to ask if you agree that we "should not be sending aid to bongo bongo land"

(218 Posts)
ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:22:44

Aside the ridiculous racist overtones of the statement itself....if you can...

The adorable MEP on radio 4 this morning was suggesting that it is inappropriate to be sending aid abroad when we are cutting police, hospitals and the defence back home.

The interviewer pointed out the last aid dispatched was 50 million to help with a polio outbreak in the Sudan area.

The MEP basically said if people want to give to charity they can, the government shouldn't and I think the majority of your listeners agree.

So please answer if you will:

1. Did you hear the interview?
2. Do you agree that we should stop sending foreign aid?
3. Can you believe he said bongo bongo? In 2013???

Shrugged Wed 07-Aug-13 09:24:35

1. Yes.
2. No.
3. I looked at DH and said 'WHAT?' And he said UKIP, and I said 'Oh. Figures.'

MrsWolowitz Wed 07-Aug-13 09:26:10

1. No.
2. No.
2. Of course not.

wonderingsoul Wed 07-Aug-13 09:26:28

2- yes
3-- dont agree but can belive so yes.

thornrose Wed 07-Aug-13 09:26:53

1. No
2. No
3. shock

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:26:53

Oh I should answer as well shouldn't I.

1. yes (obvs)
2. no
3. genuinely no. Not even UKIP.

I do not shock easy, but when I read your thread title I went shock!
1. No, I didn't hear the interview, no doubt I was in bed wink
2. I'm not sure about foreign aid, I think that if we DO keep sending it, then we need to be very careful (which we are not at the moment) about where it is going, and what it is used for. I do not see why we should support regimes and dictators, but I do support feeding starving people and helping with vaccinations etc.
£. Again, another shock

MrsWolowitz Wed 07-Aug-13 09:27:28

Oh hi!

<waves at fellow flip flop club number>

Just noticed it was you ICBINEG!

1. No
2. No
2. UKIP? Not surprised.

Flobbadobs Wed 07-Aug-13 09:27:56

I didn't hear it, read something about it on a news website.
No I don't agree.
Sadly yes I can believe it. Thinking about the derogatory way beneifts claimants are spoken about, I can fully believe that countries who receive aid are referred to in the same type of way. It's almost fashionable to look down on those who are more in need of help than 'us'' these days wherever they are and to reduce them to offensive stereotypes..

MalcolmTuckersMum Wed 07-Aug-13 09:28:21

I am surprised you think you're going to get any answers except the only possible ones in a civilised society to be honest. If you wanted a different view on this you'd have gone to a DM reader's forum surely?

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:29:01

hi Mrs W.! Not looking for a flip flop on this one....but I'm always prepared!

Trapper Wed 07-Aug-13 09:29:40

I had no idea that Bongos were associated with Pakistan. Learn something new everyday!

1. No
2. No (although I would welcome debate on the subject and increased visibility)
3. OMG No.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:30:46

malcolm I don't know how to say this...but um...MN is by FAR the most right wing place I frequent. By a mile. I am surprised daily at the things people say on here.

I think it's good for me. I spend the rest of my life in a liberal to the point of anarchic ivory tower in a bubble.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:31:24

hmmm I need more radio 4 listeners in my poll!

ParsingFancy Wed 07-Aug-13 09:32:18

1. No
2. No
3. Well he was UKIP...

He hasn't really understood that war and aid are both the continuation of politics by other means, has he? Which is why the Coalition armies in Afghanistan are busy installing hydroelectric plants and building local facilities.

In fact it's a major problem for Oxfam in some countries, that the British army wants to work so closely with them they have to actively manage keeping a separate "brand".

Billwoody Wed 07-Aug-13 09:33:18

1. Yes
2. Yes - if the recipient is unable to provide an audit trail to show that the money is spent on AID rather than on Mirage fighters, Dictator accoutrements and/or projects that do not merit AID support.
3. Yes, and I do think many people understand what he means (which is not ideal)

No - saw headline and thought WTH?
Yes - not a popular opinion
No excuse - throwback to the old colonialist attitude and partly the reason why aid is needed.

Flobbadobs Wed 07-Aug-13 09:34:26

Well technically I am a radio 4 listener if you count I'm sorry I haven't a clue and Just a minute every so often...

pooka Wed 07-Aug-13 09:34:28

1. Yes
2. No
3. No. Just so depressingly Alf Garnett. People really elected this idiot? Really?

1. No
2. No. If we can help we should and even our fault ridden system is infinitely better than what some other countries have where kids die of everyday illnesses.
3. Just shock

PanicMode Wed 07-Aug-13 09:37:02

1. Yes I did hear the interview - it reduced John Humphrys to silence which has to be almost a first!

2. I don't think we should stop giving aid, but I do think that it needs to be audited and targeted appropriately. I also think that some of the countries we are sending money too are in better shape financially than we are, and so I would rather it was sent to those in genuine need (Syrian refugees etc) than just being generally sent to x or y country.

3. During the interview he referred to "enjoying" the stir he was causing - and that he was just saying what others wouldn't in this PC world. How anyone votes for UKIP when they have attitudes like this astounds me and saddens me in equal measure - sadly, I think there will be enough people "at the rugby club, the golf club" who will vote for these ignorant bigots. (The other appalling thing is as an MEP, he can't be sacked/removed/ and will be earning stupid money on the gravy train so will be free to spout this nonsense for a long time to come.....)

ubik Wed 07-Aug-13 09:37:03

Where is BongoBongoland?

<squints at map>

MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:37:40

Saw the thread title and thought this was something a 'hun' type had said on another thread. I cannot BELIEVE it was an MEP and broadcast. Ha. I hope he gets into a lot of publicity trouble for this. I also hope it shows people what UKIP is really about. But no, I do not listen to the radio except in the car. I think it would stress me out listening to stuff like that all day! I am too opinionated myself.

Why are people surprised that UKIP are racist?

teacherandguideleader Wed 07-Aug-13 09:38:53

I didn't hear the interview but do think we should stop some of the foreign aid. I deal with so many children in this country who are living in severe poverty and I believe we should sort this out and improve the life chances of our own young people. I appreciate that the need of those abroad may be greater and they are experiencing far greater poverty, but all the time children are being abused and neglected in the UK, I believe the money should be spent helping them.

I didn't get the whole uproar about Bongo Bongo as I had no idea what it was, but if it is racist and he is UKIP I'm not surprised.

Kirk1 Wed 07-Aug-13 09:39:10

1 Yes, but while I was still pre-awake. I thought I'd dreamed it.
2 Yes, we shouldn't support imaginary places with real money. Enough of that goes on on Facebook... Seriously, I can kind of see his point. I think he's wrong though.
3 See 1. I call UKIP BNP lite and DH argues with me. The UKIP members though, keep making these outrageous statements and proving me right.

MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:39:34

I also hope he reveals his charity spend (as % of his salary) if he thinks this is the way forward. Lead by example and all that.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:40:18

yes I think I should stop listening too...although the blood pressure spike is usually enough to boost me out of bed...

MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:42:03

I think UKIP have in the past been quite careful to present themselves as a million miles from BNP. But BNP Lite/ Semi skimmed BNP does sum them up!

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:43:20

okay so I am currently at 20% of listeners agree (kirk I think your comment means you disagree with stopping foreign aid)

obviously there are valid concerns about destinations, audit trails etc. but the MEP's point was that we shouldn't spend money abroad when we could spend it at home.

That is what he thinks the majority of radio 4 listeners agree with.

MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:43:35

ICBINEG, I have a 7 yr old and 4yr old twins so I don't need a blood pressure spike to get me out of bed! Maybe when they are teens I will turn to Radio 4...

ExcuseTypos Wed 07-Aug-13 09:43:38

No- he's in UkIP

He was asked where Bongo Bongo Land was and he said he didn't knowconfused

He also said this was a storm created by The Guardian and The BBCconfused

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:44:11

I am not surprised that UKIP are racist...I am surprised they would go that far and be that blatant.

MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:45:04

You'll need at least a 100 listeners to make that statistically correct!

