Millennium Fiasco

Published in: on March 24, 2007 at 8:13 pm  Leave a Comment  

A test for our heroism!

Published in: on March 23, 2007 at 10:03 pm  Leave a Comment  


By Hama Tuma

Staring from my politically incorrect “tower”, I would say the people of Darfur should be feeling good now that they have become the centre of the world’s attention much to the chagrin of the Congolese (4 million dead and still no worthy hue and cry) and have been told by one veteran American senator that they have left the hell hole of the Sudan and are no found in Somalia. 

American concern over Darfur has always sounded phoney on various grounds especially since such a concern was drummed up by George Bush and Condoleezza Rice. The tears looked too political and cynical and also with the likes of George Clooney in it very “Holywoodish”. Remember when the Rwandan genocide happened, America not only looked on but refused to call it genocide and only went as far as stating there may have been “acts of genocide” and not genocide as such). Now that Senator Joe Biden has claimed he wants America to give backing to Darfur in Somalia it has become clear that the so called concern is literally misplaced unless there are Darfurians in war torn Somalia. One can say that Senator Biden has a confused tongue given the fact it trespassed all caution and stated Baraka Osama is “articulate and clean” to which the African American has politely replied that he did take his shower that morning. A black fellow who talks some sense and shows coherence usually elicits some surprise from white folks be they leftist or rightist. If you want to be cruel about it would be an “Oh! The monkey speaks English!” kind of thing. 

The French intellectual who gives philosopher a bad name, the man who visits a trouble spot for a week or so and emerges as an expert on the area and the region, the very man who wrote verbatim on the last thoughts of slain journalist Daniel Pearl, Bernard Henry Levy, went to Chad, visited the Darfur refugees for a week, came back to France and raised a big hue and cry demanding that the Darfur rebels be armed. The cry has been taken up by the president of France and that fazed champion of “war for humanitarian reasons”,Bernard Kouchner, Darfur is on the lips of the officials of the very country that collaborated with the late Habiyarimana of Rwanda and is accused of aiding the genocide of the Tutsis. One French official of SOS Darfur also did a “Biden” and told his TV audience/March 22/ that the conflict on Darfur, beware, is not religious but “racial”. As Biden has to explain how the Darfur population shifted to Somalia the SOS Darfur official has to explain how a conflict between Janjaweeds/Africans and Moslems and black/ can have a racial war with Furs and Masalits, etc of Darfur who are also Africans, black and mostly Moslem. 

As I said at the beginning, Darfur is hot. Hotter than the Congo where America, France, Britain and others are involved in a day light plunder of that country’s riches and at the expense of the lives of 4 million Congolese. Being a naturally rich country in Africa is proving to be a disaster. Congo is an example, the self declared defenders of Darfur are silent on its fate. Equatorial Guinea is oil rich but with a murderous regime that is not condemned but feted by Washington. The poor Mugabe in Zimbabwe, who prodded the nest of vipers by taking the land of some whites is, on reverse, being accused for detaining and beating his political opponents while Washington has not raised a peep to criticize its puppet in the Horn, Meles Zenawi in Ethiopia, who has jailed more than 120 of his political rivals, tortured hundreds, banned the free press and killed close to 200 peaceful protesters who said no to his election rigging. It has actually become almost nauseating to observe the crude double standard that has become the trademark of the West. He is an SOB but our SOB kind of slogan. They see the movie Blood Diamond and pretend they never knew of Sierra Leone (where Britain and even South Africa meddled to assure control over diamonds) and then go on to buy thousands of dollars of diamonds.  

has little to do with race or religion. There is a whiff of oil and of right wing fundamentalist politics at odds with Islamic fundamentalism. Beshir of the Sudan is unsavoury but then again America allied itself with murderous warlords in Somalia, armed and financed them  and, at one time long ago, was also a close ally of the Taliban, Osama Bin Laden and Sadam Hussein. The cold hearted and cynical politics makes the ongoing concern for Darfur sound hollow. America is arming the rebels of Darfur through other countries in the region though Bernard Henry Levy may pretend he does not know it. Washington meddles and meddles bad–just see Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia. Down in the Congo where Kabila junior is holding a year round discount sale of the wealth of the Congo and British and American gold and diamond companies hire militias that wreak havoc in Eastern Congo and a  country is being bloodied and ruined, the bloody hands we see first of all belong to America, Britain and France. Can such elements have the moral right o talk of Darfur?

