Is poverty a “human rights violation”? Aid Watch’s Easterly vs. Amnesty

William Easterly of Aid Watch, gives his scorecard on UN human rights:

On something like “the right to water,” where it is impossible to identify who is violating such “rights,” the UN talks big. On human rights violations like killings and torture, where the UN knows precisely who is the violator, the UN sometimes shows up on the violator’s side.

Amnesty International’s Sameer Dossani disagrees, but doesn’t seem to answer Easterly’s pointed question: “Who is depriving the poor of their right to an adequate income?”

According to Amnesty, the lack of access to clean drinking water, adequate education, housing, employment and so on, are all human rights violations, “and it is ultimately the responsibility of governments to end them.”  Yes, but, once again, who exactly is committing the violations?

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