BoreOfWhabylon Wed 07-Aug-13 09:45:28

1. Yes
2. No
3. Yes - that some people think this but shock that someone in his position actually said this.

I was also shock when he said (paraphrasing a bit) that he 'would apologise if anyone in Bongo-Bongo Land was offended' by his comments!

Lazyjaney Wed 07-Aug-13 09:45:29

Agree with Panic Mode, and would add that they know exactly what they are doing using words like that, it gets publicity and media attention that allows them to punch way above their weight.

I'm no fan of UKIP but I think their opponents make a big mistake in scoffing at them.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:46:40

For someone who doesn't know where it is, he sure talked about it being Pakistan for a long time afterwards in the original quote.

Although the main reason for it being racist and derogatory is that it isn't anywhere in's all those Johnny foreigners...just all of them...and there tribalistic uncivilized ways...

allmycats Wed 07-Aug-13 09:46:51

I think foreign aid should continue but be spent on items, not given as money. So, if they need a new nursing facility we build it and train the staff, if grain etc is needed we distribute it and supervise the growing of it etc.
Never, Ever Cash to be spent as they want.

PrettyKitty1986 Wed 07-Aug-13 09:47:19

Taking out the ridiculous I vehemently do NOT think we should stop foreign aid.

All this 'charity starts at home' nonsense. Why should someone in the UK be more entitled to help than someone in another country purely because of the luck of where they were born?

We're all human beings. All equally deserving of help. The WORLD is 'home' to us all.

I think that most developed Countries pay a shockingly, disgustingly low amount in foreign aid to assist those Countries and people most in need, those that very often lack the most basic of what we would consider 'human rights'.

MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:47:30

Oh good. I'm offended. I hereby rename my house 'Bongo Bongo land'.

Pachacuti Wed 07-Aug-13 09:48:04

I sort of heard it. It was on in the background and I wasn't really listening to begin with, but as he started to spout more and more bollocks my attention was drawn inexorably towards it. I had to hang on to the end to find out w ho he actually was, though.


Urgh, he was so pleased with himself for saying it, too.

stickingattwo Wed 07-Aug-13 09:48:05

I can believe someone would use that kind of racist language - if that person is from UKIP or the EDL or The Klu Klux Klan - because that's just how ignorant some people are.

And NO I don not think we should stop foreign aid becuase human beings - men, women and children - are dying and suffering because they have the misfortune to live in countries where governments are corrupt, disease is rife, war exists, famines happen.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:48:19

Nah don't need anywhere near 100 to make a statistically valid assertion that he is wrong.

We may even be there already...will run the numbers...

we have 6/7 against so far....

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:50:13

7/8 against

remember to say if you heard the program...or you can't go in my stats!

navada Wed 07-Aug-13 09:52:18

1) No
2) Yes
3) yes

missmargot Wed 07-Aug-13 09:52:19
MerryMarigold Wed 07-Aug-13 09:53:25

Lazyjaney, but it's a high risk strategy, I think, to associate yourself with BNP via language.

PrettyKitty1986 Wed 07-Aug-13 09:53:27

but all the time children are being abused and neglected in the UK, I believe the money should be spent helping them

What about non UK children who may not only ALSO be being abused and neglected - but also have to deal with no clean water and no food due to famine?

Surely their need would be even greater?

HollyBerryBush Wed 07-Aug-13 09:54:49

I suppose an awful lot of African tyrants have extreme wealth from creaming off foreign aid. So the problem is how to get the money to the people and bypassing the corrupt government in charge.

Sorry what was the question?

1) no but I've read the transcript
2) in some cases yes - why do we send money to Argentina? or India which has its own nuclear program? or China, which has oodles of money of its own?
30 I do believe he said 'bongo bongo' - also stunned he said it.

comingalongnicely Wed 07-Aug-13 09:55:53

Not fussed

Ficklefrancis Wed 07-Aug-13 09:57:10

1) No
2) Yes
3) Yes

Flobbadobs Wed 07-Aug-13 09:57:20

2 Yes, we shouldn't support imaginary places with real money. Enough of that goes on on Facebook...
Seriously though, I would bet that he's the type of person who defends himself by 'just saying it as it is". I bet he thinks its a real plaace as well, he doesn't strike me as the most intelligent man around..

LadyofSituations Wed 07-Aug-13 09:58:40

Actually, I reckon I'm more offended by his suggestion that aid money is being spent on "Ray-Ban sunglasses, trips to Paris, Ferraris, and all the rest of it" than by his stupid "bongo bongo land" phrase. Yes, there is a problem with aid reaching the people it is meant to. No, that's not a reason to stop giving - it's a reason to work harder on making sure it does reach the right people, and is given in a way that helps countries to help themselves for the future. That's why we have international development teams. And it's certainly not a reason to return to the days of "private charity", because this is about justice not charity. Eradication of polio, access to clean water etc. is a global right, not a privilege. And this ludicrous idea that borders matter, which bit of earth you happened to arrive into the world on is actually morally significant and so on, needs to stop.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 09:58:54

well along with having already hit statistical significance that he was wrong, we have also demonstrated that radio 4 listeners are are not drawn from the general population in an unbiased way....<absolutely NOT surprising....>

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:01:02

yeah I also couldn't believe it about the polio outbreak!

I can't find the moral place in my head where you justify spending more on NHS hospitals by removing funds from people fighting a polio outbreak that will be killing and disabling children left right and centre.

IncrediblePhatTheInnkeepersCat Wed 07-Aug-13 10:02:37

1. No
2. No
3. Shocked that he said it deliberately in public. Wouldn't have been surprised if he'd said it to another UKIP buddy and been overheard.

I think the more interesting question, ignoring the MEPs awful language, is what shape (if any) aid should take?

BoreOfWhabylon Wed 07-Aug-13 10:06:17

I have just looked at Wikipedia's entry on Godfrey Bloom. He seems to have interesting opinions on several subjects. The links are quite illuminating

this article for example.

HollyBerryBush Wed 07-Aug-13 10:06:45

BTW he went to one of the best state super selective grammar schools in the country, which surprises me.

1 No
2 Absolutely not
3 I can believe he said that unfortunately, I just despair at these twats.

Eyesunderarock Wed 07-Aug-13 10:09:54


I do think that there should be strict regulations and far more transparency on aid, who gives it, who is responsible for control and distribution of aid and what kickback deals are made between donor and recipient leaders.
I remember the time when the people of Uganda were starving and in a civil war. Our government gave aid, and Amin used it to pay his soldiers. The majority of the population got nothing.
The effectiveness of aid is also a very distressing and muddled area. Give to the starving of Ethiopia, Biafra, name your zone, Feed the World. Two decades later all you have is a considerably larger population starving.
So I think aid is essential and should be given by the wealthier nations to those in need. But with a very clear understanding of how best to help, and much less national government involvement.

Can I ask a naive and uninformed question about Syrian refugees?
Why are the Arabic-speaking, Muslim and wealthy nations of the Middle East not opening their borders without reservation to them?

See - no-one with an ounce of sympathy could argue that fighting polio is a worthy cause but surely the argument of a fully funded NHS should not be pitted against the argument for foreign aid?

ratbagcatbag Wed 07-Aug-13 10:16:37

1) no
2) yes - sorry but whilst we have families on the bread line and accessing food banks to survive we should question everything we spend. I struggle how we make cuts on most services but then feel pleased we've kept the aid spend the same.
3) stupid stupid comment from him, he would have got a better response had he used proper examples such as that of India being given aid, but they have a space programme

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:18:01

8/9 against

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:18:58

rat bag, well I agree we should question every thing...

paying this goon for one thing...

