between 2006 and 2011. [3] In 2004, it was estimated that Haiti receives $800 million in remittances annually. [1] And the U.S. has immediately pledged $100 million in the relief for the present disaster.

If there is data to show that U.S. aid and investment in Haiti takes more than it gives, I'll have a look. But I will bear in mind that what is "taken" is produced in part by U.S. technology and capital, and might not have been produced otherwise. The news article above, as well as articles it cites by Tracy Kidder and Peter Hallward, discuss rural folk being "intentionally pushed out of the countryside by aid and trade policies specifically designed to create a large captive and therefore exploitable labour force in the cities". Maybe so, but these rural folk were poor to begin with. Their poverty in the countryside was perhaps more "dignified", to quote Aristide. In any case, I agree that Haiti should have autonomy.

1 Overview of Humanitarian Assistance to Haiti (2004)
http://merln.ndu.edu/archivepdf/haiti/State/30184.pdf

2 Haiti earthquake damage: How much aid has the US given Haiti in past crises? (January 13, 2010)
http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Global-News/2010/0113/Haiti-earthquake-damage-How-much-aid-has-the-US-given-Haiti-in-past-crises

3 Haiti: Canada's second-biggest aid recipient still needs 'everything' (sep.15, 2009)
http://www.financialpost.com/m/story.html?id=1995638
 

Simon Wood (207)
Friday January 22, 2010, 9:51 pm
Frank Gerry wrote: "If there is data to show that U.S. aid and investment in Haiti takes more than it gives, I'll have a look. "

Huh? You didn't list the stats of wealth from FROM Haiti TO the USA.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Sunday January 24, 2010, 4:25 am
Paul Puckett wrote: "Simon, just to make you happy, I'd like you to know that most of Marx's books are on a shelf in reach of my left arm, which seems appropriate. And, yes, I have read them. However, Adam Smith and a bunch of other economic books are there as well.

Not that it will surprise you, but I lean more towards the Chicago School and the Austrian School, and one of my favorite books is Atlas Shrugged. So, still don't agree, but I enjoy the discussion."

Hmmm... I don't understand. You just wrote in a previous comment above that you DISAGREE with marxism. I guess that means that the "Chicago School and the Austrian School" are not marxist - though I thought they were.... Please explain what you mean, Paul.

In a previous comment, I responded to your criticism of marxism, by showing that marxism is not what you implied it was. Please address the points I made in tha response.

Adam Smith was a rich man's economist. I only support economics that is scientific (not biased in the interests of rich men), because I care about ALL human beings, not only myself, and not only rich men.

As for "Atlas Shrugged", I listened to a spoken word version of that, and I found it to be profoundly ignorant. I don't remember exactly what it ignored, but if you remind me of the main arguments of "Atlas Shrugged", I can easily disprove them. I think it was something along the lines of:

"only selfish people are creative, so selfishness is good" - which is easily disproven by a look at the history of science, art, and so on. Oscar Wilde, H.G. Wells, Federico Garcia Lorca, Picasso, Lord Byron, Einstein, some of the people at Bletchly Park who cracked the German ENIGMA code, Ken Loach, Michael Moorcock, and Ursula K. LeGuin were, or are, all socialists, for example.

And "Atlas Shrugs" also ignores the fact that wealth is ONLY created by labour - and that people can ONLY become rich by exploiting others.

Peace.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Sunday January 24, 2010, 4:49 am
By the way, Paul Puckett, I just remembered something else regarding economic theories and human psychology (human mind and behaviour) -

pro-capitalist economic theories assume that humans are psychologically healthiest (maximum sustainable success and happiness) when they are selfish and conflict with each other, and they also ignore the full negative effects of conflict.

Psychologists have studied psychological health. Thay have defined psychological health as: when people are most in touch with reality (when people's beliefs about the world are most aligned to the real world, not mistaken). Such people apply a scientific approach to life, altering their beliefs to fit with new evidence they discover about the world.

Because the most psychologically healthy people are so in touch with reality, they respond accurately to whatever happens in their life, because they are not deluded about what is going on.

