yesterday the nytimes reported that the trump transition team recently asked the state department With so much corruption in Africa, how much of our funding is stolen? Why should we spend these funds on Africa when we are suffering here in the US?
good question? or is this part of the Trump pattern of tossing out ideas, waiting for blowback. then taking the absence of blowback and/or critical feedback as a signal to move forward on an idea or a nomination.
there is a method to the madness of supporting all of africa. but the trump transition team has asked a good question. the nytimes also writes that in the same unclassified memo, that the trump transition team asked How does U.S. business compete with other nations in Africa? Are we losing out to the Chinese?
this could be a sign that the US might take a more China-style approach in aid to african nations. China tends to form partnership style cooperations with african countries. china brings both know-how and money to the table. through the know-how, china works together with the local partner to build infrastructure projects in exchange for good long-term prices for raw materials which china lacks and/or has a low supply of. such as cobalt, oil, etc. the government takes an active role in developing strong relationships with africa and these type of relationships have helped to lift billions of people out of poverty since china has made this commitment to africa.
would the US be able to foster similar relationships? possibly. the big criticism directed at china is that china takes a complete hands-off role in domestic politics. some would define this as turning a blind-eye. one could argue that china could use leverage to foster better situations for the local people. one could argue that assisting in training engineers and investmenting in high speed trains and other infrastructure projects in africa is accomplishing this too. and that maybe lecturing africans about how to create a democracy isn’t really working. in the 1990s in the paper the rise of illiberal democracy (which are prevalent in africa) by (surprisingly) fareed zakaria (or however you spell his name), the author argues that constitutional democracy is needed before liberal democracy can be achieved. constitutional democracy encompasses rule of law, protection of property rights, adhering to contracts, etc. establishing a stable structure that encompasses good governance and the rule of law.
anyway. something to consider for those living in and around trumpland. maybe getting the private sector more actively involved in africa would be a win-win situation. and could in the longrun provide greater assistance. there are things that the private sector does better than governments.