Sunday, November 9, 2008

A New Paradign For Africa

The editors at the "Economist" are capable of extreme, Orwellian double-speak. Keynesian, fiscal stimulus is great if you have the monetary resources to inject into your economy. However, most African countries are too poor to dabble with Keynes. We Africans need to widen our scope of economic modeling, and experiment with ideas that were working, but then were rejected in the 80s. Here, I'm talking specifically about scientific socialism (or African Socialism). We need to reform agriculture; put millions of Africans to work, making the things that we actually need for our daily necessities; increase literacy and numeracy; introduce relative technologies; and finally, we need to get rid of the clownish leadership that has made Africa the world's laughing-stock. We need a technocratic, development- minded elite at the helm. Compare the Chinese leadership of Wen Jiabao and Hu Jintao to Blaise Compaore in Burkina Faso, and Obiang Nguema in Equatorial Guinea. The former are trained hydraulic engineers and physicists who have led China steaming into the 21st century. The latter are doddering idiots. In normal times, Blaise Compaore would be selling mangoes on the dusty streets of Ouagadougou. HE HAS NO BUSINESS BEING AT THE HELM OF BURKINA FASO. The same goes for that cannibalistic clown in Equatorial Guinea, Obiang Nguema.

Back to scientific socialism: we are now seeing that the Western world's economic system is going through rough times. If this system is having a hard time in it's own blood-stream, in it's own, natural environment, how the hell can it succeed in Africa? If you are having a hard time growing rice in a paddy field, how can you grow rice in the arid Sahel? Under the shrewd leadership of Thomas Sankara; Burkina Faso introduced adult literacy programs; checks on desertification; and the Burkinabe actually started to produce the clothes that they wore on their backs. In Zimbabwe - from 1980 to 1989 - we went from a low educational base to having Africa's highest literacy-rate and a well-functioning health sector. This ended in '89 when the IMF got wind of this successful experiment, and then proceeded to knee-cap our state-led development program with their own genocidal, "structural adjustment" program.

We Africans must not blindly follow the economic models of the West. To have a decent standard of living for the bulk of the African masses, we must introduce scientific socialism. It has worked in the past and it can work in the future. It will allow the African masses to begin to produce, and then to consume what they produce. It will also allow the riches of Africa's natural resources to actually benefit ordinary Africans. Africa's present economic structures are not working. Now is the time to bring about viable change by introducing different, economic structures. I'll leave you with a Chinese intellectual, Minqui Li, and his thoughts on Socialism, " It is well-known that the state, socialist countries have been more successful in meeting the people's basic needs (nutrition, health-care, education, housing), and improving women's conditions than other countries with similar levels of economic developmen."

Thank you
James Chikonamombe