Now I thought that Australians were being extremely generous with $110 million in private donations (that’s over $5 per capita) and $1 billion from the Australian government but over at Tech Central Station Jackson Kuhl and Nick Schulz have come up with a measure that they call Amazonian Compassion where Australia comes dead last. They calculate per capita donations via Amazon to each country’s Red Cross. By this measure, the US is the highest with $0.0475 per capita, way ahead of France with a mere $0.0005. They don’t list Australia, but on their measure Australia gets $0.0000.
Unfortunately, there a couple of problems with their measure.
- Kuhl and Schultz may not be aware of this, but it is possible to access Amazon.com from outside the United States. Not all donations made at amazon.com have come from Americans. For example, Mike Power donated twice via Amazon.com, even though he lives in England.
- Kuhl and Schultz may not be aware of this, but it is possible to donate to the Red Cross without going through Amazon. The Australian Red Cross (that’s a link where you can donate to them) has received $51.5 million in donations so far, or $US 1.95 per capita, much more that the $0.0475 “Amazonian Compassion” number for the US. Of course, this comparison is silly as well, because only about one third of the donations to the American Red Cross came through Amazon.
Basically, their measure is completely meaningless, and that should have been obvious to them. And naturally they repeat the bogus story about the UN accusing the US of being stingy.
Oh, and this:
International aid organizations:
UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund)
United Nations’ World Food Programme
Medecins Sans Frontieres / Doctors without Borders (donate!)
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies