THE BLOG

Crisis

16/12/2013 14:37 GMT | Updated 12/02/2014 10:59 GMT

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As reported by Maplecroft, Somalia, Syria, Afghanistan, Sudan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Central African Republic, Yemen, Libya, South Sudan and Iraq have made the top 10 "hit list" of the countries with the most risk and political instability. You can also check out Crisis Group if you're really into how messed up the world is. Suicide bombers, tribal warfare, widening gaps in income and information, oppression, age old hatreds, control of resources, the crisis list perpetuates itself.

I was talking to some friends recently about land, which is the basis for everything in Nepal. (Control over land and resources seems to be as good as any reason for oppressing others). I said, rather naively but somewhat provocatively, why shouldn't the Nepal Government ensure that everyone has a little piece of land, i.e. land reform, in order to gain access to government services and to be able to grow their own food. This might also deter people from migrating for work as it could potentially create jobs, especially if cooperatives were formed and members shared in revenues. People might also be satisfied with their lot in life and not think about any kind of revolution.

Reading the Himalayan Times today, December 13, two articles caught my attention-the first being Amount of Dirty Money Leaving Developing World Jumped 14% in 2011. As reported by Global Financial Integrity (GFI), developing countries lost nearly $1 trillion to fraud, shady business transactions and corruption in 2011 vastly outpacing the amount of foreign aid received, with this situation worsening, i.e. for every $1 in economic assistance coming in, $10 leaves. Nearly $6 trillion was stolen from developing countries from 2002-11. The top ten on this hit list are China, Russia, Mexico, Malaysia, India, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, Indonesia, Iraq and Nigeria.

The second article was High End Global Restaurants Sprout to Feed India's Wealthy. One can now find Le Cirque Signature in Mumbai offering Florentine Style T-bone steak for two for $130. Indian household wealth nearly doubled to $2 trillion in five years through 2012 according to Boston Consulting Group which expects this to grow to $4.5 trillion by 2017. Millionaire households in India totaled 164,000 last year. The amount of household income is expected to rise considerably by 2020.

OK, so there is no duplication between the Maplecroft and GFI top ten hit lists, but everything is still connected. If aid reaches countries and is used, as it is supposed to be, hypothetically those in poverty should benefit. Of course I'm assuming that foreign aid is supposed to benefit the poor. However, we all know that one should never make assumptions. Secondly, if those who are becoming multi-millionaires provide some of their money to lessen the income gap, just a bit in order to ensure that all can share in resources, there might be less crises. Just think what it would be like if everyone had a job, access to health care, and a decent education for their children. Third, if those who are megalomaniacs, dictators and just down right oppressors of others for their own gains, are treated as the criminals whom they are, and deposed from power, there might be further democracy, enabling more "voice" and input from the ground.

To me this all doesn't seem that complicated, although how do we correct tens of thousands of years of human evolution which has enabled us to our present catatonic state? Maybe by just giving a small piece of somewhat fertile land to everyone enabling growing our own food, and having a little bit leftover for selling/trading in the marketplace, as well as, enough space to construct a home. Maybe entitling everyone to live in a somewhat democratic state with healthcare and proper education, no matter what one's economic status, might be a complementary start. Let's also add in full equal human rights for all no matter who they are or what they believe in.