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The Locust Effect: Why the End of Poverty Requires the End of Violence

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Overview


While the world has made encouraging strides in the fight against global poverty, there is a hidden crisis silently undermining our best efforts to help the poor.

It is a plague of everyday violence.

Beneath the surface of the world's poorest communities, common violence -- like rape, forced labor, illegal detention, land theft, police abuse and other brutality -- has become routine and relentless. And like a horde of locusts devouring ...

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Overview


While the world has made encouraging strides in the fight against global poverty, there is a hidden crisis silently undermining our best efforts to help the poor.

It is a plague of everyday violence.

Beneath the surface of the world's poorest communities, common violence -- like rape, forced labor, illegal detention, land theft, police abuse and other brutality -- has become routine and relentless. And like a horde of locusts devouring everything in their path, the unchecked plague of violence ruins lives, blocks the road out of poverty, and undercuts development.

How has this plague of violence grown so ferocious? The answer is terrifying, and startlingly simple: There's nothing shielding the poor from violent people. In one of the most remarkable -- and unremarked upon -- social disasters of the last half century, basic public justice systems in the developing world have descended into a state of utter collapse.

Gary A. Haugen and Victor Boutros offer a searing account of how we got here -- and what it will take to end the plague. Filled with vivid real-life stories and startling new data, The Locust Effect is a gripping journey into the streets and slums where fear is a daily reality for billions of the world's poorest ,where safety is secured only for those with money, and where much of our well-intended aid is lost in the daily chaos of violence.

While their call to action is urgent, Haugen and Boutros provide hope, a real solution and an ambitious way forward. The Locust Effect is a wake-up call: Its massive implications will forever change the way we understand global poverty - and will help secure a safe path to prosperity for the global poor in the 21st century.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Throughout my life I've seen firsthand that while talent, ambition, and hard work are distributed equally among all people around the world, many face challenges each day simply surviving. The Locust Effect is a compelling reminder that if we are to create a 21st century of shared prosperity, we cannot turn a blind eye to the violence that threatens our common humanity." --President Bill Clinton

"The Locust Effect provides a much-needed argument for reducing violence against the poor and a demonstration -- through first hand stories that are both shocking and true -- of why that goal is so vital. By reminding us that basic legal protections are not a privilege, but a universal right, Gary Haugen has issued a moral call to arms that informs the brain and touches the heart." --Madeleine Albright, Former U.S. Secretary of State

"This extraordinary book offers surprising and valuable insights about the nature and the drivers of the plague of violence that haunts the global poor as well as smart ideas about how to tackle it. A must-read." --Moisés Naím, Scholar, Carnegie Endowment, author of The End of Power, and former editor-in-chief of Foreign Policy

"You may 'know' that the world's poor suffer common everyday violence -- robbery, extortion, rape, murder, torture-a stream of humiliating assaults on their dignity. You may 'know' that this implies lost productivity and ultimately lost growth for low-income economies. Haugen asks why, if we know all that, we do so little? ...Read this book and you will be convinced the issue deserves more of your attention." --Nancy Birdsall, Founding President, Center for Global Development

"Some of the biggest ideas are right in front of us but still invisible. The Locust Effect brings home, in convincing and powerful detail, the simple but oh-so-important point that poverty results from violence as much as violence results from poverty. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in development, security, and the failure of billions of people to achieve their potential." --Anne-Marie Slaughter, President, New America Foundation, and Professor Emeritus of Politics and International Affairs, Princeton University

"The Locust Effect presents a compelling and shocking portrayal of the relationship between violence and poverty. The book convincingly argues that violence is the missing link in our understanding of global poverty and of our development interventions. Haugen has spent decades in extraordinary work to address violence, to free those subjected to it, and to apply the rule of law. His firsthand account brings needed moral and developmental urgency to the relentless and pervasive violence poor people experience, especially women and girls. This is a must-read book that will fundamentally expand our analysis of the nature of global poverty and our efforts to overcome it." --Maria Otero, Former U.S. Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, and Former President and CEO of ACCION International

"In a world of simplistic and knee-jerk responses to the world's problems, Gary Haugen arrives with insight, wisdom, and realism. The Locust Effect is a game-changer. He shows us how violence slices through all our good intentions, negating development, rights, and freedom. This is a book that is as smart as it is heartfelt, as grounded as it is creative. These are ideas of real power and grace." --Kevin Bales, Professor of Contemporary Slavery, University of Hull, and Co-Founder, Free the Slaves

"This crucial study carefully documents the fundamental truth that the end of poverty demands the end of violence. Both fascinating and important, Gary Haugen's book is a moving demonstration that is at once fact-filled and highly readable -- a truly unusual combination." --Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law, Harvard Law School

