April 24, 2007
Good good good....probably won't happen
This is not only a stunningly good idea, but a fascinating psychological test. I bet you could show this to 100 Bush-haters, and not one of them would say, "Hmmm, maybe I'm a bit off about this guy." And you could show it to a hundred NRO-type conservatives, and none would say, "Hmm. This is a profoundly conservative idea." When it comes to Bush, minds are closed!
[IHT]....It was here in Kansas City, at the 2005 food aid conference, that the Bush administration pushed for a fundamental change that would have diminished profits to domestic agribusiness and shipping companies. It proposed allowing a quarter of the Food for Peace budget to be used to buy food in poor countries near hunger crises, rather than buying only U.S.-grown food that had to be shipped across oceans.
And Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns spoke at the conference on Wednesday to make the administration's case for the same idea, contending that such a policy would speed delivery, improve efficiency and save many lives.
Congress in each of the past two years killed the proposal, which was opposed by agribusiness and shipping interests who stood to lose business, even as it won support from liberal Democrats like Representatives Barney Frank of Massachusetts and Earl Blumenauer of Oregon....
Of course a "conservative idea" that appeals to Barney Frank sounds a wee bit paradoxical. That's because the traditional conservative position would be that we should not be giving charity to poor countries or people at all, because it will weaken them and make them dependent. Which is true, and it's likely that one of the reasons Africa needs so much food aid is because it gets so much. [Good read: For God's Sake, Please Stop the Aid! by Kenyan economist James Shikwati.]
BUT, we are not going to stop giving food aid as long as there are horrible famines in the world. It ain't gonna happen. So the next best thing is to buy food in Uganda for the famine in Kenya. That makes agriculture in Uganda more profitable, keeps prices up, which leads to investments that make future famines less likely. It rewards productive farmers, rather than penalizing them by dumping cheap food on the market.
By the way, there is no place in the world that suffers famines because it is overpopulated. That is a lie spread by the Culture of Death. The world has enough arable land to feed far more than its present population. If I had more time it would be fun to find the average output of farmland in the US, and then find out the total acreage of farmland on the planet, and extrapolate how many people the world could feed, at present levels of farming technology. I bet it would be surprisingly large.
As for my own feelings about Bush, I just want to scream because he isn't doing more! Especially, asking the American people to realize that we are in an information war, and that they should be making sacrifices in wartime—not in this case material sacrifices, but the psychological sacrifice of swimming against the current of lefty defeatism, and against the torrent of falsehoods that the news media broadcast. BUT, on the other hand, there is hardly a month goes by that I don't see some story like this one, of transformative things being tried by this administration. Ideas that, if they take hold, will bear fruit over generations.
Which is the real reason that brain-dead lefties and Quakers hate Bush. The tectonic plates are shifting under their feet, and Bush is the symbol of change. They have no beliefs that will give them traction when the floor starts tilting, so they turn their angry bewilderment on a symbol...Posted by John Weidner at April 24, 2007 12:08 PM