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Tag Archives: Financial Times

The Millennium Development Goal that really does work has been forgotten

UPDATE 12 noon: this  is a dueling oped with Sachs on, debate has moved on and even some agreement (see end of post) from a column in the on-line Financial Times today ; for ungated access and a picture of the handsome author go here.

The Millennium Development Goals tragically misused the world’s goodwill to support failed official aid approaches to global poverty and gave virtually no support to proven approaches. Economists such as…

Posted in Aid debates, Aid policies and approaches, In the news, Trade | Also tagged , , 17 Comments

FT: Celebrities urge G8 to make new unkept promises to keep previous unkept promises

Oh how we wish it would be otherwise! What will it take?

Alan Beattie writes on the G8 in the FT:

It stretches the most elastic mind to envisage the collective wrath of Scarlett Johansson, Annie Lennox, Bill Nighy, Kristin Davis and Her Majesty Queen Rania of Jordan, but it descended on the heads of the Group of Eight this weekend.

The obsolescence of the G8 has long been discussed during interminable and inconclusive international

Posted in Aid policies and approaches, Badvocacy and celebs, Grand plans and aid targets, Organizational behavior, Political economy | Also tagged , , , , 14 Comments

Here’s what reporters would really like to say about G20 summit

…at which ministers from around the world gather to wring their hands impotently about the most fashionable issue of the day. The organisation has sought to justify its almost completely fruitless existence by joining its many fellow talking-shops in highlighting whatever crisis has recently gained most coverage in the global media.

By making a big deal out of the fact that the world’smost salient topical issue will be placed on its agenda …it hopes to convey

Posted in In the news | Also tagged , 3 Comments

Human rights are the wrong basis for healthcare

Column published today in the Financial Times.

The agonising US healthcare debate has taken on a new moral tone. President Barack Obama recently held a conference call with religious leaders in which he called healthcare “a core ethical and moral obligation”. Even Sarah Palin felt obliged to concede: “Each of us knows that we have an obligation to care for the old, the young and the sick.”

This moral turn echoes an international debate about

Posted in Human rights, In the news | Also tagged , 3 Comments

Stories from around the web

First do no harm

In today’s FT supplement “The Future of Capitalism,” Gary Becker and Kevin Murphy urge caution on government interventions designed to resuscitate the global economy. In the rush to do something rather than nothing, we run the risk of maiming the only system that can deliver growth to those parts of the world that have so far missed out on the gains of global capitalism. (The previously published online version is

Posted in In the news, Technology | Also tagged , , , , 5 Comments

Random Snippets and Miscellany

The FT has a great special section on malaria today (tomorrow is World Malaria Day). Their very sensible editorial says: “…malaria is becoming an industry in its own right. That brings responsibilities, including rigorous evaluation to ensure money is well spent.” There are plenty of other grounds for hope, let’s hope also that somebody will step up to hold this industry accountable.

In another article, FT writer Andrew Jack quotes activist Louis da…

Posted in In the news | Also tagged 3 Comments

The 50th Anniversary of The Answer: Muddling Through

John Kay in the Financial Times today celebrates the 50th anniversary of a classic article by the American political scientist Charles Lindblom, column in the New York Times last week about agricultural aid (Sachs seems to have at least briefly returned to aid after a prolonged foray into global warming and commenting on rich country macroeconomic policy vis-à-vis the Crash). A bit of the “root” planning method seems evident:

The {aid} recipient countries

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I Call Your Authenticity, and I Raise You One Ideology

People sometimes try to win a debate by playing “trump cards” that allegedly overturn any other argument, instead of practicing reasoned arguments based on logic, common sense, and evidence.

One attempted “trump card” is that an “authentic” member of group X is in favor of a certain policy towards group X. The hidden assumption is that any “authentic” member of group X can speak for all other members of group X, and knows what is…

Posted in Cognitive biases | Also tagged , , , 22 Comments