United States’ plans to rebuild Haiti are not going according to plan

posted at 3:21 pm on July 23, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

The absolutely devastating earthquake that rocked the tiny island of Haiti in 2010 inspired a deluge of foreign aid and charitable donations from the international community, all part of a pledge to help the island nation “build back better” and overcome its endemic poverty. As well-meaning as such efforts usually are, alas — philanthropy without knowledge can often initiate secondary effects that are more negative than positive. It’s easy to throw money at the problem and hope that building the same sort of material infrastructures and systems that we have in the developed world will help the Haitians in mitigating their poverty, but it’s all for naught without the political and social institutions to back them up.

But after the rubble was cleared and the dead buried, what the quake laid bare was the depth of Haiti’s dysfunction. Today, the fruits of an ambitious, $1.8 billion U.S. reconstruction promise are hard to find. Immediate, basic needs for bottled water, temporary shelter and medicine were the obvious priorities. But projects fundamental to Haiti’s transformation out of poverty, such as permanent housing and electric plants in the heavily hit capital of Port-au-Prince have not taken off.

Critics say the U.S. effort to reconstruct Haiti was flawed from the start. While “build back better” was a comforting notion, there wasn’t much of a foundation to build upon. Haiti’s chronic political instability and lack of coordinated leadership between Haiti and the U.S. meant crucial decisions about construction projects were slow to be approved. Red tape stalled those that were.

The international community’s $10 billion effort was also hindered by its pledge to get approval for projects from the Haitian government. …

For example, the U.S. had planned to improve the business environment by working with the local government to reduce regulations, pass national e-commerce laws, expand mortgage lending and update the tax code. The measurement of success, said U.S. planners, would be a better ranking by the World Bank’s “Doing Business” indicators.

Instead, this year Haiti sank eight points lower compared with the rest of the world as a place to do business in categories including securing construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, receiving credit, enforcing contracts and paying taxes.

Political instability, mass corruption, an ill-defined and poorly-enforced rule of law — these are not the hallmarks of prosperity, freedom, and opportunity, and merely imposing the trappings of prosperity and spending billions of dollars in the short-term isn’t going to help the country to stand on its own two feet in the long-term. It’s difficult to navigate the far-reaching effects of even well-meaning humanitarian policies, especially with a government absolutely fraught with corruption and economic and legal systems positively plagued with uncertainties.

The rest of the world is constantly accusing the United States of swooping in and “nation-building,” but then we’re also accused of not doing enough to help people in developing countries — even though the United States gives and does vastly more than any other country on that front. No matter what we do, it seems that some group always finds a reason to complain and call us “imperialists” and whatnot — it makes it very confusing to tell whether the rest of the world wants us to play world police or not. I’m not suggesting that doing nothing would be better than doing something, if we really want to commit to helping the Haitians out of their plight, it’s doesn’t look like our current efforts are accomplishing much in terms of long-term solutions.


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It’s because Barrack Obama hates the Black people of Haiti and New Orleans that neither has been rebuilt.

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 3:24 PM

Maybe Sean Penn needs to cuss more, or go down to Haiti and cuss out the government officials there.

Ward Cleaver on July 23, 2012 at 3:25 PM

Does that mean Obama hates Haitian’s?

right2bright on July 23, 2012 at 3:25 PM

Silly Erica, Democrat Liberal Progressive Marxist plans never go as expected, they always go into someone elses pocket. http://tinyurl.com/d8pcgk3

SWalker on July 23, 2012 at 3:25 PM

And, as much as I dislike Sean Penn, you have to give it to the guy. He really has put his money and time and effort where his mouth is with his work in Haiti.

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 3:26 PM

by working with the local government

There’s your problem. The earthquake is minor compared to that disaster.

pedestrian on July 23, 2012 at 3:26 PM

Danny Glover says the earthquake was caused by global warming. So if we haven’t solved global warming yet, how can we expect to rebuild Haiti? Only Danny Glover can answer that.

The Rogue Tomato on July 23, 2012 at 3:26 PM

Maybe when we toss him out of office in November, The Won can move to Haiti and become its new President-for-life.

He can be their new ‘Papa Barack.’

