Sunday, December 10, 2017

INGO

Propostlogue:
I sit at the screen and have a drink of beer contemplating what I shall have for dinner
and I can't help but think of those humans that haven't even shelter let alone a beer fridge a car a computer etc etc
So what you say and figure that you should bail now before I start telling you that we should open our borders wide and let those people come into our country or your country to get a better deal in life.
I am not writing to do that as I do not feel it is a viable economic solution. I feel we need to invest wisely in the third world but not so much by migration but through mitigation.
 I am sensitive to the plight of others in places that make Canada look so good and it is that which keeps me very grateful to be born here and be white. I do truly understand how privileged I am by the virtue of those two facts and the third privilege is that I have a penis! I am missing fortune and fame but it is after all the western civilization where anything is possible! The best of these things and easiest to self attain by a person in another part of the world is immigration to a better world.
I am not against immigration but wholesale immigration is fool hardy.
That's one of those issues for another day but it relates to this post as it's about giving to the non-profits in our lives. Not so much our giving but their spending and the increase in the number of Non government organizations in general and the international ngo's specifically.
  
It is sometimes hard to constantly have organizations and foundations of every type asking for money.
For your...our money.
If you are a parent then first on the list of charities which seem to permeate our society would be the school your child attends then as you go through your day they
pop
out at you.
There are groups to
             save the children
 save the whales,
   sharks and other creatures.
Save the natural area
    the ancient ruin.
These charities want our time 
     they ask for our blood 
           they'll take most of our body parts,
worn clothes,
                    glasses,
 cardboard,
    household items,
 old cars,
baked goods
and almost always
                          cash.

There are societies who focus on physical maladies
or injustice,
they give shelter to the poor
        food for the hungry
 teach our young to always be prepared
          influence your vote
and
    even entertain the masses.

But the bulk of these are local charities or domestic non profits and because of a broad definition they are for the most part considered Non Governmental Organizations it's thought that there are 10 million of them globally.
 The term NGO was coined at the United Nations back in the 40's and the definition then as now is an organization who is non governmental and is a non profit.

 The domestic NGO's are getting a relatively small piece of the money pie and their activities are local but even these "local" charities sometimes are involved in international aid.
This leads me to comment that as I have been researching this post I've found a very tangled web of organizations and money and also the amount of aid/charity money that is moved started to go beyond my comprehension.
The short answer to the question of how many dollars are given to charities world wide would be that it is impossible to get it to the penny but there are a few sites on the web that have info

This site has some stats to give you an idea as to how much money is being moved .

The International NGO is the same as any other except it works world wide or primarily outside of it's home country. It is estimated that there are 40,000 INGO's and that number is growing. The number of people and the amounts of money talked about in research on these entities is huge.
That begs the question with all of this why is aid needed in the world?
The Reality is that
The west really ignored a
lot of what was going on in Africa and this has lead to an on going need for real help in the big ticket items like infrastructure, social programs and in turn spreading democratic ideals rather than perpetuating tribal ideals by supporting monarchies and dictatorships the flotsam left by the colonial conquest a century before. The story is repeated around the globe in several hundred countries and I am not saying that the west should have handed out infrastructure but they could have had the best interest of Africans in the fore front of the dealings with the people of this massive continent. 
Also
With few exceptions the governments of the world spend more on defense than on the needs of the population with the poor of the poorest countries having
literally nothing  in the way of social support. The more despotic a political culture the more you must spend on keeping everyone in line.
So most but not all INGO's are taking up human rights and social functions such as health care and education providing infrastructure like water delivery or shelter. Basically doing work that the government can't or won't do for it's people and in some cases augmenting or consulting on government sponsored programs. Most (90 percent ?) are Non Profit and can be of any size.              
Back to the question
With so many doing so much why does it seem that so little is getting done?

First of all
A lot is being done by agencies both International and domestic but at the same time there seems to be some places in the world that are just
FUBAR!
So yes a few countries, Haiti comes to mind immediately, have had a combination of shit governance, natural disasters or war that have destroyed what little they had.   

