June 18, 2007
Hopefully more will appearing soon, with captions and credits.
Here is one of Bono who got caught up in a debate over whether development works at the conference. He thinks it works. Several of the African economists and thinkers there at the event were suggesting that it can often do more harm than good.
It is a debate that suddenly seems to have caught on all over the place.
Marc Andreessen's new blog quoted a lengthy chunk of an interview with GV speaker James Shikwati laying into aid.
Then Brendan O'Neill, editor of spiked, had a go with Welcome to the People's Republic of Bono.
The spiked piece was a bit of a cheap shot. Aid does work a lot of the time - remember smallpox? And while it is a shame that we have to rely on rock stars and light entertainers to raise these issues outside Africa, who else is there to take their place?
Here is how Jason Pontin summed up the TedGlobal debate in an article in yesterday's New York Times titled What Does Africa Need Most: Technology or Aid?:
In truth, Africa will need both investment in entrepreneurialism and aid, intelligently directed toward education, health and food.
Herman Chinery-Hesse, the founder of Softtribe, a software development company in Ghana, expressed this thought more personally than I could. “I think this choice between aid and entrepreneurship is false,” he told TED's attendees. “If we wait for trade, it will take generations, and people need help now. On the other hand, only entrepreneurship can make us rich.”
UPDATE: Ethan Zuckerman does a great job of tearing up Bono's special Africa edition of the glossy magazine Vanity Fair in Judging a magazine by its cover:
Let's begin with the cover. Shot by Annie Leibovitz, there are 20 different covers. (Collect the whole set!) Each features a pair of celebrities, shot in closeup in some form of interaction. The twenty are as follows: Don Cheadle, Barack Obama, Muhammed Ali, Queen Rania of Jordan, Bono, Condozeela Rice, George W. Bush, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Brad Pitt, Djimon Hounsou, Madonna, Maya Angelou, Chris Rock, Warren Buffett, Bill and Melinda Gates, Oprah, George Clooney, Jay-Z, Alicia Keys, and Iman Abdulmajid. So… count along with me - that's three Africans out of twenty cover subjects. Yes, it's a great representation of African-American influence on American culture, but the actual African participation in the project seem, uh, limited at best.
Posted by aheavens at June 18, 2007 6:00 PM