A quick back and forth with Jeremiah Norris of the Hudson Institute in which he repeats his boss Carol Adelaman’s argument that the money immigrants send back to their families is a form of foreign aid, and therefore the U.S. is a generous neighbor instead of a global skinflint viewed unfavorably by large majorities in virtually every country in the world. responds to my 5 January piece Republicans Lead U.S. Selfishness:"Iappreciate the opportunity to respond. The Foreign Affairs article wasdrawn from a larger study done for USAID, entitled: Foreign Aid in theNational Interest: Promoting Freedom, Security and Opportunity. SeeChapter six, The Full Measure of Foreign Aid, by Dr. Carol Adelman. Youwill find at the end of this Chapter extensive end notes andreferences. I believe you can obtain it on the Internet: www.usaid.gov.
There are two new dimensions to American giving.
1) cause related marketing, in which corporations, e.g., StarbucksCoffee, note on each cup of coffee that a nickle or dime of one’spurchase is being donated to Save the Rainforest, for example.Starbucks does not report this to the IRS as charitable giving, butrather runs the contribution through its advertising or marketingbudget. It, like many US corporations, have found it expensive toreport on a quarterly basis to the IRS, so they have resorted to causerelated giving. No one has any good idea of the dollars generated bythis method.
2) remittances at first light seem not to qualify as ‘giving’.Until, that is, one sees how these funds are being used. President Foxof Mexico thinks highly enough of them to have offered matching fundsif they are used for social projects, such as schools, health clinics,etc. In October of last year, the Washington Post ran a story on the ElSalvadoran diaspora in the DC area. With assistance from the PanAmerican Foundation, they pooled their remittances to fund theformation of a large agricultural cooperative in their home country.USAID assisted with a $500,000 grant.