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Old 01-06-2016, 07:46 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 5 days ago)
 
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I found this video quite interesting. It left me wondering if the fundamental responsibility of the failure of Sub-Saharan Africa falls squarely on socialism.

Quote:
George Ayittey is a Ghanian economist and the founder and president of the Free Africa Foundation. He also taught economics at American University and is an associate scholar at the Foreign Policy Research Institute.

Ayittey talks about the failure of Africa's experiments with socialism throughout the 20th century. He tells stories about the inefficiency, waste, and bureaucratic corruption in countries like Ghana, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe, and says that wrangling Africa's political class is of paramount importance when it comes to African development.
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Old 01-06-2016, 07:52 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 5 days ago)
 
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In this video Fred Swaniker talks about the leaders that ruined Africa.

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Old 01-06-2016, 10:06 PM
 
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I generally support capitalism. But I recognized that you really need a mixed economy(and a supporting legal system)to have a developed country. You need both capitalism and socialism to varying degrees. Every developed country including the U.S has a mixed economy. It's a matter of different African countries figuring out which type of mixed economy will be best for their situation or circumstances.
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Old 01-07-2016, 04:39 AM
 
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Oh dear, the Socialist hobgoblin again. The basic problem with Africa is that none of the ruling foreign countries ever were able to, or perhaps even willing to, prepare a large number of native people to participate in government as anything other than petty functionaries. The example that colonial rulers left was that government was a source of personal power and wealth for those who rule.

The colonial powers left...and sometimes slapped together the trappings of democracy as a parting "gift," but upon their departure the aggressive and motivated few in the African political movements who became leaders saw government as a source of personal enrichment and a nationwide mirror for their personal vanity. Why not? That is largely how it had been perceived during the decades of colonial rule.

Democracy, socialism, capitalism...each of these was a glittering tissue of myth which many African leaders wrapped themselves in as a kind of ceremonial dress, but which did not in any serious way change the basic purpose of political leadership, which was personal enrichment and personal glory.

Motion's posting makes sense, but before the things that are cited in comes a need for a class of less corrupt politicians with a different view of what leadership is.
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Old 01-07-2016, 09:56 AM
 
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My first question is, where in the hell was there socialism in Africa?
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Old 01-07-2016, 12:16 PM
Status: "Thinking of the future..." (set 5 days ago)
 
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Originally Posted by kevxu View Post
Oh dear, the Socialist hobgoblin again. The basic problem with Africa is that none of the ruling foreign countries ever were able to, or perhaps even willing to, prepare a large number of native people to participate in government as anything other than petty functionaries. The example that colonial rulers left was that government was a source of personal power and wealth for those who rule.
Wasn't that already present in Africa before colonialism took hold?

In the developing world, Africa is the region that lasted the least under colonialism (most of the continent was colonized until a century or so ago while Latin America is the region that lasted the most under colonialism. Despite that, Latin America as a whole is much wealthier and developed, and functions better too, than most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. The only Latin American country that resembles much of Africa in economic/social dynamics is Haiti, in fact they are in worse shape than most of Africa. Everywhere else, including Caribbean countries with black majorities, are light years ahead of Africa.

If we look at how African societies functioned before colonialism, at least I see simply oligarchical societies. Even the old African empires benefitted almost exclusively the people in political powers. The governmental structures they designed was meant to enrich those that went into politics and not necessarily to make their societies great.

Since Africa lasted the least under colonialism than say Latin America, it makes sense to assume that Africa is where the traditional ways of the indigenous people is most prominently and strongly on display in each society, including the way their politics/economy functions. In fact, unlike in most Latin American countries, in most African countries the European influence is most strongly felt in the capital and other major cities, but once you leave them what predominates is traditional Africa. This is evident when one focuses on the mother tongue, most Africans have an African language as their mother tongue. The one's that know a European language often speak it as a second language but not as their everyday language. In most Latin American countries that doesn't really happens, at least not to the extent it does in Africa.

Then there are countries such as Botswana, which was also colonized and yet they are doing relatively well. Why is that? Colonialism explains their success?

Ethiopia was never colonized by Europeans and its not really a model country for other African nations to mimic. Why is that? Colonialism's fault even when colonialism never took place?

Last edited by AntonioR; 01-07-2016 at 12:25 PM..
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Old 01-07-2016, 12:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by TheWiseWino View Post
My first question is, where in the hell was there socialism in Africa?
Several African nations experimented with various forms of "socialism light" during the cold war. As they had little manufacturing industry, this usually meant nationalizing natural recesource industries. I think that this also included experiments with nationally directed agircultural programs. Though most land land remained in private hands, individual farmers and villages faced various kinds of penalties for non compliance with national programs.

In regards to the actual countries, they included Angola, Mozambique, both Congos, Zambia (?), Ghana, and possibly a few others. In the north, it included Libya, and at times, Egypt and Algeria.

Socialism actually worked in Libya for decades. Then again, when one has alot of oil and little population, pretty much any economic system has the potential to work .

Last edited by Cryptic; 01-07-2016 at 01:04 PM..
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Old 01-07-2016, 12:50 PM
 
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Here's an example of African socialism. The problem as I see it is that African leaders like Kwame Nkrumah wanted a Socialist dominate economy. Had he gone the mixed economy route he would have been aware of areas of the economy where market approaches would have worked better.


Quote:
In the same year, Nkrumah visited the Soviet Union and returned much impressed at the pace of industrialization there. He came back with a rigid Seven-Year Plan. "We must try and establish factories in large numbers at great speed," he argued. State-owned companies and public authorities mushroomed in all fields. So did mismanagement and graft. The price was most painfully felt in the countryside as Nkrumah used cocoa revenues, controlled by the official marketing board, to cover the growing losses of public companies. The imposition of unrealistically low cocoa prices on farmers, combined with the bloated organization of the marketing board, devastated the industry. Many farmers switched crops altogether; others found ways to smuggle their cocoa through neighboring countries, where better prices were offered.

Commanding Heights : Kwame Nkrumah | on PBS

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Old 01-12-2016, 02:43 PM
 
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Capitalism destroyed Africa. Perhaps someone has heard of the Slave Trade, Colonialism and Neo Colonialism? Referring to individual countries in a huge continent containing many when the question regards the continent beggars belief. Surely the education system isn't that broken?
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Old 01-12-2016, 08:50 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
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There was no socialism in Zimbabwe, in a certain sense. There was a kleptocracy, and that's about it.
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