Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficking

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StroppyChops
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby StroppyChops » Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:45 pm

OrangeDragon wrote:It could be, honestly. If they help say 20 families, then 50 more see what's up and pull their kids out (who would have been going otherwise) then they've done more harm than good.
Food for thought. Although you could extrapolate that to the point that no change happens... leads to a whole other discussion about the difference between charity and self-empowerment.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby OrangeDragon » Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:54 pm

StroppyChops wrote:
OrangeDragon wrote:It could be, honestly. If they help say 20 families, then 50 more see what's up and pull their kids out (who would have been going otherwise) then they've done more harm than good.
Food for thought. Although you could extrapolate that to the point that no change happens... leads to a whole other discussion about the difference between charity and self-empowerment.
Very true.

You should also check out Aid Dependence in Cambodia: How Foreign Assistance Undermined Democracy by Sophal Ear.

Edit: here's an article covering it: http://asiancorrespondent.com/90669/cam ... ependence/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby StroppyChops » Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:32 pm

OrangeDragon wrote:
StroppyChops wrote:
OrangeDragon wrote:It could be, honestly. If they help say 20 families, then 50 more see what's up and pull their kids out (who would have been going otherwise) then they've done more harm than good.
Food for thought. Although you could extrapolate that to the point that no change happens... leads to a whole other discussion about the difference between charity and self-empowerment.
Very true.

You should also check out Aid Dependence in Cambodia: How Foreign Assistance Undermined Democracy by Sophal Ear.

Edit: here's an article covering it: http://asiancorrespondent.com/90669/cam ... ependence/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Interesting article.
What should replace aid? Is it possible to recover the Cambodian economy? What should change?

Here’s one alternative I argue makes sense: how about collecting enough domestic revenues (mostly taxes) to do your own development? As I mentioned earlier, using data from the World Bank, my book shows that from 2002-2010, for every dollar spent by the central government, more than 94 cents of net foreign aid was received. This is not a good formula for owning your own development. This is a prescription for extremely serious aid dependence. If you add both current domestic revenues and estimates of corruption, Cambodia could develop on its own. If anything, foreign aid disrupts the link between the people and their government. The people don’t pay enough taxes (but plenty is stolen from them via corruption), the government doesn’t listen to them (but ends-up ranking as one of the most corrupt countries in the world on the Corruption Perception Index), and what do you have? Pretend democracy.
My emphasis added.

This seems to be the crux to me: internal revenue (tax) + remove corruption = no need for foreign aid (charity).

This is obviously pie in the sky and I'm not entirely convinced the author isn't incredibly naive, however we push on. Without education of the masses, how will corruption ever be eliminated in this country?

I recently had a conversation with an expat who told me about a young lady who works in her parent's hole-in-the-wall restaurant. She is a great cook and her life goal is to be able to travel to every town in Cambodia, cooking for an income. Not too high a dream, but out of her reach as her mother will not let her leave 'for two years' as she needs to stay and earn enough money for her older brother's wedding. This would be the same older brother that sits on his privileged ass Facebooking in the restaurant while his sister slaves away, seven days a week. The expat told me that he told the girl that it was her life, she should pack up and leave, now, as the rest of the world doesn't accept that young women should be in slavery to the family any more. At first I was shocked that he would tell her this, but on reflection he may well be right. He and I both agreed that 'two more years' would pass and then be one more, and one more, ...

Obviously the young woman has a cultural terror of being shunned by her family if she is disobedient, and packing up and leaving is not a perfect solution - but what's the alternative, staying in bonded slavery? Some would argue, not our place to hold or express an opinion of local customs, but at what point does the humanity in us rise up and scream Bullshit! to what we see around us, like this expat did?

So, Girl, aged 9, who wants to go to school with her friends. This author argues that IF there was no corruption in Cambodia she wouldn't need foreign aid (charity) to help her stay out of the fields. AT NINE YEARS OF AGE. As educated people, and even educators, we know the corruption is not going to lessen - far from it - in Girl's lifetime... so what's the solution?

At one extreme, do nothing because we further entrench the social dependence on foreign aid and build a handout/poverty culture that we've seen in our own countries. On the other - if we had to pay every family in a poor province $5 a month per child to guarantee that their child was getting a complete education and thus starting a journey of self empowerment, is that such a bad thing in a culture that is already horribly skewed and drunk on foreign dollars? I honestly don't know where the 'correct' answer lies on this continuum - and those of us with even just a glimmer of insight know that the notion of a correct answer is ridiculous.

Still, though, Girl, aged nine, wants to go to school with her friends.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby OrangeDragon » Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:44 pm

There's inevitably going to be a period of suffering to make any dependency go away. It's withdrawals.

