C-FAR #323 May, 1998
It has often been said that foreign aid is the mechanism of transferring money from the working and middle class taxpayers of the developed world to the rich of the Third World. India, which has a huge armed forces and is developing nuclear weapons, in 1995/96 still got $119.69-million in aid from the Canadian taxpayers. (Canadian International Development Agency Statistical Report on Official Development Assistance, 1995/96, p.39) Certainly, there is poverty in India, but so too is there much wealth. The Indian political process should deal with poverty. Canadian aid simply allows rich Indians to continue their lavish ways and the Indian military to continue spending. Meanwhile, dotty Westerners feel compelled to pony up aid in a hopeless effort to cure the poverty Indian politicians refuse to address. Our aid allows India’s rich to largely avoid their own problems. It represents a transfer that subsidises their extravagant lifestyles, as pictured in the following. An article headlined “Black Label and colour TV mark Punjabi culture” explains the life of a new breed of rich Indians: “Delhi traders can barely keep up with this year’s demand for expensive air conditioners, proof of a boom in the number of Puppies – Prosperous Urban Punjabis. They define, some would say malign, the culture of much of northern India with an attitude to money that forgives anything, and especially corruption. Sardarjis, or Sikhs, who make up the majority of the Puppies were, until a generation or so ago, the most respected because of their high ethical standards and decent attitude towards women. Perhaps the decade-long separatist Khalistan movement in Punjab changed many, but Puppies – the most visible of young Punjabis – are held in ridicule.
Brand-name watches, sunglasses and other trinkets are targeted mostly at Puppies, who strut about Delhi with Black Label Scotch on their breath and gold chains on their chests. . Puppies own houses of excruciating taste, especially indoors, where they are filled with plastic chandeliers Puppies smoke imported cigarettes and no longer wear the once ubiquitous safari suit with open sandals (except in sweaty Bombay, its last big stronghold) in favour of Western-style jackets with padded shoulders to accentuate physical stature. Many do not need to do that: the fat Puppy is so commonplace he is the butt of what are essentially racist jokes. Other jokes are less mean, to wit: what is the ideal Puppy marriage? Marrying the latest television set and taking the bride as dowry. The ferocious drinking habits of Punjabis – essentially Sikhs – are the stuff of legend. Black Label is a badge of belonging to the rich, even though much of it is adulterated by bootleggers who have ingenious schemes for filling used bottles. Many women use the word Punjabi as a generic term for lascivious men. Puppies do nothing to improve their image: Puppy businessmen are to be found every day on the Shatabdi Express between Punjab and Delhi poring over pictures in Stardust magazine, which reports on Bollywood stars in various states of undress. Puppies often boast a swollen belly – known as a rice belly.
There is nothing so unsubtle as Punjabi food, which comes hot and heavy and sits like lead for 24 hours. Some Puppies are Marwaris, the Hindu caste that owns much of the country, from village shops to multinationals. They tend to be more sophisticated because their money is old and decently earned. They are thus not full-pedigree Puppies: that mantle properly belongs to the nouveaux riches who have climbed through the ranks since economic reforms were introduced seven years ago. Delhi cocktail chatter is known to have been halted momentarily by the squeal of a young wife who called across the room to “DJ” – an abbreviation for Darlingji (“ji” being the Hindi diminutive for respect.) This is classic Puppy social crassness. Puppies are frequently involved in real estate in Delhi, which has enriched many of them, although prices have lately crashed because so many foreign companies have decided there is no money to be made and are quitting. Puppy landlords — like most Delhi landlords — want the bulk of their rent in cash. They come for their money in cars with windows so dark they are all but opaque, rather in the manner of Puppy business transactions. (London Times, April 16, 1998)
Israel Sours on “Diversity”
Mainline organized Jewish groups in Canada, such as the Canadian Jewish Congress, are always regaling us with the alleged benefits of “diversity” and the marvels of continued massive non-traditional immigration. Apparently, however, many of their co-religionists in Israel are somewhat underwhelmed by the “diversity” caused by some of their foreign workers. In an article entitled “Thai’s arrest for murder sparks debate over foreign labour”, the South China Morning Post (April 25, 1998) reported: ” The arrest of a 29-year-old Thai farm worker for the murder of an Israeli woman on a kibbutz has sparked heated exchanges about the role of foreign workers in Israel. Korbua Sumbat worked at the Naan kibbutz, where Yamit Regev, 23, was raped and murdered two weeks ago as she walked home from a bar at night. He denies killing her, although police say he confessed. Labour Minister Eli Ishai reacted by saying foreign workers had “a deadly effect” on Israeli society. “I’m acting to deport as many illegal workers as possible,” he said. About half of the 250,000 foreign workers in Israel are working illegally. Most Israelis regard Thai workers as industrious, reliable and loyal. The only wrongdoing they have been accused of until now is trapping domestic dogs and cats for food.”