"The Locust Effect is a wake-up call to everyone who cares about global poverty. As International Justice Mission's Gary Haugen and co-author Victor Boutros report, with painstaking data and breathtaking cases from the field, unchecked violent crime against the poorest, especially girls and women, isn't just a human rights problem. It is a drag on development that no amount of foreign aid can fix if functioning public justice systems aren't part of the solution." --Jacquelline Fuller, Director, Google Giving

"The Locust Effect does a great service to masses of poor and vulnerable children and adults who are victims of everyday, ordinary violent crime but who are wholly unprotected by law enforcement institutions. International Justice Mission and authors Gary Haugen and Victor Boutros have put the life and death issue of poor people's access to the rule of law squarely on the agenda of governments, development institutions, and civil society." --Elisa Massimino, President and CEO of Human Rights First

"Gary Haugen reveals in painful detail the brokenness of our criminal justice systems. He also shows us that it's possible to fix them. The work of IJM that he narrates from Cebu City in the Philippines, for example, is an extraordinary story of how a committed team can come to understand justice system failures, support improvements at every step in the law enforcement process, strengthen the hand of internal reform champions, and achieve transformation. There are people in every corner of the world working to advance justice. I recommend this book to all of them." --Vivek Maru, CEO and Founder of Namati, and Founder and Former Director for Timap for Justice

"The Locust Effect makes a compelling case that a country that wants to grow and prosper needs a public justice system that protects its people, especially victims of crime, exploitation and oppression. Developing nations that must provide their citizens police who are honest, active and willing to protect victims of crime and exploitation -- especially the poorest and most vulnerable in society." -Major General Pol Phie They, Director of Cambodia's Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department

"An insightful, incisive analysis of violence as it impacts every level of the plight of the poor. A compelling wake-up call for all who care about justice and human rights. It tells the truth and gives tools and guidelines that demand attention." --Tim Costello, Chief Executive, World Vision Australia

"I have seen firsthand the ravages of violence against women and children all over the world. International Justice Mission continues to bring to light the impact of common crime not only on individual victims, but on whole countries. The Locust Effect is a must-read book for everybody who cares about the poorest of the poor." --Cindy Hensley McCain, Humanitarian and Business Owner

"Gary Haugen and IJM are waking up the social consciences of the worldwide Church even as they have shown the international human rights community 'why the end of poverty requires the end of violence' caused by the widespread failure of justice systems in the developing world. In this important book, Haugen continues to do both." --Tim Keller, Redeemer Presbyterian Church of New York City

From the Publisher
"Gripping and perspective-altering book." —David Brooks, The New York Times

"Throughout my life I've seen firsthand that while talent, ambition, and hard work are distributed equally among all people around the world, many face challenges each day simply surviving. The Locust Effect is a compelling reminder that if we are to create a 21st century of shared prosperity, we cannot turn a blind eye to the violence that threatens our common humanity." —President Bill Clinton

"The Locust Effect provides a much-needed argument for reducing violence against the poor and a demonstration — through first hand stories that are both shocking and true — of why that goal is so vital. By reminding us that basic legal protections are not a privilege, but a universal right, Gary Haugen has issued a moral call to arms that informs the brain and touches the heart." —Madeleine Albright, Former U.S. Secretary of State

"This extraordinary book offers surprising and valuable insights about the nature and the drivers of the plague of violence that haunts the global poor as well as smart ideas about how to tackle it. A must-read." —Moisés Naím, Scholar, Carnegie Endowment, author of The End of Power, and former editor-in-chief of Foreign Policy

"You may 'know' that the world's poor suffer common everyday violence — robbery, extortion, rape, murder, torture-a stream of humiliating assaults on their dignity. You may 'know' that this implies lost productivity and ultimately lost growth for low-income economies. Haugen asks why, if we know all that, we do so little? ...Read this book and you will be convinced the issue deserves more of your attention." —Nancy Birdsall, Founding President, Center for Global Development

"Some of the biggest ideas are right in front of us but still invisible. The Locust Effect brings home, in convincing and powerful detail, the simple but oh-so-important point that poverty results from violence as much as violence results from poverty. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in development, security, and the failure of billions of people to achieve their potential." —Anne-Marie Slaughter, President, New America Foundation, and Professor Emeritus of Politics and International Affairs, Princeton University

"The Locust Effect presents a compelling and shocking portrayal of the relationship between violence and poverty. The book convincingly argues that violence is the missing link in our understanding of global poverty and of our development interventions. Haugen has spent decades in extraordinary work to address violence, to free those subjected to it, and to apply the rule of law. His firsthand account brings needed moral and developmental urgency to the relentless and pervasive violence poor people experience, especially women and girls. This is a must-read book that will fundamentally expand our analysis of the nature of global poverty and our efforts to overcome it." —Maria Otero, Former U.S. Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, and Former President and CEO of ACCION International

