Impressive returns may await those who approach Africa with a long-term view
Pope Francis may be the most widely admired pope in recent times, especially among non-Catholics, but his encyclical “On Care for Our Common Home” contains language and ideas that should give pause to rationalists of every political and religious persuasion.
Since the break-up of the Soviet Union Kazakhstan has done far better economically than most of the other former Soviet republics, with per capita GDP rising from a little over $1,200 to nearly $14,000. But reaching its stated goal of becoming one of the world’s 30 richest countries by 2050 is far from assured.
President Obama received a lot of outraged criticism from the right during the 2012 campaign for his remark, “You didn’t build that.” What he meant, though he uncharacteristically said it in a fairly clumsy way, was that for every proudly self-made entrepreneur there is a huge web of supporting institutions and infrastructure built by the government.
I can recall when taking a flight in Africa would almost always give you a funny or hair-raising story to tell, even though paved runways were already standard issue in airports throughout the continent, but traveling around Africa is now pretty boring, which is a good thing.