tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN October 5, 2015 8:30pm-9:01pm EDT
best way for the world. i think this is a problem we can solve. that's true, but i would also say that i think we have an opportunity -- i'm not hopeful we will do it right at all, but we have an opportunity to do something in africa that we didn't get right in some other places of the world, which is to embrace farmers as the solution rather than look at impose a problem, not to western thinking and western mentality and western agricultural practices in a place where diversity is critical to living. our systems are the biggest mistake we could bring to a continent like africa. a few are fighting a really strong tide.
the one thing about agriculture, and this is true everywhere in the world, if you want to get results fast, i can do that for you. your quarterly. in three years, you won't have what you need to have, what ever the timeframe is, and it depends on where you are starting and the different ingredients that go into that. if i try to teach you a way to farm that will help you retain your soil, build your soil, give you a biological activity critical for production, very few of us think about it that way. if you want to do that, it's a long road. it's more difficult, but the results are long-term. and iook at africa today, look at what we call the headwinds, forget with the population is in 20 years.
if we don't change the headwinds -- one of the biggest ones is corporate governance and rule of law -- africa won't be able to feed itself. people have this idea. my wife calls me the most pessimistic optimist she knows. don't think it helps people to tell a story that makes things sound really good when they are not really good, or you have to make some serious changes and sacrifices to get to where really good would be. to talk about, africa has plenty of land, not unless you want to plow the serengeti and cut down the forests. africa does not have a lot of land. they are limited on land. they are limited on water. productivity is going to have to come from rebuilding soils, sustaining soils, being
efficient with their water, and by saying,o that this is how we do it in america. that is the biggest mistake that could happen. primei want to thank minister tony blair who has to leave around now. [applause] you are welcome to stay if you want to. howard: now we can talk about tony. [laughter] all right. we want to take a couple more questions. right here? >> thank you. once again, i wanted to express how appreciative i am to see people who are trying to do as much as they can in a region that most people tend to forget. you speak quite openly about economic development, but what
about education, and what kind of commitment to education do you think it will take in order for these initiatives to be prosperous and for the economic development of these regions to be able to sustain a quality of life for the majority of their people? howard: that is a great question. my dad always told me, stay in your circle of competence, which is very small. i don't know much about health. i don't know much about education. emmanuel might have a comment. i can tell you that the initiatives we started in rwanda, the very first thing we've done this year is written a check for $22 million to one university to make sure we've got 200 at a grid -- undergraduates. we are going to try to build a research facility. we have an agreement with 25-50 masters for and phd's.
education in terms of trying to build agriculture is absolutely critical. in africa, the most important thing is it's a practical application of education. you don't need a whole bunch of people who can sit and theorize and do research plots that don't have any application. our goal is to include a different kind -- we have some kids -- anything younger than 25 is young -- we have some down in costa rica. we will look for opportunities to have more kids in more places so they have a more diverse education. without research, education, and extension, agriculture fails. right now, you cannot find an african country -- we work in 44 of them -- you cannot find a
country that has a strength in all three of those. until we get that right, until those countries get it right, my biggest fear is that you don't have governments who really leaders and- governments who don't understand that importance. when you have 70%, 80% of your population in one area, and you are spending 2% to 4% of your national budget on agriculture, you are missing something really big. you can't feed a child. can't nurse a child. it doesn't matter where they go to school. i've seen that, too. it's difficult to pick one or the other. there are great foundations and government, working on health and education. that is also very critical.
from the perspective of what we do, education is just as important as all the other pieces, but it is a piece by itself that won't get you to where you need to get. judy: quick question. how much education to the other wardens that work with you have, and what is the situation about education overall in the drc? for me, education holds a particular place. there was a british politician who is familiar to all of us, when he was first elected, his campaign cry was, education, education, education! i think it's transversal. it covers everything. with respect to the earlier question by annette, i don't thek we can understate challenges that our generation are going to have to confront, and those are going to be compounded tenfold for our
children. we are the first generation to understand what is ahead of us, and we are the last generation to be able to do anything about it. now.a very poignant moment i am no one to say what the solutions are, but they seem to lie in the three areas. one is technology. the second is behavior change. the third is governance and organization. the only way we can have radical shifts in that is to prepare ourselves and our children. that can only be through education. howard: there is one little piece i would add. i hear people say all the time, take any country that has low
productivity. i hear people say, ask the farmers what they want. there is a lot of truth to that. if you ask a farmer who doesn't know what opv is, doesn't know what a hybrid is, how can he tell you what he wants? he has to be educated to understand what those tools are, what they mean to him, how he .an change his productivity education can come in different ways. and agriculture is absolutely the key to success. we have to have it. .e realize that we work on that to the degree we can, but it's difficult. >> first of all, thanks to the for doing this program.