"In a world of simplistic and knee-jerk responses to the world's problems, Gary Haugen arrives with insight, wisdom, and realism. The Locust Effect is a game-changer. He shows us how violence slices through all our good intentions, negating development, rights, and freedom. This is a book that is as smart as it is heartfelt, as grounded as it is creative. These are ideas of real power and grace." —Kevin Bales, Professor of Contemporary Slavery, University of Hull, and Co-Founder, Free the Slaves

"This crucial study carefully documents the fundamental truth that the end of poverty demands the end of violence. Both fascinating and important, Gary Haugen's book is a moving demonstration that is at once fact-filled and highly readable — a truly unusual combination." —Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law, Harvard Law School

"The Locust Effect is a wake-up call to everyone who cares about global poverty. As International Justice Mission's Gary Haugen and co-author Victor Boutros report, with painstaking data and breathtaking cases from the field, unchecked violent crime against the poorest, especially girls and women, isn't just a human rights problem. It is a drag on development that no amount of foreign aid can fix if functioning public justice systems aren't part of the solution." —Jacquelline Fuller, Director, Google Giving

"The Locust Effect does a great service to masses of poor and vulnerable children and adults who are victims of everyday, ordinary violent crime but who are wholly unprotected by law enforcement institutions. International Justice Mission and authors Gary Haugen and Victor Boutros have put the life and death issue of poor people's access to the rule of law squarely on the agenda of governments, development institutions, and civil society." —Elisa Massimino, President and CEO of Human Rights First

"Gary Haugen reveals in painful detail the brokenness of our criminal justice systems. He also shows us that it's possible to fix them. The work of IJM that he narrates from Cebu City in the Philippines, for example, is an extraordinary story of how a committed team can come to understand justice system failures, support improvements at every step in the law enforcement process, strengthen the hand of internal reform champions, and achieve transformation. There are people in every corner of the world working to advance justice. I recommend this book to all of them." —Vivek Maru, CEO and Founder of Namati, and Founder and Former Director for Timap for Justice

"The Locust Effect makes a compelling case that a country that wants to grow and prosper needs a public justice system that protects its people, especially victims of crime, exploitation and oppression. Developing nations that must provide their citizens police who are honest, active and willing to protect victims of crime and exploitation — especially the poorest and most vulnerable in society." -Major General Pol Phie They, Director of Cambodia's Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department

"An insightful, incisive analysis of violence as it impacts every level of the plight of the poor. A compelling wake-up call for all who care about justice and human rights. It tells the truth and gives tools and guidelines that demand attention." —Tim Costello, Chief Executive, World Vision Australia

"I have seen firsthand the ravages of violence against women and children all over the world. International Justice Mission continues to bring to light the impact of common crime not only on individual victims, but on whole countries. The Locust Effect is a must-read book for everybody who cares about the poorest of the poor." —Cindy Hensley McCain, Humanitarian and Business Owner

"Gary Haugen and IJM are waking up the social consciences of the worldwide Church even as they have shown the international human rights community 'why the end of poverty requires the end of violence' caused by the widespread failure of justice systems in the developing world. In this important book, Haugen continues to do both." —Tim Keller, Redeemer Presbyterian Church of New York City

"Gary Haugen's The Locust Effect is an exhaustive, devastatingly painful look at the very problem the 'civilized world' would rather not face: the systemic, unspeakable violence against the poorest of the world's poor. This book is hard to read. One wants to turn away. And yet the reader can only wonder what would happen without the profound work of Gary Haugen and International Justice Mission and their tireless efforts to end the madness." —Kathie Lee Gifford, Host on NBC's The TODAY Show

"When the bell tolls for justice throughout the modern world, Gary Haugen is most often nearby, raising his voice (and ours) as a tireless sentinel for freedom for the poor and oppressed—those who live beyond the reach of the protections many in the western world take for granted day by day. In The Locust Effect, Gary unveils the deeper issues of poverty and uncovers what we often fail to see, or worse, do not want to acknowledge is real." —Louie Giglio, Pastor, Passion City Church

"In a remarkably sensitive study, very aptly named The Locust Effect, the authors have provided many new valuable insights into the intimate relationship between poverty and violence plaguing the billions of global poor in many post-colonial societies across continents. This is also probably the first time that Western observers have come upon the unpleasant reality that it is, in fact, the native political establishments in South Asian countries themselves who stubbornly refuse to break away from the colonial ruler supportive police and criminal justice systems, concepts, laws, procedures, and mind sets imposed by the imperialist rulers, thus denying their peoples the benefits of a citizen friendly law enforcement system. An invaluable companion to all criminal justice studies." —Kirpal Dhillon, Former Director General of Police in the Indian states of Punjab and Madhya Pradesh; Vice Chancellor, Bhopal University, India

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199937875
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 2/4/2014
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 70,725
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Gary A. Haugen is founder and president of International Justice Mission, a global human rights agency that protects the poor from violence. The largest organization of its kind, IJM has partnered with law enforcement to rescue thousands of victims of violence. Haugen was Director of the U.N. investigation in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide, and has been recognized by the U.S. State Department as a Trafficking in Persons "Hero" -- the U.S. government's highest honor for anti-slavery leadership.

