Please answer five different questions based on the Freeloaders video clip, and Dale Wash’s Character and Government Policy essay, and the video documentary Poverty Inc. (note that there are two sets of questions to choose from). Each of your responses should be at least 3-5 complete sentences long and should include references to the provided materials in addition to your own opinion. Link to General Questions: Poverty, Dignity, and Charity Link to Documentary Questions (specific to the Poverty Inc. film): Poverty Inc. Documentary – Discussion Questions Essay: Character and Government Policy – Dale Walsh Note: if the YouTube link below for Poverty Inc. does not work, you can also watch it on Tubi for free (you may need to register, but it is free): https://tubitv.com/movies/387154/poverty_inc Question Set One: General Questions on this topic (including some of the video clips): Charity, foreign aid, and social welfare programs are a means to an end. What do you suppose the end goal is that these programs are trying to achieve? Is there a better means or method to achieve this end? A “moral-hazard” is where someone is given an incentive to do something that is destructive to the overall well-being of themselves or others (ex: rewarding failure or penalizing success). In your opinion, how might aid programs create moral-hazards for those who “benefit” from them? Understanding Adam Smith’s insight about individuals being primarily self-interested, is it rational for people to accept free money or other forms of assistance? Explain your answer and support your claim. As human beings, we have both material and psychological needs (or spiritual needs) that are met through having to work. Agree or disagree with this statement “handouts undermine the dignity of the recipient, since the self-respect that comes from earning a living is taken away.” The principle of subsidiarity holds that “local knowledge” or those who are closer to the problem (family, friends, neighbors, local churches, community organizations, etc.) are in a better position to effectively address the problem. How does the principle of subsidiarity inform how we should be helping our fellow man? Give an example. In Stossel’s Freeloaders segment, shelter operator Bob Coté practices “tough love” and suggests that the “misdirected compassion” of churches and charities actually end up hurting those who they are trying to help by enabling their destructive behaviors. Do you agree or disagree? Can you think of a real life example of “misdirected compassion” or guilt-driven charitable giving? Signaling theory suggests that people often do things (such buying a particular type of car or wearing stylish clothing) because they want others to see them in a favorable manor. Do you believe signaling theory can help explain why individuals, non-profit organizations, bureaucrats, and politicians continue to support ineffective aid programs? Or, does signaling help to explain why people give money to panhandlers? The book of Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon, who was supposedly the wisest man who ever lived. In this book, Solomon wrote that most things under the sun were “meaningless,” but he found that “there is nothing better for a man than to eat and drink and rejoice in the fruits of his labor (or to take satisfaction in his toil) – this is a gift from God (Ecclesiastes 3:13).” Why do you suppose he believed this to be so? What are we missing out on if we do not have to work and just have everything handed to us without earning it? *The basic “moral hazard” problems that aid programs can create for the recipients may also be observed in slightly different ways in each of the following areas: spoiled children, lottery winners, helping the homeless, US foreign aid to underdeveloped nations, and Native American tribe reservations. Choose any of these secondary topics and identify the unintended consequences or explain how/why the party who is receiving the “benefit” often ends up being worse off in the long run. Question Set Two: Questions Specifically on the Poverty Inc. Documentary: What problems does Magatte Wade identify with aid and the way that people in the developed world (rich countries) view people in poor countries? What “false images” have been perpetuated by pop culture and the international media? Explain how agricultural subsidies for US farmers have affected the Hattian economy. What is paternalism? How does it relate to the what Jean Ronel Noel (co-founder of the ENERSA Solar Panels) calls dependence mentality? Analyze Ghanaian software engineer Herman Chinery-Hesse’s statement “I have never heard of a country the developed on aid….I have heard of countries that developed on trade and innovation.” Explain what is meant by “The Republic of NGOs” and its implications. What is meant by the new colonialism? Who are the colonial governors? Theodore Dalrymple states that “a large part of aid is a subsidy to the countries that do the work.” What does this mean? Can you think of an example? Who benefits the most from aid – the people who work in the “aid industry” or the people in the poor countries? Do people who work in the “aid industry” have good intentions or are they corrupt? What are the implications? What does it mean to consider the poor as partners or equals, rather than the objects of charity? Explain how economic institutions (i.e., Economic Freedom Index), such as legal protection from theft and violence, justice in the courts (rule of law), legal title to one’s land (property rights), freedom to start a business (business regulation), and links to wider circles of exchange (trade freedom) provide a “ladder” to help the poor climb out of poverty. How might foreign aid undermine sound economic institutions and empower corrupt or oppressive regimes/dictators? How have church groups or other well-intended charitable efforts hurt the very people they intended to help? What is social entrepreneurship (ex: TOMS Shoes)? Is this a good thing? Explain. Why does Theodore Dalrymple believe you should live in the country for six months before you try to help? How does this relate to the concept of subsidiarity or local knowledge? Explain the concept of economic orphans or poverty orphans. How this should this inform our understanding and the way we go about adoption and/or supporting poor families? What might be done to address these concerns? Explain Nobel Peace Prize recipient’s Muhammad Yunus’ analogy of the Bonsai tree. What is the missing middle? What is the cause? What is the problem with the property rights, rule of law, and justice in the courts in underdeveloped nations? Explain what Marcela Escobari means when she says that “access” has not been democratized. Explain economist Hernando de Soto’s experiment in getting a business registered in Peru. What is the lesson? Analyze Herman Chinery-Hesse’s statement “the people here are not stupid – they are just disconnected from global trade.” Explain how celebrity culture often perpetuates harmful cultural messages about poverty and objectify the poor. What do you make of Bono’s statement “Commerce, entrepreneurial capitalism takes more people out of poverty than aid — of course, we know that” while, at the same time, he continues to state that aid is needed? What does Michael Fairbanks mean when he states “having a heart for the poor isn’t hard, we all have that. But having a mind for the poor, that’s the challenge”? Is charity good or bad? Should a distinction be made between short-term (emergency) aid and long-term development? Explain. Is there anything pertinent to this topic that you feel was left out or omitted? What other ideas should be considered when discussing the subjebcqct of poverty and charity? https://youtu.be/4teq7aKTNJ4 https://jacksoncollege-my.sharepoint.com/:w:/g/personal/ensleyaaronm_jccmi_edu/Ea2r8HCgPj9ItK5OXDJUD1IBCwpgQpUNvAfVS-yjgg8SNw?e=4AHCX2
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