General discussion


ABUSE OF POWER; **1, Africa, Tsunami

By FluxIt ·
A repeated theme that comes up time and time again is the abuse by people in power. Nearly every natural disaster is surrounded by looters, pouchers, skimmers, corruption, and graft.

Here in Florida following the four hurricanes last year FEMA dispensed millions to those not in need. Aide following the **1 disaster had some mis-appropriations despite efforts to prevent that from occurring. The Oil4Food aid to Iraq lined the UN leadership pockets. Disasters in Africa often go with marginal aide. Meanwhile, numerous nations are now seeking to out do each other with thier good will toward the Tsunami Victims. Trillions of dollars in aide is being rushed to an area that provides relatively little economic strength to the Global economy and has governments that are far from being a Democracy. Should aide be measured in these terms? ie a per victim impact cost in local currency terms.

Should there be a global aid system established having accountability for the funding? Should such accountability have checks and balances?
For example:
1. An executor division who conducts the aid operations
2. A controller division who collects, dispenses and accounts for funds
3. An auditor division who ensures that the money goes to its intended use and administrative cost are kept low.

I am not suggesting a single world government but some kind of accountable NGO perhaps? Can IT some how facilitate this?

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Comments

Collapse -

Pardon me if I'm naive

by jardinier In reply to ABUSE OF POWER; **1, Afri ...

but the proposed organisation you are describing sounds very familiar -- like the United Nations?

I believe the World Bank has some control over what money goes where.

Naturally in the modern age IT will be an essential part of any venture.

But I'm sure you're dying to elaborate on your proposition, so let's hear it.

Collapse -


by FluxIt In reply to Pardon me if I'm naive

I have nothing particular in mind. Although the United nations is a gross failure not to mention a completely wrong approach. There has to be competitive systems or governments to balance things in this World. Without that there is the case for extreme abuse of power, no one to check it, and no where to escape to. I believe that is in part what the End Times (Post Rapture) are all about.

I have heard the arguments that if things go bad then there will be a global civil war and the people will rise up. That is impossible due to geography, logistical, and communication needs. That kind of revolt is doomed from the start. The world government would simply isolate and crush any resistance using the 'police state' it would impose.

I feel an NGO type approach would be much better.

Collapse -

That was my guess

by Oz_Media In reply to Pardon me if I'm naive

I would have said such an organization was formed, commonly known as the United Nations.

Like ANY organization, there will be exploitation, show me a single one that doesnt use it's position to exploit others. Even the damn Boy Scouts does it! Perhaps the Red Cross does a lot more noticable good than bad, but I am sure there have been a few under the table or not so up from dealings for thier benefit over time.

The UN has been organizating the efforts of all nation suporting relief in the effected areas and from what i have seen, heard and read, doing a ocmmendable job of it. One such issue they have taken responsiblity for is pushing these supposed donations into reality and asking these countries ot put their money where thier mouth is and do whatever it takes to get around thier internal red tape to get actual funds into relief.

SO yes, a global presence is needed in such situations and we call that the United Nations.

Collapse -

Boy Scouts are exploitive?

by jdclyde In reply to That was my guess

Exclusionary sometimes as to what they feel is a high moral and religious value system, but I don't see the exploitation.

Is it wrong for a private organization to believe in something, and (unlike most people) live by those beliefs?

Where does the exploitation come in?

Collapse -

Insider secrets?

by Oz_Media In reply to Boy Scouts are exploitive ...

Anyone who has ever worked in the regional offices knows just how they use the name to get what's needed.

Boy Scouts is one of the few upstanding organizations left in the world, they look out for the kids and that's the bottom line. The offices also use that to take advantage of the power of children to get what they need. (not as in a sweatshop) but the fact that it is FOR the children is used to gain what others can't.

As for the movement itself, it is actually less desciminatory than many think, at least up here it is. They changed the Promises to say 'trust in my god' instead of 'trust in God', they don't chastize religions and expect Christians as they used to, campsite services are always demonination neutral, they allow turbans to be worn as dresss uniform (if the right color and sporting the Scout Crest) they allow coed troops now. (I got all excited when I met the Swedish scouts years back -'83 -and so many were hot blondes! Yes I was a YOUNG scout too, you dirty bugger!).

