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Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 05 Mar 2013, 15:45
by Gavin
As I understand it, the aid given to Africa tends to end up in the the hands of corrupt officials and militia. India has its own space programme. We have a massive deficit. Where is the reasoning in this?

I have read the following articles in the left-wing media but have been unable to find any reasons that make sense:

The Telegraph seems more thorough, and more critical:

The top commenter wrote:"The Government has no business taking money from me and my family to give away.

Let alone borrowing money in my children's name to give away.

If I want to give money to developing nations, I am quite capable of doing so of my own volition."

We should not have to "buy" business opportunities through charity. If the business is worth doing with us, it's worth doing with us. I'm unable to see any reasons for this foreign aid beyond some kind of post-colonial guilt or some misplaced sense of superiority which Britain has over countries that are very much on the rise.

Either way it seems a strange thing to do when we are so very much in debt, and these countries should be encouraged to sort out their own problems, possibly through sanctions rather than aid.

If the money is given out of pure sympathy (doubtful) then firstly it is surely not the government's place to do this, but up to individuals in this country. Secondly, as I have mentioned, this tends not to be the solution to the problems in these countries.

Dalrymple's own take on this issue is linked to approvingly in this article on the Poverty Cure website. If anybody can cast any further light on this topic please do so.

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 06 Mar 2013, 16:44
by Damo
Gavin, politicians find it very easy to spend or give away other people's money.

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 09 Mar 2013, 19:28
by Gavin
Indeed, especially socialist politicians, I think.

I saw a TV advert by the self-serving organisation Save the Children earlier today. They tugged at the heart strings by showing two minutes of slow motion footage of starving African babies. Of course, this was sad to see, but my first thought was "send condoms". If people simply send food, the Africans will expect food, and will carry on just the same.

I know they are trying to educate them but surely if they can just stop having children while they are unable to support them, this is top priority. Condoms, and trade. But would they use the condoms? Probably not. So they would be a waste of money. Trade, then, and/or sanctions against the corruption in Africa - but not charity.

As Dalrymple says of Save the Children: "[it] is not trying to save the children of Britain, it is trying to save the jobs in the British welfare bureaucracy". Very handsomely paid jobs among the executives, too.

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 11 Mar 2013, 03:53
by Caleb
Educating women is often said to be highly correlated to solving these issues. I don't know to what extent that is or isn't true. Things like microlending for people to start their own small businesses seem like they would be great too. A reasonable loan so that people can make something of themselves is always going to be better than a handout.

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 24 Jul 2013, 14:18
by Gavin
On this issue, I was just thinking today that you never hear liberals saying that counties such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar should give more, or at least some, foreign aid, do you?

Nope, even though what we have we worked for, what they have they simply "discovered". Well, actually I think we discovered it for them then we mined it for them.

Many of them are stupendously rich - you see them in Harrods for six months at a time. Yet the only foreign aid they give, to my knowledge, is donations to assist the spread of Islam within our shores, while Christians are, at best, second class citizens in those countries.

Further, liberals hate the West from which they benefit so much, yet when a disease breaks out due to bad hygiene or practices somewhere in the world, anywhere, who is it who goes in to sort it out, often risking their lives? The CDC. Who is it that goes to rescue trapped miners or anybody else. That's right, the Great Satan, the USA. Not the beloved Saudies or the Palestinians or any Africans. It's the evil westerners again.

We're bankrupt (as a result of this and other policies) yet still they want us to give more. The whole situation is crazy. We ought to go into lockdown. Roll on the Atlas Shrugs moment, I say. Stop giving to them, stop giving to liberals too. Stop giving to those who can help themselves. Concentrate on sorting out our own countries and our own people.

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 26 Aug 2013, 23:08
by Andreas
Something bothered me about this statement the other night by a UNICEF official, speaking about the situation of Syrian children who've been made refugees by the civil war there: ... transcript

SARAH CROWE: Well, the greatest wounds, of course, are the ones that you can't see, and that scar them in many ways for life.

When they talk about what they have seen and when they draw pictures of what they have seen, you can see that there's a sense of bleakness in their eyes, in the way they express it. One of our child protection officers in Jordan said to me that it's like they have lost their sense of humanity, their sense that -- it's as if they have to have their souls sewn back on again.

And this is something that is invisible, and the scars are invisible but will and could remain with them for a lifetime, especially if this goes on for too long. So it's a global shame. It's -- we're all -- we all should hang our heads in shame that this crisis has gone on now, now into its third year, and the biggest humanitarian crisis we have had to deal with.

I certainly feel sorry for these children and agree with her about the psychological damage that wars do to children. This is a terrible situation. And I agree that other countries should try to help these children. But I was bothered by her statement that "we all should hang our heads in shame." Why? The people who should feel ashamed are those who caused this situation to begin with -- the Syrian government. She seems to want to displace blame from where it really belongs to the rest of the world (since she says "global shame"). But she's addressing an American TV audience, so there's an implication that the U.S. or the West should be ashamed. I doubt very much she would suggest that people in Zimbabwe or China should be ashamed. If any outside power should be ashamed for having acted or not acted in a way that could have averted this crisis or at least lessened suffering, I think that would be Russia, not the West.

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 29 Sep 2013, 11:54
by Gavin
This one could go in a lot of threads or in its own, but I'll put it here. I think these videos do a great job of showing the foolishness and naivety of a lot of liberal thinking...

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 05 Jan 2014, 14:15
by Damo
You couldn't make this stuff up.

Britain is sending more than £2million in aid to Argentina – even as Buenos Aires cranks up its hostility over the Falklands.
The revelation provoked a furious reaction from Tory MPs last night and is an embarrassment for David Cameron, who only last month was accusing Argentina of ‘shameful’ attempts to bully the islands.
To mark the 180th anniversary of British rule of the Falklands yesterday, the Argentine government issued a five-page rant by foreign minister Hector Timerman, in which he accuses the UK of ‘colonial and military occupation of Argentine territory’.

Read more: ... z2pX8EgJKN

Re: Why does Britain give so much in foreign aid?

PostPosted: 15 Jan 2014, 20:13
by Gavin
I have just seen some of the news this evening. The BBC devoted a lot of time to disgraced former de-facto Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who is now some kind of UN functionary, for him to explain that we "need" to donate millions of pounds to help Syrians, despite being ourselves £1,377 billion in debt. Not at any point was he remotely challenged on this.