January 03, 2017

Have we seen peak Priti?

Has Priti Patel peaked?

The Mail continues to run examples of aid cash being wasted - the latest are here.

A Conservative comment site has tried to defend her against attacks that she is being captured by her department. Just as she didn't make it into the front line of the Leave campaign, so she shows signs of being overwhelmed by her DfID officials, even publicly adopting their jargon in their defence.

Cameron's sanctimonious commitment to spend 0.7% of GNP on foreign aid is bad for affordable government (we haven't got the money) and bad for the recipient countries. Freed of responsibility to support their poor, governments can spend their income on big cars, palaces, and arms, rather than changes which will help the poor start to support themselves, such as changes to infrastructure and laws and impvements in health. A poor farmer who has some produce to sell cannot compete with free food aid, and comes to rely on the food aid himself. Why shouldn't he?

Trade, not aid. Once we leave the EU's Customs Union, we can cut tariffs on imports from the poorest countries, helping them to earn their way in the world.

There should be no long term aid. This will encourage the governments to grow their own tax bases as the long term aid is withdrawn, and their tax base can only increase if their people are prospering enough to be able to pay more. Then they can decide whether to spend millions on some girl band or unpopular preachy soap series. They could ... Take Back Control.

Within ten years, aid should be limited to disaster relief. This ethical globalisation may hurt our own unskilled poor, which will have to be addressed.

Paul Nuttall, the UKIP leader, has tweeted that we must "look at" the 0.7% requirement. No. It must be abolished. This would be good for recipient countries, it could be good for our social care budget, and it would be distinctive politics, since most establishment politicians support it.

Meanwhile, Priti Patel starts to look like yesterday's woman.


Ed P said...

Trade not aid indeed.
Kenyan coffee producers may sell their beans to the EU without an imposed tariff, but if they have the audacity to process the beans in Kenya, a crippling tariff is added, mainly to protect German coffee processors. There are many other examples where the EU forces 3rd world countries to stay at the bottom end of the food chain, to protect their own - a disgusting and immoral protectionism which we'll hopefully circumvent if Brexit ever happens.

John Page said...

Agreed. It's astonishing that Remainers condone this immorality.