Western world, j’accuse.
I accuse the West as a whole-not simply America (though it is the worst and by far the largest offender) - of engaging in a massive conspiracy to keep
the rest of the world poor. Please, before the accusations and flames fly, hear me out. This conspiracy reaches into four spheres of influence-
political, economic, intellectual and military.
Firstly, one might wonder what use it is to the economy to have the better part of the world population poor. They can’t buy anything, or put anything
into the global economy! Well, they do make an excellent cheap labor force. Many western corporations have gone abroad and set up sweatshops that pay
extraordinarily little. These places exist and continue to exist simply because they are built in places where the local population is so poor that
they desperately need the extra money. They work as near-slaves, providing a large influx of cheap goods for Westerners. Thought this drains jobs from
western workers, the trade off is worth it- the cheap goods are sold to those workers through outlets like Walmart. Profit margins increase, as the
production cost drops while not alienating the prospective consumers. This general cheapening of goods insures the affordability of goods to the
western world. While this treatment of people has had limited outrage. However, if the cost of clothing doubled, or the cost of food tripled, the
outrage would be much greater.
As well, keeping the countries poor keeps industry dependent on Western support and markets. For example, Iraq has oil. However, most Iraqis have
absolutely no need for oil. Many can barely feed themselves, much less afford a vehicle, have need for heating, or lubrication. Iraq has oil, can
refine it, but no use for it. Therefore, with no domestic market, and no market in most other countries, they turn to the West. Of course, when we
buy it for half of its market value, Iraquis object to this unfair treatment, and so we crush them mercilessly. More on that later, however. In a
similar vein, certain African countries have gold and diamonds. However, gold does them no good. Their people cannot eat gold. They can’t make
anything out of it. There is no market for jewellery amongst the starving. Diamonds cannot be refined there, as the technology (and funding for it) is
absent. Therefore, their only choice is to export their goods on the cheap to the West - at the West’s prices - to feed their people. The West is the
only one who really profits from that.
Lastly, the economic spectrum would not be complete without the yet less pleasant aspects of free-market economies. Western companies take rampant
advantage of lax environmental standards in third-world countries, dumping all kinds of waste there. Medical experiments take place there. In many
places, companies provide free experimental drugs to the populace. While the locals usually benefit briefly, those drugs are destined back to the
West, most likely not to see that foreign soil again. Weapons are also tested, whether by being doled out piecemeal or tested ON the people.
With the lure of wealth, it is no surprise that most developing countries suffer a massive ‘brain drain’. With higher pay and more benefits, the West
offers much more to the intellectual elite of poor countries. They generally immigrate quickly, leaving countries without professors, researchers,
scientists, doctors and businessmen. This leaves them vulnerable, and without a base to improve upon. Very few technological achievements emerge from
developing countries. With that in mind, think about the military. Without technology, the military forces of the developing countries are at a
distinct disadvantage. Same thing with doctors- a sick populace doesn’t fight very well, nor does a starving one.
The Second World War was not won in Europe because of the technology that the Allies possessed- it was not because of the failings of the Nazi war
machine. We won because of the total, blundering idiocy of Hitler and his cronies, and because we LITERALLY drowned the Nazis in corpses. If I recall
correctly, we traded three Sherman tanks to each Panther or Tiger we destroyed. German had a massive technological edge. The lesson was well heeded,
and only massive tactical error on the West’s part has caused defeat. With the lack of innovation in the rest of the world, the West has a
near-monopoly on advanced weapons systems. The American GI is capable of inflicting immense damage on his adversary due to his edge in training,
morale, and technology. These are professional soldiers, drilled to the finest standards. Look out and see history parading before your eyes again-
instead of the Tiger, it is the Abrams which is the unstoppable tool of tyranny.
Now that the West has most countries securely in a cycle of poverty, weakness and ignorance, it can set the terms of the deals it makes. Anyone who
dares disagree suffers embargoes, or all out war. Here, the West tests its weapons of war, improves them, and sends a message. No third-world country
can withstand the West’s onslaught. At best, the NVA victory in Vietnam was Pyrrhic. So revolves the conspiracy of the West.
The Uses of Global Poverty, DS Eglitis
[Edited on 27-4-2004 by DeusEx]
[Edited on 27-4-2004 by DeusEx]