How come those who refused to recognize the genocide in Rwanda now cry and shout genocide in Darfur? How can those who aided and betted the foul murderers in Rwanda and the Congo are now crying genocide in Darfur? How come those who are giving millions to a regime that massacred hundreds in Ethiopia and sent hundreds of opposition leaders to prison till now dare accuse Mugabe? How come indeed. The West hobnobs with African dictators who hand over their nation’s wealth, from Gabon to Equatorial Guinea to the Congo and beyond this is what we see. With all the sympathy we have for the people of Darfur and other oppressed peoples in the Sudan it just does not seem right to join the chorus of the Bush and Blair orchestra. Perhaps if Darfur is in Somalia, Bush could order Meles Zenawi to intervene, no?

Published in: on March 23, 2007 at 6:26 pm  Comments (8)  

The Curse of Art (in memory of Chera Keresh/Zenebech Tadesse)

Published in: on March 22, 2007 at 9:45 pm  Leave a Comment  

Current Situations in Ethiopia and the Region, Part II

Published in: on March 21, 2007 at 7:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Current Ethiopian & Regional Situations

Published in: on March 20, 2007 at 10:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

Another War Drum of TPLF Vs EPLF

Published in: on March 20, 2007 at 7:36 am  Leave a Comment  

From Structural Adjustment to WTO membership! Squaring poverty!! Why Ethiopia should not become member of the WTO?

By   Fekadu Bekele, Ph D


“To have a rested mind is a state of ignorance. One must always find something what he can do, to think and bring ideas which could be realized for what one is interested, either for the entire society or for individuals.”  Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz                                                                       

“The normative authority of the United States lies in ruins”  Prof. Jürgen Habermass


Regarding the application of the EPRDF government to become Ethiopia member of the WTO, I have published a long thesis in Amharic, and tried to prove that this application and the possibility of becoming member of the organization is not in the interest of our country. The fact that enlightened minded Ethiopians and those who will be directly affected vehemently oppose if Ethiopia becomes member of the WTO, Meles Zenawi who is now a strong ally of the Bush administration in fighting the fabricated international terrorism, is advised to take more liberalization measures, if Ethiopia have the chance of joining the WTO. Though there are thousands of scientific evidences which prove that such kinds of membership by no means helps a country like that of Ethiopia to build an economy based on science and technology which is the prerequisite of a coherent nation-state, Meles is hasty to totally sell-out our country to multinational companies so that our people won’t see the true light of civilization. 

In the last ten or more years, poor people and enlightened forces across the globe have fiercely protested against the attempts of not only the WTO which promotes free trade doctrine for the industrialized West, but also against all monetarist policies of the IMF and the World Bank, which have brought incalculable damages against the billions of poor people in this world.  The sixty years of economic policies which have been practiced in most of the Third World Countries in the name of free market have proved that these policies have the sole purpose of pushing these people into more poverty and resource plundering which were organized by the respective governments of those countries. In spite of the many damages that the people of the Third World Countries are experiencing, new policies are being formulated again and again so that these countries become more dependent, and open their doors for more resource plundering. The fact that no intellectual debate takes place, especially in many African countries, which economic policy is the best in bringing the necessary economic development that guarantees the people a decent life so that they live in peace and harmony, it is convenient for organizations like the WTO, the IMF and the World Bank to propagate their monster like policies which ultimately destroy the livelihood of those innocent people. It is therefore our urgent task to oppose any attempt made by these organizations to incorporate Ethiopia into the global order so that her resources will not be more plundered, and her people will not live under permanent poverty.  In order to prove why free trade as is propagated by the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO couldn’t bring the desired results, I will show first of all the effects of the structural adjustment program, henceforth SAP, on the livelihood of the Ethiopian people as has been practiced over the last 15 years. As I have subsequently proved in the many publications I made why SAP couldn’t bring the promised results, it will be evident here too that Ethiopia’s application to enter the WTO will deepen the poverty of our people, and break-up the existing social structures, make our country more dependent on outside forces, and make her vulnerable to any economic shock which comes from outside.  From this bleak perspective, the insistence of the US administration that Ethiopia must liberalize its service sector if she will become member of the WTO is nothing but a calculated intrigue to destroy the remaining social ties and create a new social matrix like that of Mexico and other Latin American countries, which can’t be easily controlled by any government which seizes power.                    