thank you for the conversation. my organization works on africa for food security and nutrition. something like 80% -- judy: what is your organization? >> it's the national cooperative business association. howard: 1-800 -- [laughter] >> something like 80% of the food in africa is being produced by smallholder farmers, and over 50% are women. the idea to link small farmers into the global economy is a big thing we focus on. we find the cooperatives and farmers associations are a hugely important vehicle to not only do that but also aggregating, training, functional literacy, as well. what i wanted to ask you is, what kinds of investments are
you putting into cooperatives and farmer associations as a way to bring smallholder farmers into the economies? are you willing to do even more around that area to strengthen local economies? howard: the first thing i did when i started figuring out how complicated the problem was with was --ture in the world i learned farmers are to the same. how do you deal with that? i did a little triangle, and we not just on mych experience, but we had different people look into it. to goed our guy in ghana
in and do his own research some of the different provinces in ghana. it comes back with the same answer however you do it. at the very tip top of this 5%, 6%e, you have maybe of commercial farmers. those are farmers who wouldn't look like commercial farmers .ere they have some access to fertilizer, some storage. they fit in the commercial world. then you drop down, and then there are kind of market-ready -- you can call them whatever you want -- we called them "market ready." that's 10%. then there's a group -- i can't remember what you'd call them,
but that's another 10%. the bottom 50% are subsistent farmers. these are farmers living day to day, week to week, and diversity is important to them. they have no credit. accessve little, if any, to fertilizer, unless a government program gives them some. a lot of them are planting on land. everybody talks about smallholder farmers, but there .re these big different groups everyone takes a different approach. i hate to say this, because it sounds bad, but the bottom 50%, i don't know what you do. it's difficult. we have a hard time thinking about our money as charity. investments so people don't need us anymore when they've been successful and they do their own thing without us. that bottom part is a difficult part.
we don't need to help the commercial guys. .e focus on these other areas we found a couple successful which iso about it, similar to how you work on it. in central america, we had a huge success because of the .o-ops in terms of crops in one case, we gave co-ops support for lawyers so they could get through the bureaucracy in their own country, and they began exporting. they couldn't get through the legal part of it to be able to succeed. in other cases, our purchase for progress program, it was because of co-ops we were successful, but you have to train people on what is a contract. how do you honor a contract? how do you deliver when you say
you are going to deliver? all these different things to think co-op's aren't important aspect to having success, but there are a lot of places in the world and in certain countries where co-ops are foreign and not trusted and difficult to put together. i think they are an important tool. were you going to say something? i think it's this whole notion of trying to promise collective action. together, we tried to develop this nation of overreliance. you've got a synergy between people who were otherwise vulnerable, otherwise .isempowered we work on the organization of farmers as opposed to working with farmers solely as individuals. there is certainly a lot that can be achieved.
judy: we've got one minute i thought i would let each one of -- one minute left. i thought i would let each one of you ask your question in an abbreviated form. >> my question is, how are you ensuring that the poorest of the par who need the assistance and food are receiving it rather than those with the biggest guns or most money? judy: the poorest of the poor. what is your question? >> my name is joseph. i am from ghana. i grew up in that region. i know very well the national park of the room got. i just came here for school. i would like to thank you very much for what you are doing. i know it's very difficult. most importantly come if i can, i would like to apologize for what happened. quite friendly, imagine somebody who comes to help the country, and the people shoot at him. it doesn't make any sense.
i'm sorry for that happening. . thank yo. -- emmanuel: thank you. [laughter] >> beyond that, i had a question for the prime minister, but he left. [laughter] that's ok. what you so much for are doing, and i'm looking forward to getting back. judy: thank you very much. [laughter] emmanuel: come spend some time with us. i would enjoy it. judy: thank you. we are glad that you stayed. the poorest of the poor. howard: what was the context again? >> how are you ensuring that the poorest of the poor are receiving the assistance rather than those who have the biggest guns or most money? howard: you start, and i will finish. you might talk long enough so i won't have time. you are quite right.
it's the hardest of questions. part of the reason why they are poor is because they are difficult to access in terms of ensuring that they are able to thess the benefits of wealth of the country. for me, it's very important to try to work out the simplest way of reaching them. part of the problem is, by virtue of being poor, there are many of them. virunga national park, we have formally people who live within one day's walk 4 the parks boundary -- million people who live within one day's walk of the park's boundary.
to reach 4 million people is not a simple thing. what you need to do is look at parsimonious, cost-effective way of delivering services to every single one of .hose 4 million people that really changes your perspective completely. a lot of the problems in transitional aid models is we are so riddled with failure, any success is wonderful. we tend to do token projects to demonstrate success. really success is only achieved when you reach everybody, and in particular, the poorest. that makes it pretty tough. what we found -- it may or may not be the right solution, and we feel it is -- we should concentrate on certain sectors that have a higher chance of success, and what we feel to be the most important as a first step is a rural electrification.
