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Old 10-16-2014, 02:56 PM
 
1,030 posts, read 1,226,576 times
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Like others, growing up I was told about the "poor suffering Africans" and was told we need to give them aid and help, but if Africa itself is so rich with resources why are they so poor?

I'll never forget in school my teacher made a statement that made me not care less about Africans. It was:

"Africa is a continent rich with all kinds of resources and wealth yet most Africans suffer tremendously".

When my teacher said that the wheels in my head began to spin. So Africa is a very rich continent....yet the people can't use them to their advantage? Europeans sure had little problem with it.

After I heard that I didn't feel bad for the Africans at all, if they can't use their continents resources to help their people/country why should I care? It has always seemed amazing to me how you can be literally sitting on a gold mine but not have the brains necessary to properly utilize it.

But seriously, why should we care if they have the means to help themselves with all of Africa's rich resources but don't? It's not the Wests fault African countries can't go a day without a coup d'etat of some kind.
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Old 10-16-2014, 03:17 PM
 
271 posts, read 292,667 times
Reputation: 300
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeaceAndLove42 View Post
Like others, growing up I was told about the "poor suffering Africans" and was told we need to give them aid and help, but if Africa itself is so rich with resources why are they so poor?

I'll never forget in school my teacher made a statement that made me not care less about Africans. It was:

"Africa is a continent rich with all kinds of resources and wealth yet most Africans suffer tremendously".

When my teacher said that the wheels in my head began to spin. So Africa is a very rich continent....yet the people can't use them to their advantage? Europeans sure had little problem with it.

After I heard that I didn't feel bad for the Africans at all, if they can't use their continents resources to help their people/country why should I care? It has always seemed amazing to me how you can be literally sitting on a gold mine but not have the brains necessary to properly utilize it.

But seriously, why should we care if they have the means to help themselves with all of Africa's rich resources but don't? It's not the Wests fault African countries can't go a day without a coup d'etat of some kind.
Herein lies the original problem wouldn't you say?
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Old 10-16-2014, 03:51 PM
 
1,030 posts, read 1,226,576 times
Reputation: 2392
Quote:
Originally Posted by dowsieboi View Post
Herein lies the original problem wouldn't you say?
Why does that matter? It's not as if Europeans managed to take all the resources. Plus they haven't for a long time. So why can't Africans put their resources to use the same way Europeans did?
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Old 10-16-2014, 04:45 PM
 
Location: In a chartreuse microbus
3,854 posts, read 5,302,124 times
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I've read several articles that claim the west has sent over a trillion dollars in aid to African countries over the last fifty or sixty years. In addition, China and Japan also send billions. One problem that most agree on is the corrupt governments over there. Just google the name, Robert Mugabe, and you'll see what I mean; he is only one example. Here's a link to an interesting read on how things really work when aid is sent over there:

How Western (foreign) Aid destroys Africa
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Old 10-16-2014, 11:01 PM
 
Location: Houston, Texas
2,174 posts, read 4,395,178 times
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You're lumping all of Africa together, a common mistake.

Botswana, which has husbanded its resources quite well and been an economic success story, is not Somalia. It has been called the "Switzerland of Africa."

Botswana economy set to sparkle after diamond deal - CNN.com

Botswana: An African Model for Progress and Prosperity*|*Nake M. Kamrany

The African Expatriate: The Republic of Botswana: What's Not to Love

Ghana, which wants to be a leader in tech on the continent, is not Liberia.

Ten Startups In Ghana To Watch Closely - Forbes

African Entrepreneurs Are Making Ghana Into a Tech Startup Hub

Ghana’s tech community welcomes iSpace Ghana as newest tech hub and innovation center | VC4Africa

Rwanda, which has risen from the ashes of its horrific genocide into something remarkable considering its history, is not Equatorial Guinea.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/24/wo...odel.html?_r=0

Nigeria and Senegal, which have beaten back the ebola plague right on their doorsteps, are not Liberia and Guinea.

How To Stop An Ebola Outbreak: Lessons From Nigeria And Senegal

A few years ago, some Portuguese began moving to the former colony of Angola because they sensed opportunity there that was missing at home.

Europe's jobless flee for new El Dorados - Europe - World - The Independent

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/14/bu...pagewanted=all

That's not to say there aren't very serious problems in just about all of these that need to be addressed, especially with corruption, political stability, human rights, cronyism, poverty, religious conflicts, and the after effects of civil wars. The middle classes are growing but still relatively small. But you could say the same for Russia, the Middle East, and parts of Asia and Latin America. These are not issues that just pertain to Africa.
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Old 10-17-2014, 10:38 AM
 
535 posts, read 713,389 times
Reputation: 605
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeaceAndLove42 View Post
Like others, growing up I was told about the "poor suffering Africans" and was told we need to give them aid and help, but if Africa itself is so rich with resources why are they so poor?

