Back 50 years ago, the cry was to help new third world countries get themselves out of colonialism. Various economic strategms were put forward as theories. Among these were the World Bank, the International Money Fund and since then, many other lending agencies, such as the Inter-American bank and others.
Looking back in hindsight, what do we actually have?
What we have from the viewpoint of a practical fisherman, and not that of an academically trained economist with a paper degree in theories, is a WORLD FARMING OPERATION. The Global Economy is here, as is the global village, and Belize is just a small little field, part of a bigger farming operation that grows a crop of FOREIGN EXCHANGE.
Nowadays the international lending banks and organizations are sowing, fertilizing and growing a crop of foreign exchange. Mostly they want to grow the U.S. Dollar, the Euro Dollar and the Yen. Or what is euphimistically called FOREIGN EXCHANGE. A currency that can be traded around the world relatively quickly. These farmers, the lending banks and other organizations are not interested in the weeds, which would be local currencies, like the Dinar, the Peso, the Bolivar, or the Belize dollar. They want tradeable currencies as their crop from their farms around the world, that they till and harvest. What these farms are composed of, are THIRD WORLD COUNTRIES, run by townies of cities that inherited the Empire building colonial system of rule of DIVIDE AND CONQUER, which was the population representative system. In Empire building and colonialism, it was easier to control rebellious political opposition townies with midnight raids, punitive laws and arrest, jail, exile, or disappear troublesome colonial rebels, when they were in towns and cities. Rural rebellions were more difficult to control using guerrilla hit and run tactics. Hence the population representation system of subservient parliaments by townies. The population representation system carried forward in many third world countries today, is responsible for countries being governed by townie elites, who for the most part, are greedy, selfish, provincial country bumpkins looking out for themselves, their personal wealth building and ego power building, versus what might be called nation building in places like the Federation of Switzerland and the States of the USA.
Because third world agricultural countries are run by townie provincial bumpkins, they are susceptible to the soft sell of credit cards, loans and other technical jargon used to sell a way of governing, that is contrary to self-sufficiency.
Nowadays, the International lenders sow a crop of LOANS to these people running Third World Countries. First they fertilize the ground with some FREE GRANTS of a few hundred thousand dollars, knowing that an Education School building loan of $80 million will more than pay as the fertilizer in the crop of INTEREST EARNINGS, CONSULTANCY FEES, STUDIES BY EGGSPURTS, AND OTHER CHARGES.
The ultimate goal of lending agencies is to subvert the townie run THIRD WORLD COUNTRIES into projecting forward dreams of building things, improving education, airports, roads, computer systems, or anything else that becomes the latest buzz word in the highly specialized field of salesmanship for the lending of multimillion dollar loans to government provincial townie hicks.
Like credit card companies in the USA, Third World Countries are inundated with offers of EASY CREDIT, LOANS FOR EVERYTHING ( no money down and 30 years of easy payments ) Do it now is the sales pitch. Instant gratification! What will sell a loan? Talk about infra structure? Talk about airports and shipping docks? Talk about rebuilding schools? Whatever it is, it is INSTANT GRATIFICATION that is offered. For a price of course! Though like most credit card holders, the price is not seen or realized at first glance.
I myself, never had a credit card, never needed one and still do not need one. I bury my money that comes in, with a tin can under a coconut tree. (Metaphorically speaking of course.) When I take in $100 dollars, that $100 is still mine. All of it, every single dollar and I can spend it when I choose, on what I choose, at a time of convenience to me. Not so credit card holders. The price of loans and credit and INSTANT GRATIFICATION, or special fees, interest charges and other gimmicks, that will steal on average; about $36 out of every $100 that you spend, before you earn it.
Third World Countries are now in this same modus operendi. Of every $100 of local currency, or INTERNATIONAL TRADED FOREIGN EXCHANGE that is earned, about 36% is kept by International Farming Lending Institutions.
This is the crop they are farming from THIRD WORLD COUNTRIES. The credit card companies of the NEW WORLD ORDER in this GLOBAL ECONOMY AND GLOBAL VILLAGE.
