Monday, April 30, 2012

"Western hypocrisy toward Africa"

Bu'ush from Nairobi sent me this:  "THE West continues to present to Africa the wrong side of a rough stick. So accustomed to the brusque treatment, Africa now makes only mild protestations then meekly endures the bias as if chained to it. In ways big and small, Africa is put down and betrayed. Instead of holding out for justice, we have gotten to the point where we beam ecstatic for a small cloth towel to be tossed across our backs to slightly cushion the load thrust upon us by our own failings and the unjust designs of others. Our sense of proportion and ability to discern the intricate patterns of the global political economy have frayed. We are stirred to high emotion by contretemps that are but minor plays in the grander scheme of things. Yet we treat the sweeping issues of our existence like squalls in a saucer. We confuse salience and visibility for profundity. We often miss the big picture because we are too busy staring at the flashy one.For weeks, media rode the story of Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala’s candidacy for the World Bank. This respected Nigerian economist was eminently qualified for the position but her candidacy was ill-fated upon its very launching. The American was always to win. Had the United States sent forth a three-legged, blind and deaf pack mule for the position, that wretched animal would now be the occupant of the highest office in the building that houses the World Bank. This was never a contest in the true sense of the word. The drama around the illusory competition for the position was contrived. The Western press that endorsed the Nigerian knew this one was over before they went to press. The writing was on the wall before they wrote in their newspapers and journals. They knew their writings would not turn around those who had already made the decision yet would make them look enlightened and less bigoted in the eyes of the developed world. Theirs was an empty gesture akin to presenting a housewarming gift to someone whose mortgage has been foreclosed."