Africa
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Thread: Africa

  1. #1

    Default Africa

    So, why is Africa, as a continent, so *****d up? It\'s had about 5000 years to get it\'s act together, but is still plagued by all sorts of miserable stuff.

    I really don\'t buy the \"It\'s being oppressed by evil, selfish, Western Nations\" argument.

    Considering the wealth of natural resources available there, the plight of Africa has always somewhat puzzled me.

    (thread inspired by a news article I saw today).

  2. #2

    Default

    Because GW is evil. And they don\'t have Weetabix or Lucozade.

  3. #3

    Default

    I would sujest an amazing book bby Daniel Cohen (An awsome economist) : Wealth of the World povrety of nations.

    I had basically the same question on my exams last week in geopolitics. I won\'t give you the whole things but basically :
    -> First globalisation which destroyed its industry because of International divison of labor (Ricardo\'s theory basically). So most africa moved on to closing up and trying self centered developpement, by developping their industry to replace importation, worked in Latin America, didn\'t in Africa for various reasons.
    -> The notion of state dosn\'t existe in Africa as it exists in other countries. It\'s an artificial notion brought in by colonisation. The result is weak central powers, corruption, wars.
    -> Obviously corruption is strong in Africa, mostly because of the two arguments given before. Closing up means you don\'t have a global market to rationalize your choices, as it did in singapour for example. And the fact that most African really don\'t care about their governement means it\'s easier for them to use power as a money cow.
    -> Weak governement means no infrastructure, thus weak health services and education. Both important for economical growth.
    -> Africa has no comparative advantage, all that Africa produces can be found elsewhere.
    -> Price for \'raw material\' (don\'t know the terme in english), which Africa as plenty of, was very low for most of the XXth century and is only starting to peak up with China\'s growing demand.
    -> There\'s a big probleme with urbanisation. Government remain in power so long as the cities agree to support them. So with the help of marketing boards they keep price on food low to keep the cities pretty happy. But that means farmers get paid less, and eventually they leave for the city to find more money. But cities don\'t have job and aren\'t designed to accomodate so many people. So people just end up in huge ghettos, becoming a burden on the city. It\'s a vicious cycle. Not to mention that our industrial revolution started with the countryside. But in Africa with the money beeing sucked out of the country side no industrial developpement is possible.
    -> Africa is crushed by the wieght of it\'s debt.


    Put all that together, and it\'s easy to understand Africa\'s underdeveloppement.

  4. #4

    Default

    Mad dude kills about 30 American students - thread begins full of sympathy and pleas that it doesn\'t get political.

    Plane crashes in Cameroon killing a likely 114 people - thread begins wondering why Africa as a continent is so fu**ed up.

    It\'s no wonder Englishmen always play the vilains in movies (Eg Rickman as Hans Gruber, Hugo Weaving as Megatron lol)!

  5. #5

    Default the biggest problem

    european\'s and their actions in africa over the past many hundred years..(espec the british) basically started to help destroy the country....controlling the trade, and slavery for the resources. Problem was now, the few wealthy africans there...mainly warlords, continue the same practices the europeans brought there long ago....

  6. #6
    Brushlicker johnboyjjb's Avatar
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    Default

    The reason that I see as having large amount of troubles in Africa stems from money. Those who have it have all of it and aren\'t willing to share. Those who don\'t have it are willing to do anything to get it. If/when they do get it, without getting killed, they are now unwilling to share. By these means there is no improvement to infrastructure. The poor stay oppressed and the rich make sure they stay there.

  7. #7

    Default

    Originally posted by lono
    Mad dude kills about 30 American students - thread begins full of sympathy and pleas that it doesn\'t get political.

    Plane crashes in Cameroon killing a likely 114 people - thread begins wondering why Africa as a continent is so fu**ed up.

    It\'s no wonder Englishmen always play the vilains in movies (Eg Rickman as Hans Gruber, Hugo Weaving as Megatron lol)!
    :) The story that I saw was the one about a hospital ship that was built near my town to be sent to Africa. It got me wondering, the fact that we\'re building hospitals to send to other countries, and the reasons why.

    Frenchkid - good answer. I can see why all of those things together might add up to a lot of trouble. Corruption particularly would undermine all efforts to improve the situation.

    matty - Africa actually has a massive un-tapped potential for lucosade and weetabix resources, but no-one seems willing to utilise it. It\'s political I think.

  8. #8
    Superfreak!!! Sand Rat's Avatar
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    Default

    Could also have to do with a social structure that emphasises the tribe/family connections over national interests, added to explotation by colonial powers, and the above items listed by French Kid.

    Course, it could also be that by keeping Africa hosed, we Westerners still have a place where we can make up for our sins by shouldering the \"White Man\'s Burden\" in order to civilize the poor backwards heathens of Africa.

  9. #9

    Default

    I suspected the story that prompted it probably wasn\'t about the plane crash, just messing!

    Got to question the Lucozade thing though. If they don\'t have Lucozade how come they have so many good atheletes? I thought it was a necessity in sporting achievement... or have John Barnes and Michael Owens been lying to me?

    OK, I\'ll admit it, I don\'t really feel informed enough about the situation in Africa to add anything terribly astute to this discussion.

  10. #10

    Default

    the AIDS epidemic is playing a major role in the destabalization of many african countries. young people are running the countries because anyone old is sick or dead.


  11. #11

    Default

    Lono: Hugo Weaving is actually a Nigerian-born English-Australian. Africa has so many good athletes because they are used to running 12 miles in scorching heat from their villages to get dirty water to drink. At least that\'s what we are told - I actually believe they are hiding secret Lucozade wells.

