November 14, 2006

And the winning idea on how to ameliorate African poverty is....

According to the WTO, Slavery.
At a Wharton Business School conference on business in Africa, World Trade Organization representative Hanniford Schmidt announced the creation of a WTO initiative for "full private stewardry of labor" for the parts of Africa that have been hardest hit by the 500 years of Africa's free trade with the West.
Now hang on a minute, they can't actually mean slavery, can they? Let's not jump the gun here. "Full private stewardry of labor," that sounds different, at least, right?
The initiative will require Western companies doing business in some parts of Africa to own their workers outright.
Wait a tick, that actually does sound like slavery.
Schmidt recounted how private stewardship has been successfully applied to transport, power, water, traditional knowledge, and even the human genome. The WTO's "full private stewardry" program will extend these successes to (re)privatize humans themselves.
Reprivatize humans?

Oh. My. God. I cannot believe I am reading this. But it doesn't stop--it just doesn't stop:
"This is what free trade's all about," said Schmidt. "It's about the freedom to buy and sell anything—even people."


  1. That press release is a joke, right?

  2. It is a joke. The entire website is run by a couple of guys who call themselves the Yes Men. They got the rights to, made a fake WTO homepage, and have been slandering the organization from the inside ever since. They are even asked to speak at conferences as representatives of the WTO, and they accept then come up with outrageous, barely believable stuff in the hopes that they will be called out and the WTO will go down with the ludicrous idea they've been pushing under their name. There's a great documentary about their earlier hijinks called, appropriately, The Yes Men.

  3. Getting the rights to is pretty convincing.

  4. Sarah4:42 PM

    Oh, The Yes Men! I forgot that they did this to the WTO...