Wednesday, June 15, 2005My blogging comrade Abigail Brayden pointed me to this article concerning the interesting cover art on the new Coldplay record. The artwork, once decoded, simply means "X & Y." How appropriate. Coldplay, meanwhile, is still passionate about making trade fair.
Look. I buy fair trade coffee. It's a voluntary thing on my part to pay a buck or two more for the java, and it always taste better than the cheap dreck. (Community Coffee being the notable exception) But that's a willful act, and it's not a massive reorganization of trade agreements. Using an international framework to artificially inflate prices may help third-world workers in the short term, but it is a horrendous long-term solution. It just doesn't work. Eventually the market will collapse on such prices, and then we're back to square one. Not a good idea, folks.
So how to help the third world? I can support some debt relief, on the agreement that the relieved funds go to develop infrastructure. It is important that developing nations have a free government, a free press, the rule of law and freedom of religion. Without those things, a stable economy will not develop for any significant amount of time.