In this respect, it is of a paramount importance to understand also the theoretical foundations of these organizations which promote free trade across the globe. Without understanding their false assumptions, and the basis of their theoretical foundation, it is very difficult to fight for a civilized Ethiopia, where her people live in prosperity and peace. I will try to prove also that not free trade as formulated and propagated by Adam Smith and Ricardo, but mercantilist policies of the 17th and 18th centuries, which had opened the road to more coherent economic development in those countries that applied this state regulated economic policy. Here too, I will prove that not free trade which brings economic prosperity for those impoverished countries like Ethiopia, but a systematic state regulated economic policy, which also favours all those active forces that are ready to take part in nation building.   

The failed promise!!  Why SAP has failed! 

The introduction of the free market policy and especially the program of the structural adjustment in Ethiopia in 1993 is a historical turning point in the socio-economic conditions of our country. With the introduction of the SAP, it was from the outset clear that such kind of a wide range policy will create new social conditions and social relationships that our country has never experienced before. By creating new conditions, and formulating new laws, and practicing new policy that are totally different from the policy of the previous government, the policy makers were convinced that Ethiopia and its people will march on the road of market economy that brings prosperity and eradicate poverty once-for-all.  After the experts of the IMF have “studied” the socio-economic condition of Ethiopia, that is very meagre and unscientific in its formulations, they came to the conclusion that, the EPRDF government has no option other than implementing a market economic policy program as prescribed by these neo-liberal organizations. In their beliefs, the previous military regime had adopted a socialist economic policy, that is not compatible with the neo-liberal market economic policy, and responsible for the bad performance of the economy and wide spread poverty. On the other side, one could see easily the theoretical fallacies and empirical contradictions made by these organisations, that while the majority of the Ethiopian peasants live under subsistence condition, and when this with the widespread of the informal sector is the reproduction basis of the Ethiopian masses, how is it possible that one can plan a socialist economic policy. Under these scattered economic conditions and formations with practically underdeveloped economic, financial and social infrastructures it is very difficult to practice a socialist economic planning. What the military government had tried to do was to organize the people in cooperative farming, and had taken wide range measures that it believed, could pave the way for a kind of state regulated economic policy.  Because of the political turmoil that the country had to experience, and the contradictory measures that the government had taken, and its incapacity to execute the policy in a professional manner, and its false understanding of the socio-economic conditions of the country, it couldn’t bring the desired results.  Likewise, the EPRDF government and its mentors, the IMF and the World Bank, knowingly or unknowingly, couldn’t understand the nature of the Ethiopian socio-economic formation. As a result of this misconception and wrong analysis, they came to their supposed market economic policy, that by no means solves deep-rooted social and economic crisis like that of Ethiopia. It is just like this: wrong doctors, wrong diagnosis and wrong medicine that multiply the crisis and deepen it so that no one could solve. The experiences in many countries, where SAP and other market economic policies have been practiced prove that these kinds’ of market economic policies never solve social and economic problems, and never lead those countries to a more integrated capitalist macroeconomic structure. We see today in Ghana, Nigeria and other Sub-Saharan African countries where SAP was being practiced that these countries are far away from an integrated and self-reproductive market economic structures. On the contrary: informal sector and black market activities are the rule of the system rather than the exception. From this we learn that the identification of the macroeconomic imbalances by the World Bank and the IMF concerning the African economic condition is not a correct identification as our Prime Minister, Mr. Meles Zenawi makes us believe. When there are no macroeconomic conditions like that of homogeneous labour market, capital market, money market, general inflations rate, etc, according to the theory of macroeconomic policy, how can one come to the conclusion that there are imbalances in the economic construction of the Ethiopian society. On the other side, our Prime Minister can’t specify what he means by macroeconomic imbalances. When and under what circumstances there are imbalances? What does it mean in such underdeveloped economy the existence of macroeconomic imbalances? As a matter of fact, imbalances in a given situation do exist when one aspect of that given situation is more developed than the other; and due to such disequilibrium situation when there are economic distortions which block economic development in general. The problem in
Ethiopia and in other African countries is not as such the existence of macro-economic imbalances, but the system is organized on false principles and guidelines; and therefore that these societies do not know why they exist. In other words, when a given economy is chaotically organized it disorients the people; their lifestyles will not have some philosophical backgrounds. The inherent contradictions of such a system which has its own socio-cultural manifestations, like disorganized activities, disorientation of the society, loosely connected production activities with very low value-added effect block economic development. In other words, the interactions of so many factors, internal and external, and the interwoven of these factors and their non-dynamism is the real cause of the economic crisis of the African economy.  Mr. Meles talks about economic theory that he has never understood and will never understand, because the problem lies some where, not of imbalances of the macroeconomic parameters that do not exist in the African conditions. Because of this wrong identification of the African economic realities, the neo-liberal ideologists, the IMF and the World Bank came to wrong policies that they prescribed to all Sub-Saharan African countries and adopted, and led these countries to more deep-rooted crisis. After these attempted and failed experiments, likewise our country must also swallow this bitter medicine, that after 15 years of practices our Prime Minister Meles Zenawi realized that he had chosen the wrong path of economic policy. After he has destroyed our country and changed the social matrix of our society, the “wise leader” came to such amazing conclusion, that neo-liberalism is a wrong medicine in curing the African economic crisis.        

