Mugabe is leaving no stone unturned

First he destroyed the primary sector of his economy with unbelievable efficiency, now he is turning his eye to the commercial sector

It is actually shocking just how effectively one man can systematically dismantle the economy of a country.

The widely held theory is that he is a syphilitic madman, but that can’t explain just how diabolically brilliant his scheme must be if this is his actual aim.

As this is P&R:

If Bush were really concerned with peace or stability or any of the ideals, this man would have been the target, not Saddam.

Yeah, in a just world Mugabe would be swinging by his testicles from a lamp post.

Say Brendan, when are your elected leaders going to stop mollycoddling that asshole?

They’re not. Mbeki and Mugabi are struggle buddies. The fact that they faught against the colonialists together outweighs any possible evils they can commit, even destroying the country they fought to save.

Also, Euri, the only way the situation could be worse is if there was a civil/conventional war in the country.

So they got fined $70-100 Million Zimbabwe? If I were them, I’d ask for thirty days to pay, with the rate of inflation in that country, that will be pocket change by next Tuesday.

Brendan - how is the government staying afloat? I haven’t read too much, but it seems the agricultural sector was hit very hard. I can’t imagine there’s much industry. Is there a mining sector? Or is the country surviving mainly on foreign aid these days, or something else?

From what I’ve read, it’s mainly been staying afloat via black market transactions fueled by the (huge) diaspora of Zimbabweans who’ve fled and send money back home.

The official state Zimbabwe paper (all the others were shut down) is a hoot to read.

Awesome. All this is from the state paper?

Freeze rent increases, please

EDITOR — It is sad to note that most landlords are defying the Government directive to freeze rent increases.

With the directive in place, my landlord increased my rent three-fold.

There is no way I can refuse to pay,

as that would be akin to inviting eviction.

I urge the crack units to also launch a blitz on landlords and estate agents.

A door-to-door enforcement exercise would be most welcome.

It might, however, prove costly and laborious but if we are to curb inflation, the exercise is indispensable.

Can the Prices and Incomes Commission do something about this irregularity?

Can the commission also do something about the prices of electrical appliances that are now beyond the reach of many Zimbabweans.

To buy a four-plate stove, I will need to save the whole of my salary for about six months, which is impossible.

Can the Government put benchmarks for all electrical appliances to enable the poor, like me, to have access to these goods.



I find their logo slightly ironic. It seems to be an upside-down aircraft with no wings or control surfaces.

That newspaper reads exactly like the ones in Simcity does.

I still find the North Korean newspaper funnier though.

That’s a damn shame. It’s one thing to stand by Khaddafi, but when Zimbabwe finally explodes, it’s right next door to S.A.

Mugabe was supposed to send a diplomatic mission to SA to discuss the issue but they never pitched. Even though they didn’t give any reason for snubbing us our foreign ministers says “…they must have a good reason.”. Our government seems to have swallowed the Mugabe cool aid and the idea of Mugabe being a liar just doesn’t occur to them even while he makes us the laughing stock of the world.

Brendan - what’s the longer term prognosis for Zimbabwe?

I know Mugabe is pretty old, but perhaps not old enough to solve the problem ‘naturally’ in any near term sense. I gather democracy there is pretty much dead. So that leaves:

  1. Mugabe steps down voluntarily (seems highly unlikely)
  2. Mugabe dies.
  3. Mugabe thrown out involuntarily.

How likely is #3? If Mugabe is out, one way or another, how likely is it that a decent new leader will emerge (or, dare I say, a true democracy?) How likely is it that Zimbabwe will collapse into spasms of civil war and/or warlord rule, a la Liberia a few years back?

I’m not an expert on Zimbabwean politics by any means but 1. does seem highly unlikely. 2. Is probably the best bet, and 3. in my opinion would be the worst possible outcome. The only way to depose Mugabe would be via a coup or external military intervention.Unfortunately, in Africa, once the dogs of war are let loose, that is pretty much it for a country for the next ten to twenty years.

Zimbabwe does have one thing going for it - the population is relatively well educated. If Zimbabwe can hold on until Mugabe is out of the picture, and if one of his cronies doesn’t decide to sieze power for himself there is a decent chance of the country stabilizing, it will never be as prosperous as it was before Mugabe lost the plot. (At least for the forseeable future.).

I thought that Mugabe is bad enough that his own party is deserting him and talking to the opposition. If they could pull off a relatively clean internal coup, they would be the best outcome I think.

I wish we could go back in time and unfuck Africa.

The problem is that if you use undemocratic means to end even an undemocratic reign you’re setting a very bad precedent.

If my arguments seem a little pussified, it’s because I really, really don’t a war in my neighbours back yard.

Zimbabwe, land of bargains.

Economists say the price cuts will only deepen the national crisis, leaving many shops bare because they will not be able to afford to restock while official retail prices remain lower than the cost of buying wholesale or importing. Mr Mugabe has dismissed such warnings as “bookish economics”.

There’s nothing snarky I can say that would top that.

I think I remember reading recently that some of his Generals were “suggesting” that its about time he took a step back. Then they had a couple of article about him possibly going to (I think it was) Malawi or Namibia (apparently Mugabe and the Pres. of Namibia are also “long time struggle buddies”).

I’m curious to know how much info you guys (Non-African continent people) get about Zimbabwe. Do you hear something about them on a daily/weekly/monthly basis?

Have you heard that he is forcing shops to sell stuff for less then they buy it and is Jailing anyone that doesn’t obey? (See Lum’s link above).

Its batshit insane and hopefully it ends soon.
Things a fucked up there and I don’t see a way out for them, not without food donors and a ton of foreign aid… oh, and no Mugabe.

another link:

I was going to say something like: well the silver lining, such as it is, is that if they ever do manage to unscrew themselves up, there may be rapid development based on renewed foreign investment.

Because I happened to notice a lot of telecom investment in Cameroon lately – a number of system vendors I’m studying have recently listed Cameroon carriers as their customers – I was going to cite Cameroon as an example of a relatively stable African country with a lot of investment. It’s true it’s relatively stable, and it’s also true it has increasing foreign investment.

But after a quick trip to Wikipedia… If Cameroon is really considered to be relatively good, I guess the bright spots are few and far between these days. Very high levels of corruption, concentration of wealth in the government elite, most people dreadfully poor and weird practices like “breast ironing” and genital mutilation. I suppose they’re not at war, externally or internally, so that’s good for them, but it’s hardly an ideal model.

Are there any other subsaharan African countries that are doing reasonably well, apart from South Africa?