We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

Oxfam have, again, come up with a gross misrepresentation of world poverty which fails to line up with everything else we know about human advancement and income improvements. Demonising capitalism may be fashionable in the affluent Western world but it ignores the millions of people who have risen out of poverty as a result of free markets.

Mark Littlewood, summing up why I would never give a toxic outfit like Oxfam a penny. Oxfam is part of the problem, not part of the solution.

19 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • terence patrick hewett

    My local Oxfam has better books than the local library: as a bibliomaniac I have bought some real gems at Oxfam.

  • I make it a point to not give money to my enemies

  • It is a non-trivial task to locate a UK charity that has not been captured by Labourite SJWs for use as a propaganda outlet. When a disaster happens and you want to get your money to where it will help, or when, despite your contempt for Obama, you feel you have made enough money to live on for now, and consider giving some to where it could help, then tedious research of potential recipients is often needed, followed by thoughts of whether and how far one should compromise. (I still get mail from the red cross, to whom I rescinded my giving years ago when they jumped the PC shark once too often for my by-no-means-extreme taste.)

    One strategy is to use charities with politically-incorrect aims. (For example, a charity devoted specifically to helping Christians who face ‘cleansing’ in the Arab lands or persecution in China attracts fewer SJWs than charities that help the Arabs who hate them or praise the economic theories of the communists who persecute them.) But generally one has to read the fine print of the organisations’ often tedious literature, which can change in short periods of time as officials are replaced by others or the government that funds so many of them issues new orders. (That’s after getting a shortlist that excludes Oxfam, of course.)

    On the plus side, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (for whom I was a collector when too young to have much money to give, and to whom I am a contributor now I am better off) seems to have a sensible attitude to safety fascism, regulation and government handouts.

  • Mr Ed

    Oxfam, the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief, was set up in WW2 by a bunch of what we now might call ‘Guardianistas‘ during WW2 with the aim of diverting our meagre food supplies to the admittedly otherwise helpless starving Greeks. AFAIK, Oxfam did not help to avert starvation in the UK by sinking a single U-boat.

    Mountain Rescue teams are generally SJW-free, the obvious requirements for physical courage and stamina ruling many out. I contribute to training search dogs for Lake District teams. Overheads are incredibly low, dogs are remarkably apolitical and iirc Zhivkov in Bulgaria and Stalin disliked dogs for their sense of loyalty to their pack.

  • Paul Marks

    Correct Perry. The policies suggested by Oxfam would (after, perhaps, a short term improvement) INCREASE poverty.

    However, the British government essentially AGREES with Oxfam – it is demanding that other governments “invest in people”, to increase government health, education and welfare (and-so-on) spending. The ideological hegemony of the left is not confined to the “charities” (often taxpayer supported) and the accused main-stream-media and education-system(including many of the private schools), it includes the leadership of the current government.

    A solution? I do not think there is one – not round here, perhaps not anywhere.

  • On the plus side, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution…

    RNLI is the only charity in Britain I give money to. Anyone else seeking my charitable dosh are politely invited to get stuffed, and I always make a point of explaining why. However when it comes to Oxfam, my explanations are rather less polite.

  • Eric

    Heh. I always assumed Oxfam was a travel agency for MI6 🙂

  • JadedLibertarian

    I’m sorry to say the RNLI is no longer what it was.

    See here and here.

    The first incident related to an “unauthorised rescue” and the second related to a drinking game played with a visiting Dutch lifeboat crew that involved someone getting an arse in their face. No complaints were raised about either “incident” but the management decided to act themselves.

    As far as I can tell both incidents are actually to do with a collapse in the relationship between management and crews. I’ve been unable to confirm the same person at the RNLI was behind taking both stations offline, but I have my suspicions.

    I’m afraid I the RNLI have fallen into the trap of many other formerly decent charities: they hired third sector careerist (mostly) women who’ve never had a proper job. And unsurprisingly these people screw up whatever they touch.

    I’d have thought serving on a crew was mandatory for RNLI managerial positions. It isn’t.

    I’m starting to question my previous support of the RNLI and that makes me sad.

  • Mr Ed


    When I found out the salary package that the RNLI chief executive gets £162,705 in 2016, I moved away from it. It desperately needs a purge.

    Better that a few die that the Left march on to kill us all.

    My causes: search dogs, WW2 and Cold War vintage aircraft (from the West), killing rats on South Georgia and supporting Armenian, Georgian, Moldova and Macedonian booze makers (wine/brandy) through honest trade, plus East Anglia’s womderful churches.

  • In the UK there are no charities left that haven’t been ruined. If you’re lucky enough to have a regular and decent income and want to direct some of it to a good cause why not help struggling politically incorrect authors by buying their books instead? (Cough, cough.)

  • Carol42

    My late husband once worked on an IT contract for Oxfam and never gave them a penny after that. Their luxury premises and expenses plus their open contempt for the volunteers who staffed their shops disgusted him. As soon as a charity gets political that’s me finished, now I only give to a local animal charity I can visit anytime. I too have heard that the RNLI is not what it used to be. So many receive money from the government ie us, that they cannot really be called charities and I object to being forced to contribute through my taxes.

  • Watchman

    “Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing.” – Robert Conquest’s Second Law of Politics

    I’ll add to this the observation that any organization that exists long enough eventually changes whatever goals it originally had to make the primary goal of that organization to continue to exist and provide generous employment to its employees.

  • Anat T.

    Hector Drummond: ‘why not help struggling politically incorrect authors by buying their books instead?’
    I do exactly that. I have often bought books that previously appeared as articles, just for supporting the authors.

  • Watchman writes:

    “Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing.” – Robert Conquest’s Second Law of Politics

    I suspect this is an over-simplification.

    Firstly, Churchill or someone similar once said something like: if you are not a left-winger at 20 and a right-winger at 50, there is something wrong with you. [Though I disagree, in finding myself largely unchanged in personal political beliefs.]

    Secondly I find my personal politics (in the spectrum of their times from the 1970s to now, so over some 40+ years) are largely and unchangingly both those of Gladstone (mid/late 19th century left wing) and Thatcher (1970/80s right wing). On this/these, I believe I do hold constant (with those old/ancient politicians) and the wings (and maybe all) do drift (rather distinctly against people believing that each of us has the primary responsibility for maintaining our own interests).

    Best regards

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Oxfam is a joke. Ryan Bourne, at CapX, has a good demolition of its shoddy economics here.

  • Nigel Sedgwick (January 23, 2018 at 3:51 pm: “Churchill or someone similar once said something like: …”

    (From memory) the quote is:

    He who is not a socialist at 20 has no heart. He who is still a socialist at 40 has no head.

    (Robert Conquest, no less, went through a phase of being socialist/communist at 17. He had largely recovered by his 18th birthday IIRC.)

  • Ian Prosser

    Dear Hector Drummond. I used to sponsor one of the Cats Protection League’s foster cats. Has that charity gone down the tubes? I know that MP Derek Conway, who was on its board, was busted for employing his own son as a research assistant while the son was attending university full-time. However, I’m not sure the charity itself is suspect, or is it ?

  • Ian, I may possibly be exaggerating a bit.

  • I want to make the poor richer. Oxfam wants to make the rich poorer. These are contradictory goals. Achieving one makes the other unachievable.