PanicMode Wed 07-Aug-13 10:19:31

I think what is more scary is that he is on the EU Committee for Women's Rights and Gender Equality.....especially in the light of some of his comments on the role of women, and admitting he visited brothels saying that "most girls [working in the industry] do it because they want to"....

navada Wed 07-Aug-13 10:20:42

Why should we be sending millions abroad when we can't afford to fund our own vital services? - also, I'm not on benefits but I know friends who are & they've had their money cut considerably and are really struggling. I know they're not literally 'starving' but they are struggling. I'd rather see them helped a bit more. We have families in this country relying on food banks to feed their children. That, in 2013 is shocking.

picnicbasketcase Wed 07-Aug-13 10:22:53

1. No
2. I honestly don't know because I don't think we're told enough about where money goes and what it's used for. It is troubling that this country is struggling but still sending so much abroad but at the same time, I don't want to be the kind of person who doesn't give a shit about anyone else. Arse firmly on the fence there it seems.
3. Sadly yes.

HighBrows Wed 07-Aug-13 10:23:31

1) No
2) No - I can guarantee if aid money was stopped tomorrow it would not be ring fenced to spend else where in the UK.
3) No - I can't believe he said this, it's a horrible thing to say. Has/is anyone going to make a complaint. People like him should not be allowed have a voice in the public if they say such utterly racist and hate incited things.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:24:03

'fully funded NHS'

but what IS that?

I went to an NHS hospital yesterday with my DD who has very grey whites to her eyes. We queried the HV about this when she was 6 months old. The HV referred us, and we now have had what I really hope is the last appointment in a series of 4 in which opticians have looked at her eyes and basically said they aren't bothered but come back again anyway.

We were satisfied after one appointment with a specialist, and actually tried to get DD discharged...but they pulled the guilt trippy "oh the consultant wouldn't have made a repeat appointment if you shouldn't keep it" we keep going and they keep saying "there's no problem - see you in 6 months..."

I don't like to think how many polio vaccines could have been bought with the money spent on this utterly pointless activity!

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:25:49

nevada are eye appointments more 'vital' than controlling a polio outbreak though?

HighBrows Wed 07-Aug-13 10:26:01

PanicMode I'm actually shocked at your last comment. I despair, I truly do. He is on a committee for women's and gender rights and uses brothels. My opinion of this person has sunk even lower. What an utter arsehole.

LadyBigtoes Wed 07-Aug-13 10:26:09

1. No didn't hear it.
2. No, we should send aid, though I think a hell of a lot of corruption goes on, so that needs to be looked at.
3. Amazing isn't it!? You would think even UKIP members might have a leeeetle think about whether they want to wear their racism THAT much on their sleeve - but no! However it makes them look like even bigger twunts, and will probably help to put people off them.

ouryve Wed 07-Aug-13 10:26:49

1. Yes
2. No - it's a tiny sum that we send and the least we can do as a supposedly civilised country which has historically exploited a lot of countries now in receipt of aid.
3. Considering the source, yes. It might be 2013, but small minded prats haven't been selectively bred out of the human population, yet.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:28:12

are confidence boosting cosmetic surgeries more important than controlling a polio outbreak?

I don't doubt that hating your body can in some rare cases be very debilitating...but it doesn't leave you dead / with a life altering disability with the massive frequency that polio does...

navada Wed 07-Aug-13 10:29:03

Don't use the NHS then, take out private medical insurance & contribute part of your taxes ( the part funding the NHS ) to foreign aid - why not do that?

Sparklyboots Wed 07-Aug-13 10:30:06

1. No
2. No
3. Sort of glad he said it as it is utterly revealing

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:30:16

9/10. that bumps us up a confidence level.

Dear MEP you are WRONG. The majority of radio 4 listeners do NOT agree with you.

navada Wed 07-Aug-13 10:31:44

& yes, some people commit suicide over depression re: body image. Stop being so flippant over things you know nothing about.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:33:15

navada because that won't stop the NHS spending billions on things far far less 'vital' than what the foreign aid budget attempts to address.

You said we can't send money abroad while vital services are cut.

How about we continue to send money abroad and cut non-vital services like constantly checking the repeat appointment box instead of putting your money where your mouth is and discharging someone that you think there is nothing wrong with?

Catlike Wed 07-Aug-13 10:35:38

Yes, sadly.

I think his mean spirited attitude towards helping poor people in developing countries is actually pretty common. I 'like' Save The Children on facebook so I get their photos in my newsfeed. Whenever they have a picture of a starving, ill baby in Africa or a homeless toddler from Syria sleeping outside in the snow in a refugee camp or similar, there are always a ton of comments underneath saying things like "send them contraceptives not food, they breed like rabbits", "let their own governments sort it out, there are plenty of kids here who need help" (true but how can that be your first reaction to a photo of a 2 year old child sleeping outdoors in snow?). It's really depressing.

ubik Wed 07-Aug-13 10:35:55

Am I right in thinking our 'Aid' often comes with a host of conditions attached including arms deals - I have a distant memory of the labour government selling Tanzania an anti aircraft system on the back of 'aid'

That said - we have a moral duty to help other countries in need

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:37:25

navada would you care to put an estimate on the relative rates of death due to suicide from lack of boob job and polio across the world?

Or maybe just make the efficiency point....

1 polio vaccine costs £1 and has a high probability of saving life.
1 boob job costs £5000 and has a very very low probability of saving a life.

So which of these is the more vital service?

LEMisdisappointed Wed 07-Aug-13 10:37:29

Well of course we shouldn't be sending aid to "bongo bongo land" <whispers> Theres no such place!

Catlike Wed 07-Aug-13 10:37:36

Oh and I should have said, these comments aren't even about government aid, they're resentful about people giving their own money to charities that help foreign children in desperate circumstances.

Lazyjaney Wed 07-Aug-13 10:37:57

"radio 4 listeners are are not drawn from the general population in an unbiased way"

Nor are MN readers, this is a double screened sample. reading Twitter there is a lot higher agreement on his foreign aid point.

IMO as long as foreign aid is a "non negotiable" on the left, despite the very clear evidence of misuse over the years, it creates an easy target.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:41:07

oh I know MN isn't an unbias's just the closest I can get....

As I said earlier this is the closest to right wing I ever get.

literally NO ONE I know in RL would agree that we should cut the foreign aid budget. Get it where is should be going...of course. But cut it? Never.

myroomisatip Wed 07-Aug-13 10:42:15

1 No
2 Yes
3 No shock

Icedink Wed 07-Aug-13 10:45:07

1- no
2 - no
3 - wtaf?!

ModernToss Wed 07-Aug-13 10:48:06

1. No, but read the transcript (am abroad, but a Radio 4 listener when in the UK)

2. No, I absolutely do not agree

3. I am gobsmacked and appalled that even this twat would be so overtly and unashamedly racist.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 10:49:53

This guy kinda makes me think of Jimmy Savilles gravestone 'it was good while it lasted'

Just a, yeah I am racist, yes I think the value of a life can be judged by skin colour and yeah I think women should stay in the home and businesses would be mad to employ them..oh and most prostitutes are gagging for it.....are you going to fire me? No? Then I'll just carry on.

Wellwobbly Wed 07-Aug-13 10:51:57

Please don't get sidetracked into 'UKIP are racist' and 'aid is good'.

Those are your assumptions, and they don't make you a better, more moral person even if you would like to think so

There is a growing amount of evidence that aid really does not help either good governance or the economies of these countries.

If the European Union (the entity that rules Britain these days) REALLY wanted to help Africa, they would:

1. stop paying European farmers sugar beet subsidies
2. stop putting tariffs on imported cane sugar (grows naturally w lots of sun) to make it more expensive than Silver Spoon
3. open European markets to African produce.
Just one small example.

And you know the lovely warm glow you get when you put clothes in the banks for charity? ... this has completely stuffed up the African textile and clothing industry (along with Chinese imports).

There is a huge market in Nairobi, where you can get the most amazing stuff for a couple of shillings, all donated by nice middle class people in the West.

In Uganda, they used to wear these lovely Victorian bodices with puff sleeves (happy nostalgic sigh), all made out of locally made and designed colourful fabric. All gone now, the tailors and factories out of business.

