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Reply #32: Your stats aren't actually relevant. [View All]

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Igel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-11-09 09:44 PM
Response to Reply #25
32. Your stats aren't actually relevant.
Edited on Fri Dec-11-09 09:44 PM by Igel
The problem is in the title of the chart: ODA.

Official Development Aid.

That's a couple of rather severe restrictions on what's being counted.

That means what the government gives in overseas aid to other countries for economic and social development. It says nothing about (a) private donations and NGOs, i.e., those by individuals (which is the entire point of the OP) or (b) any spending done domestically from any source.

It's a very common assertion that a lot of others give more than Americans, but what that usually means is that the governments give more in international aid. That works when the government is essentially the only game in town, when there are few contributions within a country and not much aid is used internally, but otherwise.

There are similar kinds of skewed comparisons made. My personal favorite is always average income. Most of the reports use governments' official numbers. So in France and quite a few other countries all sorts of government aid counts as income, so the poor and unemployed receive aid for housing, aid for food, aid for medical care, etc., etc., and that counts as income. In the US earned income counts as income, so any housing aid, food stamps, EIC, Medicaid, etc., does *not* count as income. It's like comparing tangerines and grapefruits--both may be citrus, but beyond that it's a bit dicey. It always pays to look at the footnotes and endnotes.
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  -Guess what?New study says that Americans are tops in charitable giving.(LARGE graphic) lildreamer316  Dec-11-09 12:24 PM   #0 
  - There are considerably more religious people in the US than secular..  Fumesucker   Dec-11-09 12:30 PM   #1 
  - But it's a percentage, so population size irrelevant  dmallind   Dec-11-09 12:58 PM   #2 
     - I'd have to know a lot more about how the survey was conducted  Fumesucker   Dec-11-09 01:02 PM   #3 
     - Donations to churches can be similar to club dues, not always real charity  lostnfound   Dec-12-09 12:12 AM   #34 
        - True - but look at secular only giving, NT  dmallind   Dec-12-09 09:09 AM   #35 
  - USA! USA! USA!  SIMPLYB1980   Dec-11-09 01:06 PM   #4 
  - Conservatives give to their churches.  HuckleB   Dec-11-09 01:06 PM   #5 
  - How many billions is Pat Robertson worth?  baldguy   Dec-11-09 01:46 PM   #21 
  - less than 1, otherwise he'd be in the Fortune 400  hfojvt   Dec-11-09 02:23 PM   #23 
  - another thing is that foundations like Heritage and Cato  hfojvt   Dec-11-09 02:06 PM   #22 
  - They seem to be counting donations to churches as charity giving, which is highly debatable. -nt  Commie Pinko Dirtbag   Dec-11-09 01:09 PM   #6 
  - No shit. Since when are churches a charity?  progressoid   Dec-11-09 01:22 PM   #10 
  - I understood it all except the part about Lutherans. Can someone tell  jwirr   Dec-11-09 01:10 PM   #7 
  - It's a basic charitable organization set up by the synods  dmallind   Dec-11-09 01:35 PM   #15 
  - k/r. Really interesting stuff. nt  Romulox   Dec-11-09 01:12 PM   #8 
  - Europeans have less of a need for charity  AllentownJake   Dec-11-09 01:19 PM   #9 
  - And Europeans are less religious so give a LOT less to religious organizations  progressoid   Dec-11-09 01:25 PM   #11 
  - Some churches do good work  AllentownJake   Dec-11-09 01:32 PM   #14 
     - There were secular abolitionists. The women's rights movements had major overlap with both too. NT  dmallind   Dec-11-09 01:36 PM   #16 
        - Lincoln was probably a secular abolitionist  AllentownJake   Dec-11-09 01:41 PM   #19 
           - I'm not sure Lincoln, ironically, was much of an abolitionist  dmallind   Dec-11-09 04:04 PM   #28 
  - +1. It also means that, for the most part the European poor....  Luminous Animal   Dec-11-09 07:37 PM   #31 
  - Makes conservatives look good and us bad. Must be a lie. Alerted. n/t  newtothegame   Dec-11-09 01:26 PM   #12 
  - ..and welcome to my ignore list. I did not make the graphic,Been here years& never been alerted on.  lildreamer316   Dec-11-09 07:24 PM   #29 
  - thats because donations are tax deductible and the biggest beneficiary are churches  jsamuel   Dec-11-09 01:29 PM   #13 
  - Exactly this study would have a lot more meaning if church donations  jwirr   Dec-11-09 01:41 PM   #18 
  - There is nothing good about America, why post anything that may even suggest there is?  The Straight Story   Dec-11-09 01:37 PM   #17 
  - We Care A Lot  NightWatcher   Dec-11-09 01:42 PM   #20 
  - The others are socialized, they don't have to donate to charity so that others' basic needs  diane in sf   Dec-11-09 03:24 PM   #24 
  - how does that translate/compare as a percentage of gnp with those other nations...?  dysfunctional press   Dec-11-09 03:37 PM   #25 
  - Your stats aren't actually relevant.  Igel   Dec-11-09 09:44 PM   #32 
     - it as the only one i could find quickly at the time-  dysfunctional press   Dec-11-09 11:09 PM   #33 
  - Given America's meager safety net- that this would surprise anyone is beyond me  depakid   Dec-11-09 03:46 PM   #26 
  - Good point  varelse   Dec-11-09 07:29 PM   #30 
  - Do charities that promote right-wing evangelical domination and Blackwater thugs count? You bet.  readmoreoften   Dec-11-09 03:51 PM   #27 
  - I'll take Churches for $1000, Alex...nt  SidDithers   Dec-12-09 09:12 AM   #36 
 

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