;)

theflyonthewall on July 23, 2012 at 3:27 PM

Rebuild or Build to a state far beyond what it was before the Earthquake?

jaydee_007 on July 23, 2012 at 3:28 PM

Hiati kind of reminds of getting projects done here .
Who’s more disfunctional ?

Lucano on July 23, 2012 at 3:28 PM

Of course pouring billions of dollars into a corrupt kleptocracy like Haiti won’t improve things. Even if you could bribe the necessary number of Haitian officials to allow you to rebuild their infrastructure, their people wouldn’t have the money, training, or experience necessary to maintain or leverage that infrastructure.

You don’t need to travel to Haiti to understand this principle, though. We pour billions of dollars a year into our urban schools to no effect, thanks to kleptocratic teacher’s unions and city officials.

Throwing money at the problem is no way to solve it. When will liberals learn?

Outlander on July 23, 2012 at 3:29 PM

It’s Bush’s fault.

See how easy that was?

listens2glenn on July 23, 2012 at 3:30 PM

A lot of people who ‘care’ and nameless faceless bureaucrats have made a living off of the plight of haitians.

They don’t care. They aren’t trying to help. But they will give you sob stories to guilt you into shoveling cash into their pet project.

tom daschle concerned on July 23, 2012 at 3:30 PM

Political instability, mass corruption, an ill-defined and poorly-enforced rule of law…

Sounds like home.

Buttercup on July 23, 2012 at 3:32 PM

So it looks like it’s Obama’s government that did that “not do that”.

Figures.

Anyway, private taxpayers, many with successful business (that didn’t become successful on their own) are not waiting and helping to rebuild Haiti on their own.

Partners in Health is just one of many I came across while Binging, yesterday.

Dusty on July 23, 2012 at 3:32 PM

Ever look at a map of Haiti? It isn’t one separate land mass. It the one half the island of Hispanola. The other half is the Dominican Republic.

Funny thing: The Dominican Republic is well, a REPUBLIC.

The estimated annual per capita income is $1,300 in Haiti and $8,200 in Dominican Republic. Haiti has 9 million inhabitants, the Dominican Republic, 9.6 million. Life expectancy is 61 years in Haiti, 73.7 years in the Dominican Republic. Literacy rate (over 15 years old) is 52.9% in Haiti, 87% in the Dominican Republic.

The Dominican Republic has the second largest economy in the Caribbean and Central American region and is the Caribbean’s largest tourist destination.

They have their share of problems there and one of them is the influx of Haitians migrating there and the economic stresses that brings.

The Dominicans should just take over the whole country.

Opposite Day on July 23, 2012 at 3:34 PM

Political instability, mass corruption, an ill-defined and poorly-enforced rule of law — these are not the hallmarks of prosperity, freedom, and opportunity, and merely imposing the trappings of prosperity and spending billions of dollars in the short-term isn’t going to help the country to stand on its own two feet in the long-term.

I thought we were talking about Haiti…..what?…..we are?

my bad….it just sounded so familiar.

Tim_CA on July 23, 2012 at 3:34 PM

For example, the U.S. had planned to improve the business environment by working with the local government to reduce regulations, pass national e-commerce laws, expand mortgage lending and update the tax code.

Uh oh, someone left the irony on, again…

Fallon on July 23, 2012 at 3:34 PM

United States’ plans to rebuild Haiti are not going according to plan

You cannot make the people of Haiti something they are not. If you are going to help, then you have to find a way that fits in with the country as it actually is, rather than what you think it should be. That often means making it profitable for the local head honcho’s to do what you want in the short term, and the long term.

If you try to deal them out, they will try to find a way to mess up what they see as a challenge to their authority, or their income. This means you are going to be dealing with some rather unpleasant folks because the reality on the ground is unpleasant, and any Dudley Do-Right would get eaten alive.

sharrukin on July 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Silly. Only well connected donors get government cash, which is then re-cycled into the Obama campaign.

Joe Mama on July 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

$10 Billion dollars in aid for 9.8 million people.

That’s been a huge boondoggle for someone.

Cody1991 on July 23, 2012 at 3:36 PM

A lot of people who ‘care’ and nameless faceless bureaucrats have made a living off of the plight of haitians.

