Quotable: John Perkins on the Haiti disaster

“We are encouraged to believe that USAID, the World Bank, and other institutions are truly philanthropic, there to serve the best interests of the people and the country. However, the reality is that, in previous cases — such as the Asian tsunami — much of this aid is employed to help huge multinational companies gain a strangle-hold on resources (including cheap labor) and markets. Instead of helping local fisherman, farmers, restaurant, and bed and breakfast owners rebuild their devastated businesses, the money is invested in projects that benefit the Krafts, Chiquitas, Monsantos, Marriotts, and big box restaurant chains of the world.

“In the case of Haiti, we also must not forget history. In the early 1800s the country declared its independence from France and proclaimed itself “slave-free.” The French sued the new nation, stating that the loss of the slaves had negatively impacted the French economy. It was just one in a series of actions taken by foreign powers to subjugate Haiti. US Marines invaded in 1915 and occupied the nation for 19 years; ever since Haiti has been the haunt of corporate executives and government officials who have corrupted one leader after another.

“While the earthquake happened in an instant, it took years of corporatocracy actions to create such a poverty-ridden country. There was no way Haiti could respond to a 7.0 earthquake because the misguided policies and interventions stripped it of any potential it might have had for surviving such a major traumatic event.”

–John Perkins, “The Tremor Felt Round the World”

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