ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Live8: Expanding the Moral Community

World public opinion today is built, expressed and strengthened through advances in telecommunications. Musical shows such as the recently held Live8 concert have acquired the status of important occasions to highlight persistent political problems. The concert also demonstrated how a global 'moral community' has become sensitive to problems of the third world.

Darfur: Ethnic Cleansing as Primary Accumulation

The famine in Darfur and other such parts of Africa has two important aspects to it. One is the ethnicised conflict over resources between communities and, two, the breakdown of older forms of redistributive reciprocity and its replacement by individualised access to resources with market-based exchange relationships. What this means is that there are no easy solutions to the problems of famine in Africa today.

Micro Finance: Transforming the Economic Ethic

The successful functioning of micro-finance institutions in several developing countries has fostered the rise of a new economic ethic. MFIs have helped in the successful inculcation of the saving habit, encouraged loan repayment as per a pre-set schedule, ensured the separation of the public and private spheres and overseen the commercialisation of economic life. Under this economic ethic, more than hierarchy or other traditional demarcations of status, it is money, the possession of it and its use in commercial commodity production that forms the measure of most things ? in determining transactions, relationships and status.

Low Employment Growth

India languishes in the area of low technology, labour-intensive exports. If globalisation is to lead to broad-based growth, then a substantial push in labour-intensive manufactures is required. There must be an end to the fascination with small enterprises, with an emphasis instead on the increase in labour employment.

NGOs as Not-for-Profit Corporations

The evolution of micro-finance based NGOs into very large concerns operating in diverse sectors raises issues of regulation and accountability. In Bangladesh Grameen and BRAC have now effectively become brand names and have launched several productive initiatives. The government is struggling to come up with a regulatory framework for large NGOs. There are proposals to introduce a law of the cooperative type, which would give governments wide powers.

sub-Saharan African: Looting the State

The way to bring about a change of the manner in which some sub- Saharan African ruling classes or groups accumulate their wealth is to make it difficult for them to continue to do so. An important step in this direction would be to halt the financial transactions of capital flight. If the money cannot be taken out, it would in some manner or the other have to be used within the country. It would then be possible for successor governments or civil society organisations to track down this ill-gotten wealth.

Elucidating the Social Structure of Accumulation

these commodity or service chains and thus lead to controlling firms to set up Elucidating the Social alternative chains. Further, their competition is not with the small capital in which Muslims have a presence, but Structure of Accumulation India Working: Essays on Society and Economy, Barbara Harriss-White; Cambridge University Press, 2003; PP XXXVIII + 316, Rs 950.

Metropolitan Recession as Impetus for Globalisation

With the development of local capacity in the rest of the world, recession in the metropolitan countries, by increasing the emphasis on cost-cutting to raise margins in the struggle for market share, intensifies the tendency to shift whole sections of manufacturing and even office processes to cheaper locations, thus lengthening recession and weakening recovery.

State Secrets, Profits and SARS

If SARS showed the weakness of the centralised and authoritarian Chinese political system, it also exposed the fact that in giving primacy to business profits, Toronto could let down its guard too soon. It is not only the lack of democracy, but also the enshrining of profits that is a culprit.

Aid: Old Morality and New Realities

The Indian government has tried to signal a change in its status from 'aid-taker' to 'aid-giver'. The basic purpose of this move is political, to support India's claim to a new status in international affairs, but it is important to pay attention to its economic motivation too.

Localisation as an Alternative to Globalisation?

Instead of the isolation or quasi-isolation of 'localisation', what is needed is to change the terms on which the local of the developing world interacts with the global.

Participatory Growth and Poverty Reduction

India: Development and Participation by Jean Dreze and Amartya Sen; Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2002; pp XXVIII + 512, Rs 395.

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