They don’t care. They aren’t trying to help. But they will give you sob stories to guilt you into shoveling cash into their pet project.

Pretty much the case, which is why government should never, ever, be involved in nation rebuilding of third world nations, if any nation at all…..better that private organizations spearhead the efforts.

hawkeye54 on July 23, 2012 at 3:36 PM

Compare Haiti with the disaster in Japan.

Handing out hands, be they American, German, or other, will always be bitten…and envied.

U.N. anyone? Teh heh

Plus, you can’t make an Uppereastsider out of a jungle-dweller.

Schadenfreude on July 23, 2012 at 3:37 PM

And, as much as I dislike Sean Penn, you have to give it to the guy. He really has put his money and time and effort where his mouth is with his work in Haiti.

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 3:26 PM

He has, I just don’t like his approach. Berating donors isn’t the way to make them open their wallets.

Ward Cleaver on July 23, 2012 at 3:38 PM

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” — John Adams

“Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters.” — Benjamin Franklin

And that is why you can’t impose American republicanism and capitalism (and the prosperity that results) on cultures that don’t share the morals and virtues that Americans had. (Whether enough Americans still have them or whether we have reached the tipping point is another debate.)

The only thing that will lift Haitians (and most of the world) out of poverty is a complete overhaul of the culture to one that values honesty and thrift and hard work and individual rights.

CJ on July 23, 2012 at 3:39 PM

You can’t shine shinola.

VorDaj on July 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Political instability, mass corruption, an ill-defined and poorly-enforced rule of law…

.
You can’t fix this from the outside, until Haitians decide these things are no longer acceptable, no amount of money spent will fix thier problems.
It will only make them dependent.

LincolntheHun on July 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

A thoroughly corrupt govenment, and a population accustomed to having someone else come in and fix problems for them, rather than doing for themselves, and everything crumbling around them…..

Yup, Detroit is a mess. Oh, and it’s bad in Haiti, too.

iurockhead on July 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Since when is it the American taxpayer’s responsibility to reconstruct – at astronomical cost- the hopelessly inept Haitian country? If any why not France that once colonized it (before the genocidal Haitian independence revolution which slaughtered every white that could be found)? This is a hopelessly deep sink hole for our tax money, a beggar that will forever beg while we have our own poor and out of luck to worry about.

Tell France it’s their responsibility.

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 3:41 PM

What Haiti needs is a new, world-class dictator to whip them into shape; Would it help if we gave them obama? I’m willing to make the sacrifice.

Obama-4-Haiti 2012! O4H12!

Pork-Chop on July 23, 2012 at 3:41 PM

[Dusty on July 23, 2012 at 3:32 PM]

Oh, and,

– I found it next to impossible to find anything summarizing what the UN had done in these intervening 3 years on the UN website. The UN government is responsible for making it next to impossible to do that!

– I haven’t a clue where to start looking on US government webpages. The US government is responsible for not even providing clues as to where to find out what they’ve done.

I’m beginning to see a pattern, here.

Dusty on July 23, 2012 at 3:42 PM

The Dominicans should just take over the whole country.

Opposite Day on July 23, 2012 at 3:34 PM

That really wouldn’t be a bad idea, but wouldn’t the difference in languages be a problem?

Ward Cleaver on July 23, 2012 at 3:42 PM

What Haiti needs is a new, world-class dictator to whip them into shape; Would it help if we gave them obama? I’m willing to make the sacrifice.

Obama-4-Haiti 2012! O4H12!

Pork-Chop on July 23, 2012 at 3:41 PM

He could change his name to Duvalier…

Ward Cleaver on July 23, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Experience Haiti
Without leaving America!
(Reelect Barack Obama in 2012)

VorDaj on July 23, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Uh oh, someone left the irony on, again…

[Fallon on July 23, 2012 at 3:34 PM]

Haiti’s private sector is doing fine!

Dusty on July 23, 2012 at 3:46 PM

I found it next to impossible to find anything summarizing what the UN had done in these intervening 3 years on the UN website. The UN government is responsible for making it next to impossible to do that!

I’m beginning to see a pattern, here.

