Thursday, January 04, 2007

That Letter to the Independent

A commenter asked me which article so incensed me that it motivated me to send a letter to the Independent.

The article, by Johann Hari, is here.

It's mostly harmless but "reason number five" about the massive reductions in poverty in India and China annoyed me.

The letter I wrote (which was not published) was:



Johann Hari ("Six good reasons for feeling cheerful", Tuesday 26 December) correctly delights in the breathtaking number of poor Chinese and Indians being lifted from poverty. Has he ever paused, between his tiresome attacks on globalisation, free trade and capitalism, to inquire as to how poverty alleviation on such scale has been achieved?


Richard G Brown
London, E1W


To his credit, Mr Hari replied to my email and we had a brief discussion.  I think I was probably unfair to him in my letter (in that his position is, indeed, more nuanced than I suggested). However, I believe the general thrust holds: those who claim to seek increased wealth for the poor of the world and who simultaneously fight against globlalisation and free trade and, at best, misguidedly inconsistent.

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