Victor Boutros is a federal prosecutor who investigates and tries nationally significant cases of police misconduct, hate crimes, and international human trafficking around the country on behalf of the U.S. Department of Justice. He is also a member of the Justice Department's Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit, which consolidates the expertise of some of nation's top human trafficking prosecutors and enhances the federal government's ability to identify and prosecute large human trafficking networks.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
Chapter 1: What Are We Missing?
Chapter 2: The Hidden Crisis at History's Inflection Point
Chapter 3: When the Locusts Lay Waste
Chapter 4: "No One's Driven That Truck in Decades"
Chapter 5: The Emperor Has No Clothes - At All
Chapter 6: A Dream Devastated
Chapter 7: Colonial Legacy and a Failure that Makes Sense
Chapter 8: Private Justice and Public Lawlessness
Chapter 9: You Get What You Pay For
Chapter 10: It's Been Done Before
Chapter 11: Demonstration Projects of Hope
Conclusion
Appendix

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Customer Reviews

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( 18 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 18 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 1, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    If you read one book this year, make this it. Seriously. It's no

    If you read one book this year, make this it. Seriously. It's not a "feel-good" book. It's so much better and important than that. This is a practical guide to helping save the lives of the most vulnerable people alive today.
    "Freedom isn't Free" is a popular saying in America used to recognize the service and sacrifice of those who fight for our personal freedom. As Gary Haugen and Victor Boutros explain in "The Locust Effect", justice isn't free either.

    "The Locust Effect: Why The End of Poverty Requires The End of Violence" has three major parts. 

    Part 1: THE PROBLEM: 
    In true prosecutorial form, Haugen and Boutros convincingly make the case that there are 2.5 billion people, in the world today, who are not safe and need our help. Citing a report by the United Nations, the book explains "Most poor people do not live under the shelter of the law, but far from the law's protection".

    Part 2: HOW WE GOT HERE:
    "Sadly, the public justice systems in the developing world not only fail to protect the poor from violence, but they actually perpetrate violence, protect perpetrators, and make poor people less safe." Every part of the criminal justice system pipeline is broken. Police. Prosecutors. The Courts. Every bit of it.
    Thankfully, Haugen and Boutros don't stop there. The reason this book is so important is because of the hope offered and opportunity offered in the final chapters.

    Part 3: THE SOLUTION
    In Chapter 10: "It's Been Done Before" and Chapter 11: "Demonstration Projects of Hope", Haugen and Boutros provide real life examples of how reforms have been made to the criminal justice systems in the developing world. It's a glimpse to what is possible when people are awakened to reality of this plague of violence afflicting the poor and we make it a priority to address the complex issues.

    The book concludes with a call to action:
    "It's time to take that decisive turn down the long road we've been avoiding - by investing aggressively in what already seems to be working, by continuing to innovate through short and long term experiments in criminal justice, and making the commitment of compassion to secure what we have always treasured for ourselves: the freedom from violence and fear through which the global poor might finally find their opportunity to flourish and thrive."
    Read this book and together we just might , after all, change the world. Lives depend on it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2014

    This is it. The Locust Effect is the book that will change the g

    This is it. The Locust Effect is the book that will change the global conversation on poverty. Authors Gary Haugen and Victor Boutros present a thoroughly researched and field-checked volume to expose the hidden plague of violence against the poor. Haugen’s labor with the International Justice Mission and Boutros’ expertise as a federal prosecutor uniquely position them with access and authority on this topic. 

    Through a delicate balance of personal testimonies and scholarly reports, Haugen and Boutros articulate the devastation of sexual abuse, forced labor, property grabbing, and abusive and arbitrary detention.  This everyday violence not only plagues the lives of the poor but it also undermines the global efforts to alleviate their struggles. The Locust Effect authors show how new schools, health clinics, and water wells are rendered ineffective when impoverished communities cannot use them out of fear of lawless perpetrators. 

    The Locust Effect offers a central place that pulls together research on justice issues by international institutions, government reports, non-government organizational papers as well as academic journal articles. Abundant statistics and historical research clarify issues with an unexpected depth of new understanding. The result is a valuable volume useful for study and to add to the global poverty discussion.

     The goal of The Locust Effect is not to solve global poverty. Instead, the authors state that they hope it will be a discussion starter. The book is a call to action. For economic development to happen and for reduction of global poverty to succeed, it is critical that the global community understand and address criminal justice systems. 

    The final chapters of The Locust Effect highlight governments and programs that have successfully addressed the lawless chaos. Hope is found in the huge strides of government officials committed to care of the poor. The enforcement of existing laws as well as addressing the needs of the law enforcement (including training and living wages) and reducing corruption among all levels of prosecutors and court system show that change for the better can happen. 