Dusty on July 23, 2012 at 3:42 PM

As I commented on the Headline thread on this story yesterday:

I was just in Haiti 3 weeks ago and it has to be one of the most depressing places I’ve ever been. The people just look beat down. It’s not just the US but the UN which has an enormous presence there. There are massive UN complexes everywhere, with high walls topped with razor wire and heavily armed guards in watchtowers. Behind the walls are row upon row of shipping containers used to bring in supplies…for UN workers, not the Haitian people. Squads of heavily armed Brazilian soldiers assigned to the UN patrol the streets menacingly. The hospitals in Port-au-Prince were destroyed in the earthquake and haven’t been rebuilt, but there’s a large UN medical facility-behind razor wire and armed guards-that’s for the use of UN personnel only. The streets in Petion-Ville, above Port-au-Prince, are clogged with street vendors who fled the capital after the quake and are too scared to return and now live in the streets. You talk to the Haitian people and their first question is “Why is the UN here? Why is the US here? What are you doing for us?” More efficient cooking stoves? These people need basic housing and sanitation and 2 1/2 years after the quake nothing has been done.

Trafalgar on July 23, 2012 at 3:47 PM

A thoroughly corrupt govenment, and a population accustomed to having someone else come in and fix problems for them, rather than doing for themselves, and everything crumbling around them…..

Yup, Detroit is a mess. Oh, and it’s bad in Haiti, too.

iurockhead on July 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Maybe someone like Rahm could make it work, being familiar with that level of corruption.

slickwillie2001 on July 23, 2012 at 3:47 PM

There are only 10 million Haitians. I don’t see why we can’t airlift them all to CA under universal amnesty and give them the opportunities they so desperately need.

Then fence off CA.

Liam on July 23, 2012 at 3:48 PM

Haiti was born out of a successful slave revolt, one of the few of its kind anywhere anytime. And other than a razor-thin veneer of civilization when things are going well (no earthquakes or hurricanes), it’s been Lord of the Flies ever since. Papa Docs have been the rule and not the exception.
The only way to bring about real change is in the hearts of people, and some religious (gasp!) groups are doing just that while also bringing in practical aid.

Marcola on July 23, 2012 at 3:51 PM

Guess who Brian Ross blames

Wagthatdog on July 23, 2012 at 3:53 PM

Haiti is on the same island as the Domincan Republic. I was recently in the DR and although it is not very well developed, most of the people looked and seemed like they were not 3rd world. Additionally, the resort industry in the Dominican is booming. Just more to the point that it is the government of Haiti that is the problem.

weaselyone on July 23, 2012 at 3:54 PM

They had a plan?

ProfShadow on July 23, 2012 at 3:54 PM

Haiti’s private sector is doing fine!

Dusty on July 23, 2012 at 3:46 PM

lmfao.

Tim_CA on July 23, 2012 at 3:54 PM

Whenever I think of those millions of poor Haitians just sitting around doing nothing waiting for some foreigner to put their lives back to normal in one of the laziest most dysfunctional societies on Earth, I could burp.

but then we’re also accused of not doing enough to help people in developing countries — even though the United States gives and does vastly more than any other country on that front.

There are at least two dozen more abandoned Mosques in the Saudi desert that need some TLC and loving respect. Extra dhimmie points if they are started before Ramadan is over.

BL@KBIRD on July 23, 2012 at 3:56 PM

Why donate anything? Most private goods organized here and sent there were relabeled to indicate they came from the UN.

And we all know how successful any UN action is. /s

jb34461 on July 23, 2012 at 3:57 PM

Rebuild? You have to have built something there before you can re-build it. Did any of these yahoos actually see a picture of Haiti before the disaster?

Browncoatone on July 23, 2012 at 4:00 PM

The majority of donors had no intention of actually fulfilling their pledges. But being seen in the public eye as willing to “help” certainly made them feel good about themselves.

Whether earthquakes in Pakistan or Turkey, or tsunamis in Indonesia or Japan, or hurricanes or whatever, if one goes over the list of pledges and the list of actual payouts over the decades…sadly, seems rarely if ever are these pledges fulfilled.

Add to this the refusal to address local corruption, and the routine provision of funds to obviously corrupt governments.

