Home > Business-Economy, Current Affairs, Living > Getting to the root of world’s real problem – Global poverty (Part 1 of 3)

Getting to the root of world’s real problem – Global poverty (Part 1 of 3)

Over the last few years starting with my pre-MBA job, then the business school, and subsequently my current occupation… I have heard and seen closely the issues facing organizations. More often than not, what happened since 2008 is easily blamed on the “financial crisis” without delving any thought to understanding what’s behind this so-called crisis and what the fundamental underpinnings on this issue are…

At the heart of all this is the collapse of the economic system… the primary purpose of an economic system is to ensure economic well-being of all constituent individuals – a fundamental right to live for all mankind. Unfortunately, we have often taken this economic system as given, reclining to the belief that some people have to go hungry for some other people to have a lavish dinner spread.

Why poverty

So, now it’s a question of who falls into which bucket? And so does the flawed theory of “survival of the fittest” find its way. There are countless of articles on economic system and what can be done. I have decided to take a different approach and start with what is the prime objective of a “rational and just” economic system… and then build on how the ideal economic system will handle it robustly than the current systems – be it capitalism or socialism.

Even before we get there, let me share what someone says in support of what I am about to share…
“The causes of the economic crisis are a combination of greed, incompetence, and a number of additional negative character traits.”
– Steven Pearlstein, a Pulitzer Prize winner and a Washington Post columnist

(1) At the core foundation, the purpose of an economic system is to ensure economic well-being of every individual by solving the problem of poverty.

(2) This economic system has to co-exist in harmony with the other important systems of any well-run civilization – the social system, the political system, the legal system, and the moral system. What we see today is exactly the absence of this… where the ecosystem is so corrupt and degraded that I cannot think of any of these five systems being in a good shape.

(3) Now, everyone is very well aware of poverty in developing countries… how rare is it to see images of starving children in Asian countries or malnutrition-related deaths in almost the entirety of Sub-Saharan Africa? However, what we are not aware of is that hunger has embraced shores of the “developed world” as well. The US Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service reports that ‘in 2011, 50.1 million people lived in food-insecure households and prevalence rate of food security in the US has gone up from ~10% households in 2000 to ~15% households in 2011’. Even the so-called glorious boom years of 2003-2007 did little to stem this rising tide.

(4) We, living in America, have no clue about this given the media whitewash such fundamental issues get. It was eye opening for me to see a CBS video on “hunger in America” to show how one in six Americans are going hungry every night. So, even within the capitalist stronghold, there are one in six Americans who need a REAL CHANGE!!!

(5) And to add urgency to the situation, it was touching to see how some regions in the world have seen hungry push people back to the stone age… with adults selling off their kids just to afford food. This is really the bottom a civilization can get to… even though all this is happening away from many of us who are fortunate to live easy lives, it is our collective responsibility to rise above the “individualism” mindset to solve this problem.

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  2. gerischus
    September 5, 2013 at 1:48 pm

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