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Old 08-13-2011, 01:08 PM
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Default Stealing food from the hungry

from PRI: Public Radio International - Hedge funds buying massive tracts of African farmland

This is not that new, but that article makes it ABUNDANTLY clear what is going on in the world in this economy today and makes me just want to puke!

Quote:
Western hedge funds have begun buying up vast parcels of land all over Africa. ... over 148 million acres... an area larger than California. ... often used to produce export commodities -- including biofuels, cut flowers and specialized foods -- and are displacing millions of Africans from fertile farmland.... the contracts ... allow foreign companies to keep exporting as much as 80 percent of what is grown on the acquired land, even if the host country is experiencing food shortages....The companies boast they can make a profit even without growing anything on the land..."With the collapse of the housing market, there is a drive for the new commodity to invest in...Mittal said. "These hedge funds are promising returns of 25 to 40 percent." Mittal called this the new investment bubble.
(excerpts - please read the original article for full report, includes an audio report.)

W T F !
These people are playing with other peoples lives, with hunger, death and destruction, people here pack food packages and send food and money to these countries because people go hungry and the same countries export biofuels and cut flowers!!! Even if the pople are starving !!! And to top this off, they even make a profit by not growing anything on the lands that people used to make a living off?

What else there is to say? I mean really - this kind of stuff makes all the pretense of a beneficial financial economy, the origins of world hunger in lack of food and many many other things crumble with ease.

As long as this kind of stuff is going on, no one can tell me that these countries need GMO crops, more development and technology, that the economic system called capitalismis sustainable or that the plan of industrialized countries is to help the poorer countries. This is totally ****es up.
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Old 08-13-2011, 04:56 PM
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Those countries don't need GMO's if people weren't doing things like this, sure. It was the overpopulated China and India I thought needed them.
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Old 08-13-2011, 06:50 PM
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You steal one dollar, they call you a criminal...
...you steal a million, they call you a businessman.

I hate hedge fund managers soo much. I guess they've moved on after thoroughly gutting my country. No wonder so many are in poverty when we allow criminals like this to exist.
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Old 08-14-2011, 03:51 AM
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Yuck. There's no other word I can use to describe this..
The only thing that could rub more salt into the wound would be if these companies decided to sell produce back to the Africans at an inflated price..Somehow, I think that this might end up happening.
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Old 08-14-2011, 01:23 PM
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Once again, I'm not surprised...
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Old 08-14-2011, 10:00 PM
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Unfortunately, the only thing I can think of to fix that is to outlaw shady business, which is... a bit impractical.
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Old 08-14-2011, 11:25 PM
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Actually i think they do sell it back to these countries. Or more precisely, they sell it to people who sell it to people, who sell it to charity organizations that buy it with donations and then send it back to these countries in a relief effort. One could maybe just shortcut this and donate some money to the hedgefonds in return for them allowing people to farm that land - but that would be a bit too obvious like mobsters behaviour then, wouldn't it...
But it shows clearly how things work, who profits and who looses out big time (at the price of body and life). So sick!
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Old 08-15-2011, 12:46 AM
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Saw it coming
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Old 08-15-2011, 08:31 AM
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Why am I not surprised? Skypeople seem to never exhaust the possible ways to screw others for personal gain.
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Old 08-23-2011, 03:13 AM
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Reminds me of John Perkins' "Confessions of an Economic Hitman," which laid bare a lot of how the USA manipulates other countries behind the scenes. Probably some help from Uncle Sam greasing the wheels here.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:10 PM
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I think Uncle Sam is an old cripple. I mean the original Uncle Sam, the democratic US government. He has given the inheritance to his sons from BP and Exxon and Monsanto. So is soneone greases some wheels, it is the other way round. Not that the US was in the past 100 years particularly democratic, but nowadays, the new merger of government and corporate power is in charge.
Economic warfare is in progress and China plus several big corporate entities are in the midst of it and one of the target is Africa sadly.
There was a time when politics ruled the world and not economics the economy - but now - the capitalist economy is the most ruthless of all monarchs and it rules most of this world in the 21st century. Hehehe - I guess we need a bit of a French revolution here. "off with its head"
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"Humans are storytellers. These stories then can become our reality. Only when we loose ourselves in the stories they have the power to control us. Our culture got lost in the wrong story, a story of death and defeat, of opression and control, of separation and competition. We need a new story!"

Last edited by auroraglacialis; 08-23-2011 at 04:32 PM.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:43 PM
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Just as a curiosity, when was the world ruled by politics and not economics? For instance, the British East India Company was given its monopoly as early as 1600, and it was only removed when the Company was dissolved in 1858.
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Old 08-23-2011, 04:49 PM
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There were patches in history where politics ruled over the economy and at times even over economics. Usually put off as small and short lived abberations. "Communists", "Socialists", "Anarchists". For longer stretches of non-rulership of economy you have to go befor 1600 indeed. And it were of couorse not always happier times. An emperor or the church or a dictator could rule and do so with more power than the economy, but not to the benefit of the people. I am basically just saying that we replaced one dictator or emperor with the dictatorship of the economy. "Its the economy, stupid!" - Most of us follow the orders of the economy. The social structures of the past century have tried hard to make us into the "homo economicus" of game theory, which is at the base of modern capitalism and consumerism. Fact is, that most people and certainly almost all larger entities follow the rules of the economy. And these are harsh, they do not say "care for the people" or "create community" or "save the planet". They say "what is efficient/cheap/productive/profitable will be done, all else is irrelevant". I would not want a monarch like that.
Oh and just as a "light" example - I was born into this country in a time when things were different. The railway, the postal service and parts of the energy supply - the water services, schools and kindergartens - all this was owned by the public. People working there got decent wages, a safe job and good working conditions, customers got prices that were adequate, trains went to remote locations at a loss to allow people living there access to cities, everyone could get the same kind of education. In eastern Germany it was even guaranteed that everyone gets cheap housing and a place in kindergarden for his kids. One parents wage was enough to feed a family. During the 1980ies this went away. Now the railway is owned by a pseudo-private company, the postal service is privatized and some cities sold their water supply. Both parents have to work for the low wages they get but cannot find a room for their kid during the day unless they pay the price the economy desires. Universities are sponsored at times by companies because they are encouraged to find their own funding according to the economy, providing only the kind of education these companies want. Trains do not drive to remote locations anymore because it is not economic. Even healthcare suffers because of the introduction of economic structures that encourage doctors to rather send people home with an Aspirin than look at what really is wrong - or keep patients in hospitals because they need to fill the beds. So yes of course, this is all more economic, it is efficient, it is "lean" and productive and creates profit and it plays by the rules of the economy - but is it humane? Is it ethical? Is it the right thing to do? I think not. Not really.
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Know your idols: Who said "Hitler killed five million Jews. It is the greatest crime of our time. But the Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher's knife. They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs.". (Solution: "Mahatma" Ghandi)

Stop terraforming Earth (wordpress)

"Humans are storytellers. These stories then can become our reality. Only when we loose ourselves in the stories they have the power to control us. Our culture got lost in the wrong story, a story of death and defeat, of opression and control, of separation and competition. We need a new story!"
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