    The Locust Effect meets its goal to build a rigorous case that elimination of everyday violence is now a most critical factor in the battle against poverty. The hope to build peaceful and secure communities where families can flourish remains forefront of all development organizations. But for billions of people, it remains an unattainable dream. Read The Locust Effect to untangle the issue and find your place in the struggle to address global poverty. 

    I recommend purchasing The Locust Effect before you have to wait for the second printing.
     (Posted by Sharon Hoover)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 24, 2014

    "This book, no doubt, holds nothing back when Gary recounts

    "This book, no doubt, holds nothing back when Gary recounts the details that have resulted in the Locusts of violence that is overtaking the global poor all over the world in the first 3 chapters of this book. 
    That said, the message is revolutionary, essential and a call to action is clear. 
    If the message is headed and action is taken, there is a very present hope that the end of violence and poverty is possible
    But we MUST move. All of us." Sara Pomeroy, Richmond Justice Initiative

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2014

    Eye opening

    Well researched and informative. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in human rights.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 19, 2014

    This is a difficult but necessary read.  When faced with this re

    This is a difficult but necessary read.  When faced with this reality, it is important for Christians in the West to understand that unchecked violence is undercutting many of the other good efforts—like providing education, clean water, food, housing, social programs, work opportunities, and even sharing the gospel—to end extreme global poverty. Therefore, addressing the violence against those living in extreme poverty must be a part of our conversations, our prayers, and the efforts we support. “If we can’t overcome the locust effect, nothing else good people do to help the poor will be truly sustainable (110).”  

    Violence is perpetrated by humans, it is “simply a result of stronger neighbors harming weaker (45). The good news is that this violence can be stopped, and this is where The Locust Effect offers us hope! After sharing the evolution of broken criminal justice systems in the United States, France, and Japan, Gary presents several “projects of hope” that are working to bring about real change to this culture of runaway violence. These projects are being initiated by the International Justice Mission and other great organizations. They take the necessary risks to train legal personnel; confront the corruption of police and others in the criminal justice system; infiltrate the system with courageous reformers; raise the expectations, trust, and accountability of citizens in the community; while improving the communication necessary to address the community needs.  

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 3, 2014

    The message of this book moved me and inspired me. Try to imagin

    The message of this book moved me and inspired me. Try to imagine a world in which you're never safe, and anything could be taken away from you - even by the law enforcement that is supposedly there to protect you. That's the world in which poor people in developing countries live. The international community provides economic, social, educational and health aid to developing nations; but it can only help the poor so much when they live in such a terrifying reality. Girls drop out of school because the walk to school - or the school environment itself - is unsafe.

    Mr. Haugen takes you on a journey through the realities of the developing world, and provides hope for a better reality at the end. Read, learn, be inspired.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2014

    This book clearly articulates with stories and facts one of the

    This book clearly articulates with stories and facts one of the largest problems that plagues the poor, unrestrained violence. It takes a step by step approach documenting the foundational problems of violence against the poor and human trafficking. It then provides pratical ways that the problem can be addressed, mainly through demonstraing that when impunity ends, the violence stops.

    While this book deals with a very heavy topic, it provides real hope that things do not have to remain as they are if we are willing to take stand that the issue of violence must be addressed in the developing world. I loved the examples the book gives of cities in the developed world that were at one time hopelessly corrupt and
    violent, but now have functioning public justice systems.

    If you like books like Half the Sky or Enough, then you will love The Locust Effect.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2014

    The Locust Effect is years of experience, tears that have been w

    The Locust Effect is years of experience, tears that have been wept and lives that have cried out for justice, all rolled up into one script for the world to take notice of.  I hope we all learn the lesson that the violence the poor face on a daily basis needs to be addressed or the aid and development work we do can be completely undermined by those that use terror as their tool of choice.  

    Haugen takes you deep into the slums of Africa, the mountaintops of Peru and the brick factories of India.  You get to see the scars and the torture that you’ll never see on normal visit there.  The subject of violence that Haugen deals with has largely been ignored because it is hidden by shame and fear of repercussions that the poor live with on a daily basis.  Haugen uncovers the corrupt or non-existent legal systems that do nothing to protect the innocent, but instead rob them of justice and their life savings trying to find it.

    This is not just an incredibly passionate book, but Haugen has done his homework too.  He intelligently backs up his arguments with well researched statistics and draws in material from all over the world.  Every page speaks of experience and thought that has become a life work and a cry against injustice.  Haugen does not argue that all aid and development should be replaced with a focus on violence and law enforcement but he does argue that you will not have long lasting change without addressing these issues.  He also brings a sense of hope, telling the stories of places where true transformation has occurred to entire communities.  This is a fight that can be won.