As usual, the IMF and the World Bank had prescribed in their policies the known formulas: The EPRDF must take the following measures if it wants to adopt market economic policy: devaluation of the Birr in terms of the US-Dollar, price liberalization, state budget reduction, privatization, liberalization of the foreign trade, etc. From the perspective of the IMF and the World Bank, if the government practices these monetarist policies, that are erroneous and unscientific by nature, economic growth and increase of real income become the rule of the system, and as a matter of fact it encompasses all the areas of the socio-economic activities, and as a result of this the Ethiopian people will see the true light of civilization, and become the member of this beautiful global village where billion of peoples dance hand in hands and enjoy life.  In the eyes of the IMF and the World Bank that propagate neo-liberal policies on a global scale, devaluation of a given currency will automatically increase demand. In their beliefs, currencies like that of Ethiopia are overvalued, and hence export prices are expensive and as a result of this overvalued currency, Ethiopia couldn’t get sufficient demand. If currency devaluation occurs, the so-called elasticity of demand will be the rule, and that means the product Ethiopia exports get more buyers. If this elasticity demand applies for those highly competitive economies, that use scale economies i.e. that operate with high intensive technologies and decrease production costs, for countries like  Ethiopia the formula of elasticity of demand couldn’t be applied. Because of the oversupply of products, like coffee and other agricultural products, and because of intense competition among agricultural and raw material producing countries, and because of price dictation and future contracts, that the coffee and other raw material cartels have at their disposals, devaluation of currencies will not have automatic positive results as is supposed by the IMF, the World Bank and other neo-liberal economists that are ideologically blinded and confuse the world. If the Ethiopian Birr and the currencies of other Third World Countries are overvalued,  because of historical reasons, i.e. in order to protect their markets. From the point of view of importers, it is advantageous to have overvalued currencies, since the exchange rate in terms of a foreign currency favours the importers, i.e. with less amounts of their currencies they could exchange a certain amount of foreign currency, say the American dollar with which they import the necessary capital goods, durable or other marketable goods.  