Waste

Waste is one big factor and not just the blatant waste but the ongoing waste in the implementation of programs that are not of any real value. Short term relief plans, confused goals and flawed delivery systems that fail heroic endeavors!

 Add
to this
mother natures
                    wrath
     corrupt officials
nepotistic village leaders,
crappy sociopolitical overview,
             shady business people,
native stakeholders stuck in survival mode and some NGO's themselves!
Check out this story about one of the largest NGO's in the poorest country of the western hemisphere!From Propublica:
The little organizations can be just as ridiculous or even notorious.
NOW
you start to see why this can sometimes be a frustrating business to be involved in when you honestly want to do some good without a paycheck.
My very close friend Laura Allen has been on the ground operating Shelters International Disaster Response for many years in a few different countries and she said the High of seeing an affected person smile because of your effort is worth all of the tears spent to get to that point.
That is what drives most who go to third world countries and try to empower the poorest people on the planet but International non government organizations are increasingly becoming the subject of scandal
and the
reasons?

       lack of control
                  the lack of transparency
                                                 the lack of accountability.

This is born from the passive nature of the NGO's donors and that most INGO's are operating in countries who do not have the resources to police every project especially in a disaster situation and the number of INGO's has exploded. I am not talking about the big players here as they are under scrutiny at all times but the smaller NGO's.
an article about the proliferation of INGO's
That explosion has produced some incredible organizations most of whom are small, focused with long term plans for the areas they work in but the bulk of the cash goes to the big players and that is not working so well in some areas of the world.
?
I think the delivery systems have to change and become decentralized to accomplish this we as donors should look at more grassroots oriented organizations.
This has been happening for the last dozen years and the trend is growing and this is one of the reasons there are so many INGO's!
Look for the small player who is focused on an area, has a history and heart. So many of these tiny operations work with hardly any budget. Yet these same entities make a fair portion of the relief and repair possible and they are very flexible through being on the ground in affected areas.
 So part two of this will be a look at this grassroot phenomenon. In no way do I say I have thoroughly researched my material as with most of my writing this is more a collection of thoughts with some facts as inspiration.


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Only hours left to make the intelligent choice?

The Brexit issue has brought up interesting conversation in the world of sociology they seem intrigued by this last exit being largely a movement or coherence of dissatisfied voters who expressed that dissatisfaction by voting to leave the EU. The pundits and bean counters called it to be close but for the stay side not for the leave. 

No one factored in the completely uninformed voter who only really understood the importance of participating in the vote but not much about the substance of what was being voted on. Also many people who didn't care much whether they were in the EU or not simply didn't think that the central government was listening to their concerns and shouted them by saying no to the EU. 
Then you have the sheeple who will just follow along and had strong anti EU leanings. 

Some believe this is a referendum in America just as it was in the UK. A referendum where there is one answer to give to many 
unrelated issues and the predominant issue is this: Do I as a voter want more of the same? 
This might be why the predictors of  the Brexit result were off but it was a number of things that made the result unforeseeable. Things that have been playing in recent years both in NA and the UK 

I think that in both the UK and the USA there has been a large portion of the population that feels as though they haven't been heard and the rhetoric of the right wingers spoke to them. Others wanted a protest vote to simply break the hold of corporate america but weren't anti immigrant pussy grabbing dim witted citizens as Mr Trump seems to be. Their protest vote couldn't go to the third choice candidates and you would understand why if you checked out said candidates...and you thought Trump is off the wall.
None of the Americans really believe Trump will deliver but they are sure that shit will get shook up by having him as the commander in chief!
It would seem that there are a number of people who simply want to shake things up not completely destroy America by voting for the sideshow. No they want the big top and it's a two ringed circus. Trump seems to fit the bill for almost every disenfranchised voter in America. 
Clinton on the other hand appeals to the new age sheep who are being put to sleep so that the status quo can be maintained. Whenever one of their drowsy heads pops out from under the covers of their safe warm beds they are fed a snack of Liberal policy and cooed to till they fall asleep again. The problem for Clinton is that there are more people who don't have the time to be sleeping because they're working two jobs with little or no security living in some rented rundown house because a big bank took theirs several years ago.

