Umm, what?

But in February 1966, a military coup backed by the CIA overthrew Nkrumah, and the country remained politically unstable until 1979, when another military coup brought the neoliberal Jerry Rawlings to power. With the help of international financial institutions, he made Ghana a model of African neoliberalism.

I think it might be true that Rawlings became neoliberal but he didn’t start out that way, did he?

8 comments on “Umm, what?

  1. He started out as Head Chef ordering his sub-chefs to serve up his specialty dish: Human Ears with Rice.

  2. Not sure why we’d agree “neoliberalism” is even a thing. And my experience in Ghana is that the patronage- and relationship- based bureaucracy and parties are stronger than any ism going.

    And I recommend John Mahama’s memoir, My First Coup d’Etat, if you want a first hand account of the stupid socialism applied during the years your quote just describes as “unstable”.

  3. ‘Neo-liberal’ is a term of abuse, IMO. I see little value in the term. Rawlings was more open to foreign investment in Ghana? OK, but he was also the usual nigger tyrant.

  4. Rawlings came to power in 1979. So did Thatcher. So did Deng Xiaoping in China. The next year so did Mitterrand and Reagan.

    They all pursued similar policies. All over the world people embraced neo-liberalism – in the actually sense of really being neo-liberalism rather than some mindless abuse.

    So what? Neo-liberalism did not make China before Deng a poverty-striken sh!thole. Or Deng a mass murderer. It did not make Mitterrand a collaborator with the Nazis or a friend of the Soviets. Countries have their own histories and their own paths to where they are. They have their own cultures and politics. Still, think how bad Rawlings might have been if he came to power when African Socialism was popular!

    But nothing is more powerful than an idea whose time has come.

  5. Oddly enough Charles Taylor’s wife is on trial as we speak. For crimes against humanity.

    That is not the odd part. What African ruler’s wife does not engage in a little light murder and rape? The first thing is that she and her family got asylum in the UK. Naturally.

    The second thing is that she has been working as a Senior Lecturer in Business at Coventry University. As you do. Think of the rich life experience she could share!

  6. So I see another terrorist attack in London. Another round of politicians fearing we the public might say or do something. Another round of threats and bullying to make sure we don’t.

    Another round of doing precisely f**k all about the problem.

    After all, what is the cost of washing the skull fragments of eight year old girls out of our hair compared to the joys of a vibrant, diverse, multicultural Britain where people like Rusty don’t call you a racist?

    All immigration since Windrush needs to be undone.

  7. I never know whether to believe the “backed by the CIA” stuff. We’re always told that Allende was overthrown in a CIA coup, but I once came across an argument that he wasn’t. An earlier CIA-backed coup attempt had failed. The one that worked wasn’t one of theirs. That conclusion is consistent with the competence of the CIA.

    I know that it was JFK who had the Diem brothers killed: I assume that the CIA was how he dealt with the South Vietnamese plotters. Was it?

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