This being the case, the devaluation of the Ethiopian Birr (Ethiopian Currency), from the previous 2.05 Birr in terms of US-Dollar, to 5 Birr and later to 8, and to 10 Ethiopian Birr could not bring the desired results. The devaluation of the Ethiopian Birr has two negative effects; i.e. as a result of devaluation Ethiopian exporters couldn’t find more buyers for their products. The exporters must export too much of the same products to get the same amounts of turnover as the previous years or less. On the other side, importers must bring more of the Ethiopian Birr to buy one US-Dollar, which is not possible. As a result of such kinds of exchange rate that is not market induced, but taken by the government because of the pressure from the so-called international community, Ethiopia has to experience negative trade balances over the last 15 years. As a result of the introduction and implementation of such kinds of devaluation measures, and liberalization of the foreign trade, the trade balance deficit had increased from $ -720.6 US in 1991/92 to $-1,101.7 US. The increase of imports in terms of GDP had increased successively from 23.0 per cent in 1995/96 to 30.3 per cent in 2000/01; where as the amounts of exports in terms of the GDP had fluctuated between 13 and 14 per cent for the same years. Export volumes and earnings from coffee couldn’t bring the desired results as the IMF and the World Bank would make the government believe. Due to low coffee prices at historic level, and increasing oil prices and the heavy fluctuation of the volume of coffee that Ethiopia exports, the earnings from coffee has decreased from $ 420 million US in 1997/98 to $ 203 million US in the year 2003/4. The terms of trade of coffee to other imported goods has decreased by 33.9 per cent in FY 2000/01, by another 6.3 per cent in FY 01/02, and by yet another 8.9 per cent in FY 2002/03. That means Ethiopia must pay more for one imported good, because of the fall of the prices of coffee. Or she must sell more of the volume of coffee for one imported good.  This clearly demonstrates that, as the result of the well celebrated  devaluation, Ethiopia could neither export more nor earns more dollars that could be used for the importation of capital goods.  Theoretically seen, devaluation must restrict imports. The practice demonstrates, however, that Ethiopia must import goods that are not compatible with her internal production capacity, and with the export income she earns. As a result of liberalisation and emerging of new consumer class including government authorities, the country was compelled to import unnecessary consumption goods that shared the meagre hard currencies that she other wise allocates for other productive purposes. This in turn had spread a unique black market activity and a kind of Ethiopian speculation, which had benefited the new consumer class. At the same time, such kinds of market reforms and increasing of imported goods had expanded the share of the service sector to unknown historical level. Because of the low industrial base of the country, and because of the internal migration from the rural areas to the cities, especially to the capital city, and that are also deliberately induced by the government, those who couldn’t find jobs and couldn’t be easily absorbed by the new investments and the existing industries, were compelled to engage themselves in black market activities, to ayer be ayer (speculation) and other very minor activities. This has swollen the share of the service sector in terms of GDP, which is 40 per cent now, compared to the industrial sector which had remained to only 12 per cent over the last 15 years. At the same time, the massive importation of Handy and the involvement of the EPRDF cadres in such kinds of activities, and the massive corruption of the Ethiopian telecommunication officials by foreign forces have radically reduced the use of fixed telephone lines. Telecommunication officials, who could be easily corrupted, make the existing telephone lines out of operation; and people are compelled to buy Handy. This kind of insane activity by the Ethiopian telecommunication officials had expanded the Handy market.  

