Friday, January 15, 2010

Close to Nature

Most of the commentary on the situation in Haiti understandably focuses on the immediate effects of the earthquake. We are deeply disturbed by the suffering of our fellow human beings.

But there is a larger, longer running tragedy at work here. We call it poverty. Poverty is what "being close to nature" really looks like.

Behind the popular romance of nature as a pretty park where happy creatures play lurks the awful truth. Nature is not cruel, but it is clumsy, indifferently stumbling over land and people alike.

We can only love such a thing after we have contained its potential to do us harm. That does not come from prayers and worship; it comes from wealth and the security that wealth provides.

Earthquake relief does not make a nation wealthy. Wealth comes from the peaceful and profitable trade of individuals.

Until Haitians can securely own and trade property, they will continue to face the harrowing prospect of one disaster after another, one relief program after another, with no end in sight.

1 comment:

Twalls said...

I set up a page for pro-liberty people to donate to Mercy Corps, an aid group with a good reputation for not wasting money on government lobbying:

A couple of crates of Bastiat in French might do some long-range good as well.

Tom Walls