For years, we have listened and approved as the heads of various governments have told us that we citizens who enjoy the advantages of living in developed nations have a responsibility to help those in under-developed countries. So, we share our scientific knowledge, we export out advanced technology, we send out experts in every field to teach those not as “advanced” as we are.

Most of us agree, in principle, and then most of us don’t give the subject any further thought. Indeed, the more naïve of us – and that includes me – are secure in the assumption that the experts know best. For instance, the list of areas (such as medicine, law, social sciences) in which I am ignorant is large; I would not normally challenge an expert in any of those fields when he or she offers professional advice.

I suspect that most of us adopt an “ostrich” (or head-in-the-sand) posture when it comes to government-funded bodies of experts. We hope for the best; we assume, at least, that organizations representing Canada, and therefore the people of Canada, do so with integrity, impartiality and concern.

This month I have seen two reports which have shown me just how naïve I am. Both reports are far too long to do justice here

My concern with them now is to mention briefly what our government appears to be doing, and doing with very little publicity, so that we ordinary people do not get a chance to voice our disapproval.