Charlie Stross wrote:
> On Wed, Aug 22, 2001 at 01:34:18PM -0400, Mike Lorrey wrote:
> > Sure, but I don't seen anyone suing Jamaica in the WTO over the
> > marijuana crop, which is far higher in value than the banana crop. Keep
> > in mind also that native jamaicans don't own the banana plantations in
> > Jamaica either, they are owned by Brits.
> Er, no. We -- the British public -- were paying approximately twice
> as much to the Jamaican producers for their bananas as we're paying
> to United Fruit for the imports we're now buying. Guess what: that's
> money that isn't going to the small Jamaican farmers any more, it's
> going to United Fruit.
> I can personally live with bananas that cost 50p a kilo as easily as I
> can live with bananas that cost 20p a kilo. But Jamaica can't. Or, to
> put it another way, Mike: "freeing up trade" has just put a massive
> deflationary crimp on the Jamaican economy, while fucking them over
> royally by tying any loans they get to a 19% interest rate. At that kind
> of interest rate, is it any wonder that so many third world countries
> end up defaulting?
And as I said, the 19% rate is a disincentive to begin with. Giving a
loan to a person who has just lost their job is, as I said earlier, a
'really really dumb idea'. If Jamaica decides to take out such loans, it
is merely demonstrating its own stupidity.
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