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CGW4U hunger myths

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M Rudkins

on 24 May 2011

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Transcript of CGW4U hunger myths

10 myths
world hunger At least 700 million people do not have enough to eat.
Hunger is not a myth – but myths keep us from ending hunger. There’s not enough food to go around. 1. Reality – There’s enough food in the world to make most people overweight! nature’s to blame. 2. 3. there are too many people It’s a trade-off: the environment or food The Green Revolution is the Answer We need large farms Free trade is the answer All we need is more aid the victims are too hungry to fight for their rights the free market can end hunger 7. 6. 5. 4. 8. 9. 10. Reality –food is always available for those who can afford it – starvation in hard times hits only the poorest, when natural events are the final push over the brink. Reality – Birth rates are falling rapidly worldwide; nowhere does population density explain hunger. Reality – Industrial agriculture is degrading soil and undercutting our food production sources. Environmentally sound alternatives can be more productive than destructive ones. Reality – Technology cannot challenge inequality as the root cause of hunger Reality – Small farmers achieve 4 – 5 times more output per acre; land reform can increase production Reality – the market only works when poor people have money to buy food Reality –Free Trade has proven an abject failure at alleviating hunger. In most developing countries exports have boomed while hunger has continued unabated or actually worsened. Reality –Most aid works directly against the hungry by undercutting local
food production Reality – For those with few resources, mere survival requires tremendous effort. If the poor were truly passive, few of them could even survive. (Enough food is available to provide at least 4.3 pounds of food per person a day worldwide) (Human institutions and policies determine who eats and who starves during hard times.) (in America many homeless die from the cold every winter, yet ultimate responsibility doesn't lie with the weather) (Hunger results from underlying inequities that deprive people, especially poor women,
of economic opportunity and security. ) (Most pesticides used in the Third World are applied to export crops, playing little role in feeding the hungry... while in the U.S. they are used to give a blemish-free cosmetic appearance to produce, with no improvement in nutritional value) (Focusing on increasing production can’t alleviate hunger because it fails to alter the tightly concentrated distribution of economic power that determines who can buy the additional food.) (A World Bank study of northeast Brazil estimates that redistributing farmland into smaller holdings would raise output an astonishing 80%). (Government has a vital role to play in countering the tendency toward economic concentration, through tax, credit, and land reforms
to disperse buying power toward the poor.) (Many people have been made too poor to buy the food grown on their own country's soil, so those who control the resources will orient their production to more lucrative markets abroad.) (Free trade can lead to a 'race to the bottom,' where the basis of competition is who will work for less, without adequate health coverage or minimum environmental standards.) (It would be better to use our foreign aid budget for unconditional debt relief, as it is the foreign debt burden that forces most Third World countries to cut back on basic health, education and anti-poverty programs. ) (People will feed themselves, if able to do so. It's not our job to ‘set things right' for others. Our responsibility is to remove the obstacles in their paths, obstacles often created by large corporations, Western governments, World Bank and IMF policies.)
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