Can foreign aid, poorly executed, do more harm than good?
Christopher J. Coyne’s claim that almost all humanitarian projects are ill-conceived, ill-executed, and ill-advised cannot fail to affront. After all, many thousands of Americans rush to help people hit by natural disasters and other overwhelming events.
Nor will it please U.S. government officials who justify interventions—including military ones—as essential for democracy, free markets, and human rights.
Whether in countries torn by civil strife, such as Syria, or ones shattered by an earthquake, such as Haiti, “what are the limits on what we can do?” asks Coyne, a professor of economics at George Mason University.