Thus, for example, their relationships are more successful, and they know what is conducive to happiness (not excessive wealth, nor gratuitous violence, nor selfishness, for example). Indeed, one of the things that such people have in common is that they are altruistic - NOT selfish.

They are also very democratic in their families, and the human groups (such as schools) which are the most psychologically healthy also display these characteristics, and encourage these characteristics.

Thus, altruism is healthier than the capitalist way. A system, such as socialism, which encourages altruism, is more healthy than capitalism - "more healthy" means more conducive to happiness, and with sustainable development (development which provides for everyone, but does not destroy the environment).

Another example about the ill-health of capitalism and the higher health of socialism is in workplace systems:

as I wrote above, human groups that are more democratic are healthier. I mean when they share out decision-making more. Well, traditional capitalist corporations are clearly not psychologically healthy - they are run in a very top-down way. And the result is that rank-and-file workers have very little power over their own lives, and suffer high stress and stress-related illnesses. In contrast, socialist systems, such as the democratic worker-controlled cooperatives in Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba, (plus perhaps the Mondragon Cooperative in Basque Country, Spain, and the Abrasaflex cooperative in Australia) are much healthier systems, where workers are cared for, and experience less stress. There is much more warmth and cooperation in such organisations, compared with traditional capitalist corporations.

As you can see, socialist ways are more psychologically healthy than capitalist ways. Socialist ways are more conducive to happiness, camaraderie, harmony, and thus productivity and success (as is shown by the higher productivity of those businesses in Argentina after they were taken from the bosses by the workers, and democratised.)
 

Simon Wood (207)
Sunday January 24, 2010, 5:32 am
Chaz Gaily Berlusconi wrote: "Simon... I cannot agree with your comments.. if one has to look at back... Africa to was given back to the people... what did Mugabe to Zimbabwe.. it hs now become the begging bowl, where as the black people are suffering, have been murdered beaten and chucked off their land, this pattern has spread like a blanket over this continent, with wars, corruption, greed and anothe host of evils being the order of the day... america has given billions in aid and helped ... but these countries still stay in a quagmire of rot.. From Somalia who have destroyed their own country without the Americans being there.. The genocides that have plaqued this continent, the US having nothing to do with any of the above.. so except that America is a blessed nation.. they have built up their country and true the poor you will always have with you... we cannot all walk in wealth, but should be happy for those who do, as they are then a blessing in giving the people jobs..."

You gave the example of capitalist Africa, which was first devastated by colonialism, and then devastated by neo-colonialism.

Mugabe was a capitalist, not a socialist. And his regime was engaged in capitalist and fascist (ultra-rightwing-capitalist) actions internally, plus allowed first world capitalist classes to exploit Zimbabwe to some extent.

All of Africa was devastated by colonial oppression (including genocide by the white colonialists), and exploitation and impoverishment.

You can read more about how Europe plundered Africa, leaving it devastated, here:

http://www.michaelparenti.org/Imperialism101.html

And here:

http://www.marxists.org/subject/africa/rodney-walter/how-europe/index.htm

In recent decades, since the countries of Africa have gained political independence, they have continued to be oppressed, exploited and impoverished by first world countries (including the USA) - e.g. by multinational corporations (including multinational corporations that are based in the USA).

First world countries (including the USA) have devastated Africa in order to achieve their economic aims, by both selling arms to governments and rebel groups in Africa for devastating wars. First world countries do it by supporting oppressive regimes that borrow money (much of it the elites have corruptly taken for themselves, or used to buy arms for their armies to oppress their own people and stay in power) - and then the working classes of those countries are forced to work to pay for those foreign loans.

First world countries also do it by supporting oppressive regimes that allow multinational corporations to exploit the workers and resources of those African countries.

As for the "billions of dollars of aid" that you say the USA has given to Africa... I will write this AGAIN, because you ignored it above, even after I asked you to read the comments before you write a comment:

"The countries of the first world, led by the USA, plunder U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the people of the Third World each year!!! That is a plunder of U.S.$550 billion, subtracting the aid - of about U.S.$50 billion - that the first world gives back to the Third World each year. I.e. the first world only gives to the Third World a tiny fraction of what the first world plunders FROM the people of the Third World!!!"