1) Yes
2)No. for so very many reasons.
3) utterly appalled. It says it all, he's an utter utter oooooh, I can't think of the words!

navada Wed 07-Aug-13 10:56:08

Icbinge; I doubt many women are offered cosmetic surgery on the NHS willy nilly, if that was the case we'd all be having it done. You could argue IVF treatment is a waste of money, the woman won't die if she never has a baby after all - why not cut all services that aren't deemed 'life or death' while we're at it? - is that what you want?

naomilpeb Wed 07-Aug-13 11:02:05

Not surprised. Disgusted, yes, but not surprise. It's UKIP for goodness sake! BNP lite as someone said. Those of us who find their views offensive need to wake up to quite how horrible and dangerous they are.

allmycats: I think foreign aid should continue but be spent on items, not given as money. So, if they need a new nursing facility we build it and train the staff, if grain etc is needed we distribute it and supervise the growing of it etc. Never, Ever Cash to be spent as they want.

This ignores however the side benefits that would be lost if it was done that way. Think about it - the number of jobs that get brought to a place where a nursing facility is being built - builders, masons, truckers, nursing trainers etc etc. And if 'we' (who exactly?) supervised the growing of grain, it's completely unsustainable as local people don't have any control or are able to save seeds for the next year's harvest, that kind of thing. All these countries have excellent, highly qualified people who could do that, and finding opportunities for them to work means fewer people in those countries are living in poverty and are now able to better provide for their families - which is what foreign aid is all about in the end, surely?

To all those who are saying that foreign aid needs greater scrutiny - of course it does. Corruption over foreign aid is a serious problem in lots of countries. There are a lot of campaigns by charities here in the UK and ones based in developing countries about trying to get 'First World' governments to take this seriously. A lot of the corruption comes from multi-national private companies too, who are contracted to deliver aid projects and win these contracts by bungs, backhanders and so on. These are a couple of the campaigns about this that might interest you:

peggyundercrackers Wed 07-Aug-13 11:12:02

doesnt surprise me.

I do think hes right about aid not being used for its original intention. Too much aid/money seems to be misdirected to benefit many people other than those who it was intended to benefit. Unfortunately due to the way he has put his argument no one will listen.

catinabox Wed 07-Aug-13 11:14:20


Please see response from Bongobongo land below.

[ response]

catinabox Wed 07-Aug-13 11:15:16

Eyesunderarock Wed 07-Aug-13 11:17:02
Trigglesx Wed 07-Aug-13 11:32:49

1. No
2. Possibly.
3. Not surprised, considering the source.

I'm really on the fence on sending foreign aid. I suspect a lot of it is not going where it should. And I do struggle with the idea that we're in austerity measures here, people are needing food banks, and there are talks of further cuts, but we're still sending money to other countries.

The moral obligation thing only goes so far - don't we also have a moral obligation to the children (and everyone) in our own country to make sure they are okay?

I've always wondered about the money sent over - "this much money buys a well or building or whatever" - at what point is it ever going to be enough? Sorry, but this has been the same thing for YEARS - since I was a child (and I'm in my 40's) - and yet, nothing has changed. Obviously, something is not working. And I don't believe we should be sending money to countries like China, India, etc at all.

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 07-Aug-13 12:05:14

This is all quite close to home for me, because I do have family in Syria as well as family who have fled to Jordan.

Pre war, they lived very stable lives, a lot like you and me. Now they have to queue for over six hours to get basic essentials. Sometimes they will have no oil for cooking or heat for months at a time and electricity is intermittent. They consider themselves fortunate, others have it far worse.

Eyes, to answer your question, Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon have taken in vast numbers of refugees. The fourth largest city in Jordan is a Syrian refugee camp.

For most Syrians it is difficult enough to escape Syria, the entire country is a warzone, all the border regions have heavy shelling, you usually need to hire a driver, which is hugely expensive.

Hopping on the plane to Qatar isn't really an option, then there's the fact that the cost of living in the wealthier countries is beyond what most refugees can afford.

Arab countries and Muslim charities are giving money to aid Syrians, the next big project is convert the camps to make them more suitable for long term living.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 12:18:45


VixZenFenchell Wed 07-Aug-13 12:26:52

No (but I am a radio 4 listener)
Yes (many reasons)
Yes, sadly.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 12:29:54

navada I would like to think both IVF and polio vaccines could be afforded if really wasted money in government was cut first.

But if it had to be one or the other, then sorry but I can't see how the desire for a child can outweigh the life of an existing child. So I would rather cut funding to IVF than cut funding to polio vaccines for Sudan.

If the current polio scheme loses funding the WHO thinks it will lead to an extra 200,000 cases per year that's 10,000 children paralysed or worse per year. They have very nearly eradicated the fucker. If they manage it then no more cases more funding required ever.

So yes I would exchange ~1500 babies born by IVF on the NHS this year for the chance to eradicate polio for ever and save 10,000 existing children per year from disability or death.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 12:31:01

ohhh Vix...well I guess I will count you 9/11 against...still statistically significant that the MEP was wrong about the majority of listeners agreeing with him.

TabithaStephens Wed 07-Aug-13 12:33:30

I think all foreign aid should be stopped. If people want to give to people in foreign countries, there are charities that do that.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 12:50:55

er what now...that should have been 10/12 blush

chicaguapa Wed 07-Aug-13 13:00:27

1. No I didn't
2. No. We live in one world and should not leave people who live in developing countries through circumstance of birth to die.
3. No, but it speaks volumes about his attitude to people in those countries and why he doesn't think they deserve aid.

sashh Wed 07-Aug-13 13:29:17

1. Did you hear the interview?


2. Do you agree that we should stop sending foreign aid?

No but it should be targeted better. If I have a choice I buy Colombian fair trade coffee because any Colombian farmer not growing cocaine needs all the help they can get.

The same with vaccines, we have eliminated small pox, we are close to the same with polio. This is not IMHO an aid policy, it is something that everyone in the world can benefit from. If we can irradiate a disease then we all benefit, as do our children, grand children etc.

Education, particularly female literacy - it is the best way to stop over population and ensures a better life for the children who are born.

If you feel safe in your own country, have access to education and food for yourself and your family then you are less likely to seek asylum elsewhere. I have no problem with people fleeing places where they are in danger, Malala Yousafzi is welcome, as are her family, but I wold prefer to live in a world where a child could go to school every day without death threats and be able to keep a blog.

3. Can you believe he said bongo bongo? In 2013???

If he is UKIP then yes I can

OryxCrake Wed 07-Aug-13 13:32:40

1. No
2. No
3. Words fail me, but sadly I can believe that there are people stupid and bigoted enough to say this, even in 2013.

LineRunner Wed 07-Aug-13 13:34:22

It's UKIP.

The real UKIP.

flatpackhamster Wed 07-Aug-13 13:36:03


9/10. that bumps us up a confidence level.

Dear MEP you are WRONG. The majority of radio 4 listeners Guardian reading latte-sipping Mumsnetter Islingtonite pantywaisters do NOT agree with you.

Fixed that for you.

TheRealFellatio Wed 07-Aug-13 13:36:28

It was a crass and incredibly stupid thing to say, even for him, but I do think we should be looking more closely at how our foreign aid is distributed.

HahaHarrie Wed 07-Aug-13 13:39:02


NO - If you think we have it tough here, how do you think it is for people in extremely poor countries who have no benefits, no access to medical assistance, never mind free medical, no clean drinking water, etc... It is just luck you weren't born in a poor, desperate place. Where is your humanity?!! I do agree that corrupt governments/dictorships that squander money when their country is in need makes me angry and sick. But should you screw people over twice?

Urgh - very depressing attitude.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 13:39:21

flat the MN jury is more split than the radio 4 a long way... my statement was true...yours is not so much.

If the MEP has said the majority of MNetters will agree with me he might have been right.

flatpackhamster Wed 07-Aug-13 13:41:10


flat the MN jury is more split than the radio 4 a long way... my statement was true...yours is not so much.

If the MEP has said the majority of MNetters will agree with me he might have been right.

Mumsnetters, Radio 4 listeners, Guardian readers - pretty similar demographic. Radio 4 listeners - definitely broader. But MN/Guardian are practically interchangeable. Look at the weekly "AIBU to hate the tories because they are so bad" which crop up here.

