Nanyang Junior CollegeJC2 Preliminary Examination 2009Paper 1Suggested Approaches
Is it the responsibility of the richer nations to help the poorer ones?Interpretation
Main thrust of the question-
whether it is the duty or obligation
) of the rich countries (on moral, social, political or practical grounds etc) to help poor nations lead a better life and the
why it isor it is not their duty.
1. Agree that it is the responsibility of the rich nations to help the poor ones, but thepoor nations must also help themselves.
Disagree – because poor nations are largely responsible for their plight and theyneed to address the problems that they have created-eg over-population,corruption etc.Note: 1st stand is more sensible.
Requirements of question: Stand 1
1. Must give reasons why it is their responsibility.2. Qualify it with the balancing explanation as to why the poor nations must alsohelp themselves.3. How the rich can help should be only a minor part of the essay and should onlybe part of the elaboration of the rich nation’s duty .4. Note that the essay is not about the different ways rich nations can help.5. There must be ample coverage and illustrations.
Some possible reasons why it is the responsibility of the rich.
1. Interconnectedness of the world with the rich prospering at the expense of thepoor nations:
Exploitation in the colonial era; compare pre-colonial self sufficiency toneo-colonial dependence caused by colonialism. (also a historicalresponsibility)
The existing unfair trade system with unfavourable terms of trade for thepoor, with prices set by the rich. The principle of fairness demands thatthey not only change the trading system, but also make up for theinjustice by helping the poor nations to compete competitively ininternational trade.2. The brotherhood of all men binds the rich nations to help their poor fellow humanbeings.3. Moral duty- man’s conscience- humanitarian grounds.4. Also man’s obligation to prevent the potential threat to his survival that resultfrom a divided world (conflicts) or a damaged environment (caused by poor nations in their struggle to survive).
For their own benefit too- if poor nations become more well off, they can be amarket for their goods etc.
Balance (Poor nations must also help themselves)