On the day of the election in the United States of America it matters little as to what is promised by either candidate. This is something that the people of the USA have come to trust and rightly so mainly because being a politician is a job that requires you constantly try to keep your job so you go with the safest bet. That means that decisions are made less with the good of the people in mind and more what is good for re-election. Or you simply have a "public" side and a "private" side which I have seen a few times in my own country. 

Trump could very well win this contest and that will speak volumes to the intelligentsia as to where society is at! 
Just as the public did a few months ago in Britain. 
The public not the elite and entitled will take a brash showman such as Donald J Trump over the proper intelligent Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The playing field has changed so fast and so totally that few have taken notice and fewer can safely or accurately chart the electronic sea in which we they've been cast.

Now to end this post without a prediction but sort of a summation of the candidates.

Trump is a buffoon and if elected he will cause harm to the state. He is a vindictive teenager who should NOT have the keys to the car no matter how many names his school mates called him.
He will, as a segment of his supporters hope, cause change in the USA but not by design. It will be more like a train wreck in a crowded metropolitan station, you know that afterwards there is going to be a horrendous mess and in the process some people will be hurt but don't know much more. This is a person who is afraid to lose because if he does he would lose the respect of his father. A seed for his psychotic behavior later in life...never admit defeat....be a killer etc.

Clinton for any and all of her faults still is a more capable leader than Trump could ever be. Yet there is a feeling that she has two faces one for the public and one for corporate america. That may be by inclination or a reflection of the political reality that she lives in either way she is viewed by many as being in the hip pocket of big global interests which probably is only partly true and I feel it's better than these loose connections with Russia. 
To all appearances she does seem in comparison to Trump to be the same old same old. Also, unlike her opponent, when you look at it in its totality her life has been a slow but focused march towards this day not a vendetta against the elite rich families and the current President Obama which brought him to politics..............right hasn't been even close to it.

Now for all this talk of DJ being a sexist well he did hire two women to implement and orchestrate his firms invasion of Manhattan.
Which brings me to the biggest reason I would like to see Hillary win.
When asked in the seventies why he hired women in these high profile positions Donald said that he found one hard working intelligent woman was worth ten hard working intelligent men.

The world could not handle the energy that would exude from the oval office if there were ten Donalds!


Only hours left to make the intelligent choice!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

My foot's outside the door

I want to take myself back a number of years but with the tech that I have now. It would be amazing also fraught with horrible turns.....ending up in an "Area 51" being examined by the "Man"!
 What a fantasy and yet some would say that the tech we have now is from alien beings!
What I have to say about that is this.
If aliens have been on earth for who knows how long, since the space time continuum is not fully understood by we humans, it is very possible that there are aliens among us and I would assume that they would be more technologically advanced and as such can make themselves known.

Or

Is this like a Dr. Who episode?

 Perhaps their silence is a product of some evil or divine plan involving earth. So if we are fore warned we would screw up this plan? 
Truthfully we know so little about the actual structure of the universe that truly anything is still possible.
But
it doesn't mean the pyramids' were erected directly by alien beings which brings me to the point of this post:
It doesn't really matter until it matters.
A dumb ass comment?
No just one that reflects the resignation that there are things we won't know and until we do know we should concentrate on the here and now rather than dealing with pure conjecture on an ancient event or ones yet to happen.
This goes for the other conspiracy theories and claims I say to those who want to shed light on the government being involved in lies and dirty tricks please we all know this no need to prove it and futhermore we know "anybody can be bought". Scientists and professional people who seem as single minded in

upholding respect for the protocols and principles of their fields of professional endeavor as they are in monetary gain. The later often taking precedence over the former when a scientist is bought by this or that lobby group.
 Politicians who we know are swayed not by sound reason but through the lure of lucre.
The media performers who act as purveyors of intelligent reflection on current affairs who should be giving an unbiased view to the public are paid to be short sighted misinformed xenophobic misogynists. 