By the way, the countries of Europe and the USA destroyed Somalia first by colonial Italian genocide, and then by post-colonial economic plunder and PROXY WAR. You really don't seem to know much about Somalia - please only talk like you know about something if you ACTUALLY have LEARNT ABOUT IT.

The genocides were first done by you Europeans. That alone was enough to cause such psychological harm as to create more genocides (like how the genocide against Jews has led to the Jewish people waging a campaign of genocide against the Indigenous people of Palestine). But on top of that, Europe deformed and devastated the economies and societies of Africa, making Africa even more prone to ethnic conflict and genocide. And on top of that, after political independence, Europe and the USA have continued to interfere in Africa to sell arms, promote proxy wars (ethnic conflict and genocide) and ecponhomically exploit the workers and resources of Africa. Those are the reasons for the genocides. You people of European ancestry can blame yourselves for the genocides - don't pretend that you are innocent!!!

The USA has been a major player in Africa for many decades, doing all of those horrible things I described above, since African countries gained political independence.

We socialists (Cuba, the ANC, Angolan socialists, Namibian socialists, etc.) defeated the U.S. mercenaries and the fascist armies of the apartheid regime of South Africa in the southern African war! If we hadn't won that victory (at the battle of "Cuito Cuanavale"), South Africa might still be under the apartheid regime, with South African colonial control over Namibia and other neighbouring African countries, as they had before, and the USA's devastation of Africa would have been even worse than it has been!!!

As for the wealth: people only get wealthy by exploiting other people.And the USA is only wealthy because it has plundered the Indigenous people of North America, and the millions of African people who they enslaved, and then by plundering hundreds of billions of dollars each year from billions of people in Third World countries, continuing to do that even now.

Clearly you ignored how the USA has done those things to the people of Africa. Please read more of what I wrote above about the USA (e.g. you could read the webpages I recommended above), so that you actually know about these topics before you talk about them.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Sunday January 24, 2010, 5:54 am
Hi Frank Gerry,
It's 12:42am and I am tired of responding to pro-capitalist comments, especially since most people who I respond to ignore my comments and then they write the same things AGAIN later on!!!

Well, I would like to remind you that the people of Haiti have suffered foreign invasion, oppression, exploitation and impoverishment for hundreds of years.

If you look at Cuba, Bolivia and Venezuela, you can see how the people of Third World countries have gotten out of poverty by becoming independent, democratic and socialist, while Haiti has not gotten out of poverty, because it is still a capitalist neo-colony.

And as I said before, the problem in Haiti is that, NOT ONLY was Haiti devastated by genocide, slavery, and numerous invasions over hundreds of years by France, the USA, etc. (including in recent decades), but ALSO, Haiti is CURRENTLY UNDER OCCUPATION, an OCCUPATION that enforces a pro-exploitation regime on the people of Haiti that is the result of a COUP against the government that the people of Haiti had chosen to get them out of poverty!!!

With FREE AND FAIR ELECTIONS (where Aristide and his Lavalas party - the most popular politician and party in Haiti - are allowed to participate), the people of Haiti could elect Aristide (or someone similar), and elect Aristide's Lavalas party to government, and they could develop their economy in an egalitarian way, forcing corporations to pay much higher wages, getting more help from Cuba, Venezuela and the other countries of A.L.B.A., etc., like how Cuba, Venezuela and Bolivia have developed their economies in egalitarian ways.

In short, the foreign powers are using violence directly and by proxy, to control Haiti, in order to enforce a system of maximum exploitatio on the people of Haiti. If the people of Haiti get free and fair elections and foreign powers do not make any more coups or invasions, then the people of Haiti will be able to develop its way out of poverty in an egalitarian way!!!
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Sunday January 24, 2010, 7:40 am
Simon,

It isn't that I haven't read your comments or the books you referenced. It is that I disagree with your philosophy, and the evidence that altruism and group ownership of property results in better lives for citizens.

