international small farmer solidarity

Leigh lh at pressroom.com
Sun May 5 14:48:27 EDT 2002


Phil,

My wife and I were just down in Brazil.  She was meeting with various 
groups in the fight to stop large multinationals (mostly French) from 
privatizing the water supply.  Some of the groups she met with 
represented small farmers.  What is happening in Brazil is that large 
corporations are moving in and kicking the small farmers off the 
land, sometimes using laws they are instrumental in writing, 
sometimes with the local police, sometime with the use of death 
squads.

   So I guess the short of it is that helping small farmers and 
building solidarity with small farmers internationally wasn't and 
isn't a bad move.

What was/is a bad move was/is allowing large transnational 
corporations  get control of the food system here and abroad.  We 
should be actively opposing treaties (NAFTA) and organizations (WTO, 
World Bank, IMF) that promote transnational corporate globalization 
at the expense of small farmers. These organizations do not operate 
in the interest of small farmers here or abroad.

Here's a quote from a world bank official about water privatization 
in Ghana - 'The poor have more resources than we imagine.  They can 
afford paying more for basic services.'
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