That whole “the U.S. had planned to improve the business environment by working with the local government to reduce regulations, pass national e-commerce laws, update the tax code” and all that…in Haiti…and the same government refuses to do the same at home, actually works assiduously to prevent that sort of thing…

Yeah, sincere…yep.

But, high salaries are paid to the top end administrators, and the special executives and such, and the palms of the local kleptocrats are well greased.

Yeah, I’m giving my donations to private outfits with boots on the ground. In those places where actual work is being done. Might not be as spectacular, but one at least knows that money is actually spent where it is needed.

coldwarrior on July 23, 2012 at 4:00 PM

Even before the earthquake, Haiti was one of the poorest and least economically free countries in the world. Is the “rebuilding effort” going to magically instill honest government, the rule of law, basic property and contract rights or anything else resembling a functioning country? No? Then the whole thing is a waste of time and money. The only thing the earthquake did was to make a completely dysfunctional society even more so.

RadClown on July 23, 2012 at 4:01 PM

You didn’t build that.

Buttercup on July 23, 2012 at 4:02 PM

It’s because Barrack Obama hates the Black people of Haiti and New Orleans that neither has been rebuilt.

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 3:24 PM

That’s exactly how they would spin if had this been Bush.

Wagthatdog on July 23, 2012 at 4:02 PM

Can we start with Chicago instead?

Wagthatdog on July 23, 2012 at 4:03 PM

There are only 10 million Haitians. I don’t see why we can’t airlift them all to CA under universal amnesty and give them the opportunities they so desperately need.

Then fence off CA.

Liam on July 23, 2012 at 3:48 PM

Maybe China can take them and put them into one of those empty cities, and fix their demographic problem at the same time.

slickwillie2001 on July 23, 2012 at 4:07 PM

One could almost think Haiti’s biggest error was winning independence from Napoleonic France. As a French colony, Haiti would have been better governed and prosperous. They would have likely gained independence willingly from France after WWII with a good infrastructure and history of competent government. However, it was Napoleon losing Haiti that had him decide to sell Louisiana to the U.S. He couldn’t hold onto it militarily while engaged in Europe, and he’d rather the Americans have it than the British.

hadsil on July 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

it makes it very confusing to tell whether the rest of the world wants us to play world police or not.

The rest of the world just wants to be able to tell us what to do. It’s all about power and opinion. We are conceitedly more concerned with the worlds opinion of us than we are of truly helping anyone.

Lawrence on July 23, 2012 at 4:13 PM

We can’t meddle.

Speakup on July 23, 2012 at 4:13 PM

…does that mean Mooch will not be using Haiti as a vacation destination anytime soon?

KOOLAID2 on July 23, 2012 at 4:15 PM

I spent a considerable amount of time in Haiti in the late 90′s. I talked at lenght with both the Ambassador and the Charge’about the future of the country and in particular studied the Civilian Police training effort that was ongoing.

The consensus was that there is really no hope for Haiti. It is beyond redemption. The deforestation, overpopulation, receeding water table and not least the endemic corruption make Haiti a lost cause. The Charge’ said that even with the best government in the world Haiti could not succeed. It’s just too far gone.

We poured millions into the Civilian Police program. We provided police officers from the US as trainers and mentors, we equipped them with vehicles, radios, weapons, salaries for the men, everything you need. And, in places the force actually started to operate like a police force. They established at least 68 major felony cases including multiple murders. But, due to a corrupt judiciary and political class not a single one of those cases went to trial. The Haitian force lost heart and despite the presence of the US police personnel the majority of the Haitians just gave up. Within months the vehicles, and equipment of every type, including weapons just disappeared. The Haitian Police had stolen them and sold them. It’s a microcosim of Haiti as a whole.

One of the officers I worked with had been in India at a school just prior to coming to Haiti. He said that he’d seen abject poverty in India and he never thought that he could see anything worse. However, he said Haiti was worse, not so much that the poverty was worse, but that in India there was hope that someday it would improve. In Haiti there was no hope.

The earthquake was not Haiti’s problem. All that did was rearrange the ruble.

I also spent some time in DOMREP. They share the same island but that’s about it. You can see the border when you fly over. There are no trees on the Haitian side. DOMREP is poor, but there is a functioning society. Haiti is a Lord of Flies domain.