I'll never forget in school my teacher made a statement that made me not care less about Africans. It was:

"Africa is a continent rich with all kinds of resources and wealth yet most Africans suffer tremendously".

When my teacher said that the wheels in my head began to spin. So Africa is a very rich continent....yet the people can't use them to their advantage? Europeans sure had little problem with it.

After I heard that I didn't feel bad for the Africans at all, if they can't use their continents resources to help their people/country why should I care? It has always seemed amazing to me how you can be literally sitting on a gold mine but not have the brains necessary to properly utilize it.

But seriously, why should we care if they have the means to help themselves with all of Africa's rich resources but don't? It's not the Wests fault African countries can't go a day without a coup d'etat of some kind.
If OP is American.. this my friends is a fantastic example of the type of critical thinking skills that our school systems are teaching. Students are being taught to look at issues on the surface level and draw definite conclusions from their observations.. Period. No further analysis, no search for other background or historical context, pure A + B= C causation without any consideration of third party variables or other factors that may have contributed to get the final answer. OP.. go to the googlenet and type in the following key words into that big search box underneath the colorful Google sign: COLONIALISM, CONFERENCE OF BERLIN.... AFRICA and you might find some answers to your questions
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Old 10-17-2014, 11:02 AM
 
6,554 posts, read 9,067,154 times
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Basically it's corruption and mismanagement of these resources by government officials that keep these countries from fully benefiting from resource wealth. Then you have a lack of diversification in the economy. Having natural resources isn't enough. A country must also diversify their economy beyond those resources because there's only so many jobs that can come through those resources.


Norway provides an example of how to better manage a resource like oil.

Quote:
Mrs. Hertzberg, who made the call at the inaugural Ghana Oil and Gas Awards, noted that oil resource was non-renewable natural resource and so was important to invest in revenue accruing from it prudently, warning "If you inject oil money into economy inflation will eat it all." She said in the case of Norway, it used the oil money to establish a fund with which it made investments abroad and used four percent of it to finance the national budget, adding that the fund kept growing because of returns on investments.

allAfrica.com: Ghana: Norway Offers Oil Advice to Ghana
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Old 10-17-2014, 11:27 AM
 
671 posts, read 855,494 times
Reputation: 442
Um....I think you left out Europeans. The fact that they go to other's lands and steal resources is a key indicator. You need serious capital to convert you resources into something usable. There are history books, you know.
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:08 PM
 
Location: In a chartreuse microbus
3,854 posts, read 5,302,124 times
Reputation: 8018
Quote:
Originally Posted by BubbyBobble View Post
Um....I think you left out Europeans. The fact that they go to other's lands and steal resources is a key indicator. You need serious capital to convert you resources into something usable. There are history books, you know.
According to the following link, most countries there have had their independence for fifty years or more; hence, all the constant aid, monetary and otherwise, for fifty years. You can only ride the boo-hoo train for so long before becoming accountable for your own actions.

Chronological List of African Independence


Any resources stolen from France, Italy or the Brits are of little consequence now.
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Old 10-17-2014, 03:24 PM
 
Location: London, UK
9,992 posts, read 9,948,054 times
Reputation: 3473
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrueDat View Post
You're lumping all of Africa together, a common mistake.

Botswana, which has husbanded its resources quite well and been an economic success story, is not Somalia. It has been called the "Switzerland of Africa."

Botswana economy set to sparkle after diamond deal - CNN.com

Botswana: An African Model for Progress and Prosperity*|*Nake M. Kamrany

The African Expatriate: The Republic of Botswana: What's Not to Love

Ghana, which wants to be a leader in tech on the continent, is not Liberia.

Ten Startups In Ghana To Watch Closely - Forbes

African Entrepreneurs Are Making Ghana Into a Tech Startup Hub

Ghana’s tech community welcomes iSpace Ghana as newest tech hub and innovation center | VC4Africa

Rwanda, which has risen from the ashes of its horrific genocide into something remarkable considering its history, is not Equatorial Guinea.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/24/wo...odel.html?_r=0

Nigeria and Senegal, which have beaten back the ebola plague right on their doorsteps, are not Liberia and Guinea.

How To Stop An Ebola Outbreak: Lessons From Nigeria And Senegal

A few years ago, some Portuguese began moving to the former colony of Angola because they sensed opportunity there that was missing at home.

Europe's jobless flee for new El Dorados - Europe - World - The Independent

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/14/bu...pagewanted=all

That's not to say there aren't very serious problems in just about all of these that need to be addressed, especially with corruption, political stability, human rights, cronyism, poverty, religious conflicts, and the after effects of civil wars. The middle classes are growing but still relatively small. But you could say the same for Russia, the Middle East, and parts of Asia and Latin America. These are not issues that just pertain to Africa.

Trudat!
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