Tuesday, December 2, 2008


One would think that the conclusions of the Canadian Senate in 2007 would have been heeded. The good senators found that the $575 billion spent on African development aid in the last four decades merely promoted a population boom that exhausted resources and succeeded only in leaving people more miserable at a higher population level than when aid was first dispensed. Quite obviously the antique “Theory of Demographic Transition of 1934”, that prosperity was the best contraceptive, was wrong.

But notwithstanding the Senate report, the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) robotically proceeded with its business-as-usual formula of pouring aid into Afghanistan, Haiti ($353 million) northern Kenya and the like without family planning guidelines, and indeed into the teeth of governments that refused to consider them.

Canadian foreign aid in Africa can be likened to a continental baby bonus---and a bounty hunt on wildlife. And yet all Saint Stephen Lewis can give us is heart-rendering tales of aged mothers burying daughters and raising their baby grand-daughters only to leave them as orphans. Lewis doesn’t get it. AIDs is not the problem. The problem is not too many Africans dying, it’s too many Africans being born into an environment that can’t sustain them. The problem is birth control, not death control. Callous? So is nature.

In 55 years, Africa’s population has tripled, and in 40 years at this pace it is projected to increase 233% in Burundi, 274% in Niger, 310% in Uganda, 198% in the Congo, 173% in Chad, and so on. Between 2000 and 2005, Africa’s population grew by 2.32% per year, almost twice the global rate of 1.24% per year. Next century it will be fully double the rate, if you believe the environment will pemit this circus to carry on. All I can say is, “Way to go Canada ! You certainly have done your bit for African growth !”

The consequences are manifest. There is no “smart” growth. 65% of the continent’s farmlands are degraded. Deforestation afflicts 35 African countries in a major way. Africa is losing 4 million hectares of forest every year----twice the world’s average. And there is a significant loss of wildlife occurring in 34 African countries.

When searching for reasons as to why Canadians would be party to mad runaway African population growth and to the wildlife holocaust that is its result, one need only look to the runaway population growth and biodiversity loss at home here in Canada, the disaster that our political parties and those who vote for them are apparently oblivious to.

Here is a Canada that awards its citizens with tax incentives for having children rather than for not having them, despite the environmental benefits of the latter. A Canada that encourages mass immigration despite the preponderance of evidence that it offers no net economic benefit and causes demonstrable environmental harm.

And a Canada with an organization called the SPCA that in my area feeds a colony of a hundred stray cats hiding in tunnels along the shoreline so that they may not starve. And presumably breed more strays. In that one act of misguided humanitarianism is displayed the politically correct idiotic pity that lies at the root of Canadian foreign aid policy. Is CIDA any different?

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