Logo of World Food Program red cup campagin, in Japanese

You have presumably seen the storm in a little red cup over Elon Musk's offer to send about $6 billion to the World Food Program if “WFP can describe on this Twitter thread exactly how $6B will solve world hunger”. Of course the Director of the WFP pointed out that the headline misrepresented him, natch, and that $6 billion “will not solve world hunger, but it WILL prevent geopolitical instability, mass migration and save 42 million people on the brink of starvation.”

And he has now come up with an itemised budget.

While we wait (and wait) to see how that plays out, I'm reminded of my own little fantasy, written 12 years ago after another empty gesture at ending hunger. I wondered what would happen if, instead of merely foregoing one meal, big fucking deal, rich people sent the cost of that meal to poor people. I reckoned it would raise about $2.5 billion, as a low estimate. I also fantasised about delivering the cash direct to people who need it, via their phones.

So, yeah, here’s my meal, hungry people. I trust GiveDirectly to give my money to people who need it, and I trust them to spend it however they want.

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