Sunday, January 08, 2006

Malawi Today: Overpopulation

Recently we linked to Paul Theroux's excellent editorial against Bono and Bill Gates sending computers to Africans nations and forgiving debts of these nations (which helps the corrupt govts.) while ignoring simpler, less Microsoft-oriented solutions. That editorial got reprinted at the Times of London here.

It also got letters to the Times in response; among them comparisons to Ireland's famine: "The main cause of Malawi’s plight: overpopulation. In the 40 years since he (Theroux) was a volunteer worker there, the population has quadrupled. No wonder the forests have been destroyed and the environment degraded.

"At the beginning of the 19th century Ireland was going the same way, with a mainly peasant population of 8m, the numbers nearly halving by 1950. The total now stands at about 5.5m, giving it a density of 58 people per square kilometre. The equivalent figure for Malawi is 103, with little industry and without the support of the common agricultural policy. If the Irish population had grown as fast, it would now stand at 13m and the republic would be in dire trouble without emigration."

Another letter claims that Africans lack moral values and any kind of work ethic. Another says AIDS is part of the main problem: "
Malawi’s GDP per head was the same as South Korea’s in the 1960s, now it is among the 10 poorest nations. The collapse of the market for its main product, tobacco, and the effect of HIV/Aids, which now affects 11% of the population, have had a much greater impact on the economy than either the emigration or bad governance identified by Theroux."

See earlier January posts for more of god's scorn - and other supernatural doings - heaped upon Malawi.


Blogger Unsane said...

Africans sometimes lack WESTERN moral values, but sometimes they have them in overabundance -- see mugabe and his anti-gay stance.

12:40 AM  

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