Thanks to the London bombings and the tragedy in Lousiana, the post Live8 Make Poverty History debate got, understandably, sidelined from the news.
Today’s Guardian has this interview with Bob Geldof – it’s the first time I’ve heard Bob answer his critics post-Live8, and he does so with his usual brash honesty. I really like man. I think he’s great. I still think he missed the mark with the unconditional nature of his statements after Gleneagles, but I trust him to pursue the cause of the poor first an formost. Of all the accusations levelled at Bob, the least convincing seem to the be the ones that he’s power-hungry and just out to promote himself. I’ve seen no real evidence for this at all.
Anyway, we need to keep the pressure on in the run-up to the UN talks in New York this week, and the WTO talks in Hong Kong in December.
It’s odd, given that the WTO in its present form has no business existing. It’s never going to work properly appealing to agencies like the WTO, World Bank and IMF for reform when they are the problem. It’s like asking the Government to vote themselves out of power. So we need a two-pronged attack – one that carries on appealing to those pernicious bodies to reform, acting as a thorn in their side, building up the pressure of global public opinion, and the other calling for their scrapping, offering suggestions for alternatives, and resourcing leaders in the developing world in building their own economic power-base to bargain from.
Soundtrack – VOL, ‘Audible Sigh’.by