Thursday, January 4

Hooray, Canada!



I got really excited, because I thought it was Tanzania whose textile mills had all closed by 2004 on account of dead white men's clothes (stuff that doesn't sell at Goodwill, etc. in North America) undercutting the cost of making clothes locally, but it turns out it was Zambia.

2005: "Textile mills in Tanzania that had previously been mothballed were brought back into action and now employ thousands."

They're exporting them, too, which means that Zambia's probably still got no employment for textile workers and no up-and-coming textile factories making mosquito nets, but overall, still a great story. It's not like Tanzania wasn't hit at all by the "dead white men's clothes" markets. They lost a lot of textile mills, too, as implied by the statement "brought back into action." I don't quite understand how the economic policies worked, but work they did, so God bless whoever in Canada, Africa, etc. thought this up.

(Mosquito nets, are one of the most promising methods we have of reducing population growth in Africa.
1) People pop out kids to replace the ones they think will die, only people aren't very good at those predictions and always overestimate their dead kids, so the population grows. Population growth specialists seem to have determined that knowing your kids will live is the most effective incentive to take contraceptive action.
2) When parents die before kids know how to run a farm, carve shoes, or whatever it was they were going to learn as a skill for making a living, the kids end up dispersed, hopeless, living on the margins, and exposed to fewer reasons to take contraceptive action. Population growth specialists seem to have determined that keeping parents alive & healthy long enough to apprentice kids well also dramatically reduces population growth.

Oh, and by the way, does anyone know if the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is as into funding attacking-the-viruses-themselves research & development as this guy says it is? They were so highly praised by Jeffrey Sachs, the economist who is all for biomed miracles if they work but wants people to focus fastest and hardest on technology & methods that keep things simple, that I can't imagine they'd get that kind of praise from him if they weren't contributing to things like mosquito net distribution.

I can't decide if this article is a complete misunderstanding of what "donating to medical/technological solutions" often means in practice (is this one of those guys who also thinks no doctors anymore recommend diet & exercise? He's wrong!) or if I'm just ignorant of Bill & Melinda Gates dangerously taking "medical" and "technological" to mean only "fancy creams & injections" and not taking it to mean "nets and roads."


The Mighty Kat said...

Hi Katie. the blog looks great! I'm honored to be on your blogroll. Can't wait to see more of your posts.

Katie said...

Thanks! By the way, after reading your post about playground workouts, I sent it to my boyfriend, and that very evening he came up with one himself. So how could I not include you?

Recent headlines from the blog "Black and Missing but Not Forgotten:"