Red China Sets the Standard to Avoid
China’s “economic miracle” never quite trickled down to the 65 millions who survive on incomes below the official poverty line of $64 a year; nor have Canadian trade officials inquired closely when everything from plastic shoes to computer components can be gotten on the cheap. If the wealth of nations is measured exclusively by the ability to undercut the competition, then China’s network of forced-labour gulags known as Lao Gai, should have much to recommend it. Canadian politicians – take note: when policy produces malcontents, a really sharp regime can parlay punishment into serious dough! Under the Chinese system of justice, “local communist parties in China have the power to send anyone in their area to prison for up to three years if they so choose purely by making an administrative decision – the sentence can subsequently be extended indefinitely. Another category, Forced Job Placement … [or jiuye] are prisoners who have completed their jail terms in full, but must continue to carry out forced labour as though they were still serving a sentence. They are usually paid a wage … this cheap ‘non-convict’ labour is now being marketed to potential Western investors [probably tarted-up as ‘ethical’ investments]. …
The number of prisoners in the laogaidui excluding jiuye prisoners is at least 10 million and probably nearer 15 million. The ISHR believes it is safe to assume a total laogaidui population of 20 million prisoners. … To conceal the origin of forced labour produce, each camp has 2 names – a prison name and a production unit name.” (Forced labour system in the People’s Republic of China, Jan Dobinson and Glenn Calderwood and the International Society for Human Rights) Ironically, China itself may be added to the long list of countries losing out to its ruthlessly efficient slave-labour system. “Han Dongfang, the Chinese trade-union activist, said yesterday that China was ‘a time bomb about to explode at any minute’ under the pressure of its vast unemployment problem. Mr. Han … estimates that there are at least 56 million workers about to be laid off or already unemployed in the 40 per cent of state-run industries that have failed. A further 100 million workers from rural areas are said to be travelling around the country looking for work.” (London Times, April 6, 1998) Our own politicians have insisted on hitching our economic wagon to the Red Star, even when it was obvious that the PRC economy has experienced a gradual but steady decline since 1992. Current GDP is just half what it was in those heady days. A Hong Kong analyst notes, “‘That’s worse than Southeast Asian countries.’ … China’s chief economist at the State Statistical Bureau, Qiu Xiaohua, [confirms that PRC posted its 16th consecutive quarterly economic downturn during the first three months of 1998]. Industrial losses rose nearly 22 per cent during the first two months of 1998 over the same period last year. Even more stunning was an 82.8 per cent plunge in profits during January and February. ‘The deterioration in the economic efficiency of industrial firms is even worse than we had expected,’ Mr. Qui acknowledged.” (Globe and Mail, April 25, 1998) Not all that long ago “30 million, perhaps 40 million Chinese died as a result of Mao’s Great Leap Forward, his campaign to overtake the per capita industrial production of Britain within 15 years. … Mao refused to believe reports of famine, at one point joking that ‘even if there’s a collapse, that’ll be all right. The worst that will happen is that the whole world will get a big laugh out of it.'” (Time, March 3, 1997) At that time there WAS nowhere to emigrate. “Whenever Communist leaders get worried about the morale of the people, they breath new life into Lei Feng. … [he] is the purest example of the ‘model worker’. … Lei Feng was beatified by Mao Zedong, who in 1963 coined the phrase, ‘Learn From Comrade Lei Feng.’ This was not long after the economic calamities of the Great Leap Forward. … Every Chinese knows Lei Feng’s story: how he was orphaned and raised by the Communist Party, how word spread of his kindness even before his death [by telephone pole] … The heaviest promotions of Lei Feng have come in waves. One big push came after [Tiananmen]1989. … But in recent months, as the depth of the economic threat has become apparent, spurring fears of unrest, the appeals to Lei Feng have become more urgent.” (New York Times, April 16, 1998) Industrial inefficiency may be the least of China’s problems: despite ambitious plans for nuclear and hydro-electric development and pampering at the Kyoto Conference, “China’s primary energy supply will be 68 per cent coal and 25 per cent oil in 2025. … By 2025, China’s annual CO2 emissions alone will be 3.2 billion tons carbon, compared to current world CO2 emissions of 6.5 billion tons.”
(Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 3/19/98) ” China has six of the 10 most polluted cities in the world. … Major cities like Shanghai, Beijing and Chongqing have spent almost nothing on treatment of sewage or water purification … On May 7 the South China Morning Post reported that as a result of villagers dumping sewage and rubbish, 500 tonnes of dead fish covered Dong Hu Lake in Hubei province, turning the surface silvery white. Pollution monitors said the lake had a nitrogen oxide level five times the national standard. The most famous rivers – including the Yangtze and Yellow River – are completely polluted. Such has been the environmental mismanagement that the Yellow River barely exists for half the year – its bed is dry for 800 kilometers. … China hopes to raise vast sums abroad to pay for a grand clean-up. … Until now, China has only bought Western technology if the cost was borne by aid donors or international institutions like the World Bank.” (South China Morning Post, April 18, 1998) Astute readers already know that a disproportionate number of ‘trade deals’ with China are spiked with massive aid packages (Thus, ‘free enterprise’ is really just more ‘government business’ – in China, and increasingly, here). While Canada undertakes to rebuild China’s dilapidated system of dams, China’s priorities are infinitely sexier: “Beijing has laid down ambitious plans for technological development, especially in the military and industrial fields. Foremost among the mainland’s goals is to put a man in space before the end of the next decade.” (South China Morning Post, April 1, 1998) “A new CIA report says that 13 of China’s 18 long-range strategic missiles have single nuclear warheads aimed at U.S. cities. … CSS-4 missiles aimed at the United States … indicate that China views the United States as its major strategic adversary. … The CIA report also undercuts President Clinton’s often-used phrase that there are no nuclear missiles targeted at the United States. In boasting of his administration’s security record, he said in one speech in October 1996: ‘There is not a single, solitary nuclear missile pointed at an American child tonight. Not one. Not one. Not a single one.'” (Washington Times, May 1, 1998) Mr. Clinton should zip-up and find time to read history.
China’s legacy in Southeast Asia is a catalogue of duplicity, “China armed and trained rebel groups in almost every Southeast Asian country including Malaysia, Indonesia, Laos, Thailand, Burma and Cambodia, even when it encouraged warm relations with their official governments. … Even though commerce has replaced ideology as the basis for Beijing’s policies towards its neighbours, it has continued to protect the old followers of Mao. Above all it has protected the Khmer Rouge. … [When Pol Pot visited Beijing at the height of the killing, 21 years ago, he was lauded by the People’s Daily] It ran special columns describing flourishing scenes everywhere’. China did not stop supplying arms until at least 1991. There is also evidence that China gave top Khmer Rouge leaders Chinese citizenship and passports. China has also made it clear that it will oppose any attempt by Washington to put the remaining Khmer Rouge leadership on trial for crimes against humanity. … China supported and trained the Burmese Communist Party for decades, even though Burma was the first Asian nation to recognize the Chinese communist government in 1949. … An ethnic rebellion in 1989 ended the Burmese Communist Party’s dominance and nine of the armed groups formerly under the communists, including the Wa, have since tried to negotiate deals with Rangoon. Many of the rebel groups have since turned to growing opium while China has given political asylum to 14 leading members of the former politburo.” (South China Morning Post, April 23, 1998) Now, “China is gaining access to high technology, [thanks in no small part to Clinton’s machinations.] The military, too, is a growth industry. Some analysts estimate China’s defense budget is as high as $30 billion and may be climbing ten per cent a year.
The People’s Liberation Army is the largest in the world; it boasts the third-largest nuclear arsenal in terms of delivery vehicles. … If American policies are successful, ten years from now a large, well-equipped American-led force will be in place on the central plains of Europe, fully capable of deterring Russia. Meanwhile, American power and influence will have steadily shrunk in East Asia [despite China’s] military buildup, increasing chauvinism, and aggressively one-sided economic policies.” (New York Times, March 26, 1997)