, buty not seem obvious what you find in eastern congo and in many other parts of the country andt the society is still stuck in what you would call a colonial .conomic model the congo gained its political independence in 1960. [laughter] howard: they are laughing at you, don't worry. emmanuel: it gained its political independence in 1960, but it never gained its economic independence. the reason for that is it only exports raw materials, and that is what keeps people in poverty. one of the main reasons is that it has no industry. it's only through electrification that you can do it. by doing that, you can reach many more people. what we find is that for every megawatt of electricity you
provide for rural communities, you can create 1000 jobs. that's a lot. virunga national park, from the rivers flowing out of it, can create 100 megawatts. that is 100,000 jobs. one million people would benefit from that. you are beginning to have an impact at that level. that is how we would do it. it's very straightforward. it's very simple. it does require a lot of investment, $160 million of investment to get 100 megawatts, but when you think about it, the international community has spent $90 billion in eastern since 2000. it is all relative. i think that would be the most cost-effective way of reaching the poorest of the poor. judy: if i could just add before i turn to howard for the final comment -- yesterday, the world bank issued a statement they
called "the best story in the world today." the number of people living in poverty in the world is likely to fall for the first time below 10% of the worlds population this year. they say -- howard, i know you are familiar -- using the new benchmark, the world bank projects 702 million people, or 9.6% of the world population, will be living in extreme poverty this year, down from 902 million people. howard: i'm going to answer that, and then i'm going to answer the question. i wrote your answers down. place -- idirty don't know what you would call in congo one time, and we were looking at this cacao project. i had this farmer talking to me. i needed an interpreter for most of it. mesays, you know, they tell
i used to live in poverty. i said, ok. he said, yes, they told me i was living on $1.25 a day. he says, i don't know what that means? dayn't know what $1.25 a is, but i couldn't send my kids to school. i couldn't do anything for my wife. sometimes, we couldn't eat for an entire day or sometimes more. now they tell me i'm not in making, and they said i seven dollars a day. he said, i don't know if i'm making seven dollars a day. i can't measure it that way. my kids are going to school. i bought my wife a dress. my point is all these people who love to create numbers, i don't believe them. it's no different from our immigration issue. i don't know if there is 11 million illegals, 20 million illegals.
you can make a number up. the truth is, if you look at the world population today and you look at who has access to clean --er, who has access to good based on international standards , and if youls a day start basing it on the kind of way we think about what is the bare minimum, you've got four or 5 billion people. you've got 4 billion people for sure. i don't care what the world bank says. they are not living the way they should live. [laughter] me, it's almost demeaning to say, this is a good news story. go to eastern congo. that is not a good news story. you can go all over the world and find it. to me, it's very demeaning to the people who live the way they live in this world to think that somebody in some office can say,
i calculated the number. here it is, folks. i think it's bullshit. i do. [applause] i'm glad i don't work for the world bank. i'd be fired. [laughter] true. i think these are people who need to go spend a little time in the field. to answer your question, i have my cheat notes -- on going to give you two answers. they are very different. in 2003, in south sudan outside -- i can't think of the town -- i went to visit these farmers, this group, and i was sitting with the elders. it's kind of funny. something came out of this much later. i asked them what to their biggest problem was. i was expecting a couple different answers. they said the lra.
i said, what do you mean? they come in. they burn our crops. then they steal some of our kids. i thought, wow. 10 years later, my good friend shannon who is here got is involved in counter-lra activity, which was a great learning experience. one day, i will tell you about that when we have time, but the point is, i went away thinking about that, not so much about how they burned their crops down. a great friend of mine who's an from texas, ed price and, i was talking to him about that. they went and studied some different areas and different conflict zones, and you can kind of laugh at this, but they came up with conflict crops. if you grow peanuts or sweet potatoes, you can't burn them down, and i guarantee you, they
are not taking time to pull them out of the ground. there are innovative ways of thinking about how people in conflict areas can try to protect themselves. they might not think about that, but the truth is a lot of them will figure it out, too. that was one story i wanted to tell you. the other story, i was sitting in south sudan -- it was a different trip but back around that time. i learned if you can get a couple beers in somebody, you can get a lot better information. i don't drink, so it makes sense. i can make somebody think that i drink. [laughter] i'm talking to this commander. one of them on that -- ane nette knows. who lost hisnel leg. he started going off on the
whole aid thing and what a joke it was and everything else. it, italked about realized, there is nothing black-and-white in this world. there is nothing black-and-white in conflict or poverty or anything else. he went on to tell us how they would have groups who would orchestrate so that they would take a village, and they would it on the outside. then they would make sure the world food program, the international community, they all knew, people can't walk into that village. they can't get food. they can't get timber. they can't get water. then they would just sit back and wait. pretty soon, here come the airdrops. if you are making that decision -- he said, these guys are clever. but will take 30%, 35%, they will never take more than that. if they take more than that,
they know they won't get it. they won't drop the food. i don't know how precise that is, but the concept is probably pretty right. food is power. when you are in a situation where you cannot eat, food is power, and people use it to that way. it's more important than currency. when you think about it to that way, there are all sorts of tricks you can use in war and conflict. that is just one of them. this guy just talked like that was no big deal. the reason i remember that, i got asked a different question once, and it was about aid. i was trying to express, what if you are the person who has to make that decision? what if you know the rebels are going to get 30% of what you drop? if you don't drop it, you are going to have 600 people die.
that's not an easy decision, but somebody has to make that. eventually, they figure out what is going on. when you look at agriculture and people and try to figure out a solution, there's nothing that you can do that you know will work. that you know will work. >> landmark cases explores significant supreme court decisions. we begin with marbury versus madison. tonight, hillary clinton .alks about gun violence all those who have business before the supreme court