    The Locust Effect should find itself on every university humanitarian course required reading list, in missionary training and on the must read list of anyone who is interested in seeing poverty ended.  The Locust Effect is an uncomfortable and challenging read but it’s message is too important not to be heard.

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  • Posted February 3, 2014

    A wake-up call to this average American ¿The Locust Effect¿ by

    A wake-up call to this average American

    “The Locust Effect” by Gary Haugen & Victor Boutros is a challenging read, both intellectually as well as emotionally, that dives into the dark realms of very real violence around the world in the developing nations. While most of us know something about violence in these parts of the globe, perhaps we have never realized how it directly undermines our efforts of humanitarian aid and that we must address this incessant issue of violence if we want to win the battle against extreme poverty.

    Haugen & Boutros seek to present the case that the end of poverty requires the end of violence, and that the end of violence can happen through properly functioning public justice systems. The authors take thorough & comprehensive measures to build an iron-proof case for such. Extensive graphs and statistics, and 37 pages of notes at the end of the book are balanced by real-life stories from the field and interviews.

    Haugen is founder & president of International Justice Mission, was Director of the U.N. investigation of the Rwandan genocide, and has been recognized by the U.S. State Dept as a Trafficking in Persons “Hero”. Boutros is a federal prosecutor who investigates & tries nationally significant cases of police misconduct, hate crimes, and international human trafficking around the country on behalf of the U.S. Dept of Justice.

    This book is intense, but a necessary read for all. While highlighting the current situation globally, the book concludes with hope and initial steps towards resolve for the age ahead of us where public judicial systems and police enforcement work not only for the elite but also for the benefit of the poor as well. Haugen ends with this quote: “Indeed, the critical question of our era is before us. At this historic inflection point in the struggle against severe poverty are we prepared to do something different? Are we prepared to honestly acknowledge that the abandonment of criminal justice systems in the developing world has been a disaster? And are we prepared to leverage what we now know to finally begin securing with the poor that safe passage out of the violence that history tells us is both indispensable and possible?” I highly recommend reading this book and engaging in the conversation which could bring about needed change for millions in this decade.

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  • Posted February 3, 2014

    An absolute must read that will challenge all readers at a soul

    An absolute must read that will challenge all readers at a soul deep level!  The stories are haunting and ever so real.  They paint a picture that often goes unseen by most of us in the developed world.  A dark and horrible picture of the plague of everyday violence that face the global poor.  Billions of people who live outside the protection of law, undermining all of our best efforts to rescue them from this crushing poverty.  This book is a desperate cry for those of us with a voice to be a voice for those the world has forgotten.  A beacon of hope that change is possible.  Effective public justice systems can be built.  Change can happen.  It will be costly, difficult, and dangerous, but to ignore it would be inhumane.  
    Buy this book.  Read this book.  Be a part of the change. Make a difference.  Be human. 

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  • Posted February 2, 2014

    If you¿re like me, you¿ll be shocked to realize that in all your

    If you’re like me, you’ll be shocked to realize that in all your discussions on poverty and development, you rarely thought about one particular piece of the puzzle. We have cultivated expertise on economic development, health, education, nutrition, and more, but we have ignored the problem that can, in one fell swoop, undermine all of our well-meaning efforts at changing lives around the world: violence. 




    In this book, Haugen & Boutros lay out the violent realities facing the poor; the way that law enforcement fails to protect them from violence and even contributes to it; the reasons for this failing; and the projects around the globe that have dared to introduce justice system reform as an integral part of poverty alleviation. 




    The first two chapters of the book seek to share the stories of real people who become victims of horrible violence because they are perceived as poor and powerless, and how law enforcement turns a blind eye to the plight of these vulnerable people. These emotionally disturbing chapters will wake you up to the reality that in many places in the world, justice is for sale, and 4 billion people simply cannot afford to pay.




    Haugen & Boutros then lay out, with excellent research and lessons from history, the reasons for the brokenness in the justice systems of many developing countries. 
    They explain that if you look back at Paris, New York, or Tokyo 150 years ago, you’ll find justice systems plagued by the exact same problems facing Nairobi, Lima, and Phnom Penh today. 




    This should fill us with realistic hopefulness; although the problems preventing justice from reigning across the developing world are considerable, Haugen & Boutros show that the trail toward combatting these problems has already been blazed and that change is attainable with public support, local talent, and the right resources and expertise.




    The final chapter of the book describes individuals, organizations, and governments around the world who decided not to look away from the violence they knew was lurking in the shadows for the world’s poor. Haugen & Boutros have begun to fill in an enormous hole in our strategies for ending global poverty. 




