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Thread: Secure Development

  1. #1
    Joseph Russo
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    Default Secure Development

    I am an avid reader ofyour publication. Having married a Dominican woman in 1996, I have taken a keen interest in the political discourse in your beautiful country. Over the years it has become a passion and a frustration. I have come to know many hard working law abiding citizens and have shared in their frustrating search for a secure future. Of course I realize that their search is not unique and answers to improving their condition not simple and easy to come by. Things will change slowly becuse the people will demand of their leaders. The other day, I came across this article which I do believe discusses the kinds of issues faced by a developing nation. I hope you find it intersting enough to share it with your readers.

    Thanks.

    Joseph Russo
    Vancouver Canada

    Thursday 4 January 2001

    A curb on capitalism Lack of secure property rights keeps poor

    countries poor

    LORNE GUNTER

    Edmonton Journal

    The world's wealthiest nations could all double their foreign-aid

    contributions. They could triple or even quadruple them. They could

    forgive the debt of the 40 or 50 poorest nations. They could honour the

    crank solutions to globalization proposed by every window-smashing

    anarchist in Seattle, Washington and Prague, and by every United

    Nations commission ever. And poor countries would still be poor.

    What separates the rich from the poor among nations is something the

    increasingly militant global left has never considered, and never will. The

    alleged income gap is not the result of a lack of assets - lack of money

    and property - nor lack of entrepreneurial spirit nor genetic impairment

    among the poor.

    The gap results almost entirely from a lack of secure property rights.

    Where it is difficult to secure title to one's home, business, ideas and

    investments, it will be difficult to secure mortgages, working capital and

    buyers for one's shares, according to Peruvian economist Hernando de

    Soto, in his stunning new book The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism

    Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else.

    In Lima, registering title to a home involves 207 separate steps, and

    that is a breeze next to opening a legal business.

    Long and Expensive

    A team of de Soto's assistants "spent six hours a day at it and finally

    registered the business - 289 days later." The cost of registering the

    one-worker garment shop was $1,231, the equivalent of 31 months' pay

    for that lone worker. It's small wonder most Peruvian entrepreneurs

    choose to operate their businesses illegally.

    In the Philippines, simply registering a title on a home or parcel of land

    would "necessitate 168 steps, involving 53 public and private agencies,

    and take 13 to 25 years." If the property is in an area deemed

    agricultural by the Philippine government, add 45 steps, 13 agencies and

    another two years.

    De Soto and his colleagues found the same to be true in Haiti and

    Egypt. Nearly one in 10 Egyptians lives in an illegal home - is, in effect,

    a squatter - because building a legal home to which one may obtain title

    takes five to 14 years of bureaucratic manoeuvring, after which time

    the next government, or even the next minister within the same

    government, can revoke ownership when the policy breeze shifts

    direction.

    "In the West, by contrast," de Soto writes, "every parcel of land, every

    building, every piece of equipment or store of inventories is represented

    in a property document," and almost instantly.

    The True Marvel

    While one might marvel at the technological triumph involved in buying a

    stock online, only after reading Mystery of Capital is it driven home that

    the true marvel is a legal one. No one but the residents of nations with

    firm, equal, democratic property rights would consider buying a stock

    instantly via the Internet.

    Where property rights are not universally understood and respected,

    buying from an online trading house would involve two distinct risks,

    rather than one: the risk of the investment itself, and the risk of one

    not being able to prove one's ownership of the stock being purchased.

    Poor countries are poor because their people, while prepared to risk

    their homes and standards of living for a chance at a better life, are

    unprepared to risk their homes and standards of living and their claim to

    any profits or gains on assets that arise from the first risk.

    They are also poor because, nearly always, they could not risk their

    homes and lifestyles even if they wished to. "They hold these assets in

    defective forms," de Soto explains. Because title is sketchy or because

    property rights are mostly disregarded where title can be secured, the

    assets of the world's poorest people is "located where financiers and

    investors cannot see them."

    They are what de Soto frequently refers to as "dead capital."

    Mystery of Capital could be the modern Wealth of Nations - that is, the

    seminal book for an era of revived thinking about free markets - except

    for its insistence the failure of capitalism outside the West is not

    cultural in origin.

    De Soto spends much of his book arguing the West has so completely

    imbibed reverence for property rights that it no longer even sees its

    own reverence. People in the West respect each other's property by

    rote. That seems the essence of a cultural tradition to me.

    Yet that's a small point. If Mystery succeeds in changing Third World

    and former-Soviet-bloc thinking on the centrality of property rights to

    economic freedom and development, it might yet become an economic

    landmark on a par with Adam Smith's famous work.

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  2. #2
    Frederic
    Guest

    Default Re: Secure Development

    THANK YOU for your contribution!

    I am circulating to my friends in the DR and the rest of the Caribbean and Central America.

    I am sure others will too.

  3. #3
    Gabriel Arroyo
    Guest

    Default Re: Secure Development

    Dear fedreric on or during the month of december possibly the last week of Dec 2000, a theft of cattle took place in el estrecho Luperon Puerto Plata . a total of six cattle were taken. please contact coronel.Jaime martes Martinez National police Santiago . or General Aquiles Cruz Gomez DR. If you or someone has any information regarding this matter please contact ; Manuel Cruz 718 965 9446 or 718 499 7437.

  4. #4
    Frederic
    Guest

    Default Re: Secure Development

    If I hear anything I'll let you know. But I live in Santo Domingo, not in the North Coast.

    So maybe some of our north coast readers could help.

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