Posts like this one make me angry. Oh, let's go against ALL collective wisdom on Africa, and pull out one statistic, two anecdotes out and no first-hand experience, and say "No, people in Africa are happy!" btw phil, The celphone statistic is because: 1. most africans have never had a landline, 2. celphones are actually far cheaper in africa, and 3. Celphones are actually far more advanced in africa than they are in North America. The may not have cameras in them, but you can take your sim card with the same phone number to a different phone on a different provider.

[The folks who've actually spent time in Africa feel a lot less sorry for Africans. One fellow at the Hacker's Conference spent nearly a year on a road trip through Africa with He said "In a lot of the villages where we stayed, folks only have to work about two months per year to pay for all of their food and shelter. They're so much happier than Americans." My friend who work in public health and have spent years in Tanzania don't shed tears for the locals, either. And there is some evidence that Africans may not be as bad off economically as the dry statistics suggest. notes that "an estimated 100 million of [Africa's] 906 million people" have mobile phones.]

Another quote from Githush. This post should provide a little more context into the problem

Nothing weird you say, well on another channel - Bravo - they have a marathon of the reality show, The Restaurant. Now imagine this, on one channel you are watching a chef slathering a whole pig with butter, frying up some chicken, and grilling a ribeye steak. On the other channel you see folks (Ethiopian) forced to eat grass - which the refer to as cababage - a Sudanese family forced to go 3 weeks without food, and North Koreans forced to eat human flesh in order to survive. Curious are we, there is more.

The patrons in the restaurant can not stop complaining, ohh the food is not hot enough, it's taking too long, it's not in the right plate etc.. But the Ethiopian, Sudanese and North Korean just accept what little they have (though they try hard to get better) and do not keep complaining. Those with plenty bitch about not having enough or not the right knd, but those with little accept what they have, thank the lord for what they have and continue on with life. Kweli hardship hardens the skin.


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20 November 2005