Here's a few links to Atlas Shrugged, the Austrian School, and the Chicago School. Unless I misunderstood, you seemed to indicate that the Austrian and Chicago Schools of Economics are both Marxist? They are not.

http://www.thefreemanonline.org/featured/ayn-rand-a-centennial-appreciation/

http://mises.org/etexts/austrian.asp

http://economics.uchicago.edu/

Our fundamental philosophical disconnect has at it's root your belief that Altruism is not possible except in a socialist setting. Mine is that without a strong principle of private property, it is not possible to be Altruistic. The principle of socialism, group ownership of the means of production and shared rewards, has not, and never will, work, at least for any length of time. What is the condition of the poor in Cuba and Venezuela? Why are the leaders of these countries living at a level far above their people? Why are people marching, right now, in Venezuela?

The poor people in countries that come closer to Capitalism live better than the poor people in countries that embrace any other "ism" including Socialism. The poor in the US also make up a smaller percentage than the poor in Cuba or Venezuela. What year was the average vehicle in either of those countries built? How many of their citizens have reliable electricity, clean water, and a safe environment, relatively speaking. What method of scientific analysis shows anything that contradicts any of that? If the group owns the means of production, why do some members of the group live in palaces and have servants? How equal is the average citizen to Chavez or Castro?

In the US, there are many people who live better than the President or any other elected representatives. There are many who make more money that politicians as well. There are also many who are altruistic, by choice, and share their wealth and knowledge with others. Without the fundamental precept of Capitalism, private property, where does the money come from if a socialist wishes to be altruistic?

No offense, but when you lecture anyone who disagrees with Socialism that they either aren't, or can't, read, then you should expect basic questions like the ones above.

Bottom line - There is no evidence now, or in the history of mankind, that Socialism produces a better life for people than Capitalism. The evidence that private property is a critical ingredient for the production of wealth is demonstrated not only by human history but by nature as well.

Apologies if I have offended, but the conclusions drawn regarding the US involvement in Haiti as some form of oppression or plundering. With no offense to Haiti, right now there isn't anything to take except poverty, disease, and disorder due to years of poor governance and a recent natural disaster. So, the US goal is to take the disease and disorder caused by natural disaster from the Haitian people and pay for the privilege. It is a shame that the countries you admire cannot generate the wealth necessary to help at a similar level, per capita or in real terms. The military is there to provide order, and they will do so while helping the people of Haiti. Hunger produces desperation and it requires a strong military presence to prevent violence and looting. It happens in the US everytime we have a major disaster as well, but given the wealth created by a system of government based on private property, it doesn't require an army or the help of the more successful socialist countries that rely on our aid but did not share their wealth when Katrina hit New Orleans.
 

Paul Puckett (46)
Monday January 25, 2010, 4:10 am
Mugabe a capitalist?
 

Simon Wood (207)
Monday January 25, 2010, 6:31 am
Paul Puckett, my "philosophy" is science. I approach everything by using the scientific method - which psychologists have shown is what the most psychologically healthy people do. You don't agree with science???

You deny the findings of science? E.g. you deny the finding that the most psychologically healthy people are altruistic, and that the most psychologically healthy families and organisations care for people in an altruistic way?

As for group ownership of property, that is the main form of ownership in CAPITALISM: SHAREHOLDERS own corporations in capitalism. However, in capitalism, ownership is unequal, and depends on how rich someone is. Whereas in socialism, everyone has an equal share.

Group ownership enables democratic management, cooperation and coordination - IF that is SOCIALIST group ownership. If people don't share ownership of things, they compete and conflict with each other, which results in increased stress, productivity loss, wastage of resources, violence and war. The evidence everywhere shows this. E.g. AS I ALREADY SHOWED, and you IGNORED: compare the increase of productivity and happiness in hundreds of Argentina's businesses when they were capitalist, compared with now, when they are democratic worker-owned cooperatives.

Paul Pucket wrote: "Our fundamental philosophical disconnect has at it's root your belief that Altruism is not possible except in a socialist setting."

Huh?

