Thursday, September 13, 2007

Problem, Meet Solution

In English, the President of Zimbabwe's surname, "Mugabe", roughly translates as "gross, willful incompetence." Ironic for a man who holds seven--count'em seven--non-honorary degrees.

That may be slightly unfair to Bobby Mugabe. Navigating your own newfound independence is never easy. After the former Rhodesia fully relieved itself of British colonial rule, he and the rest of the Zanus may have owned the hearts and minds of many Zimbabweans, but there was a mountain of English-inspired detritus to sort out. While land distribution and coalition building dominated the political agenda in the free third world nation circa 1980, first world nations in the West and East counted their billions, raced to corner the market on the next technological revolution and plowed through piles of cocaine like it was oxygen.

Even before Bobby Mugabe was rechristened a corrupt dictator, he and his country were, how you say?, in a hole.

That, though, doesn't excuse the Allyson Felix rate of inflation that has crippled Zimbabwe during the first few years of the 21st Century.

Shit is so bad over there that Zimbab-expats can't even send money back home for their families to buy groceries. One dollar today may only be worth 50-cent tomorrow. Whether they have the scrilla to buy a bag of rice or not, people in Zimbabwe still gotta eat, right?

Therein lies the problem. And here, courtesy of NPR's Marketplace, is the answer.

My Shona may be a little rusty, but I think "Sadza" translates as "clever application of capitalism."

Or something to that effect.

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