What is the cause of poverty in the third world?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Mind Over Matter, Sep 11, 2011.

  1. Mind Over Matter Registered Senior Member

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    (Identifiying root cause of poverty would lead to appropriate corrective action)

    I think it is the result of low productivity. The solution is to remove the barriers and allow impoverished people to be productive.

    What are the barriers?
     
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  3. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    Your parenthetical statement is COMPLETELY incorrect because the root cause is corrupt governments. Saying that it WOULD lead to corrective action is what is incorrect.

    After many, many decades of it, the people MAY eventually rise in rebellion - as has recently been demonstrated in the Middle East - but simply identifying it (as you seem to claim) is certainty no guarantee. Look at Myanmar (formally Burma) and North Korea as prime examples.
     
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  5. Mind Over Matter Registered Senior Member

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    The root cause is always the root cause. Either your root cause analysis fails or your corrective action is incorrect.
     
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  7. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    That's just plain silly (or stupid, if you prefer) - I never said otherwise! :bugeye:

    What I actually said was: "Saying that it WOULD lead to corrective action is what is incorrect."
     
  8. Mind Over Matter Registered Senior Member

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    Or perhaps implementation of corrective action fails.
     
  9. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    Sorry, but I really don't see why you are bothering with what's totally obvious, certainly it has failed - many,many times, in fact. :shrug:
     
  10. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

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    I think the governments also reflect the will of the people. Many corrupt politicians hail from populations of unscrupulous people. The government reflects the will of the people. North Korean leadership doesn't exist in a bubble. There are large numbers of people holding their jailers in high esteem.

    Lets watch and see how things unfold in the ME. My bet is 18 months before the old scapegoats are dragged out. Then the people go for what they know, religion, which will then need to be backed up with violence, and soon we're right back to square one with a Dictator.
     
  11. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    Sorry, I can't completely buy into that. Taking the example of North Korea, the people are SO brainwashed to the point that they believe that Kim is actually deity and can do no wrong. (Very similar to the old Japanese Emperor.) And your idea certainly isn't reflected in Myanmar in the least. Nor in Somalia.

    Now THAT I can pretty well agree with.
     
  12. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    Lol. It is what is and its this way because certain people want it how it currently is.
     
  13. Cifo Day destroys the night, Registered Senior Member

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    For developing nations, I'd say the most broad-spectrum and significant cause of poverty is lack of education. However, children cannot attend school if they are working (child labor, slavery, etc) or performing subsistence tasks (fetching water or firewood, finding food, etc), so it's a vicious and oppressive cycle (Catch-22).
     
  14. Mind Over Matter Registered Senior Member

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    In the Philippines, the cause of poverty is massive corruption. The solution is to stamp out corruption.
     
  15. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Leaders that don't care about their own citizens but only look out for themselves. Having more ethical leaders that want to help not take would be a better way to go.

    Overpopulation can be a very big problem in many countries for no m,atter how much the governments try to stabilize their county the farther behind they get due to overpopulation. A free birth control/family planning program would be benifical to many countries suffer from this dilema.
     
  16. Ganymede Valued Senior Member

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    This documentary reveals all of the answers that you're seeking. Unfortunately I don't think you're looking for answers you're just looking for a platform to exercise your superiority complex. A man of your intellect shouldn't even bother with such remedial questions you already know the answers to. But if you're looking for a spirited debate I'm game.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgnmT-Y_rGQ
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2011
  17. Ganymede Valued Senior Member

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    There's massive corruption in Russia, China, and the US, the answer isn't corruption. Power begets corruption, if corruption was the sole reason we'd be still be living in the stone-age.
     
  18. Telemachus Rex Protesting Mod Stupidity Registered Senior Member

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    Ignoring what causes poverty there are many possible explanations for why one country is more productive than another: lack of education, lack of good nutrition during brain development, lack of good government, high rates of disease, reductions in productivity caused by stresses raised by famine (or high crime, disease, unrest, terrorism, religious persecution, etc), lack of proper incentives to be more productive, lack of a philosophical drive to be more productive, (of course) the lack of modern technologies to enhance productivity, and the list goes on.

    Worse, it is likely multiple causes, not just one cause. Even worse, at least one possible explanation is unremediable: that a lack of natural resources in a given region may impact productivity. There are, doubtless, limits on how great a disadvantage that is in real world situations, but the comparative disadvantage in, say, living in Siberia in winter 1,000 miles from the nearest functioning port never entirely go away.

    It's also important to keep in mind the need for proper incentives. That factor means you can't simply throw money at a problem to make it go away. It's always more complicated than that.

    If you can solve this problem, then you definitely deserve the Nobel Peace Prize they are sure to give you.
     
