The Shotgun Blog
Friday, February 29, 2008
Fair trade is a poor answer to global poverty
Fair trade sounds pleasant--after all, what could be wrong with "fairness"?--but it's awful, argues Alex Singleton in his most recent column for the Western Standard. And it's awful particularly for the poor and indigent.
"Instead of allowing producers to make their own choices, the Fair Trade scheme demands they conform to their utopian vision of co-operatives, seemingly in the belief that these promote development. The truth is that poor country co-operatives often end up being oppressive. Many co-operative leaders win elections time and time again through rigged elections, and then cream money off the top that ought to go to farmers, who are left in the dark. Of course, many producers want no part of co-operatives, preferring to remain organised as small business owners." Read more...
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The good thing about fair trade is that we are not required to buy it. It is still voluntary.
But, to the farmers who are hurt by it, oh well.
Posted by: TM | 2008-02-29 3:50:35 PM
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