Thursday, 18 June 2009

Yes we can!

Well, we've looked at cooking Dahl, and it's various accompaniments. That was what I wanted to achieve for this week. Now, if you will humour me a little, I want to tackle the common idea that absolute poverty, famine, malnutrition and hunger are inevitable, and nothing can be done to resolve them. During my occasional reading, the following quotes stood out as particularly pertinent:

  • Thirty million people a year die of hunger. And 800 million suffer from chronic malnutrition.
  • The total wealth of the world's three richest individuals is greater than the combined gross domestic product of the 48 poorest countries - a quarter of all the world's states.
  • Food is not in short supply. In fact, food products have never been so abundant. There is enough available to provide each of the Earth's inhabitants with at least 2700 calories per day. But production alone is not enough...
  • The UN calculates that the whole of the world population's basic needs for food, drinking water, education and medical care could be covered by a levy of less than 4% on the accumulated wealth of the 225 largest fortunes. To satisfy all the world's sanitation and food requirements would cost only $13 billion, hardly as much as the people of the United States and European Union spend each year on perfume.

Ignacio Ramonet, 'The Politics of Hunger', Le Monde Diplomatique, Nov 1998. Quoted by Gary Alexander, eGaia, 2002, Lighthouse Books, Diss, Norfolk, UK

Once we all realise that the malnourishment problem is not production, but distribution, then I think we are well on the way to ending hunger, globally, for ever.

And we can end hunger, if we all want to, enough.

Best wishes, 2ndRateMind.

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