You might have missed Stan Meisler’s comment on the proposal someone named Charles Kenny wrote for the Center For Global Development entitled: “The Peace Corps in a Smaller World: A New Model for the Next 50 Years.”
Kenny is a fellow at Global Development, or whatever they call such ‘Think Tanks’. Judging from his CV, he is a Brit so we have to cut him some slack for not knowing what he is talking about. Stan Meisler, however, does know what he is talking about.
Stan was a Peace Corps Evaluator in the early days of the agency and recently wrote, When the World Calls: The Inside Story of the Peace Corps and Its First Fifty Years. Charlie James Kenny as it appears from his CV, has a blog: http://www.charleskenny.blogs.com but has never volunteered for anything or ever had a real job (you know, as Republicans like to say, “has he met a payroll?”) Charlie recently published his ‘paper’ that outlines, in his opinion, what is wrong with the Peace Corps.
Anyway, here is Stan’s comment on what Kenny had to say:
I took the time to read this foolish, harmful essay. It is written by someone who does not understand the Peace Corps. He is so caught up with numbers, formulas and charts that he misses the point. What makes the Peace Corps experience so unique is its intensity. I, for example, devoted ten years of my life to Africa as a Ford Foundation fellow, Peace Corps official, and Los Angeles Times correspondent. I have met many Africans and have traveled up and down from one end to the other. But I never had the full and intense experience that Mike Tidwell describes in “The Ponds of Kalambayi.” I never was able to fully experience the complexity of cultural change that Tidwell felt after spending two years isolated in a remote part of Zaire speaking only the tribal language. Kenny’s proposals would turn the Peace Corps into a travel agency for tourist volunteers. It would not last very long. Why do people like Kenny feel that the Peace Corps is in such dire need of transformation?