Parmarella Wed 07-Aug-13 13:44:27

1. No
2. Yes ( remove trade barriers instead and give them a fair chance to compete, aid does not seem to help much. Don't give a man a fish, teach him to fish instead, that idea)
3. Yes, sadly I can believe it and it invalidates any point he might have had

TabithaStephens Wed 07-Aug-13 13:45:22

We give $12 billion in aid to foreign countries. How can anyone decry our own "austerity" while still being in favour of foreign aid to this level?

Parmarella Wed 07-Aug-13 13:47:21

Tabith, I guess the thought would be to tax "the rich" more?

Pilgit Wed 07-Aug-13 13:48:21

Yes - but it is all so much more complicated than that. In principle we as a nation have so much more and it is our duty to provide aid. That said the way it is dealt with and the way people here are suffering shows we are from getting it right.
Unfortunately - no.

Horrible thing to say - it is a matter of life and death and he has trivialised it with this term. A little part of me did wonder whether cuts in aid to Bongo Bongo Land would explain why you don't get Um Bongo much any more.

flatpackhamster Wed 07-Aug-13 13:49:19


Tabith, I guess the thought would be to tax "the rich" more?

If it was that easy to get more tax out of "the rich", don't you think Gordon Brown would have helped himself long ago?

How about 'not spending quite so much money'?

Parmarella Wed 07-Aug-13 13:53:18

Well yes, exactly.

My point was that saying "tax the rich more" means " tax anyone with more money than me, but not me please" which is prevalent in left wing thinking.

I think aid should be different anyway, not handing out cash to ease our own conscience. Now micro finance can be very beneficial to stabilise local communities, that is something I think is effective.

Viviennemary Wed 07-Aug-13 13:56:02

1) No
2) Aid should target the people in need. And sometimes it doesn't
3) No. Of course this is bad by today's standards.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 13:56:11

flat my point is that this thread PROVES that the MN demographic and the radio 4 MN subset are not the same AT ALL.

Blu Wed 07-Aug-13 13:58:10

1. No
2. No, but I think it is fair to review what aid, to where, for what purpose and on what terms
3. Pretty depressing that anyone thinks it is OK to talk or think like that and doubly so that anyone who does can get elected to represent a UK constituency.

Inertia Wed 07-Aug-13 13:59:19

1. Didn't hear it.

2. I don't agree that we should stop sending foreign aid. The UK overall is relatively comfortable compared to many countries of the world, though obviously there is a lot of inequality in our society, with people in the UK living in poverty. We spend a comparatively small amount in foreign aid- rather than begrudging support to the genuinely destitute and desperate nations of the world, we should be looking at ensuring a fair and efficient taxation and public spending strategy. Some aspects of foreign aid may be questionable and based on political/ outdated historical reasons rather than humanitarian need, but I don't want to support a policy which would stop providing life-saving aid in order to fund , for example, the writing -off of billions of pounds worth of business taxes. And as the world becomes increasingly capitalist and market-driven, it's hard to imagine how things can ever become more equal.

3. That's UKIP for you! If you try to silence a basket of snarling racists by hiding them under a silky smiling sheet of voter-friendly patriotism, every so often one of them will rip through the cover to show the world what's really under the surface.

Tabitha, because that amount is a tiny drop in the ocean, it's the bare minimum standard that we've promised, and we get a lot more back from poor countries than we ever give them. The system is set up to make it look like we're doing a lot, even in these hard times, when really the system has already been set for the UK to make profit out of any giving.

If we helped enforce the corporation tax laws in the countries where our citizens take resources, reworked the system of trade and redid the entire IMF debt system, and ensured a joint pot for aid in emergency situations like a sudden polio outbreak, it would be fairer and we would likely end up spending less on foreign aid as the countries would become less dependent on us and have the capital to build themselves, but that would mean we would lose out on the money and under-priced trades that boost our own economy.

HaroldLloyd Wed 07-Aug-13 14:07:59

No no and bloody hell!

No I didn't hear the interview.

I don't think we should stop aid, but we do need to look at where it is sent, stop using it as bribery and be a bit more sensible about how it is used.

I'm only surprised he didn't manage to blame women for other countries needing aid as he is a misogynistic wankbadger who hates everyone who is not a middle aged man.

Wellwobbly Wed 07-Aug-13 14:19:15

Here is a diplomat's view:

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 07-Aug-13 15:09:13

Flat you are so boring. All you do is come on threads and call us a bunch of out of touch Guardian readers.

When anyone points out that they have direct experience of whatever is being discussed you then claim they're rubbing their credentials in your face.

Aid is controversial and there are arguments for and against. If you have any arguments it would be good to actually hear them, instead of the same tedious insults.

flatpackhamster Wed 07-Aug-13 15:43:58


Flat you are so boring. All you do is come on threads and call us a bunch of out of touch Guardian readers.

Only on the threads where that's clearly what's happening. As soon as I saw the Godfrey Bloom story, my first thought was 'The Trots on Mumsnet will be frothing with excitement at being the first one to post about this. UKIP and evil racialism, what could make them happier.' And I was right.

When anyone points out that they have direct experience of whatever is being discussed you then claim they're rubbing their credentials in your face.


Aid is controversial and there are arguments for and against.


If you have any arguments it would be good to actually hear them, instead of the same tedious insults.

I apologise. In future I will improve the quality of my insults.

Britian is a member of the G8 and along with policy making/UN directives and enforcement there is also the need to balance it with the givng of aid and assistance whereever possible. Britian historically has a chequered colonial past and it would be irresponsible to abandon former colonies in need.

I still do not get this idea that it is an either/or situation - the idea that somehow taking aid away from people in dire need is somehow going to be able to plug gaps in our economy? We just pay our taxes and vote in the vain hope that the party we elect follow through on election promises and deliver.

I find this funny from the BNP. These are the same people who are quite willing to let Johhny Foreigners go home and not have any recourse to any aid, but yet don't realise that the money given for aid is often the reason why there aren't more economic migrants ...

somewheresomehow Wed 07-Aug-13 16:00:01

1. some of it
2. yes , it doesnt go to where its needed
3. i can believe it but i think he was trying to get the point across that we should not be giving our money out to every tin pot country that asks for it

ophelia275 Wed 07-Aug-13 16:05:25

1. No
2. Yes - Because so much of it doesn't get to the people/groups/activities it is supposedly for.
3. Yes I can believe it (rolls eyes).

LEMisdisappointed Wed 07-Aug-13 16:09:36

flatpack, why would you want to insult someone????

from what i understand we are a member of the UN and would assume, maybe i am wrong, that we benefit from that in some way. We have a duty to other members of that society, to other human beings to ensure that within our capabilities, we provide aid to those who need it.

I am a member of the red cross, although to my shame, not an active member, however I am proud to be a member of an organisation that help anyone, regardless of race/religeon/politics, but simply because they are human beings.

I know that aid can be difficult because how does one ensure that in countries with political instability that the aid is actually getting to those who need it, but if there is no aid at all, no one will get it.

See, id rather my money go to bongo bongo land than to help some poncy art gallery or theatre and i think it is outrageous that the national lotteries money goes to these "causes". However that is my personal opinion, i am sure that these places do a lot for local communities and are deserving, but really, how can you put a new roof for a theatre over a child in need of a vaccine or basic needs such as clean water.

I also recognise that there is real poverty in this country, our government has a responsibility to do something about this, i'd rather the budget for this be taken from possibly the "arts" budet rather than the bongo bongo land budget though.

I don't give much to charity, i am skint most of the time, but i occasionally text a fiver to DEC when disasters happen. Its nobodies business but mine what charity i give my money to.

The irony is that the RSPCA get more money from donations in the UK than the red cross hmm

softlysoftly Wed 07-Aug-13 16:12:29

1. No
2. No but as already said needs to get to the right people AND make long term goals of improvement.

3 Yes, excellent PR, probably planned, less people who are likely to vote for them will be offended than than you think or hope the bastards.

4. BongoBongo land is Bangladesh, I know because DH calls his loving family Bongos, s' ok apparently becausehe is one hmm

JakeBullet Wed 07-Aug-13 16:15:03

Its a case of UKIP not vetting it's MEPs very well.

