Sadly, no matter the political system, starvation is a challenge for everyone. But, the extent to which it is occurring and how it is handled varies greatly. There has never been a country wide famine in a capitalist country. Many economist attribute this back to Adam Smith’s theory of the invisible hand. However, the free market that capitalism allows has been a catalyst for conflicts around the world which have led to famines. For example, 20 million people are at risk of starving to death primarily in, South Sudan, Yemen, Somalia and Nigeria.
Yemen sadly is the warzone for Saudi-led army and Houthis whom, is backed by Iran and Hezbollah. Saudi officials say the purpose of the war is to protect the people of Yemen and, in order to do this they must kill civilians and, bomb schools and hospitals. This has led to the greatest humanitarian disaster since the formation of the U.N. in 1945. Many media outlets across the capitalist world such as, BBC in Britain are urging citizens to donate money and goods. Britain has pledged to double public donations upto £5 million and have made consistent statements that this situation is horrible. Yet, the U.
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K. is second to the U.S. in arms sales and their main client is Saudi Arabia. The free market has its fair share of cons and one is,it allows people to capitalize off the market and take advantage of others. Starvation and poverty also exists in capitalist countries. For instance, 13.
1 million people lack sufficient access to healthy food in the U.S. and over 850 000 people rely on foodbanks each month in Canada. However, these statistics are not due to capitalist exploiting the hard working people. Instead, it all comes down to productivity.
Research done by Forbes concluded that, the richest state, Connecticut is twice as rich as the poorest states, Mississippi and West Virginia and in Mexico the difference between the richest and poorest region is a difference of 9 times. These differences were do to the productivity of the region. Thus, it is not that the greedy capitalists are taking a larger piece of the pie it is instead that the pie they create is much smaller. In capitalist countries there is a large emphasis on feeding everyone and there are many programs and charities in place to help those who do not have access to an adequate supply of food. However, the same cannot be said for communist countries.
For example, the North Korean famine, which occured from 1994 – 1998. It is estimated that during this time up 1 million North Koreans died and ? of the population lacked food and basic healthcare. When it came time for the government to step up they were not willing to decrease their military budget by 5% to help their starving citizens. Additionally, the aid that was donated was stolen by the elite and the farmers hid their food which resulted in the poor starving to death. The top 1% exploited the poor and let them starve to death.
Since the 1860s majority of the famines that have occured have been in communist countries. This can be largely attributed to the elite taking advantage of the poor by, stripping people of their right to own private assets. This results in a select few have all the power over the majority.