All societies have mixed economies: partly capitalist and partly socialist (and in some cases, there is some feudalism and slave-based economy, too). Altruism IS part of socialism. To the extent that people are altruistic, they are socialist, and vice-versa. E.g. Australia's sharing of wealth in the area of health care (partly free, partly subsidised health care) is a socialist policy WITHIN a mostly capitalist society.

Paul Pucket wrote: "The principle of socialism, group ownership of the means of production and shared rewards, has not, and never will, work, at least for any length of time."

Huh? That is complete rubbish! Primitive communism survived for 2 million years, since humanity evolved from other ape species, until only 10,000 years ago. And some societies still continue primitive communism.

Also, modern socialism has lasted in Cuba, since the 1959 revolution, for 50 years, and is continuing.

Paul Pucket wrote: "What is the condition of the poor in Cuba and Venezuela? Why are the leaders of these countries living at a level far above their people? Why are people marching, right now, in Venezuela?"

The condition of the poor in Cuba and Venezuela is (1) MUCH BETTER than it was before the revolutions began, and (2) MUCH BETTER than the condition of the poor in comparable countries that did not engage in socialist revolutions and are still suffering extreme capitalist exploitation.

Which leaders of Cuba and Venezuela are you talking about? The capitalist ones or the socialist ones? The capitalists who have fled to Florida? They are rich because they are the usual capitalists who plundered their employees before they fled the people's anger. The capitalists who still live in Venezuela? Well, they are there because Venezuela is not a socialist country. It is a CAPITALIST country which is in the MIDDLE of a socialist revolution. That revolution has only partially achieved socialism, so there are still many rich fatcats left in Venezuela.

As for the SOCIALIST leaders of Cuba and Venezuela, they are not rich. By the way, some capitalists in Venezuela claim to be for the revolution there, and have even become politicians in the socialist party there - however, they are moderates who resist real socialist change, and we politically conscious revolutionaries are well aware of them (we call them the "endogenous right") and we aim to get them voted out of office eventually.

As for demonstrations in Venezuela: the pro-revolution demonstrations are bigger than the reactionary demonstrations. Only SOME people demonstrate against the revolution, and they do so because they are, as I have said before, privileged classes in capitalism, who are trying to keep or regain their privileges. Also, a few of them are working class people who have been tricked by the capitalist media in Venezuela.

The same is true of Cuba, but there is very little capitalism in Cuba, aside from the misleading culture of capitalist tourists... and media propaganda comes from the USA, not from within Cuba.

Also, reactionaries in both Venezuela and Cuba are richly funded and supported by the government of the USA. E.g. in Venezuela, the U.S. government has given them more than U.S.$50 million in the 11 years since the socialist government was first elected - and emember, since this is a Third World country, $50 million is worth alot more in real terms!!!

Without U.S. interference, there would be alot less reactionary activism in Venezuela and Cuba.

Paul Pucket wrote: "The poor people in countries that come closer to Capitalism live better than the poor people in countries that embrace any other "ism" including Socialism."

No they don't! U.N. statistics alone show that you are talking rubbish there!

Paul Pucket wrote: "The poor in the US also make up a smaller percentage than the poor in Cuba or Venezuela."

What you have written there is misleading in multiple ways.

First of all, the USA is a first world country and Cuba and Venezuela are Third World countries - i.e. built on the genocide of the Native American people and on slavery and with a huge amount of land and resources, the USA has exploited, impoverished and prevented the development of Third World countries for hundreds of years.

Cuba and Venezuela, on the other hand, were EXPLOITED, IMPOVERISHED BY first world countries, WHICH PREVENTED CUBA AND VENEZUELA'S DEVELOPMENT for hundreds of years. For Venezuela, this still hasn't stopped - the government is only starting to stop it now. The people of Cuba have only stopped that imperialism within the last few decades, HOWEVER, the USA has been continuing an economic against Cuba for many decades, preventing trade with Cuba by any ships businesses that have anything to do with the USA (including many Brazilian ones, Spanish ones, etc.).

As a result, the revolutions in Cuba and Venezuela BEGAN with more poor people than the USA has had for over 100 years. (The rising of living standards for the working class in the USA is the result of 2 main factors: U.S. exploitation of Third World countries to the detrinent of the people of those Third World countries, and hundreds of years of campaigning by the U.S. working class for their rights.)