  12. #12

    Default It\'s always the evil whitie\'s fault, isn\'t it?

    Originally posted by GreenOne
    It\'s a long shot, but I think the only way we could help them is to get all the white/occidental interests out, including those that pretend to be helping, and stop selling them weapons. With time ( quite a bit of time actually.) the africans would reclaim the lands that been stolen from them and use it to their interest. If the (plenty) fertile lands where owned by black farmers, instead of white ranchers, for example, it would be a good start...

    Actually, I think any short them solution to the situation is pure utopia, but if no more evil persons are allowed to f**k them even further, when the world will change, over centuries, Africa might become the power it as been in the past ages.
    lol Riiiiiiight on, mate, right on! lol

    So, I should up and leave Africa? lol Got any Canadian-born black folk that you\'d like to swap me for?

    As for white ranchers vs. black farmers... two words; Robert Mugabe. I suggest you do a little googling on that name before you make another haplessly uneducated post. \"Stolen land\" is another precious phrase, but I don\'t care to wax on about that.

    The reasons for Africa being undeveloped (as I believe them to be) have already been mentioned. steelcult and frenchkid got them fairly sorted out.

    Edit: African philosophy defies Western philosophy. African reasoning defies Western reasoning. It is folly for western people to try and understand Africa from a western point of view. Only greed is a common language.

  13. #13

    Default

    Originally posted by GreenOne
    It\'s a long shot, but I think the only way we could help them is to get all the white/occidental interests out, including those that pretend to be helping, and stop selling them weapons. With time ( quite a bit of time actually.) the africans would reclaim the lands that been stolen from them and use it to their interest. If the (plenty) fertile lands where owned by black farmers, instead of white ranchers, for example, it would be a good start...
    Actually, beeing cut out from global market would be horrible for Africa, they need to export and they need to import.

    And I don\'t know what you mean by short term solution but agreable growth could be acheived in about 50 years. In 1967 South Korea\'s GNP and HDI were the same as most African country. Insertion in global market was a big part of their developpement. That and the \"90% perspiration, 10%inspiration\" mentioned by kinsinger ( I think...)

  14. #14

    Default

    You should know better Mod...its always the \'mans\' fault. The man takes on different guises, but it always boils to the same argument. \"We\'d do fine, if the \'man\' wasn\'t sticking it to us\".

    Maybe sometimes there is creedence to \'the man\', but mostly it is just a convenient scapegoat.

  15. #15

    Default

    Originally posted by StarFyre

    European\'s and their actions in africa over the past many hundred years..(espec the british) basically started to help destroy the country....
    It\'s a crock to blame it all on the British. The French, Germans, Portugese, Italians, Belgians and Spanish all had their flags stuck in various bits of the continent and all played their part in the creation of Africa as it stands today.

    That\'s without even considering the effect of Arabic and Middle Eastern slave trading...

  16. #16

    Default

    i think the OP answered his own question.

    5000 years is a long time. and believe me when i say africa was the king of the hill early on. zimbabwe, etheopia, egypt. all had very wealthy, very powerfull empires. in many ways they had more power than USA does today.

    unfortunatly these early civilisations relied more on natural resorces that were in limited supply. trees being right up there. they also had less agricultural technology which devestated their soil in many places.

    technology advances were hindered by everything being in the wrong spot. tin was rare and not near copper so relied on transportation to advance. africa was largly out of the loop here being mostly landlocked. egypt was the last of the african empires due largly to it\'s own sea power.

    africa and the arabic crescent ran out of resources before they made technological advances to keep moving forward. much later coutries continued to use their resources to make the bid for world power. the spanish blew it\'s go with the destruction of it\'s armarda. the loss of trees and material was staggering. englands bid coincided with the discovery of the new lands. it out grew the need for trees and was able to keep hold of most of it\'s important assests up till present day. a very big player in ealy industrial revolution meant it had money and tech. enough money and tech to invest in a new continent barely touched full of loverly resource. cue USA the newest country on the scene with pristene resources. with tech and money invested heavily into it it grew and prospered. they have better technology to utilise the natural resources at this point and don\'t destroy their lands too much.

    now USA and other major super powers get by on oil. when it runs out then you can bet it all, that they will collapse and end up very much like africa today.

    try to imagain american military might without oil and you\'ll have an insight to how weak africa is now in relation to what it once was.

  17. #17

    Default

    Originally posted by Modderrhu

    So, I should up and leave Africa? lol Got any Canadian-born black folk that you\'d like to swap me for?
    lollollollollol

  18. #18

    Default

    Originally posted by steelcult
    Could also have to do with a social structure that emphasises the tribe/family connections over national interests, added to explotation by colonial powers, and the above items listed by French Kid.
    In many parts of Africa the tribe/family connections are what\'s important to the people as it has been for 1000s of years. The states and borders were constructed by other people, not seldom dividing tribes into different countries. You can\'t create a national identity by drawing borders on a map and call it a country, and that\'s what happened in many places.

  19. #19

    Default

    If I have heard correctly, alot of the aid that\'s sent to Africa ends up in the hands of some warlord and never makes it to the people it\'s intended for....amazing.

  20. #20

    Default

    But africas (and everywhere elses) problems are so easy to solve. Just get rid of 95% of the humans. Make sure you keep all the intelligent, easy going, good natured people and they will have plenty of food and resources without being a terrible burden upon the earth.

    Either that or we need to invent replicators...

    Bill Hicks<not the most popular idea>Bill Hicks

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