  19. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    The root cause of poverty anywhere in the world is a combination of ignorance of the masses and exploitation by a few. Its not restricted to the Third World. Ignorance and exploitation can take root anywhere

    Number of Americans in poverty hits record high
     
  20. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    What is the cause of poverty in the third world?

    Western perceptions of "poverty."

    Third-world people have always had the kind of living standards they have, or lesser, but they didn't always consider themselves poor.


    Other than that, I think the root cause of poverty anywhere is that people live beyond what the resources available in the long term on the land they live on.


    So, for example, indigenous tribes that have lived the same sustainable lifestyle for centuries are not poor - even if they don't have electricity and tap water.
    We Westerners, however, are poor, because we use far more resources than the land we live on can provide in the long term.
     
  21. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Limited communication is also a problem. When oppressed people A) discover that there are millions like them and B) can communicate with those millions and organize, it makes oppression more difficult. So as the Electronic Revolution makes the internet more accessible, oppression will be challenged. However, the most effective communication is in writing and this requires literacy, and literacy requires a minimal level of education that is not available to many oppressed populations.

    Of course the internet can be and is used for education. It allows people who are merely literate, rather than trained teachers, to present basic, prepared reading lessons to their village. Not to mention many terabytes of stuff to read!
    But you're overlooking a huge qualitative difference. Corruption in the United States, and even in China, is nowhere near the level that it is in places like the Congo. Russia may be a special case because it had a corrupt communist regime for three generations, so there was no one left who knew how to run a country honestly and efficiently. Still, I'm not sure I would lower Russia--or even its breakaway satellites like Kazakhstan--to the same level as the world's truly dysfunctional nations like Burma and Sudan.
    There was a quantum deterioration in the standard of living of the Third World when the First World (with the best of intentions, one must hastily point out) introduced modern scientific medicine. Without the evolving cultural attitude toward a lower birthrate that kept our birthrate synchronized with the reduction in infant mortality brought about by vaccines, antibiotics and public health measures, in a single generation they saw their average family size grow from an equilibrium level to one of catastrophic population growth.

    This is not the sole engine of their deterioration, but it is still an enormously powerful engine. I disagree with you and insist that the standard of living and per-capita GDP in the Third World today is indeed qualitatively lower than it was 150 years ago, and perhaps even 2,000 years ago.

    The evolution of a civilization must be balanced. When Iron Age, Industrial Era or Information Age technology is introduced in one burst of contact to a Paleolithic or Neolithic culture, the results are almost invariably horrifying. As evidence, ponder the introduction of the single technology of alcohol distillation to the barely Neolithic culture of the western Native Americans.
    There is truth in that statement, but we must recognize the "Global Village." The still-underpopulated Western Hemisphere has so much farm land that we could feed the entire world three times over, keeping the segment of our population who would rather be farmers than officeworkers deliriously happy. And in fact we try our damnedest to do just that, giving our efficient charity organizations plenty of money to buy our ridiculously cheap surplus food and ship it in giant lots to the Third World, as a gift from their loving friends, who just want them to stop being poor so we can stop feeling sad about it! Their despotic governments intercept it, sell it on the black market, and use the money to increase the scope of their despotism.

    The second derivative of population went negative thirty years ago, so the population is universally predicted to peak, just barely into eleven digits, during this century... and then start decreasing. There is plenty of food to nourish that many people, without depriving ourselves of T-bone steaks and potato chips. We just need to get it to them.
    Those few tribes are merely a footnote on the human race's annual report. They are outnumbered 100:1 by the 50% of the African population--both urban and rural--who live in genuine, unquestionable poverty that satisfies even a Paleolithic definition of the word: lacking the resources that define the bottom steps on Maslow's Hierarchy.
    People always see doom in the earth's future when peering from the back side of a Paradigm Shift. Read Dickens for a scathing indictment of the Industrial Revolution, and I guarantee that plenty of clucking hunter-gatherers predicted that the newfangled inventions of farming and animal husbandry would bring about the ruin of their tribes.

    A few generations later, the Industrial Revolution turned out to be a rousing success for the people who were already living in the Iron Age. Although not so much for those who were not, such as the Africans, Native Americans, Australians, Maori, etc.

    The Information Age will doubtless have a similar impact, solving our environmental problems (simply working at home instead of commuting will reduce our petroleum consumption by 25%) while leaving the people in the Third World more than a little bewildered.

    But take heart. The Third World is shrinking measurably. Every decade sees more democracies and fewer authoritarian governments. Democracies invariably evolve more prosperous economies. And prosperous people can afford to regard conservation as an item in their budget and allocate more resources to it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2011
  22. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    Like the US and the EU, yeah.

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