So giving detailed examples of the JFK assassination cover up
or this covert operation or that misinformation is of no surprise to me and therefore not worth spending a lot of intellectual energy on the subject.  Telling me of the secret societies and their power is not a revelation but simply a mix of myth, some historical fact and practical coincidence. 

But 
to all who have some reason to doubt something and I mean anything, do search it out but make your investigation balanced. 
Really there are places and situations that bear a shout out.
There are things that are actually happening right now in this world that need addressing so many in fact that the shout becomes a roar.

Uncovering the cover up in Area 51 or the secret of chem trails seems sad and for another blog post I could go into how you are sucked into these conspiracy theories.

Sad also is the dis connection we seem to have and I mean in the general population, with the rest of the planet. Truly sad because the potential for knowledge in this day is astounding but for the masses the internet is an entertainment vessel not a place to get too much information on anyone subject.

So it is time for this one person to reconnect as uncomfortable as it might be to the other world which exists not far from my safe western home.  Here I go my foots outside the door!



Wednesday, October 1, 2014

2013 Full on Flux


I'm moving through the main stream as an observer. Not an intellectual or a true pure creator I am a borrower and sometimes a reflector of the humans around me. An inquisitor but I try hard not to be judicial my query is more to be an arbiter rather than an executioner. I am not right only the power over all of us can be right and this is not human power which I see is often misguided and unjust but the laws that govern all of us I would say the laws of nature rather than use the amorphous terms that you are used to. I see the pain of so many and it is doubled through people bringing this pain on themselves through dealing pain to others as righteous as they believe themselves to be. Do not be smug and think you are immune to the laws because you have a belief in this or that. You and I are only humans
prone to gross errors and imperfections our only salvation is to see that we are just that humans and in this space and time of are little consequence by ourselves. Yes some can and do affect and influence other humans but this is not that great a feat a much greater challenge to you is to understand that we are very very small and through this understanding we can and do achieve greatness. This view that I have of us is not one of divinity nor is it brought to me by the great flying spaghetti monster
or any other faith based belief system at the same time I think perhaps our scientific community is falling and failing in some aspects of the information given to the public as fact. I am disheartened to hear scientists say "that is the way it happened" with little more solid proof than someone citing a chapter from a book of dubious origins.

But this is getting away from where I was going with this post, perhaps I should stay away from beer when writing, no I am here to express my concerns over the growing gap between the reality of need and the need of want. It seems that we are continuing, largely through the unreporting by MSM and the internet, to the plight of people in general. 
We are social animals with strong emotional triggers and like other animals are naturally empathic but I think we have developed empathy to the point where we perceive wrong and react in a knee jerk fashion to this or that wrong which tends to lead to polarization which leads to a break down in true dialogue. I would have thought that with the free exchange of information we would be farther along than where we seem to be. Now this is my narrow view of what I see through facebook. Something so powerful yet in that power it becomes derisive, I assume I am naïve or overly hopeful of my fellow humans but this is what I see in a macro overview of the social media user but to even bring up the idea that a cause to be championed maybe better left to another time is a form of heresy and met with a somewhat cold shoulder. 
But this is only part of the post in general the behaviour of people on the internet mixed with a cause can do good things but in the case of the "Ice Bucket Challenge"
I wondered if all of this money could be put to better use in say Sierra Leone? The problems faced by the health agencies who are left on the ground is dire made that way by the ravages of Ebola.     
Or an air bucket challenge for peace? Seeing the smiles on the faces of kids from far off countries, who seem somehow to always draw out the assholes in thought and religion, that know peace costs way fuckin more than the challenge could ever raise but the medical supplies are nice.
I am not naïve I do know that all of these maladies are more complicated than what seems to be given as information. There are all sorts of concerns when whole groups of people are being systematically slaughtered or moved on what is a proper motive. I'm sure that is running through the mind of every shell shocked inhabitant of Gaza. As fathers and Mothers race through the rubble holding the broken remains of their children the last thought they have is that this is all for the security of Israel or for the furtherance of Hamas truly they see their meager life destroyed by a largely faceless destroyer
 


I love the endless parade of humanity that run before us everyday in our comfortable western civilization. Both the formal and informal are rooted in passion  but these can all be distracring and setting us to debate hot topics rather than fully focus on issues which are setting us at a social crossroad. Basic stuff that affects all of us.    