No matter whether you agree with their policies or not they are not hrlped by people who use such poor language to promote them.

I didn't hear the interview
I don't necessarily agree with him
Sadly I CAN believe it and he is far from alone.

And for FlatPack.....I don't read the Guardian, I am just a human who doesn't like the type of person that feels such language is appropriate.

Purplepassages Wed 07-Aug-13 16:16:51

1. No

2. Some of it. Our aid props up some pretty nasty regimes, and provides aim dept employees with some pretty lavish lifestyles - great jobs if you want to pay off your mortgage early and send your kids to boarding school. Not what you might imagine for the public sector. BUT that doesn't mean that I agree with this UKIP wanker.

3. Wtaf? Revolting. Yes, but only because it is UKIP.

Purplepassages Wed 07-Aug-13 16:18:51

Aid dept, not aim dept. Sausage fingers.

UnexpectedStepmum Wed 07-Aug-13 16:23:05

1. No
2. No
3. FGS...

Xihha Wed 07-Aug-13 16:23:05

and Yes, but i am surprised they'd say it on the radio.

MissFenella Wed 07-Aug-13 16:44:56

yes but I am glad his sort use this type of language. It makes them easily identifiable and invalidates any argument by the sheer stupidity/crassness of language.

ICBINEG Wed 07-Aug-13 16:59:40

hmm I don't read the guardian either....

frothing over the language would indeed have been too easy...which is why this thread is about whether or not the goon was correct to assert that radio 4 listeners agree with him.....

a much more interesting question....and we answered it grin

<not that I mind the discussion of whether or not we should send foreign aid...many interesting points made!>

SarahAndFuck Wed 07-Aug-13 17:53:10

1. Yes and no. I heard a brief clip on the radio news but I was at work and couldn't really listen to it properly.

2. Yes and no. One country (India?) apparently said they didn't want or need our aid, and we apparently insisted on still giving it because we didn't want to be politically embarrassed. I find this odd, if it's been reported accurately, and think we shouldn't force money on countries who don't want it when we could use it here or elsewhere.

3. Unfortunately yes I can. I'm just amazed it made it past the spin doctors and into the speech.

I heard a little bit of the speech, including the "Bongo Bongo land" quote and then somebody else from UKIP saying that he doesn't understand what the problem is as there is no such place as Bongo Bongo Land so how can people be offended by somebody talking about it?

He didn't explain how we are managing to give money to a non-existent country though.

Or why one of his parties MP's had bothered to give a speech about a country that doesn't exist getting money we are obviously not giving to them (since they don't exist).

gordyslovesheep Wed 07-Aug-13 18:01:43

No Yes - sadly

Oblomov Wed 07-Aug-13 18:14:57

1. Yes
2. Yes
3. No

Have since listened to the Radio 2 review and I just think his language has obscured a point.

flatpackhamster Wed 07-Aug-13 18:21:24


3. Unfortunately yes I can. I'm just amazed it made it past the spin doctors and into the speech.

UKIP don't have spin doctors. Most MEPs don't have speechwriters.

Saffyz Wed 07-Aug-13 18:26:40

1. No
2. No, I think we should keep sending aid
3. Sadly yes, I can believe there are some idiots who would say something like that.

catgirl1976 Wed 07-Aug-13 18:45:08


Pixieonthemoor Wed 07-Aug-13 18:50:41

1. Yes
2. Of course we should keep sending it (although I am a bit hmm that India has a space programme whilst the poverty of some of their people is appalling)
3. Doesn't surprise me - he struck me as a total tosspot

colleysmill Wed 07-Aug-13 18:52:59


No but I think foreign aid should be like all areas of public spending and subject to scrutiny and assessments to whether it is actually reaching the projects and people for which it was sent.

Isn't Bongo Bongo land where all the Mazda Bongos come from?

1. Part of it.
2. No I don't think it should be stopped completely but I'd like to see where it's all going and how it's helping, so we know we are sending it to the right places.
3. Yes, I'm not surprised to be honest with you. UKIP have some valid points in some areas but make themselves look like a complete ass when it comes to others. If they could only tone it down a bit, they may have a point i.e. needing to control immigration but not making it about race, but about population size and employment.

I couldn't help laugh though when I heard BongoBongoLand. I thought it was some made up place that a kid came up with, like a bounceycastle land or something like that. smile

ShellyBoobs Wed 07-Aug-13 19:35:00

1. No
2. No
3. Yes because he's from UKIP, so nothing he says surprises me.

JaquelineHyde Wed 07-Aug-13 20:25:59

1. No, but I am a Radio4 listener.

2. No.

3. Saddened but not surprised, this is UKIP we are talking about, I think you have to sign up to use language like this on a daily basis if you want to become a party member.

SarahAndFuck Thu 08-Aug-13 00:12:19

flatpack - I didn't know that, thank you.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 00:16:41

whoop whoop MEP proved wrong at the 0.01 confidence level again grin

RussianBlu Thu 08-Aug-13 01:31:04

I thought the interview on the channel 4 news tonight with Krishnan Guru-Murthy was hilarious.

MyBaby1day Thu 08-Aug-13 04:00:37

1. Yes
2. No
3. No, it's an awful thing to say, you don't say things like that anymore!. It was racist and he should be sacked from whatever position he holds!.

niceguy2 Thu 08-Aug-13 04:10:05

I hate the stupid 'logic' that we should cut foreign aid because we have doctors and hospitals which need the money more.

Why must we always boil everything down to that? We can supply that argument to everything the government spends on. Why give money to the arts? Why not keep the TV license money? Why spend money fixing roads when we need nurses to keep people alive?

The foreign aid budget is tiny in comparison to the overall budget and to keep focusing on this is about as annoying as the obsession on benefit fraud when most of our money is spent/wasted elsewhere

Mimishimi Thu 08-Aug-13 04:47:21

2. Yes (rife with corruption both on our end and the recipients). Do believe money is better spent on local services.
3. Yes

Sparklymommy Thu 08-Aug-13 07:06:27

1: No.
2: no, but I do think it needs to be better distributed. For example we are still sending aid to China... Who don't need or even want it!
3: just shock no one should use such terms. Even if they are UKIP!

TheRealFellatio Thu 08-Aug-13 07:11:11

Yes Oblomov I thought that too.

TheRealFellatio Thu 08-Aug-13 07:13:07

He has done what I call a 'Classic Daily Mail.' Which is the art of having something arguably important to say, but saying it such a way that no-one can take you seriously.

Cerisier Thu 08-Aug-13 07:19:44

The Bongo thing makes me laugh as one of the very nice restaurants at the Night Safari here in Singapore is called Bongo Burgers. Nobody is offended at the name.

To answer the questions:
1. no
2. yes and no- I think that sending money to places like Pakistan and China is ridiculous, the money should go to victims of disasters and to alleviate starvation and help stop diseases
3. ha ha ha

Lazyjaney Thu 08-Aug-13 07:36:56

He has done what I call a 'Classic Daily Mail.' Which is the art of having something arguably important to say, but saying it such a way that no-one can take you seriously

I disagree - it wasn't aimed at Guardian readers and the media chatterati, that's not UKIPs constituency. I think the people it was aimed at absolutely got it, just search Twittter.

Lazyjaney Thu 08-Aug-13 07:43:44

whoop whoop MEP proved wrong at the 0.01 confidence level again

You are mistakenly thinking "No, but" means the same as No. It's how people who don't want to be seen to agree with UKIP, do agree smile

1. No.

2. No - first, because the UK takes much more from the third world than it gives in return and second, because aid constitutes diplomacy and influence on the world stage.

3. Yes, and I expect the UKIP top brass are having a good laugh about it.

TheRealFellatio Thu 08-Aug-13 07:48:14

No think you are misunderstanding me. Of course some people got it, just as some people nod along in agreement to the DM. What I mean is that the point he was trying to make about foreign aid was a good one; we do need to look carefully about where our money is going and make sure it is sensibly targeted. But his choice of phrase and his general tone of delivery has detracted from any valid point he may have and, and all we take from it is the message that he is small minded and xenophobic.