    This book is a must-read for anyone interested in poverty alleviation. It is exceptionally well done in terms of research, story telling, and metrics that really drive their points home. My hope is that The Locust Effect will spark a revolution in development that will fully incorporate justice system reform as a vital component in improving the lives of billions around the globe. -Jessica Honegger, Founder of Noonday Collection

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2014

    A plague of locusts can lay waste to anything and everything in

    A plague of locusts can lay waste to anything and everything in its wake. "The Locust Effect" makes the compelling case that violence (common, everyday person-on-person violence) is laying waste to anything and everything for the poor in the developing world. Our efforts to feed the poor, educate the illiterate, uplift and empower girls and women, combat cultural prejudices, stimulate bruised economies, provide shelter for the homeless cannot and will not succeed unless we change the conversation and start to consider how deeply violence affects the very people we hope to help.

    We would do well not to simply assume we know what the poor need. When asked, what the poor want most is not education, food, shelter or opportunity - they want to live in safety, without fear that the little they have and those they love could be decimated by evil-doers acting with impunity. They want justice: justice which HAS to come from public justice systems.

    The thesis of the book is simple: the end of poverty requires the end of violence; and to end violence, countries need functioning public justice systems.

    Haugen and Boutros carefully, academically, painstakingly and passionately argue that violence against the poor is both the biggest issue which the poor are facing, and also the single issue which the world at large has yet to address for human rights. They are clear in their probing as to how criminal justice systems got to be so bad, sober in their assessment of the task ahead, 100% convincing that this is the issue we HAVE to face head on if we are to seek justice for the billions of suffering people in our world.

    The Locust Effect is not light reading. It doesn't have a silver bullet solution. It is emotionally unsatisfying to read: I wanted at least one really happy ending for the girls and women mentioned in the book. The book gives none - It is deeply disturbing and yet hopeful and purposeful.

    Reading Half the Sky by Kristof and WuDunn was inspirational and has opened up a new conversation for how we can and must address the issues facing girls and women in the world. The Locust Effect is a necessary companion for us to continue that conversation. Criminals need to be tackled head on. Sex traffickers, rapists, slave owners, torturers and molesters cannot continue with impunity; and to do that - we need to get actively talking and thinking about public justice. This book is necessary reading if we are to make a meaningful contribution to tackling poverty in the 21st century.

    (Review posted by Bronwyn Lea.)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2014

    We all know about the existence of global poverty. Natural disas

    We all know about the existence of global poverty. Natural disasters, military conflicts, and famine regularly bring the face of developing world poverty before us.

    What we probably do not know is that beyond these natural and political events, there is an epidemic of violence in the developing world. The ones impacted most of all are the very poor.

    Great advances in health and education over recent decades have benefitted some, but for the very poor hope remains out of reach, and The Locust Effect explains why.

    Haugen & Boutros not only identify violence as a factor in global poverty, it also appears to be the decisive factor perpetuating their poverty.

    The Locust Effect takes us into the lives of numerous victims of the violence epidemic. It’s a confronting read. The accounts attest to the sheer prevalence of sexual violence, forced labour, and unlawful land seizures. Protections of law enforcement, assumed in the wealthy west, are none existent for the poor of the developing world. Worse: in many cases police are themselves perpetuators of violence against the poor. Legal systems are broken, ineffective and dysfunctional. The scandalous result is that in many cases the very people which should be protecting the poorest and vulnerable turn out to be the ones they most have to fear. We are left pondering the scandal that there are more slaves today than ever before.

    What then of the billions of aid and development dollars have been spent on developing nations in recent decades? The Locust Effect supports these moves, but makes the sober observation that precious little of these funds have been directed to restoring dysfunctional law enforcement and justice systems.

    Wanting to be more than a catalogue of bad news, The Locust Effect outlines examples of how violence against the poor can be effectively addressed, and how systems of law enforcement and justice can be transformed. 

    Haugen & Boutros allow the inevitable question to settle: ‘At this historic inflection point in the struggle against poverty are we prepared to do something different?’ Indeed we must, for “where laws are enforced, the violence stops.” Government and NGOs need to tie more of their aid to outcomes that bring protective law enforcement and effective justice systems to the poor.  

    We should never say ‘there’s nothing we can do about developing world poverty’. Indeed, the problem may be massive, and our responses imperfect. But if our efforts are concentrated where there is a likelihood of success, we may see a brand new day dawn when the poorest and most vulnerable people on earth find justice and - at last - begin to thrive.

    The Locust Effect opens our eyes to the brutal effect of violence and to its  bruised and bloodied victims. We may want to look the other way, but God forbid we pass by on the other side.

    Please, read The Locust Effect. Put it in the hands of as many people as you can. We cannot allow the violence epidemic to continue. 

    David Groenenboom, Perth, Australia

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2014

    This book is a must add to your 2014 reading list. Gary Haugen t

    This book is a must add to your 2014 reading list. Gary Haugen takes us on a journey to explore a sometimes hidden tragedy the poor face everyday- indescribable violence along with corrupt or absent law enforcement. It's a conversation many of us have never thought to have. It's easy to look at a lack of material possessions or basic human necessity as risks the poor face, but violence doesn't always enter into the conversation.

