Foreign Aid & Charity

A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.

Henning Webb Prentis
Former president of the National Association of Manufacturers.
Feb 1943

The role of government is to protect your rights, your property (including your right to spend your money as you wish) and to issue the national currency. By implication, the government should not make contributions (from tax receipts) to foreign governments, foreign aid organisations, or charities; rather, it should protect your individual right to choose to whom you wish to make charitable payments.

Charity is a personal and moral choice

Foreign aid and charity will not cease under the ASP policy. In fact - it may increase for the simple reason that the middle-class is more charitable than the rich. People from the middle-class give 7.6% of their income, while the rich only give 2.8% of their income.

charityWhen the government makes foreign aid or charitable payments, it will always be against the wishes of a portion of the population. For instance, some people may want their tax money to go towards assisting the homeless or towards the protection of abused animals.

More importantly, people want an assurance that their money will not go to a cause that they do not support. For example, the conflict in the Middle East is very divisive, and a sector of the population will be enraged if their tax dollars are channeled to one party (i.e. either the Palestinians or the Israelis) at the expense of the other. It is for this reason that foreign aid and charity is a personal and moral choice.

These decisions should not be for the government to make, but for individuals according to their own conscience and resources. The government should facilitate the choices that are made by individuals by setting up bank accounts and distribution centres, but it should be up to each individual to contribute to whom they please.

Charity starts at home

The only exception we support is that the government should provide a limited form of "get back on your feet" assistance to Australians. Our current system, whereby the government confiscates money from the public via taxation, and then proceeds to bribe the public with their own money (in order to secure political re-election) is morally bankrupt and a recipe for fiscal disaster.

Reduced tax rate

Once the Debit Tax is implemented, it is our intention to reduce the Debit Tax rate from 1% to a lower rate; so that people will have more money at their disposal and they can then choose to whom they want to donate their own money. It is not the role of government to act as their moral compass, but to allow and facilitate freedom of choice. To believe that only the government is in a position to make such decisions and payments is to believe that the average Australian is uncharitable and devoid of conscience.

While we do our good works let us not forget that the real solution lies in a world in which charity will have become unnecessary.

Chinua Achebe
Anthills of the Savannah


Videos - Foreign Aid & Charity

Charity that hurts

From aid to enterprise

An African talks about foreign aid

ABC News - foreign aid

What is wrong with international aid

EU Parliament - The truth of foreign aid

Africa needs incentives - not aid

Africa and the curse of foreign aid

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