SoonerMarine on July 23, 2012 at 4:28 PM

We can’t even “build” our own nation back up! How are we supposed to build somebody else’s nation, if we can’t build our own???? Enough said.

DixT on July 23, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Just build them some infrastructure (roads, schools, bridges, etc.) wherever you want.

Then all their homes, businesses, jobs, and economic growth will immediately spawn from the necessary infrastructure which creates all business.

What? I’m pretty sure I got the Obama Administration plan on economic development; why won;’t they show us how it works in practice?

gekkobear on July 23, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Just build them some infrastructure (roads, schools, bridges, etc.) wherever you want.

Then all their homes, businesses, jobs, and economic growth will immediately spawn from the necessary infrastructure which creates all business.

What? I’m pretty sure I got the Obama Administration plan on economic development; why won;’t they show us how it works in practice?

gekkobear on July 23, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Now that there is FUNNY

koaiko on July 23, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Political instability, mass corruption, an ill-defined and poorly-enforced rule of law — these are not the hallmarks of prosperity, freedom, and opportunity, and merely imposing the trappings of prosperity and spending billions of dollars in the short-term isn’t going to help the country to stand on its own two feet in the long-term.

But enough about Obamanation.

davidk on July 23, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Haiti will always be a sh*thole, and it’s not our job to fix it, just like it’s not our job to police the world. A dollar of American taxpayer money wasted in Haiti is a dollar too much.

Armin Tamzarian on July 23, 2012 at 4:48 PM

…does that mean Mooch will not be using Haiti as a vacation destination anytime soon?

KOOLAID2 on July 23, 2012 at 4:15 PM

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/07/23/Michelle-Obama-s-Family-Ski-Trip-to-Aspen-Cost-Taxpayers-at-Least-83-000

davidk on July 23, 2012 at 4:48 PM

In April of this year I visited Haiti to help with a construction project. What I saw was skilled people who were anxious to work, and not afraid of hard work. Maybe that’s not the entire population, but the people I encountered were ready to make life better if given the opportunity.

I saw so much potential for businesses in Haiti. Naturally, with political instability companies will not invest. Entrepreneurs could do very well in Haiti. Maybe the U.S. should do a little “leadership re-evaluation” like we did in Iraq and help the Haitians develop a democratic republic.

Know It All on July 23, 2012 at 4:53 PM

Haiti is on the same island as the Domincan Republic. I was recently in the DR and although it is not very well developed, most of the people looked and seemed like they were not 3rd world.

The question always comes up as to why the DR is relatively prosperous while Haiti is a dump. It’s the same island but not the same people. The difference? Check out the CIA factbook on the peoples of these two countries.

DR: Ethnic groups:
mixed 73%, white 16%, black 11%

Haiti: Ethnic groups:
black 95%, mulatto and white 5%

Just pointing out the facts.

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

I understand helping people in need, but that’s the job of Americans…not the Federal Government/taxpayers. I’m guessing that much of the money has gone to Obama supporters who have spent 10% of the money on Haiti. You can’t trust bureaucrats with money under any circumstances.

cajunpatriot on July 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

SoonerMarine on July 23, 2012 at 4:28 PM

Sadly, Haiti isn’t much better than when you went.

While i agree its destabilized enough, but not as bad (Somalia, anyone?), Haiti biggest problem *is* its overt class distinction.

Worse yet, you would need at least, realistically, 30 committed years to reverse and reduce the corruption to “normal” levels of that type of country.

Think the UN is up for that? Hell, no.

God help those people though, *IF* they are that Ecologically barren. At some point the globe better make contingency place to be able to evacuate the populace..

…or at least I hope like hell there is one in place.

BlaxPac on July 23, 2012 at 5:20 PM

There are only 10 million Haitians. I don’t see why we can’t airlift them all to CA under universal amnesty and give them the opportunities they so desperately need.

Then fence off CA.

Liam on July 23, 2012 at 3:48 PM

They could dig the rail bed for Jerry Brown’s high-speed project. Probably could afford to pay them a living wage of $12 or $13 an hour. And the funny thing is that most of them would make their life work under those circumstances.

Would the Illegals in California complain that the Haitians took their work and it was unfair?

