March 17, 2000, Reni Sentana-Ries
The following is an excerpt from an article published by dawn.com dated March 16, 2000, out of Pakistan. It highlights what is wrong with the international capitalist system, and our analysis permits us to reduce the global poverty problem to the lowest common denominator. The article states as follows:
(quote) Poverty-alleviation plan: Loans through NGOs to carry 13% interest
PESHAWAR, March 16: ....."After deeply looking into the issue, the government has decided to keep the rate of interest on the loan ... at 13 per cent (which is the same that is) being charged to the formal sector," Dr AR Kamal, director of the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics told Dawn in reply to a query after his presentation at a seminar here on Wednesday.
According to sources in Islamabad, the government would borrow Rs15 billion for the first phase of the Poverty Alleviation Programme from the World Bank at an interest rate of 1.75 per cent and then lend that amount to the recently-formed Poverty Alleviation Fund at a three per cent interest rate.
The poverty alleviation fund would loan out the money to different non-governmental organisations at a 10 per cent interest rate, keeping a cushion of seven per cent to meet the organisational costs and sustain the default, if any. (end quote)
Commentary by Reni Sentana-Ries:
The Nature of the Problem:
Mistake number one: NGO = Non-governmental organizations associated with the United Nations. Pakistan must learn to run her internal affairs without organizational commitments to the elitist United Nations, else she will never become strong to stand on her own feet of sovereign strength.
Mistake two: Pakistan operates on the crumbling foundation of a money system based on the Western model.
Mistake three: Pakistan runs to the World Bank for "credit" and accumulates more debt on the necks of taxpaying present and future generations.
Mistake four: The Pakistani Government pays and charges "interest" on borrowed money. Where the Government pays 1 3/4 % the people are made to pay 13%.
Mistake five: Pakistan's government cannot see that the nation's wealth belongs to her people, which includes the land and its resources, and all that is needed for people to help themselves is for the Government and corporations to return the land back to the people who by all intrinsic rights own it anyway.
Mistake six: Pakistan nurses the (....) money system instead of the people. A fundamental mistake. So much for the tunnel-vision part of it.
The Self-Evident Solution:
Disband the NGO inside Pakistan and close all United Nations offices which can be found on Pakistan's soil.
Bring the Bank of Pakistan firmly under Government control.
Use the Bank of Pakistan to issue all credit for poverty alleviation interest-free.
Terminate all international debt payments which are blackmail by the (....) elite.
Jubilee all governmental, business and corporate debts into oblivion. Justify this action by the fact that all goods and services represented by these "debts" have been rendered and thus there is no need for hanging on to detrimental accounting after the fact of contract fulfillment.
Balance the issue of credit in accordance with the nation's productive output in generating wealth for its people. It is the people who will create wealth, and not the banker nor the Government nor the corporations.
And thus Pakistan will have found the magic formula for poverty alleviation. Remember, this is merely the first step toward self-redemption.