It is ironic that we all know Bongo Bongo Land is a euphemism for all or any tin pot African states with ever changing names due to being in a permanent state of flux - and they are the ones who most need our aid. Not India, not China, not Argentina. so again, he started off with the bones of a good argument and then ruined it!

ladymariner Thu 08-Aug-13 08:05:18

1) no

2) yes

3) yes......

Lazyjaney Thu 08-Aug-13 08:23:52

But his choice of phrase and his general tone of delivery has detracted from any valid point he may have and, and all we take from it is the message that he is small minded and xenophobic

Only liberals will see it as Xenophobic. Read Twitter rather than MN and the Guardian to see how it was taken in general. The point resonated far further than if it had been made in a more careful, PC way.

FreudiansSlipper Thu 08-Aug-13 09:40:15

Yes not really that shocked sadly

babybythesea Thu 08-Aug-13 10:33:23

I haven't yet read the whole thread but will add my numbers anyway as I might not get to finish it before the baby starts squawking!

1) Yes.
2) No, not in any way shape or form, although better practice at delivering it needs to be a priority.
3) I know people think it, but to say it like that? Cannot believe he thought it was appropriate, on any level, whether to shock or because he didn't think it through, or whatever.

With regards to the charity giving, I would agree that being somebody worthy of help because you were unlucky enough to be born into horrible living conditions doesn't change whether you are born in Africa, South America, or the UK.

But I think there is a wider point. We can only stop giving, as a nation, when we stop screwing these countries over.

During the South Africa football cup, a deal agreed with that needy little company, coca cola, prevented street vendors who normally sell within certain distances of the stadiums from selling there as coca cola had bought exclusive rights to the area, somehow. News story from the time says : "Regulations imposed by football's world governing body Fifa on host countries stipulate that no-one but its commercial partners be allowed trade or promote their products in the immediate vicinity of all World Cup sites." It effectively banned the livelihoods of the street vendors for the duration of the world cup.

Tax avoidance - legal but morally dodgy: "In one case a single - entirely legal - transaction through UK-linked tax havens would have provided $2.2 billion in tax if it had not taken place offshore, according to the Indian government. This is almost enough money to provide every Indian primary school child with a subsidised midday meal for an entire year. In another example, one major mining firm gets 84 per cent of its revenues from Africa, yet has just four of its 81 subsidiaries registered in African countries, and 47 registered in tax havens."
We know it's being done to us in the UK through companies like google and amazon, but we are also helping it happen to developing countries - would they need as much aid if we could sort out these tax issues?

And then the issues we're all aware of. Like the sweat shops using cheap labour to produce clothes. We can't hand people a double whammy, saying on the one hand we refuse to buy clothes at a price which means you get a decent salary because we are poor (although we have medical help and clean water and education regardless...) but at the same time insist that our own poverty means we cannot help. Stay where you are making my dirt-cheap clothes ....

Comparing the reaction of oil companies to their 'mistakes' is interesting. Millions was ploughed into the US after the oil spill there. It's an ongoing issue in the Niger Delta too. Is there any money going to support people whose livelihoods are affected there? Umm, not so much.

So I think if we want to stop aid, then we also have to accept that activities of developed countries are impacting developing countries, in some cases preventing people from getting out of poverty (or even preventing them from earning at all, or being healthy) and do something drastic to sort that out.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 11:04:11

Lazey hmm well I tried to include 'no but' if people were saying we could do more with the money we do send abroad...I mean that is a truism right? All money could be better spent...that wasn't his point at all....his point was spend it at home not away.

I hope I didn't count too many people who said 'no but I do think we should spend more money here and less on foreign aid' ...although some may have escaped the net smile

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 11:06:02

baby thank you for that post - very interesting and thought provoking reading.

1) No
2) Partly - Agree with Holly about not to countries that have enough money to look after themselves.
Not to countries who's goverment could afford it if they stopped spending all the money on themselves.
In this country we have kids going to bed without having eaten all day, sleeping on the floor because their family's can't afford food, furniture or heating. Shouldn't we be spending our money on helping them rather than relying on charity's such as children in need to help projects to feed kids in our own country whilst our money goes abroad!! - i just don't understand it. confused
3) Doesn't surprise me!

musicismylife Thu 08-Aug-13 11:39:03

If he can say 'bongo bongo land' in public, I dread to think what his ilk say in private...

Someone mentioned up thread about a colonistic attitude.

This as well. I think people forget that luck really does depend on which side of the world you were born. And I think people also forget that there is lack of contraception in these countries and that men really do rule the roost.

It's all rather sad without that wanker adding insult to injury sad

Just to be clear, India REJECTED aid from the UK.

To answer the OP,
1. No.
2. Yes, you can't afford it.
3. It's an irrelevance.

FantasticDay Thu 08-Aug-13 12:02:17

1. Yes
2. Some reservations about foreign aid:
a) There are long standing issues with governance and accountability. Undoubtedly a lot of money has paid by poor people in rich countries to be siphoned off by rich people in poor countries. However, DfiD has really got its act together recently about evaluating the effectiveness of aid projects.
b) The recent massive Chinese investment in Africa does seems to be more effective for e.g. developing Nigeria's infrastructure and human capital than any amount of Western aid (though without any ties to human rights requirements etc.). They also offer a new market for African produce, as the EU is very protectionist of its own primary produce.
c) I am really uneasy about sending aid to middle income states which have enough money to develop nuclear weapons (India, Pakistan).

These are reservations though, rather than actually thinking we should stop it (and certainly Action Aid and Christian Aid do a fantastic job helping people to help themselves through education, very targeted project etc).

3) Totally unacceptable and racist term

AmberLeaf Thu 08-Aug-13 12:22:10

1. no
2. no
3. yes, he is a UKIP member, why would anyone be surprised that he is a racist?!

Sleepyhead33 Thu 08-Aug-13 12:54:26

No, absolutely not.
Sadly, yes from this particular character.

cushtie335 Thu 08-Aug-13 12:58:37

I just get so weary knowing that racist and xenophobic old farts like this still exist in public life. It's just so.....bleehhhemmmemammm, just, tired of it y'know. I honestly thought they all died in 1973, but apparently not.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 12:59:52

cush yup the plan to outlive the bigots is a slow one to come to fruition...but just another 20 years or so....

cushtie335 Thu 08-Aug-13 13:05:28

I just don't understand how these old bigots don't realise that we all live on the same fucking planet and are all entitled to a decent quality of life on it. It seems they believe that's a right only extended to white, middle class British blokes, i.e. people just like them. Tell me it'll change ICBINEG, tell me it'll change.... sad

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 15:18:19

It will will...but very slowly....

navada Thu 08-Aug-13 15:27:55

I'm actually suprized at the amount of people agreeing with him on this thread, this being Mumsnet n'all.

GibberTheMonkey Thu 08-Aug-13 15:29:30

Sadly yes though I wish it were not so

navada Thu 08-Aug-13 15:36:53

surprised even.

jollygoose Thu 08-Aug-13 15:44:34

I realise most mnetters are anti ukip and the bongo bongo reference very silly - however putting that aside I belie ve charity begins at home and whilst of course we should continue to support things like vaccinations and anti famine projects I cant think for the life of me why we are sending money to places like India which is spending huge amounts on space projects - also Pakistan is spending far more than we can afford on defence. Why should are cancer sufferers and disabled children be unable to access much needed drugs etc whilst w send these huge amounts of money abroad.

inallmydays Thu 08-Aug-13 15:46:04


TabithaStephens Thu 08-Aug-13 15:50:04

No-one is "entitled" to a decent quality of life. It's something that has to be worked for.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 15:56:01

hmm cancer sufferers....

Is it crazy to say that a child born in Sudan into crippling poverty, who will never have water or food security, whose life will be put at risk by every childhood disease going, might actually bite your hand off for the chance to become a 50 something cancer sufferer?

Is it really more important that my taxes be spent getting lifesaving treatment to a 50 something person in the UK than to a newborn baby in Sudan?