    Haugen shares the stories of people he has met and worked with throughout the book and provides us with hard facts to illustrate the issue of violence that the poor face. Even with the multitude of information and cited studies and facts the book is riveting and I had a hard time putting it down. I found myself drawn to the stories and picturing the amazing people he described. He focuses attention on the people on the front lines fighting for justice for the global poor. He also tells us powerful stories about these amazing people living in poverty- he paints a picture of beautiful men, women and children who have been victims of grave injustice. The stories alone stir one towards action.

    I believe this book starts a conversation that is essential if we want to eradicate poverty- "Why the end of poverty requires the end of violence." I consider it a 'must read' for anyone- whether you are a humanitarian, lawyer, law enforcement officer, business person or stay-at-home mom. We all can play a part in seeking justice for the marginalized and awareness is the first step.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2014

    The Locust Effect is not an easy read. It¿s thick, and intense.

    The Locust Effect is not an easy read. It’s thick, and intense. Many chapters were slow going (for me, a notoriously fast reader!) and others brought tears. I read story after tragic story of the humiliation and debasement of human beings by other human beings, and was appalled. 

    At the end of the day, this book explains why current approaches to address poverty have not yet succeeded. “What was so clear to me was the way these very impoverished Rwandans at the point of their most desperate need huddled against those advancing machetes in that church did not need someone to bring them a sermon, or food, or a doctor, or a teacher, or a microloan. They needed someone to restrain the hand with the machete.” It’s the hard, messy relational part that takes a ton of work. The book gives tons of insights into the academic research around poverty as well as numerous examples of contextualized projects that are taking ground in this area. The Locust Effect doesn’t just analyze the problem theoretically - it demonstrates the real, local, personal possibilities. 

    I know so many people who know that things aren’t right - they want to make a better world but just don’t know how. They can’t go to many of these places or help them firsthand. So many of the evils perpetuated in the book are built on the idea that no one will notice - and that it wouldn’t matter if they did. Let me be clear: this book is meant to change the conversation. Every person who reads, and understands, and shares - you are changing the public understanding of the issue of poverty and the reality of violence. It all counts. 

    The Locust Effect’s key is the invitation to stop pretending and see. So many turn the other way, or click to another page, or change the channel - but that “brave refusal to look away” invites us all to help create a better world for ourselves and our neighbors.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 27, 2014

    We Can't Ignore Violence When It Comes To Poverty The main poin

    We Can't Ignore Violence When It Comes To Poverty

    The main point of the Locust Effect is that while the world works towards ending poverty in regards to hunger, water, provision, medicine, etc. it is ignoring the violence that comes right along to steal all of that and makes matters worse for the people.

    The people lose all ground on getting out of poverty, and it actually makes the “Locusts" stronger along the way since as they grow with supplies, confidence, etc. because of no law enforcement system in place.

    While the read is tough and raw detailing various accounts of these examples happening, it is necessary to read and take seriously the effect that's taking place for so many people in need.

    It's time to start rethinking poverty and time to address the violence. We need to teach others the truth of what's happening and address these real needs by loving others and sharing the Gospel where Jesus can bring healing and restoration. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2014

    Reading ¿The Locust Effect¿ seemed like an exercise in moral obe

    Reading “The Locust Effect” seemed like an exercise in moral obedience. It is never easy to read about the victims of modern slavery, sexual exploitation, and travesties of justice—but the clear-headed analysis and authority of “The Locust Effect” demands a careful reading.

    Gary Haugen (founder, International Justice Mission, and Director of the U.N. investigation in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide) and Victor Boutros (investigator with the U. S. Department of Justice) serve readers well in several respects:

    1. Vivid story-telling of the many faces of injustice in the developing world today.

    2. Carefully-researched information that reveals the stark realities of most of the world’s population living with virtually no protection of law and order.

    3. A seminal idea: that any informed discussion of global poverty must include the role of everyday violence that is virtually unchecked against people who have no way to defend themselves.

    4. Hope. The authors describe how advanced countries like the U.S. had as few justice social structures in the 1800’s as many developing countries have today, and yet forms of criminal justice were developed. “The Locust Effect” does not offer easy solutions for the world, but real examples where violence has been curtailed by reforms in criminal justice.

    This is an important book. It makes you shake your head in disbelief: accused people languishing in prison for years awaiting trial; judges with no legal training; the poor who will never ask for police assistance because they will become victims of police abuse; courts that shut down because they run out of paper (!); It goes on and on.

    The book left me wondering about the mystery of evil, and indignant about the evil of personal violence. In the book of Genesis God says to Cain after he killed his own brother Abel, “your brother’s blood cries to me from the ground.” The question is, do we hear the cries?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

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