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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 1: Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:21 pm
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The Ethics of International Aid

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So, in my not so very humble opinion, international aid is a thoroughly good thing.

Not only are many in the developing nations absolutely poor (too poor to sustain their lives, and those of their families) and deserve succour on secular humanitarian grounds, let alone the expression of Christian love of neighbour, but if these poor were not so poor, they would have a reasonable chance of an economically productive life, and a chance to help grow the world economy, which means we all would get richer.

Fortunately, the UN agrees with me, and has set a target for 1st world nations to spend 0.7% of GDP on aid. I am proud to report that the UK, my country, has enshrined this target in legislation, so it would be illegal for any British government to spend less than this.

Here are a few disparate rankings:

Sweden spends over 0.95% of GDP on international aid. Germany spends around 0.41%. Australia spends 0.27%. The US spends 0.18%. Russia spends 0.08%.

So, my question to the forum is this; do such rankings of aid/GDP indicate a ranking of national morality? If not, why not?

Best wishes, 2RM.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 2: Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:37 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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2ndRateMind wrote:


So, my question to the forum is this; do such rankings of aid/GDP indicate a ranking of national morality? If not, why not?


It does create such a ranking, but I do not consider that ranking to be valid, because I question the institution. The UN is notoriously corrupt. Also, to sell the concept "International Aid" is framed in monetary terms. Colonialism, Imperialism, and humanitarian war are also forms of "International Aid" and are more well rounded. I do not promote these as solutions to the world problems. However, I find them to be more intellectually honest than international egalitarianism, which I believe is at the root of the efforts of the UN.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 3: Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:49 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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bluethread wrote:

2ndRateMind wrote:


So, my question to the forum is this; do such rankings of aid/GDP indicate a ranking of national morality? If not, why not?


It does create such a ranking, but I do not consider that ranking to be valid, because I question the institution. The UN is notoriously corrupt. Also, to sell the concept "International Aid" is framed in monetary terms. Colonialism, Imperialism, and humanitarian war are also forms of "International Aid" and are more well rounded. I do not promote these as solutions to the world problems. However, I find them to be more intellectually honest than international egalitarianism, which I believe is at the root of the efforts of the UN.


OK, forget the UN target, if you don't like the UN. But as for the ranking, it persists irrespective of any UN target.

And I agree that 'international aid', for some, might include the concept of deposing this or that tin-pot dictator by force of arms. Nevertheless, when such military adventures are undertaken, they tend to be undertaken in the interests of the aggressor nation's concerns. Similarly, imperialism and colonialism tends to involve the stripping out of assets for the benefit of the imperial coloniser, rather than the subject colonised. So whether these kind of activities amount in reality to 'international aid' is a moot point.

What is your problem with the idea that all humanity is born equal, and should be treated that way?

Best wishes, 2RM.


Last edited by 2ndRateMind on Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:25 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 4: Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:13 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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2ndRateMind wrote:


What is your problem with the idea that all humanity is born equal, and should be treated that way?

Best wishes, Strivax.


Modern egalitarianism is a fallacious premise. Being "born equal" is not without context. We are not, in fact, born equal. When one uses that idiom, one is referring to a particular principle or set of principles, i.e. "equality under the law" or "equal rights". So, whether two people should be treated the same depends on who those people are and what kind of treatment we are talking about. Equalizing income or economies is a pipe dream. Economically, the best one can do is provide equal opportunity and allow the free exchange of goods and services to establish equity.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 5: Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:23 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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bluethread wrote:

2ndRateMind wrote:


What is your problem with the idea that all humanity is born equal, and should be treated that way?

Best wishes, 2RM.


Modern egalitarianism is a fallacious premise. Being "born equal" is not without context.


From a Christian perspective, though, we just are born equal. We come into the world, innocent and naked, and leave it without wealth or advantage to be judged according to our merit.

From an economic perspective, I agree, some may have native advantages others do not. But I think God is wise enough to take such advantages into account, come the end of days.

Best wishes, 2RM

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 6: Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:33 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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2ndRateMind wrote:

bluethread wrote:

2ndRateMind wrote:


What is your problem with the idea that all humanity is born equal, and should be treated that way?

Best wishes, 2RM.


Modern egalitarianism is a fallacious premise. Being "born equal" is not without context.


From a Christian perspective, though, we just are born equal. We come into the world, innocent and naked, and leave without wealth it to be judged according to our merit.

From an economic perspective, I agree, some may have native advantages others do not. But I think God is wise enough to take such advantages into account, come the end of days.

Best wishes, 2RM


Innocent is a matter of judgement. One can be deemed innocent. Naked of clothing, yes, but what does that matter. In almost every other way, we are unequal.

OK, regarding eternal judgement, come the end of days Adonai will decide that. What does that have to do with "International Aid"?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 7: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:03 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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OK, regarding eternal judgement, come the end of days Adonai will decide that. What does that have to do with "International Aid"?


Short answer? The morality of a democratic nation is the politically expressed will of the sum of each individual morality comprising it. And I am persuaded that it is our individual moral merit that will interest God, come judgment day.

But I agree, we are digressing, a little. Perhaps you can spell out for me why international aid is not moral, if that is the adversarial position you wish to defend.

Best wishes, 2RM

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 8: Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:55 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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2ndRateMind wrote:

Quote:
OK, regarding eternal judgement, come the end of days Adonai will decide that. What does that have to do with "International Aid"?


Short answer? The morality of a democratic nation is the politically expressed will of the sum of each individual morality comprising it. And I am persuaded that it is our individual moral merit that will interest God, come judgment day.

But I agree, we are digressing, a little. Perhaps you can spell out for me why international aid is not moral, if that is the adversarial position you wish to defend.

Best wishes, 2RM


I wouldn't say that I am really in an adversarial position. Philosophically, a case can be made for our involvement in the UN. However, I do think that involvement in the current UN is not in the best interests of these United States. Your short answer regarding democracy exposes the Achille's heel of democracy. It is subject to what Adams referred to as "the Tyranny of the majority", i.e. mob rule. So, appealing to the collective morality is a bit weak. I personally am a localist, which is a form of federalism, and that view is that moral decisions are best left tot the smallest unit of government possible. Federal actions should be limited to securing the borders and arbitrating interstate conflicts. Therefore, to the extent that foreign aid secures our borders, it is justified. However, the moral plight of those in foreign countries are best dealt with by voluntary humanitarian organizations and commercial entities with a vested interest.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 9: Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:06 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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bluethread wrote:
However, the moral plight of those in foreign countries are best dealt with by voluntary humanitarian organizations and commercial entities with a vested interest.


Do you not think, then, that if these organisations and entities (not to mention private philanthropy) were sufficient to the task, that there would be no poor among us, and that government has a valid role to play in righting that wrongful deficit?

Best wishes, 2RM.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 10: Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:49 pm
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Re: The Ethics of International Aid

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2ndRateMind wrote:

bluethread wrote:
However, the moral plight of those in foreign countries are best dealt with by voluntary humanitarian organizations and commercial entities with a vested interest.


Do you not think, then, that if these organisations and entities (not to mention private philanthropy) were sufficient to the task, that there would be no poor among us, and that government has a valid role to play in righting that wrongful deficit?

Best wishes, 2RM.


What wrongful deficit? Who is keeping the ledger and on what basis does that authorize a government to extort money from it's citizenry for the sake of giving it to people who are not only not citizens, but don't even live within that government's jurisdiction?

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