Problem with billionaire charity goes beyond whitewashing the...

Castefrancais Says...

problem with billionaire charity goes beyond whitewashing the actions that acquired wealth.

It centers on the more fundamental issue: who gets to decide how we generate and allocate resources.

During my time in Haiti (a nation with the highest per capita ratio of NGO's to citizens in the world) I witnessed the chaos of well-intentioned charity directed without broad perspective or local initiative.

On the two projects I designed and helped construct, we used to joke, "Thank god we don't have any Clinton-Bush funding," It was well understood, on the ground in Haiti, that projects with such grandiose funding sources were bureaucratic entanglements, from which little money ever trickled all the way down.

I don't know the social benefit that The Gates Foundation or Ms. Scott's donations provide at the point of receipt.

What I do know is that our society has ceded to Mr. Gates, Ms. Scott, and their ilk the privilege of shaping how we care for those in need simply because they are rich. Then we bestow upon them the cloak of generosity.

Instead of allowing the fabulously wealthy to create foundations that glorify themselves, we ought to make them pay more taxes, and collectively determine how to use that money to the betterment of humankind.

Posted March 24 2023 at 12:27 PM

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