I have to use personal analogies to explain what happens here, from my experience. Probably by my mid forties, I had around a half million dollars in assets. Real Estate, boats and equipment and other things. Some of it I sold, some I just gave away and others of it, I shed and gave to my daughters to help them get on with their lives. I was in the process of changing my life style due to health reasons and boredom. Essentially, 10 years ago, I might have been called relatively penniless. Back to zero! Nowadays, I'm back to around $100,000 Belizean in assets again. How is this possible, for I don't work much. My life style is relatively laid back and casual.
You have to realize that sweat and labor and brain power is your biggest asset. Couple that with a philosphy of never borrowing ( I have a house mortgage, in real estate I believe some things are better done through a loan. ), but generally speaking, the use of loans is fairly restricted and only to something that will be quickly productive and repay the loan in two years and less. Saving until you can pay cash, or find a bargain, another obvious earning asset accumulation strategy. Never borrow for anything that will not return the loan and interest in six months, guaranteed. No loan should be over two years, or it is self-defeating, cause circumstances and needs are constantly changing. That is a personal philosphy.
THIRD WORLD COUNTRIES THOUGH are treated as "Money Farms" by International Lending Agencies and they are a field that has to be tilled by planting the seeds of LOANS, to earn INTEREST, and other add on costs, such as SPECIALIST STUDIES, CONSULTANCY FEES, TRAVEL EXPENSES, POINTS AND ANYTHING ELSE the lending agency can make the customer swallow. 36% of a country earning capacity is probably lost as a minimum figure. Some estimates are as high as 68% losses to a loan operation philosphy.
Obviously, even to a simple uneducated fisherman such as I, that is a huge loss of earning capacity. You cannot build up either your personal assets, or wealth, or that of a country if you are being farmed for FOREIGN EXCHANGE. Belize is of course fully farmed for it's crop of FOREIGN EXCHANGE. Worse, the money that Belize earns in Belizean dollars must be used to pay off INTERNATIONAL FARMERS like the World Bank and the IMF, not in local Belizean currency, but in scarce FOREIGN EXCHANGE. The local currency must be changed for FOREIGN EXCHANGE and that contributes to the loss even more, of the capacity to become financially self-reliant.
Don't get me wrong. Belize for instance is self-reliant, because even the International Money Lending Farmers of the GLOBAL ECONOMY know you can only get so much from a plantation in this crop. The farm has to produce the money some way, in the first place. What the MONEY FARMERS want, is as much of the crop they can safely take out of the local plantation and still be able to farm the land (Belize and other Third World Countries) for another crop, YEAR AFTER YEAR.
The MONEY FARMERS strategy here, as in credit card companies, is to lend as much as the subject target can borrow and still pay fees, charges and interest payments. Find something they want to do and reinforce this with a sales pitch to encourage them to borrow and do it NOW. Instant gratification! In Third World Governments, this means to encourage them to borrow, loan after loan, consolidate all other loans and keep lending ( up until the crop of foreign exchange seems in jeopardy). The ideal from the Lending Agency viewpoint, is to get a Third World Country maxed out on loans to the point that they actually operate all of the government and the nation on LOANS. Once you have that goal achieved, you basically have a never ending crop of FOREIGN EXCHANGE. You must till, fertilize and harvest fairly wisely, to keep the plantation fields producing though. Adjusting the loans and the controls to maximize the crop of FOREIGN EXCHANGE.
The goal then is government by loan operations! In Belize, we passed that threshold many years back and the illusion of being masters of our own destiny has long gone, by realistic rural people. The townies still think they have some maneuverability, because they are in charge of borrowing the loans. The soft sell sales pitch again. An illusion is an illusion! In reality, though we have a government cash flow of $330 million Belizean a year, it is all comprised. Every bit of it, down to the last phoney looking aluminum centavo penny. Oh sure, you can juggle the books. Borrow from Peter to pay Paul! And itemize things to show that you are actually paying for things by internal revenue operations.
But that is hypocrisy and flim flam. In reality, Belize has no choices much anymore. The Government operations are maxed out in loans and the FOREIGN EXCHANGE CROP goes out year after year to INTERNATIONAL FARMING LENDING AGENCIES.
How does it feel to be a field in a World Wide Plantation, reaped by Farmers that call themselves International Banks and other fancy Lending Agencies? We are not even a big field, just one of hundreds and hundreds of such plantations to be harvested for FOREIGN EXCHANGE.
I understand we produce a steady good crop for the farmers, through the
use of population representation townie dominated government.