Despite those facts, because the people of Cuba and Venezuela have been making socialist revolutions, they have reduced the number of people who are poor in their countries, AND they have increased the living standards of those who are poor (e.g. ensuring free health care, free education, free food for all school children, and in Cuba: a guaranteed income and housing for everyone).

Paul Pucket wrote: "What year was the average vehicle in either of those countries built?"

That doesn't matter. Cars are unnecessary rich people's accessories, and are destructive to health and the environment, so those revolutions are encouraging public transport, and rational city-planning, to reduce car use.

However, in the case of Venezuela, there is still some support for capitalist things like cars, so the government there has recently been building a factory to produce its own cars. Also, many cars have been imported for rich people since the revolution began, becuase capitalism has not yet been ended in Venezuela.

Paul Pucket wrote: "There are many who make more money that politicians as well."

No, that is a lie. The bourgeoisie doesn't "make money". Only the working class creates wealth. All wealth is created by labour.

Paul Pucket wrote: "How equal is the average citizen to Chavez or Castro?"

The citizens of Cuba are more equal to Fidel Castro than most citizens of any capitalist country are to the bourgeoisie and head of state of their country. The citizens of Venezuela are more equal to Hugo Chavez than most citizens of any capitalist country are to the bourgeoisie and head of state of their country.

Paul Puckett wrote: "There are also many who are altruistic, by choice, and share their wealth and knowledge with others."

Actually, in capitalism, poorer people are more altruistic than richer people, even in the USA, where there is a bit of a culture of altruism amongst some of the rich. And, as I said, every country that is capitalist has at least some elements of socialism, Socialism is sharing - if you share, you are being socialist. Capitalism is selfishness and exploitation - if you are selfish or exploit others, you are being capitalist.

However, much of the "philanthropy" of rich people in the USA is only for P.R. purposes, and is not ALTRUISM. It is generally not done anonymously, and it is generally done with an expectation of reward (to make a celebrity more popular, to make a corporation more popular, etc.).

Paul Puckett wrote: "Without the fundamental precept of Capitalism, private property, where does the money come from if a socialist wishes to be altruistic?"

All wealth is produced by workers doing labour. In capitalism, rich people steal much of that wealth from workers, and then pretend to be "altruistic" when they give some of that wealth back - however, most rich people keep the majority of what they steal from workers. Despite the fact that they are victims of systematic theft in capitalism, it is the working class in capitalism who are the most altruistic!!! However, that altruism is a socialist action - a pocket of socialism in a capitalist society.

In socialism, workers produce the wealth and then give that some of that wealth to old people, sick people, students, unemployed people, etc., within their society, and to poor people in other countries, too.

Paul Puckett wrote: "Bottom line - There is no evidence now, or in the history of mankind, that Socialism produces a better life for people than Capitalism."

Yes, I have given alot of evidence, and I can give specific studies, statistics, etc., too. But I am only willing to do that if you will read them properly - not merely ignore them or take a quick glance and dismiss them without really reading them, and thus waste my time.

Paul Puckett wrote: "Apologies if I have offended, but the conclusions drawn regarding the US involvement in Haiti as some form of oppression or plundering."

What kind of evidence do you want, dammit??? You want the name and accounting details of every factory or some other unreasonable rubbish??? You want me to go there peronally and do an audit of every sweatshop???

Paul Puckett wrote: "With no offense to Haiti, right now there isn't anything to take except poverty, disease, and disorder due to years of poor governance and a recent natural disaster."

As for Haiti, I have already answered this, and you have ignored my answer AGAIN. Here is is AGAIN:

"U.S.-based multinational corporations (and corporations based in othe first world nations, such as France and Canada) are exploiting the LAND of Haiti, and the WORKERS of Haiti, in FACTORIES that pay LESS THAN $2 PER DAY!!!!!!!!"

Paul Puckett wrote: "It is a shame that the countries you admire cannot generate the wealth necessary to help at a similar level, per capita or in real terms."

