Posted by: luvin | March 18, 2009

On Grants and Aids

When you are big and mighty, when you have amassed wealth that you can no longer exhaust spending on mundane luxuries, there is no way for you but to extend a helping hand to the needy. Perhaps one reason why the news these days are full of PR propaganda gimmicks trumpeting the soft heart, the humanitarian side, the good samaritan persona of the once greedy profit oriented companies about there corporate social responsibilities. It may be an honest effort, or a mere justification of the guilt feeling,  an effort to fill the emptiness and meaninglissness of their lives that huge amount of money can never cover up…,the effort to help the needy is a welcome development.

There are two recent news that made my day. The first one is regarding my home island of Mindanao which for decades have been mired in war, underdevelopment, poverty and neglect. Mindanao will recieve 800 hundred million pesos (or around 16 million US Dollars)  grant from Germany to help the developed the island. They are the recent helping hand that joined Japan and Australia who have already provided millions or billions dollars in aid to Mindanao. Of course the EU have also been there for decades already. The Germany grant  may not be so huge an amount but it is a welcome effort on their part even in these time of economic crisis. Hopefully, the aid will really find its way to the needy and not end up at the hands of the administrator, both in the government and in non government organization, who have somehow mastered the art of siphoning about 75% of these aids and grant.

America is silent regarding its effort to help Mindanao for 2009 and beyond, but it is understandable for the not so simple problem that beset their economy. Their billion dollars are needed to bail out their ailing conglomerates. Which brings me to the other news item; the aid to the ailing american companies. AIG, has been bailed out in the tune of billions of dollars. How big  is AIG? It is a big company that its reach may affect so many americans, but perhaps not as big as Mindanao. But the aid they recieve is in billions while my poor island gets a mesly million.  That only shows who is more important, who should not suffer the difficulty in life in contrast of who should die in starvation and bullets.

But even with those disparity in consideration, Mindanaoans gets lesser irritants that goes with those aids.  If you get 1 million, so you lost 750,000 thousand of it to administrative cost (if not corruption). In contrast, the american people are aghast that the bailed out company are paying hundreds of millions in bonuses to their CEO’s.  The bigger your share of the pie, the bigger your share of the poison that goes with it.

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