Making Poverty: A History [NOOK Book]

Overview

In this clear and intelligent book, Thomas Lines examines the role that global policies have played in creating a crisis of rural poverty. He explains the mechanisms of markets and supply chains, charting their impact on agricultural trade in the world's poorest countries. A desperate situation is emerging which could soon leave little place for hundreds of millions of smallholders across the world, as the global supply chains of giant food corporations and supermarkets swallow them up. Poor countries have become...
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Making Poverty: A History

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Overview

In this clear and intelligent book, Thomas Lines examines the role that global policies have played in creating a crisis of rural poverty. He explains the mechanisms of markets and supply chains, charting their impact on agricultural trade in the world's poorest countries. A desperate situation is emerging which could soon leave little place for hundreds of millions of smallholders across the world, as the global supply chains of giant food corporations and supermarkets swallow them up. Poor countries have become newly vulnerable to price changes for crops like rice and wheat, and the situation is set to deteriorate further if global policies do not change. The author argues that debates about world trade negotiations have only highlighted part of the problem: we must turn our attention to wider economic policies, the workings of the markets themselves and the division of power along the supply chains, to establish a practical set of solutions. Combining analytical rigour with a clearly accessible examination of the key factors, the author deftly points to the forms that these solutions could take.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781848137301
  • Publisher: Zed Books
  • Publication date: 4/4/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Thomas Lines is a freelance consultant specializing in international agricultural markets. He started his working life as a jourbanalist reporting on the commodity and financial markets in London and Paris, and later became a lecturer in international business at Edinburgh University. He has worked as a team leader of agricultural aid projects and a policy advisor for U.N. agencies, leading NGOs, fair-trade and trade union organizations.

The author has worked in more than 40 countries and speaks fluent French and Russian. He was a candidate for the Green Party in the 2005 general election.

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Table of Contents

List of Tables and Figure

List of Abbreviations

Introduction 1

1 Those who have fallen behind 5

2 How poverty is made 29

3 Do the market's job for it 61

4 Not farming but gambling 93

5 Getting out of the trap 118

6 Can we put history behind us? 140

Bibliography 150

Index 160

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2008

    Good proposals for ending poverty

    Thomas Lines, a freelance consultant in international agricultural markets, has written a most persuasive book on how to end poverty. He points out that poor countries have small populations, are remote, depend on exporting primary commodities to the global market, and import more food than they export. Three quarters of the world¿s 1.2 billion poorest people live in rural areas. Lines writes that the IMF and World Bank `promote and protect the interests of global capital¿. They claim that the market lifts food prices, benefiting the poor. Instead, world food prices have halved since 1960. Twelve of the world¿s poorest countries are poorer than in 1985. In Britain, since 1988, the prices that farmers got for their produce have risen by just 3.4%: retail food prices rose by more than 50%. Global free markets have benefited speculators and supermarkets, not producers or consumers, producing `unfathomable wealth for those who have worked in finance¿. Investors speculate in primary commodities, turning 2007¿s food price problem into 2008¿s world food crisis. The supermarkets have become the masters, the price makers, controlling global supplies. Lines proposes that national governments, not the World Bank or the World Trade Organisation, should decide their own policies. Governments should stop relying on exports to volatile commodity markets: rural policy should start from national food security, not foreign trade. Governments should support domestic agriculture and the production of staple foods, feeding their own people first. Governments should cut corporate power and raise agricultural workers¿ wages. Governments should raise and stabilise agricultural products¿ international prices. Governments should promote domestic and regional trade, especially in staple foods. Lines finishes by writing, ¿this approach is the only humane one and it has to be pursued, in the face of the powerful vested interest that will inevitably oppose it.¿

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