The countries of A.L.B.A. (whose combined population is less than that of the USA, and whose GNPs are less than that of the USA because they are ex-neocolonies, while the USA is rich from exploiting the Third World) are giving more than the USA is giving to Haiti, and are not taking anything, while the USA is taking more than it gives to Haiti, and on top of that, the USA is preventing development in Haiti, in order to maintain control and maximise exploitation, for maximum profits.

The USA is a huge net harm to the people of Haiti, while, if the USA and Canada and France stopped oppressing, exploiting and impoverishing Haiti, the people of Haiti could get out of poverty without any aid, like the people of Cuba and Venezuela have done (food, clean water, housing, free access to education at all levels, and health care for all). NO, the people of Cuba and Venezuela don't all have cars and other wasteful luxuries like that - but a car is not necessary to anyone's well-being.

Paul Puckett wrote: "Hunger produces desperation and it requires a strong military presence to prevent violence and looting."

The aid workers and locals on the ground in Haiti say that your portrayal of the people of Haiti is largely a lie.

Besides which, you can't end poverty by denying people food and having troops there to stop them from getting food. You an only end poverty by giving them food in the short term, and well-paid jobs for everyone i the long-term. The USA is not doing either of those things. The people of the A.L.B.A. countries ARE doing that, having sent over 10,000 tons of food aid, and only a minimum of soldiers, because that is all that is actually needed. The troop numbers the USA is sending are the numbers needed for an occupation, many more than are actually needed for disaster aid.

Paul Puckett wrote: "It happens in the US everytime we have a major disaster as well, but given the wealth created by a system of government based on private property, it doesn't require an army or the help of the more successful socialist countries that rely on our aid but did not share their wealth when Katrina hit New Orleans."

No socialist countries receive aid from the USA. Cuba (the only country which is even close to socialism) does not receive aid from the USA, and neither does Venezuela.

However, on the other hand, Cuba gives free university education to U.S. citizens from poor communities (e.g. to become doctors).

And on top of that, Cuba DID OFFER AID to the USA, but the U.S. government REFUSED. Cuba offered to send its Henry Reeve Brigade disaster-relief force of over 1,000 medical workers to help the people of the USA, IMMEDIATELY after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans. The USA refused, and some people in post-hurricane New Orleans died as a result of lack of medical care.

That is what capitalism does to a country: it results in unnecessary human deaths for P.R. purposes.

As for Venezuela's aid to the USA during Katrina:

http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/news/1336
http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/news/1348
http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/news/1341

And the regular discounted heating oil program from Venezuela to the poor people in the USA, which helped more than 200,000 households last winter, is beginning its 5th year this year:

http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/news/5073

Etc..

And what I have said has shown you how much you have written falsehoods about socialism and capitalism.

I remind you that most of the world is capitalist, and most of the world is a mess:

e.g. the first world supporting brutal, corrupt and oppressive regimes that are pro-corporate-exploitation and that wage wars on their own people in order to stay in power, enabling the first world to plunder U.S.$500 billion net wealth from the Third World each year, 3 billion people struggling to survive on less than $2.50 per day, 1.5 billion people without access to clean water, 1 billion people malnourished, and more than 11 million children dying each year from poverty!!! Etc., etc....

Whereas, to the extent that each society has built socialism (i.e. democratised their economies and shared out wealth and power more equally), people have health care, education, food, clean water, housing, and so on.

This is true of first world countries, and it is especially true of those who live in Third World countries, where the majority of the world lives.
 

Simon Wood (207)
Monday January 25, 2010, 6:36 am
Paul Puckett wrote: "Mugabe a capitalist?"

Yes, his policies are capitalist. The society of Zimbabwe does not own and control the means of production, distribution and exchange, and Mugabe is not leading any movement towards that. All he has done that is remotely "socialist" is take land from rich farmers and give it to a clique of his own followers. But that is merely exchanging one capitalist owner for another - there is no democratic ownership by all of society, nor even by some of the working class.

That is why we socialists do not support Mugabe. That is why our comrades in Zimbabwe (i.e. members of the International Socialist Organisation) are campaigning to overthrow Mugabe's regime.
 
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