May 22, 2006


A huge 'no' to Africa's big-man politics (The Monitor's View, 5/23/06, CS Monitor)

Nigeria has defied an African tradition of bowing to the Big Man (the kind who takes power by bullet or ballot and never lets go): It denied its president a third term. Such an act shows the potential for leadership by Africa's most populous nation. [...]

With some 130 million people and oil resources that should have made it prosperous by now, Nigeria could be the continent's shining light. But an entrenched culture of civil and political corruption, along with tensions among its more than 250 ethnic groups - and especially between its Muslim north and Christian south - have kept those prospects dim.

Eventually the UN Security Council -- reorganized around the idea of an Axis of Good -- should be America, Australia, England or Poland, India, Brazil and an African democracy. Kenya and Nigeria are logical choices if they can keep making progress.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 22, 2006 8:29 PM

Hmmm. Nigeria, Poland and Brazil? I wonder why you didn't include Iran, it being our natural ally and all.

Posted by: Peter B at May 22, 2006 8:48 PM

Nigieria is not making progress, via Clive Davis:

This part probably touched a particularly raw nerve:

On this visit I asked some educated Nigerian Muslim women what they thought of the 2003 incident in which a Nigerian woman had been convicted of adultery and under Sharia (Muslim) law was sentenced to death by stoning. They insisted that the procedure had not been followed correctly. (Apparently there had only been one witness and there should have been four.)

So I asked whether, if the procedure had been followed correctly, they would have been in favour of the stoning. They said yes. Whatever the educational challenges in Jamaica, you would be hard put to find women (however illiterate) who thought stoning a woman to death for adultery was correct.

Posted by: Sandy P at May 22, 2006 9:01 PM


India is the natural Asian representative.

Posted by: oj at May 22, 2006 9:02 PM

Certainly both parties should be stoned in adultery cases.

Posted by: oj at May 22, 2006 9:08 PM

Sandy - All that proves is that there are Muslims in Nigeria but not in Jamaica. It doesn't prove that Nigeria is not making progress.

oj - I suppose if fantasy baseball can do so well, maybe fantasy UN security councils has a chance.

Posted by: pj at May 22, 2006 9:51 PM

oj: So you have finally converted to Islam?

Posted by: Mörkö at May 22, 2006 9:53 PM

We'll get ready to welcome Nigeria into the Anglosphere.

Posted by: erp at May 22, 2006 10:51 PM

Morko - Try Judaism, of an old-fashioned variety.

Posted by: pj at May 23, 2006 8:04 AM


I have to confess I thought of our Fearless Leader when I saw this from Blogging the Bible:

The Lord—not so good at follow-through. In Chapter 2, He is clear as He can be: He commands man not to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and bad: "for as soon as you eat of it, you shall die." No wiggle room there. You shall die. But then when Eve and Adam eat the fruit of the tree a few verses later, do they die? Nope. God punishes Eve with "most severe … pangs in childbearing" and curses Adam by making the soil barren. Any parent knows you have to follow through on your threats, or your children will take advantage of you. God makes a vow He can't keep—or if He did, He would undo all his good work. So, He settles instead for a half-hearted punishment that just encourages His children to misbehave again. Is it any surprise that we sin again? And again? And again? All the way down to the present day. You can call this "original sin," but maybe it's just lax parenting.

Posted by: Peter B at May 23, 2006 9:09 AM

So oj has converted to ancient Judaism. Interesting.

Posted by: Mörkö at May 23, 2006 10:17 AM


Posted by: oj at May 23, 2006 10:21 AM

Until they give up stoning, they won't be a part of the anglosphere.

Posted by: Sandy P at May 23, 2006 10:28 AM

Until we return to punishing adulterers we'll trail them in anglospherocity.

Posted by: oj at May 23, 2006 10:33 AM