By the time I quit as a Scout leader, again quite a few years back, they were just going coed in Canada and the US. The sad part is it demonstrates just how weak membership is now to what it used to be, perhaps from so many groups doing so little nowdays. It got them a bad name as being a 'do nothing' organization.

While some fund raise and go on great adventures, camping, river rafting, etc. Others meet like a social club once a week and offer nothing of substance or outdoor training/awareness that Scouts was founded on (being started as a somewhat military focused organization originally).

For the most part, Scout exploits are on the inside, as we have heard over the years. I was merely illustrating that exploitation is part of the world, the nature or reputation of the group can't determine who is good and who isn't.

Collapse -

NGO accountable to who?

by awfernald In reply to ABUSE OF POWER; **1, Afri ...

With the traditions held in the highest esteem in most parts of the world, you have to control corruption in two areas:

1. In those providing the aid;
2. In those receiving the aid.

Creating a global ngo for this purpose sounds good, however, I don't believe that it will be possible in the near future to have any type of international organization of the size that would be required to do what you are speaking of, with all of the political tie ins that WOULD be required (hmmm, give me $25,000 and I'll authorize you to enter our country, and another $25,000 and I'll authorize you to land your plane once you get here).

I love hearing all the commentary of the people saying "oh, we need a huge organization to do this", "ah, we need to do this so that we can do that", when the exact same things were said/intended in the past.

The only way to eliminate the issues you are trying to address, is by getting all people involved in the issues (meaning the aid givers, and the aid receivers) to ALL be more interested in the good of the WHOLE rather than trying to promote themselves over others.

In this manner, only those who actually NEED the aid will be requesting it, and the people providing the aid will be more concerned with getting it to the people that need it rather than on figuring out how they can get the latest model Mercedes using the funds money.

Collapse -


by FluxIt In reply to NGO accountable to who?

The International Red Cross is already partially structured for this purpose and lead by a retired US Navy Medical Core Admiral. The US Navy has two ships the USS Hope and USS Comfort that are hospital ships that conduct mostly humanitarian support in conjunction with the Red Cross.

They need to be more accountable to the general public and those donating. This can be accomplished by setting up independent checks and balances between the auditor, accounting, and executor divisions that report to the public performance and validated credibility.

As for Governments, it would offload the burden on the local governments who chose to participate in the NGO. The fees you discussed are done by most countries and are often negotiable or waivable.

My point is that the useless excess and waste of countries trying to out do each other can be trimmed with proper management and anticipation of such events. The excess could then be directed to more meaningful uses.

Collapse -

Step one : Find a cure for greed...

by TomSal In reply to ABUSE OF POWER; **1, Afri ...

Step two: Decide what you'll do with all that money you got from coming up with a cure for greed.

But seriously, this is no easy or simply thing what you are talking about. I agree something needs to be one to control this stuff. But greed is widespread and when greed meets its friend "power"....they unfortunately are near impossible to stop. (Especially when they are backed by individual armies).

Collapse -

The U.S. foreign aid budget...

by amcol In reply to ABUSE OF POWER; **1, Afri ... somewhere in the neighborhood of $13 billion. This represents about 0.25% of the total budget of the U.S., which BTW is many orders of magnitude less than what most Americans believe we spend.

In 2002 President Bush proposed the Millennium Challenge Account at a summit in Monterrey Mexico. This was to be a new approach to foreign aid, one in which governments would first be judged on their merit to receive assistance and then be held fully accountable for the use of those funds. The idea was to reward democratic governance, control of corruption, and generally raise as many people around the world out of starvation and poverty as quickly as possible.

The Millennium Challenge Corporation was formed in February 2004 with the mandate to administer the account. The mission and business practices are quite consistent with your proposals, with one's not an NGO, it's a Federal agency within the Department of State.

Related Discussions

Related Forums