Wednesday, April 2, 2014

It.....

We all have a feeling that something is "wrong". It's true I see even the happiest of persons having a feeling that things in the world today are somehow off balance there is a sense that the bubble they are in is fine it is the rest of the world which has gone off it's axis.
For a large portion of the population the drone of the tv set drowns out the buzzing in their head and makes everything aok and they are not at fault in anyway for not really getting it.
What is it ?
It is that people have started to replace interdependence with independence. From that they find most happiness when they have the upper hand and so are involved in game playing with the goal of getting something for less. 
It is coming to grips with our economic model which is flawed.
It is the idea that the centralist systems which accountants love really make no physical sense but only an economic one and limited sense at that.
It is understanding that the media in this world exists solely to make money which is not in your best interest.
It is looking through what seems to be doom and gloom to see the faint light of hope that some others might get it.


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

It's been along time

So I have been away on an extended vacation of sorts I've certainly vacated the blog world this hiatus brought on because I have been living out of suitcase for the last 6 months. Well here I am settled more or less in Lethbridge....Alberta....it's in Canada!
Why Lethbridge you ask, I have probably mentioned that my kids and grand kids are here but this is not the only reason that I have been drawn here.

The area around the town had been marked by the native population at Head Smashed and to the south but not so much where the City of Lethbridge is now. but transient populations  In  town started as a mining outpost then in 1882 The first Galt company mine opened then the railway came bringing settlers to the west. The mining workforce grew to 2000 miners at it's peak with the mines around the area being the largest producers of coal in the north west territories. In 1957 the Galt No8 mine shut down and the end of an era came apon Lethbridge.

Back in the day I lived in what is known as the Castle apartments they were tiny but funky they were also, further back in the day, one of the hotels that sprung up for the migrant mine worker.
If ghosts are possible then this building would have several.

A large part of the visual charm to this city is in the way the original architecture has been preserved.
Blocks and blocks of buildings of the same period. This place is a location managers dream for street shots could be made to go from the early 1900's to present time, with an added feature of having the "bad side" of town just as intact. The dividing line is Highway 3 and in the North end you have the working class housing along with heavy industry. The South has the big houses and little industry it also has a massive park and lake which I live by.
Henderson lake with it's park and golf course is a wonderful distraction from the hum of the city.

Lethbridge also boasts two campuses one for the University of Lethbridge and Lethbridge community college. Yes with a campus comes women, guys too but who really cares about guys.
With the collegiate crowd comes the entertainment and for a town so small it has a number of  live music venues that are well used by both local and international talent.
Too the north about a 4 hour drive is the city of Red Deer and it is a sister to Lethbridge in size and distance from a major center but the difference a University makes to the towns culture is evident in the variety of art and dining and in the area so hard to define and that is the buzz the energy that drives a community along. Lethbridge still has the uneasy alliance between education and industry and with it two towns seem to co exist in one border a symbiotic relationship that keeps Lethbridge rolling along. 
Did I mention the wind?




Sunday, September 1, 2013

From a roar to a snore

No this isn't a long teary farewell but a marker a blogger flare saying I am still here but have been too busy or just plain speechless in regards to the news of the day.
My living situation is again an impediment to making comment on the world having no fixed address physiologically takes me out of sync.
To end this I have decided to buy a home in a little prairie town.
Does this mean an end to my ramblin days?
I don't think so. If something takes me from here I'll just rent it out or sell it. Over the fifty odd years of living I have found one constant and it's change. Nothing is permanent.