I don't think dragging out aid will really remedy that in any way. In a system where corruption from top to bottom is just commonplace, all educating will do is make a new generation of corruptors, or (as we see in practice here now really) create a growing middle class while further widening the gap between them and the upper class leaving them still disenfranchised for any power to institute real change.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby StroppyChops » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:07 am

OrangeDragon wrote:There's inevitably going to be a period of suffering to make any dependency go away. It's withdrawals.

I don't think dragging out aid will really remedy that in any way. In a system where corruption from top to bottom is just commonplace, all educating will do is make a new generation of corruptors, or (as we see in practice here now really) create a growing middle class while further widening the gap between them and the upper class leaving them still disenfranchised for any power to institute real change.
You're right about the new generation of corruptors, and I don't have an answer for that other than the somewhat naive notion that without education, the kids lose or never have their own agency.

I believe I know you well enough that if you knew Girl, aged nine, who wants to go to school with her friends, you'd personally fork out the $5 a month to make it happen. I don't say this to personalise/trivialise the matter or hide the more global issue behind one of personal western guilt, I'm confident that it is so. As it is for me. And Mrs Stroppy. And Joon, and vlad, and the General, and kiwi, and jacob, and most other posters on here if asked, I'd warrant.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby OrangeDragon » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:15 am

StroppyChops wrote: I believe I know you well enough that if you knew Girl, aged nine, who wants to go to school with her friends, you'd personally fork out the $5 a month to make it happen.
I actually wouldn't. I'd agree to take him/her as a ward (as I've done) and see to it they get a proper education with my full(ish) oversight and control.

My nephew will be graduating high school next year and going on to medical school (Cambodian sadly unless some lottery ticket I've never bought somehow still ends up winning for me). The end of his university training will be just in time to start his little sisters high-school (which he can hopefully help me finance with that medical degree, lol).

In exchange for this, and I'm a big believer in fair exchange, he's had various chores around the house, been a go-for boy, etc... and had to keep his grades up. In fact, he made top of his class one semester so I bought him a second hand decent android smartphone... which has revolutionized his English communication and comprehension skills. Every English teacher should just hand them out and teach kids how to get on Facebook. They'll know English in like 2 weeks.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby phuketrichard » Tue Jun 10, 2014 7:47 am

OrangeDragon wrote:
StroppyChops wrote:
Soi Dog wrote:I have no suggestions, but it seems to be the same "welfare state" trap in the west (or the endless "charity state" comparisons elsewhere). You try to solve a real problem, but the law of unintended consequences kicks in and now there you are helping to perpetuate the "culture of charity" conundrum.

"Why does my neighbor get free housing and $1000 cash per month for not working and having more kids, when I pay my own way and work full time for minimum wage?", etc. The imagined stigma of accepting charity when you don't really need it dissipates quickly.

No easy answers.
I understand your point. So, honest question, is it better that the organisation does nothing in this case?
It could be, honestly. If they help say 20 families, then 50 more see what's up and pull their kids out (who would have been going otherwise) then they've done more harm than good.
in my scenario , pulling their kids out wont get them any cash
thats why u need people on the ground, they know what a family is worth ( ie land holdings, number of siblings, cash, cows, pigs etc etc)
so seeing your poor neighbor getting money an u trying to duplicate their situation wont fly

PLUS there is the stigma of accepting from outsiders not sure if this applies to Cambodia but it does here in Thailand.

It needs to be closely monitored an for sure the kinks need to be worked out

and keep the region out of it.I saw first hand that shit,
after the tsunami they had church's up in Khao Lak helping, but only if u were Christian or willing to convert fuck that
In a nation run by swine, all pigs are upward-mobile and the rest of us are fucked until we can put our acts together: not necessarily to win, but mainly to keep from losing completely. HST
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby Mrs Stroppy » Tue Jun 10, 2014 11:02 am

As a Christian I can't stand "rice Christianity" (we'll feed/help/teach you if you convert) or organizations that only help Christians. It makes my blood boil.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby Jaap N. » Tue Jun 10, 2014 11:14 am

Mrs Stroppy wrote:As a Christian I can't stand "rice Christianity" (we'll feed/help/teach you if you convert) or organizations that only help Christians. It makes my blood boil.
I'm not a Christian, but I've been brought up in a religious family, and shit like this makes my blood boil too. These 'Christian' organisation bribe people into converting. I know there a Christian organisations that actully do very good work, without feeling the need to convert people.
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Re: Somaly Mam: The Holy Saint (and Sinner) of Sex Trafficki

Postby Otis » Sun Jun 15, 2014 6:32 pm

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/15/world ... ml?hp&_r=0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Full takedown of this nasty woman and the racket in general in today's NY Times, including a link to the pronouncements of the saintly Mr. Kristoff.


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