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“Show me a Neo-
ImperialistClassical Economist who has been in a poor country, and I'll show you a World-Bank employee”
“They're developing. That means things are getting better, right?”
“Rich countries are developed. That means there's no poor people, right?”
Development, as defined by the Untied Naturalists, involves the process of growing or becoming, as a child becomes an adult is know as 'development'. In academic literature, this usually involves the division of the world into two categories - "developed" and "developing". An example of what this means is shown in the picture.
The History of Development
The history of academic study on development has been in the main dominated two streams of thought:
- Those that make unwarranted overgeneralisations about vast geographical, political and economic areas
- Those that ignore that poor people exist
First, however, these academics had to define just where in hell the places they were talking about could be called. The traditional and outdated comparison between 'rich' and 'poor' was controversial, as it was said that these labels were too easy to understand and measure. Next, there was a suggestion that countries should be divided up into 'North' and 'South', where The North was completely well off, except of course for perhaps enormous sections of Russia (i.e. Those not benefiting from having links with the Prime Minister, President, oil and gas corporations or the KGB), China, North Korea, most countries in the Eastern Bloc, Mexico, and Mongolia and The South contained completely poor countries, (excluding Australia and New Zealand of course).
To deal with these difficulties in their generalised account, academics seriously considered redrawing the world map and shifting the world's tectonic plates, and were halfway through planning their scheme, when Captain Obvious said "Hey, you could just forget about trying to classify countries, I mean, it's not like everyone earns the same in every country anyway". This idea still is being hotly debated at universities at the moment around the world, but is unlikely to be accepted by any countries that are classified as rich or poor, because the rich countries want to keep the poor countries dependent to their
Surplus food that they need to get rid of aid, and poor countries figure that bad help is better than no help.
The New Classification
The new classification thought of was '
centre center' and 'periphery' to denote rich and poor countries. This was thought extra-useful for it's descriptive power, because the center was rich obviously because of all the important trade that happened there, and how all the poor in the world were placed at the edge of the world. This theory however was thrown into disrepute by the lack of people living in Antarctica, which is universally considered the edge of the world (as we know it).
Ignoring that poverty exists has been a tried and true method of causing its disappearance. Studies have shown that when critical lack of food security is ignored in populations, that recorded instances and surveys of people undernourished and generally hungry will be greatly diminished, and maybe curbed altogether if the government enforces its ban on free journalism hard enough.
Classic cases of the benefits of ignoring poverty is shown in the wise attitude taken to 'irregular/illegal urban dwellers', also known as the poor or slum-dwellers. It has been shown in countries such as India that if slums are B& and 'cleared' (removed by the police/and destroyed by bulldozers), the slum dwellers never become even poorer, without shelter, and lose their few basic possessions which may have been used to help them escape their poverty.
Other, more enlightened countries realise that what the poor need is money. The obvious solution, then, is to print as much money as people wanted, and pay them that for their work. This has resulted in even the poorest being millionaire. Although this country cannot be identified, it starts with "Z" and ends with "Robert Mugabe".
Some economists, as well as large industrialising countries, have insisted that the solution lies in selling all the poor countries' raw material to international corporations, and to reduce tax as much as possible for those international corporations to pay on any profits they
exploit from the world's most vulnerable earn. This would help the poor by giving them jobs scarcely better than earning nothing, and developing their character by seeing how they work in slave-like conditions.
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