really long quote of the day that's more of a series of quotes that have been artfully spliced or grafted or whatever.

"When pollsters ask Americans how much foreign aid they think the US gives, they greatly overestimate the amount- by as much as 30 times...US official assistance to sub-Saharan Africa has been running at $3 billion a year, or roughly $3 to $6 dollars for every African. Most of this aid comes in the form of 'technical cooperation' (which goes into the pockets of consultants), food contributions for famine victims and the cancellation of unpaid debts. Little of this support has come in a form that can be invested in systems that improve health, nutrition, food production and transport.

Total US international aid is around .21% GNP- still among the lowest ratios of all donor nations...adding it all up, the total requirement for assistance around the globe is double the current rich-country aid budget, or .7% GNP, which is what all donor countries have long promised but few have fulfilled...if rich nations fail to make these investments, they will be called on to provide emergency assistance more or less indefinitely. They will face famine, epidemics, regional conflicts, and the spread of terrorist havens. And they will condemn not only the impoverished countries but themselves as well to chronic political instability, humanitarian emergencies and security risks."
Scientific American, September 2005
(emphasis mine)

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