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 5:25 PM

The question always comes up as to why the DR is relatively prosperous while Haiti is a dump. It’s the same island but not the same people. The difference? Check out the CIA factbook on the peoples of these two countries.

DR: Ethnic groups:
mixed 73%, white 16%, black 11%

Haiti: Ethnic groups:
black 95%, mulatto and white 5%

Just pointing out the facts.

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

Okay and the facts are, what exactly?

By using that logic…Also from the CIA Factbook…

North Korea:

100% North Korean

So North Korea is poor…because it’s full of North Koreans?

BlaxPac on July 23, 2012 at 5:25 PM

I have always been very bothered by the kids that are suffering there. I remember years ago, my aunt “sponsored” a kid their through one of those “late-night’ charities. Beautiful picture of a real kid in need. Don’t know how much that real kid benefited or not.

However, one wonders how many dollars it takes to get one dollar of food or medicine or shelter past the many levels of corruption before it gets to anyone in need. Add in government on our side of things….what gets out to a family or a kid there….shameful.

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 5:34 PM

A good friend of my family’s was born and raised in Haiti and immigrated to the U.S. when he was a teen. I believe he was from a more well-off Haitian family that was lucky enough to be landowners, and, even though most of them have left Haiti, they still own some land/property in Haiti and were there earlier this year. I have heard first-hand from him how earthquake rubble has not even been cleared and more aid money is going to the “aiders” than the “aidees.” He also mentioned something that I had not heard about, that the Clintons are some of the biggest landowners in Haiti as they envision some of the more premium coastal properties as large resorts. Simply Googling “Bill Clinton Haiti” brings up quite a bit of information from Ezili Danto (whom I know absolutely nothing about, she could be as much as a shyster for all I know – the information could be suspect simply because it’s endorsed by Louis Farrakhan). Just found it interesting to follow.

Bill Clinton has more power in Haiti than Haiti’s president

kmid219 on July 23, 2012 at 5:35 PM

kmid219 on July 23, 2012 at 5:35 PM

I would hide if I were you. Tell the truth about the Clinton’s in this way and you might have seen better days.

oldroy on July 23, 2012 at 5:42 PM

So North Korea is poor…because it’s full of North Koreans?

That’s not my logic. North Koreans live under a continuous communist totalitarian dictatorship. Haiti doesn’t have such excuses. If there are no oppressive ideological factors maybe sometimes it is the people.

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 6:06 PM

That’s not my logic. North Koreans live under a continuous communist totalitarian dictatorship. Haiti doesn’t have such excuses. If there are no oppressive ideological factors maybe sometimes it is the people.

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 6:06 PM

And Haiti pretty much had a rather unsteady and rather nasty bit of extremes for itself.

My point was that in both cases it was so much the racial statistics, as you had pointed out below:


DR: Ethnic groups:
mixed 73%, white 16%, black 11%

Haiti: Ethnic groups:
black 95%, mulatto and white 5%

Just pointing out the facts.

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 5:17 PM

But it was a Political issue, and as such that’s more the reason for its dysfunction.

BlaxPac on July 23, 2012 at 6:21 PM

Haiti is not a tiny island. The country is roughly half of the island of Hispaniola. It has always been a mess and that’s putting it kindly. We will not make it better no matter how much money we pour in the country. As harsh as it sounds, people have to do some things for themselves.

Kissmygrits on July 23, 2012 at 6:25 PM

For example, the U.S. had planned to improve the business environment by working with the local government to reduce regulations, pass national e-commerce laws, expand mortgage lending and update the tax code.

Well – hell – why don’t the idiots in the Obama administration do this in America?

Haiti is a lost cause – unless the US wants to take it on and make it a territory I say
let em go……

redguy on July 23, 2012 at 6:38 PM

You could transfer the wealth of the entire western world to Haiti and at the end of the day all you would get is a Detroit with balmy weather.

esnap on July 23, 2012 at 6:47 PM

Haiti taxes charitable contributions to Haiti.

Jgriff on July 23, 2012 at 6:54 PM

I read this critique in an AP article a few days ago. The author blamed the US without any hint that Haiti might have at least a tiny bit of responsibility for its own condition. Maddening. The usual AP idiocy.

