Wednesday, December 7
The World Is Yours
In this country, you gotta make the money first.
Then when you get the money, you get the power.
Tony Montana in Scarface
Opposition leader Merera Gudina on the 'election':
"The EPRDF would not give into defeat because without the power all its investments and luxurious life would be at risk."..................................
One of the distinctions between a Fascist and Communist state is supposed to be who owns the means of production - the state or private interests. Both states are murderous and any private interests in a Fascist state are totally creatures of the Totalitarian state that defines both anyway so the distinction is of little importance in real terms.
Another distinction between Communist and Fascist states is supposed to be how they justify themselves. Communist states are imagined to have an internationalist perspective and Fascist states a national one. Again, this difference can not withstand scrutiny because what it really means is that one directs violence based on class hatred while the other does so based on ethnic / religious hatred.
Indeed Communists never refer to German Fascists as Nazis instead preferring the term Hitlerites because Nazi is short for National Socialist. Neither shied away from creating states defined by brutality within and without. Both attempted to take over the world and both committed genocide for similiar class / ethnic / religious motives.
Fascism of the Left or Communism of the Right are two sides of a Totalitarian coin that when tossed means bad luck for humanity however it may land. Both make people suffer for the interests of a few in the end and the ruling party of Ethiopia has recently seen the creation of a perverse new fusion of the two.
It is a Totalitarian Party with roots in Albanian Communism that governs by tribal divide and rule while pretending to be a fount of Liberal Democracy and Free Enterprise. At the same time it actually owns the economy of an entire country through a corrupt web of state and pseudo- private interest that are themselves owned by the Party Politburo in question.
This series of posts named for the criminal vision of Paul Muni's and Al Pacino's Scarface, defined by the slogan "The World Is Yours." It will take a look at the massive and ruthless corporate / totalitarian empire also know as the ruling party of Ethiopia. From owning every square centimenter of land in a nation of 70 million onto control of billions in aid annually and total dominance of the commanding heights of a whole national economy, the Politburo's holdings represent the greatest concentration of wealth under unitary control from Cairo to the Cape.
Here are some initial points for consideration:
--The ruling party directly and through various shells owns large chunks of the economy and numerous enterprises at every level while it refuses to privatize and to allow competition for itself to exist
--Control of government and party (the same thing) owned businesses is more often than not directly in the hands of government and party officials themselves who serve both as government officials and the chairman of businesses or other shell enterprises
--There is absolutely no record or expectation of audits of the whole incestuous mess by any institution at all. Even if it existed it would certainly have at its top someone from the higher reaches of the party / government who was also a board member or chairman of a party / government / crony enterprise
--Crony status of the government and party or involuntary but absolute political subservience is needed to successfully participate in the remaining parts of the economy with any hope of success
--There is no private ownership of land and as Trotsky said "“opposition where the state is everyone’s landlord means death by slow starvation." Along with eternal destitution for all but a few, the absence of ownership means that the best guarantor of the rights of man is lost
--The government owns all of the land and thus those who own the government ultimately own all of the power and wealth
--Indeed, to an exceptional degree by international or historical standards, political and economic power and wealth are inseperable in a most direct manner and held by an exceedingly small number of people
--That is why we refer to those who run the party / government as the ultimate revolutionary feudal aristocracy. Such a state is not a breeding ground for accountable and honest government
--Despite the fact that most people in government and most citizens and even most ruling party members are decent and honorable people ... it is not only impossible for a nation to prosper in the current circumstances it is impossible for society and particularly government to be defined as anything but totally and utterly corrupt
--that the massive corporate empire controlled by those who own the government and and the economy at every level represents the greatest concentration of wealth in Africa under unitary control from Cairo to the Cape
--that has despite billions in aid made Ethiopia get poorer every year, more aid dependent and less able to feed itself while the suffering of Ethiopians translates into cold hard cash for a tiny elite to play with and invest abroad
--Ethiopian government is corrupt by the express design and wishes of those who structured it. The whole apparatus is built that way and it is lovingly maintained despite every failure of national growth and health, by those who benefit from its essentially corrupt nature
The rest of this series will go about proving the assertions made above. It was all too much to put in one post so in the interests of ethiopundit and our readers we will break it up.
Most of the information is already available in books, documents, and websites from a variety of popular and little known but always reliable sources. Some of it is already buried in this blog.
Bringing it all together seemed worthwhile since Ethiopia's governance represents a concentration of power and wealth unprecedented in the nation's history and unseen outside of frankly Totalitarian societies anywhere.
Only miserable poverty dictated by policy for use as a defense against popular accountability along with a resulting necessary dependence on the West provides for a veneer of civilization over what is frank barbarism.
Ethiopia's rulers literally own everything in the country directly or through shells under a variety of guises in government, the ruling party or through cronies. The current rule of Ethiopia is best described as an Ongoing Criminal Enterprise.
In addition to power it is not appreciated how much of what happens in Ethiopia is simply all about money - getting it and keeping it.
The Prime Minister on economics:
"Unlike in [Western Style] Liberal Democracy, in [Ethiopia’s] “Revolutionary Democracy,” there is no economic area that is outside its preserve. Only available capital and procurable management can limit its investment capacity.This will be another long series from numerous sources detailing the essentially corrupt system that Ethiopians suffer under. A system that simultaneously wastes billions in aid dollars and euros while impoverishing millions:
The World Is Yours I
The World Is Yours II - The Syndicate
The World Is Yours III - The Commission
The World Is Yours IV - "An Offer They Can't Refuse"
The World Is Yours V - Capo di tutti Capi
The World Is Yours VI - Our Thing
The World Is Yours VII - Wise Guys
The World Is Yours VIII - Friends of Ours