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Who’s afraid of mixing politics with aid? Not this duo from Oxfam

I searched for Oxfam and this goat popped up. Enjoy!

On this week’s podcast, Tom Paulson chats with two “sometimes radical” aid reformers hiding in plain sight at Oxfam: Lead economic justice organizer Jon Scanlon and Gawain Kripke, the group’s Director of Policy, who’s based in Washington D.C, the heart of the beast.

We begin with an update on the fight over food aid – specifically, advocacy by Oxfam and others to make American food shipments to poor countries more cost-effective and less self-serving. Kripke insists that a Congressional vote this summer against common sense reforms won’t hold up for long.

Why is he so optimistic, though? And if something as basic as food aid is so deeply flawed, what about the growing chorus of critics who charge that aid just doesn’t work, period? These Oxfam campaigners argue that’s too broad a brush, and to the contrary, aid saves lives and does work (Scanlon cites an intriguing example in Afghanistan).

Poverty isn’t a question of scarcity – it’s a completely man-made problem and we can unmake it. But how? Listen to find out.

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About Author

Ansel Herz

Ansel Herz is a freelance multimedia journalist whose objective is to “go to where the silence is." His work has been published by ABC News, The Nation magazine, the New York Daily News, Al Jazeera English, Free Speech Radio News, Inter-Press News and many other publications. A Seattle native and survivor of the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Ansel is producer of Humanosphere's podcast, among other things. You can contact him at ansel.herz[at] or follow him on Twitter @Ansel.