I’ve read accounts of aid workers who’ve gone to Haiti to try to help out. Bribes demanded by armed and uniformed buffoons as soon as the plane lands or the boat docks. Cargo partially seized as “taxation.” Aid vehicles hijacked and run with no maintenance until they break down and are then dumped into the nearest harbor inhibiting further docking by incoming vessels. Aid-consuming residents who make no effort of their own to clear rubble, clean up or build basic services. Stratospherically high incidence of rape.

Haiti is a hellhole of massive proportions and it’s that way because of its people. Many people don’t want to admit that because it feels like some kind of racist attack but it’s true. Haiti is the way it is because of its people and they are not going to change a bit in any of our lifetimes.

Django on July 23, 2012 at 7:07 PM

Django on July 23, 2012 at 7:07 PM

Whether Haiti failed from the top down or bottom up, it still *failed* as a modern, independent society.

The sad part is, Haiti is one of those few examples that if the United Nations actually worked, Haiti could not be a success story, but at least it wouldn’t be this backwards slide it is now.

BlaxPac on July 23, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Anything short of old-school colonialism doesn’t have a prayer of changing that joke of a nation.

Haiti is the end result of a slave revolt by revolutionaries with no clue how to run a nation, after having killed or run off anyone who HAD the faintest idea. Their biggest accomplishment ever was to give racistland a bad case of the willies until the 1860′s rolled around.

MelonCollie on July 23, 2012 at 11:41 PM

Chessplayer on July 23, 2012 at 6:06 PM

Despite my kidding about being a racist reactionary in my early days here, and having interesting folks drive past my house, I have to burst this bubble.

North Koreans and the rural Chinese are dumb, lazy and useless. This is according to some local elites in their areas.

The Russians think Lennin’s gift messed them up. Men over 40 do not function in many cases. And they loaf like our ghetto dwellers. And some are blond.

A movie about the hopeless state of the third world called Life and Debt taught me a bit.

IlikedAUH2O on July 23, 2012 at 11:44 PM

Our media and international organizations feeding their anger and entitlement does not help either. I remember Dems cursing Pres. Bush over Ward Nine in New Orleans for years. They were shocked to hear I visited and toured with a black guy who spread the blame and actually said good stuff about Republicans and rich whites (Hollywood folks like Pitt but also some corporations) who helped out to the whole bus.

Issues vanish when the left comes into power and that makes me wonder exactly what civil rights and anti war is really about.

IlikedAUH2O on July 23, 2012 at 11:53 PM

I don’t even need to read the article to say this with confidence: entrusting American politicians to rebuild Haiti was doomed to fail. You were expecting a reprise of “The Berlin Airlift”? – Maybe if the Haitians somehow could manufacture an atomic bomb!
America is the most compassionate country the world has ever seen, but lately she has put her resources in the hands of government thieves and the cronies of thieves. Look around for God’s sake and wake up!! Where is the money???
Randy

williars on July 23, 2012 at 11:55 PM

Trouble is it’s hard to rebuild stuff that wasn’t there in the first place.

curved space on July 24, 2012 at 5:35 AM

The government should be handing out glock 40 caliber pistols, and training them on how to use the guns, and giving them a 500 round half case of ammo. The money should NOT be given to anyone. The money should be USED to build. Not simply put into the government, or anyone eleses back accounts, and assuming it’ll get used for legitimate projects.

WELFARE does not help anyone, foreign or domestic.

TX-96 on July 24, 2012 at 5:56 AM

TX-96 on July 24, 2012 at 5:56 AMMelonCollie on July 23, 2012 at 11:41 PM

I had two women, one in Chevy Chase Maryland and another I hooked up with in Jamaica, argue for slavery or colonialism. The movie I cited above was about Jamaica.

This was years ago since I was worried about US spending and debt THEN. Then I took off with the idea. For slavery…

We exclude senior citizens, kids and the doctor verified disabled. We make it part of county social services so we get SEIU on board. As for the slave masters, we call the females “Nannies” and the guys “Santas”. The gov’t would inspect for humane punishment or killing of the “Benefactors”.

End $40,000 a year for jail inmates. Drug addicts and alkys off the streets. Illegals located and cared for…

IlikedAUH2O on July 24, 2012 at 9:30 AM