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Views from the Center

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Remittances as "philanthropy": The worst development idea I've seen this year

The latest Hudson Institute "Index of Global Philanthropy" just came out. It makes a very important point: that the United States gives an enormous amount of private, voluntary cash assistance to people in developing countries, far in excess of its official aid. Indeed, it shows that Americans give more to poor countries via private channels -- as a fraction of national income -- than any other rich country.

President Bush in Latin America: Democracy, Social Justice and a Dollop of Aid

President Bush is going to Latin America, and that has inspired a round of commentary in the mainstream press. A New York Times editorial urges the President to focus on democracy, human rights and social justice, and applauds the recent doubling of U.S. aid to the region. Democracy and social justice and a dollop of aid (the current budget of $1.6 billion is barely 1 percent of spending by Latin governments on health and education) are good things.