Think Twice Before Giving Aid to Japan

Its once again time to put on your tin-foil hats with your favorite contrarian. Me. The inspiration for this post came to me yesterday while I was watching 106 and Park (by watch I mean had it on while I was surfing the net and watching two other programs, its 2011, a man like myself must multitask my entertainment).

They had just finished playing the new Dr. Dre and Eminem song, when Terrence made some stupid joke about Dre being ripped in the video. The girl with no personality who co-hosts (is her name lisa?) interrupts him and lets the audience know that the fuel rods in the earthquake damaged Japanese nuclear reactor might explode. She then follows up by saying if you want to donate go to, because we know you care, or something, then go to this website. This caused me to pause because I had seen this before.

Remember during the crisis in Haiti, it seemed like every channel (something like 80% of the channels on tv are owned by like 3 companies so thats not a surprise) had a way for you to simply text a number and 5 dollars would be sent to an aid-organization that you had never heard of, Yele (?), and some you had heard of, Red Cross (the worst of the worst). Im sure it felt very American to be able to help by literally only lifting a finger to do so. Conscious cleared, back to the conflict diamonds on 106 and Park.

Then we had our own impartial media (ha!) patting us on the back for all the great charity work we were doing. Meanwhile the heads of Red Cross Organizations were being indicted on embezzlement charges in cases that spanned from Orange County to Sweeden

Then it  starts coming out in report, after report, after report, after report, that all of your funds are not going to the impovrished people of Haiti. It turns out that being in the charity relief industry is actually big business (shocking I know). Some of the members of the Red Cross board of Directors (8 of whom are appointed by the United States governemnt)

  • Gail J. McGovern, the President/CEO of the American Red Cross, also holds a Top managing Position at AT&T (lucrative telecom contracts because of Hatian Americans wanting to call home)
  • Paula E. Boggs, Executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of Starbucks Coffee Company, is also on the Audit and Risk Management Committee of the American Red Cross (guess what Haiti’s number one export is)
  • Steve Wunning the Vice Chair of Audit and Risk Management Committee and member of the Compensation and Management Development Committee of the American Red Cross. Also Group President of Catepillar Inc. (A heavy machinery and construction equipment company that stands to profit handsomely from our donations)
  • The company pharmacuetical company Merck has been handling the AIDS vaccinations and other medical needs of the people or Haiti. Allan Goldberg, The Chair for the QRC Subcommittee and member of the Audit and Risk Management Committee for the American Red Cross is the Executive Director at Merck and Co.*(source)

The list goes on and on and on. My point is this, donating to relief efforts around the world is a good thing, but just make sure you know who you are donating to. Make sure you are comfortable with where your money is going, because if its not reaching the people you intended it to, then you are really just donating to make yourself feel better and not really for the purpose of helping those that need it.


2 Responses to “Think Twice Before Giving Aid to Japan”

  1. Nick Walters Says:

    If you would like some place to give your money to help the people in Japan and not to worry if it will ever get there, check out the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. They know how to really help those in need.

    • youngwonder Says:

      And how is that? I know at least in African nations that Christian charity organizations make their help contingent on the needy accepting their religion. Are the Latter-Day saints organizations different?

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