Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The worlds of poverty and policy: Can compassionate be an adjective describing a technocrat*?

My smashing roommate/classmate Emily Stanger just posted a must-read entry in her blog, reflecting on the tensions between hard-nosed technocratic policy and compassionate connection to the poor. This issue has been the subject of many, many late night conversations over the past week, and Emily's entry has captured beautifully the complexities that have quite literally kept Emily, Yue Man and I up all night. As I write this at the end of my third consecutive 15 hour day working (until 11 PM) in the uber-technocratic Ministry of Finance, I'm crossing my fingers that her conclusion is right! In any event, definitely take a look at Emily's blog for some insightful food for thought.

And thank goodness for brilliant, passionate, and amazing people like Emily!

9 comments:

Drew said...

Molly, with regard to the tension between technocratic vs. grass roots solutions to development in extremely poor countries like Liberia, it seems to me there is room for both, and any combination of the two. Based on your earlier reporting, it doesn't seem to me that Liberia would turn down any aid from any source.
The key is transparency and honesty. Governments, in developed as well as developing countries, get into trouble when they act in secret; even when their actions are well intended.
As long as the Liberian government is open and honest with its people and the world, progress is possible.
As you reported, it took a number of years to destroy Liberian society through war and anarchy. I suspect it will take as long, or longer, to restore it.
Your 11 hour work days at the Ministry of Finance are just a small contribution to that process.
I believe President Lincoln’s words, spoken at Gettysburg and permanently inscribed on the Lincoln Monument, apply to Liberia today;
“…that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
Keep up the good work.

Dad

Yue Man said...

Molly,

The answer to your question is absolutely! The best technocrats are those with a bigger purpose, and, in a county like Liberia, that surely has to involve the alleviation of poverty. Sometimes balancing the budget even in the face of massive social needs is being compassionate (but sometimes it's not i.e., when you are not credit constrained, have no credibility issues and you expect with some certainty a massive increase in revenues ;o))

I look forward to many more late night talks - next topic: numeracy or literacy, which is more important to develop?

BTW this is my very first blog comment. I wanted to save my first time for my favourite partner in crime.

Yue Man

Anonymous said...

Hi !.
You may , perhaps curious to know how one can collect a huge starting capital .
There is no initial capital needed You may commense to get income with as small sum of money as 20-100 dollars.

AimTrust is what you haven`t ever dreamt of such a chance to become rich
The firm represents an offshore structure with advanced asset management technologies in production and delivery of pipes for oil and gas.

Its head office is in Panama with offices around the world.
Do you want to become an affluent person?
That`s your chance That`s what you wish in the long run!

I feel good, I began to get income with the help of this company,
and I invite you to do the same. If it gets down to select a proper companion utilizes your money in a right way - that`s it!.
I earn US$2,000 per day, and my first investment was 500 dollars only!
It`s easy to join , just click this link http://ymibituze.digitalzones.com/alajub.html
and go! Let`s take this option together to become rich

Anonymous said...

Hi there!
I would like to burn a theme at this forum. There is such a thing, called HYIP, or High Yield Investment Program. It reminds of ponzy-like structure, but in rare cases one may happen to meet a company that really pays up to 2% daily not on invested money, but from real profits.

For several years , I earn money with the help of these programs.
I don't have problems with money now, but there are heights that must be conquered . I get now up to 2G a day , and my first investment was 500 dollars only.
Right now, I'm very close at catching at last a guaranteed variant to make a sharp rise . Turn to my blog to get additional info.

http://theinvestblog.com [url=http://theinvestblog.com]Online Investment Blog[/url]

Anonymous said...

As far as I know remember…
---------------------------------------------------------
Signature:buy levitra professional online szj

Anonymous said...

mollyinliberia.blogspot.com; You saved my day again.

Anonymous said...

I`m short of time.
---------------------------------------------------------
Signature:lipitor 5mg ttjuj
cheap lexapro uexlr

Anonymous said...

Hi everybody!

For sure you didn’t here about me yet,
my parents call me James F. Collins.
Generally I’m a social gmabler. for a long time I’m keen on online-casino and poker.
Not long time ago I started my own blog, where I describe my virtual adventures.
Probably, it will be interesting for you to utilize special software facilitating winnings .
Please visit my diary. http://allbestcasino.com I’ll be interested on your opinion..

Anonymous said...

ativan online pharmacy ativan side effects throat - ativan vs xanax for flight anxiety