The Zimbabwean Crisis

We've all heard about the Zimbabwean crisis be it on the TV or print media, but here is a small selection of statistics from an extensive fact sheet to show how much of a crisis it really is:

Estimated population in 2000: between 12.5 and 13 million; current estimates indicate the population could be as low as 8 million

Economic Collapse
The world’s fastest shrinking economy - exports: R50 billion in 1997, R9 billion in 2007

Agricultural Sector
Up to 70% of commercial agriculture has been destroyed

Emigration / Brain Drain
75% of Zimbabweans with a job are employed outside their country

Living Standards
45% of the population is malnourished, one of the highest rates in the world

Number of doctors per 10 000 people: 1 (World Health Organisation statistic 2006)

Mugabe’s Mansions
Located 16 km north of Harare, Mugabe’s 25 en suite bedroom mansion is the size of a medium-sized hotel - via

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Blacks have a gift when it comes to destroying what whites build. Here in the U.S. they're working over Detroit, Baltimore, and New Orleans pretty well. With the demographic trend the way it is, they'll have the whole country going down the tubes in the next 30-50 years. All this just in time to be enslaved by a rising Asian power or perhaps put out of their misery by some meteorite.
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Jim has a compelling argument, but he didn't quite make the connection to Zimbabwe's problems being the fault of the United States, or more specifically, GWBush. He is showing his leftard tendency, though.
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Tony raises an interesting theory, but I'd like to expand it and stay away from the traps of racial-oriented explanations. Yes, prima facie evidence does lend itself to asserting that "something" must be different about the African people themselves. I'll offer that perhaps it's not the people's genetics (their intelligence, their race, or whatever) that has hampered their ability to self govern, but rather a lack of "western experience".

The great Western Democracies were based on 2500 years of cultural foundations from Ancient Greece, Rome, medieval Europe, the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, &c. There were a whole lot of successes, failures, and ultimately learning about how to run a government that happened during that time. Most of Africa missed all of it! We expect them to act like we do when the population is largely illiterate and almost wholely ignorant of what took us a couple millenia to pick up ourselves.

Literacy is the first step to resolving their condition. WIthout literacy, learning is forvever handicapped. Without learning, a people will live in perpetual ignorance and the problems never get solved -- they'll only move from one strongman/dictator to the next without ever achieving peace or achieving living standards close to the developed world.

Straight talk from Sid.
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