TabithaStephens Thu 08-Aug-13 15:58:18

I would say it was. We can't solve all the problems in the world, no matter how much money we throw at it.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 15:58:52

can you articulate why though Tabitha?

higgle Thu 08-Aug-13 15:59:16

1. Yes
2. Was it a billion pounds a month? If that is what it is then I'm surprised the government say they can't afford 2 billion a year for a proper legal aid system here - though I agree with supporting aid in general terms.
3.Shocked and saddened.

skyeskyeskye Thu 08-Aug-13 16:00:32

Yes - Our own country needs sorting out before we throw millions at other countries. This country cannot solve the problems of the entire world

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 16:00:56

19% of my taxes already go to treating people in the UK, why should I resent the 0.36% that stops children from dying of polio in Sudan?

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 16:05:28

Given the direct choice between saving the life of a baby in Sudan and the life of a 50 year old in the UK, I would save the baby. Because the 50 year old has had a good crack at life....

A harder question would be would I choose for my tax to save the life of a UK baby over a Sudanese one....I like to think there isn't much in it.

Of course I would fall of the band wagon big time if asked if I would rather save my own baby or yours....

I guess all this means is that my extended family is the world, not the population of the UK alone.

navada Thu 08-Aug-13 16:12:45

I'd like to show you what you've just written when you're a 50 year old cancer sufferer - I wonder would you really refuse all life saving drugs?

navada Thu 08-Aug-13 16:16:58

& don't bother replying . I can't take anymore of this sanctimonious drivel.

< hides thread >

missmarplestmarymead Thu 08-Aug-13 16:26:38

That really is a very thoughtless thing to say, Icbineg.
By saying that the world is your extended family, you portray yourself as a rather silly sixth former and do your ultimate argument no good.

However, no one would wish a baby to die of any nationality if it could be saved but do you think that leaders of those countries who misappropriate that money (and some do) should have funds put into their hands jus because out of every £10 they are given, they might put twenty pence towards the good of the general population?

There really is no other reply to that other than 'no'. Therefore, another way of giving aid must be sought. It shouldn't be stopped but the way in which it is given needs urgent re considering.

Btw, an apology to all those reading your immature (doing you a favour here by believing it is immaturity rather than a bad heart) remarks and reeling because you may have judged their loved one's life to be worth less than others, may be the right thing to do.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 16:32:11

Well I am not but my DM I am not talking without experience....

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 16:36:17

I have judged their loved ones lives as worth less than others?

What the hell is the whole of this thread but a massive load of people saying that the UK's 1st world problems are more important the developing worlds life and death problems?

I think everyone on here who has said outright that they don't give a stuff about the lives of babies in foreign countries should apologise.

ICBINEG Thu 08-Aug-13 16:38:14

I mean imagine you are a Sudanese mother with a sick baby, no clean water and no hope of treatment....I bet you don't so much agree that a 'fully funded NHS' is more important. Or better still that the UK should make sure there are no defence cuts in preference to sending you a polio vaccine.

gordyslovesheep Thu 08-Aug-13 16:44:20

we are human beings - we should value other human beings, regardless of their address

and people are deluded if they think aid money would be pumped into services for cancer patients or disabled children

(NB I love that, in the world of hyperbole Cancer 'sufferers' and disabled children are always more worthy than say HIV patients or disabled adults)

missmarplestmarymead Thu 08-Aug-13 16:48:06

Ok Icbineg.

You sound very young either in years or thought and it is a great pity that you are sticking to your very emotional language, which really won't cut any ice with those who have the power to change things.

Do you think that India should cut back its rapidly expanding defence budget in order to look after its poorest people with the aid that it is given or do you think that there should be some strings on that aid; strings of the sort that specify how that money is to be spent.

It really is much more complicated than your 'extended family of the world'point; a remark which should certain groups pick up on, it will be used as a weapon to say, 'those who want aid to continue are fluffy headed. They would rather people die of cancer in the UK than stop building palaces for dictators'

I know that isn't exactly what you said but that is how it could be presented. That would be a very great pity but it is a possibility.

guiltyconscience Thu 08-Aug-13 16:48:48

1. No
3.Yes I can believe it he's an older gentleman who hasn't been enlightened

TooMuchRain Thu 08-Aug-13 16:54:45

1. Yes
2. No
3. Yes, he is a UKIP bigot

babybythesea Thu 08-Aug-13 17:14:18

Our own country needs sorting out before we throw millions at other countries. This country cannot solve the problems of the entire world

What do you think of, for example, paying more for bananas because it gives the people who farm them a better existence? So that we would not need to 'throw millions' at them in the same way because they would have a fair shot of working their way out of poverty (both on a personal but also a national level)?
I can't remember which charity it was who highlighted it, but some workers on banana plantations were having their health massively affected because of the spraying. Chemicals which really shouldn't be sprayed on humans were being used to protect the crop from pests, and this was being done using aerial spraying (planes), but in order to ensure they picked an amount of bananas to give them a wage they could live on, the workers were not leaving the plantation or even taking shelter. If they did, their wages reflected it.
This is so we can buy cheap bananas. I can't see how we could not then go on to fund healthcare in these countries - we are a major reason WHY people are in need of that healthcare!
Unless we are really saying "I am poor and deserve cheap food and if providing it for me gives you cancer, then that's your bad luck - I don't have an responsibility to help in your possible recovery".

Thousands of examples like this.

I can't separate this from the aid issues. While we are happily buying cheap stuff at the cost of developing countries, I cannot see how we can then go on to say that there are poverty stricken people here too who need help and we won't give to other countries. If we were prepared to pay fair prices for our goods, then maybe we'd have a point. And if tax avoidance wasn't a problem (see my earlier post - one major mining firm gets 84 per cent of its revenues from Africa, yet has just four of its 81 subsidiaries registered in African countries, and 47 registered in tax havens). We need to get this sorted out, and not carry on living and conducting business in such a way as to keep whole nations in poverty, and then maybe aid wouldn't be an issue at all. While we contribute to the problem though, we cannot then refuse to contribute to the support of those affected. However poor we think we are.

This is a separate issue from then pointing out that the aid needs to be managed in such a way that it is not creamed off by politicians etc. That is, of course, vital. And it also needs to be an ongoing process of assessing where it is needed and how it is delivered. I was half listening to something yesterday (on Radio 4 again!) which talked about how aid to somewhere (Afghanistan?) from the US was in the form of grain but how this year they've had a bumper harvest and the grain will go to waste. Or something along those lines - I was not concentrating properly.

babybythesea Thu 08-Aug-13 17:16:27

Gah - I need to proof read properly.
The first sentence was something picked from a pervious poster but just looks random and silly where I put it because it isn't clear that's what I did.

ICBINEG Fri 09-Aug-13 20:45:47

baby it was clear to me! interesting again to read your posts!

pointythings Fri 09-Aug-13 20:50:59

1. Yes

2. No, but we need to target aid better, tackle corruption and focus more on trade than on aid - it's always preferable to help people stand on their own two feet.

3. Yes, of course I can believe it. It's UKIP.

BangOn Fri 09-Aug-13 20:56:21

Isn't what he said basically a direct quote from Alan Clarke's diaries? Making UKIP 70's tory throwbacks in a timewarp. Apt.

McAvity Fri 09-Aug-13 21:00:28

Every time UKIP come out with something racist or bigoted the large majority of people who would never vote for them anyway see them as totally discredited, and the sizeable minority of actual racists think 'Great, finally someone prepared to stick it to Bongo Bongo land.'

I think we should use the aid money that we currently send out to these countries, to pay wages for unemployed people to go out there and train people to teach, doctors, builders etc. Handouts only go so far and what we need to do long term is ensure that these countries are given the chance to stand on their own 2 feet and not be reliant on aid from the West for ever.

hardtostayfocused Fri 09-Aug-13 21:28:33

Are you still counting Icbineg?

1. Yes
2. No - although it would be better to have (Fair) Trade not Aid.
3. No - I was absolutely staggered. What a moron.

Babybythesea I like your style.

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