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January 29, 2005


The need for title to the land means a lot more than just forming a basis for a loan. It means protection from development. When some third world despot needs cash, he'll contact the World Bank and tell them he wants to provide cheap electricity for his peasants. So they loan him some millions for a dam project.

Naturally, the peasants on the best farmlands (the bottom land) can't show title to their land, so they get evicted without compensation from land they've always farmed (but it seems, never quite owned).

Once the dam is on line, no one is left to buy the electricity, and even those remaining farmers whose land is not underwater can't afford it. So the ruler invited foreign investors to come in and buy it.

This is a very old scam, and was used to fill the original slums of London back in Robin Hood's England, when the lords wanted to take the peasants' land and use it to raise sheep. It needs to stop now.

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