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Re: Fw: Hunger site
Sorry about a non-event posting, but the nature of the previous
posting requires this cautionary follow-up....
> Have a look at this.
But note the following....
> Dear all, I got this earlier, and then got this extremely
interesting reply, which you'll find below. It was forwarded to a
large list, so I feel okay sharing it with you all. Basically it is a
caution re the Hunger Site.
> I'm afraid I find this EXTREMELY FISHY, quite alarming, in fact; so
I'm not sending it on to anyone. Any number of reasons; here are
> 1.There are HUGE problems associated with "food aid" in just about
any form, as Oxfam or any of the other reputable "international
cooperation" agencies can explain. Inappropriate or even contaminated
food, "dumping" which undercuts local farmers, siphoning off of
donated food for sale by corrupt individuals, etc In this case, even
in the unlikely event that some "real food" does get distributed, the
pertinent questions are - what? where? how much? to whom? Under what
conditions? Etc. You just don't fool around with this kind of thing.
> 2. This would seem to be a great way for whoever (corporate
sponsors, etc) to get e-mail addresses and/or other information for
their own purposes - and to collect a whole list of well-intentioned
but somewhat gullible people (sorry to be so blunt, but since I'm
gullible myself in many contexts I know what I'm talking about!)
> 3. Any project where "no one's been able to find out who's behind
it" is suspicious. As my father put it in a letter once to an
anonymous "English Only" (anti-French and probably racist anti-
immigrant) group, "Long experience has taught me to distrust
organizations which, when appealing for support, do not give the
names of their officers." Much worse an appeal which does not even
give the names of the sponsoring organizations!
> Incidentally, you say there are "pharmaceutical companies"
among the sponsors, but you don't say which ones, or how you know
they are involved (since the appeal as it was passed on says nothing
about that). I'd be very interested to know whatever details. I'm
sure you are aware that several of the largest
pharmaceutical/chemical companies are heavily into "bio-engineering"
of genetically engineered (GE or GM) foods, and are pushing that
technology under various labels (eg. "novel foods") and promoting the
concept to the public with sophisticated PR propaganda about
> f eeding the hungry hordes. (For more information on this stuff,
see the following websites: Campaign for Food Safety
<www.purefood.org> and Rural Advancement Foundation International -
> 4. Scams like this (and for all of the above reasons, it IS a scam)
serve to distract people's attention from the true issues around food
and hunger and thus prevent a critical understanding and the kind of
effective action which can grow from that. This one provides a "feel-
good" guilt-assuaging pill in the form of a "virtual" promise based
on implicit misrepresentation of the facts about the causes of hunger
and how it might be cured.
> 5. People with good intentions - who may or (more likely) may not
include some of the sponsors of this website - need to channel their
efforts and resources into the legitimate and extremely worthy
organizations out there which are doing truly worthwhile work to
alleviate hunger now AND into the future in sustainable and
appropriate ways. Some suggestions of groups I know well and can
strongly recommend are:
> - Inter Pares, 58 Arthur St, Ottawa, K1R 7B9 (613) 563-4801
> - Oxfam Canada, #300, 294 Albert St, Ottawa, K1P 6E6 (613) 237-
> - CUSO, 2255 Carling Ave, Ottawa, K2B 7Z5 (613) 829-7445
> - as well as the various churches (Catholic, United, Anglican,
> Mennonites, Quakers, etc.) with their international assistance
> I'm sending this "Reply to All", and copying it to the
addresses listed in the message that came to you. I trust that will
be OK with you.
> Sorry to rain on this particular parade, but I think it's very
> important to do so before it goes any further.
Peace and Environment Resource Centre http://www.perc.flora.org
Nothing has been better proven than this maxim: that one succeeds
in having too much only by causing others not to have enough.
Francois Noel Babeuf (1769-1797)
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