The liberalization of the foreign trade had also other devastating impacts on the Ethiopian economy. Textile products, shoes and other products that are competing with the existing industries were imported; and are still being imported, and as a result of this many companies are compelled to reduce the workforce, and produce with very low capacities. The EPRDF government was not willing to take measures against these kinds of massive importations of goods that are destroying the very existing industries. All in all, and as experiences from other countries show, the celebrated liberalization of the foreign trade did not bring for the country any tangible result that could boost the internal market. The internal market is today more distorted than ever, and doesn’t have any system of internal dynamism that could give hope for the masses that are desperately looking for jobs.   The shrinking of the home market as a result of weak industrial base, and the reliance of the government more on indirect taxes for its budget, and the uncertainty of such taxes had compelled the government to rely more on outside sources to fill its ever-growing budget deficits. If we look at the development of Ethiopia’s accumulated debt over the last 15 years, the country comes to a point which it cannot cope any more with such kinds of staggering amounts of debt that shares the huge amount of export earnings. The accumulated debt over the last fifteen years has increased to $ 10.4 billion US. This means that this huge debt is 173 per cent of the GDP of the country. This is also equivalent to 504 per cent of its foreign trade. As a result of debt negotiations with Russia and with the international community, the amount of debt has been reduced to $ 5.3 billion US. Still the country must pay debt service that is equivalent to 23 per cent from her external earnings.   

The liberalization of the foreign trade like the devaluation of the Birr is based on a false theoretical assumption that doesn’t have any scientific basis. When the IMF and the World Bank make their “analysis” to detect the weak points of the Ethiopian economy, they did not have the gut and the theoretical instruments with which they could thoroughly analyse the socio-economic formation of the Ethiopian society, but they simply try to see the situation from a simple construction of monetarist view, that had blinded their minds. It must be from the outset clear that monetarism that was developed in the early 20th century is not constructed to develop a capitalistic economy, but to manipulate it by means of diverse devices, and was not suitable to serve as a theoretical instrument to analyse such backward economic formations like that of Ethiopia. As a result of this misconception of social realities, and biased against other scientifically proved economic and civilization oriented theories, the IMF and the World Bank have no other option than following this radical ideology that destroys the basis of human relationships. They are by nature against other alternatives, since they are ideologically fixed, and don’t have any knowledge of human civilization. The fixing of their attitudes to such ideologically and politically motivated economic theory shows also that, they have some hidden agendas to misguide those poorly educated guys, and are serving at the same time to execute the interests of those evil minded oligarchic forces in this world. The ideological motivation of these institutions prove also that they don’t posses any democratic values in their minds, though they pretend to do so, and are born and grown in the industrialized societies where democratic values are the norms of their societies. In actual fact, they behave like dictators, but they differ in one thing; they don’t seize guns and don’t posses prisons. Their guns and prisons are their neo-liberal ideology that is not less dangerous than dictatorship.  The problem of the foreign trade in Ethiopia like that of the internal economy is more of a structural nature than simple liberalization and monetary problem, that can’t be solved by such kinds of superficial instruments that aggravate the situation rather than solving it. For generations, Ethiopia is dependent on only very few agricultural export products to earn foreign currency. As other developing countries,

Ethiopia was also compelled to be dependent on such kinds of few exportable products rather than following an inward development strategy. Though Ethiopia has been exporting coffee over the last 100 years, its importance became clear as a new aristocratic and bureaucratic class had seized power after the end of the Ethio-Italian war. This new aristocratic and bureaucratic class that was led by the Emperor didn’t have any scientific knowledge how it could build a nation-state like that of Ethiopia on the basis of science and technology, but it had blindly followed the advices of foreign forces, and concentrated its efforts to expand coffee production, and install the wrong industrialisation policy, that has very weak internal linkages, and very weak accumulation effects. This import-substitution- industrialisation and the concentration on coffee production are the main characteristic features of the Ethiopian economy that have distorted genuine economic development based on science and technology.  

From this vantage point of view, as an economist one should study the structural weakness of the Ethiopian economy before one come to a wrong conclusion and suggest the wrong policy  that doesn’t have any scientific coherency in dealing with those economies like that of Ethiopia. In a country like that of Ethiopia, where theoretical and scientific debates are not the rule of the society, and where the intellectual basis of the society is very weak, and where such kinds of destructive forces like that of the EPRDF seize power, it is very simple to manipulate and execute once own evil agenda; i.e. to destroy the very foundation of the nation-state so that the masses live like animals. That is what the IMF and the World Bank have been trying over the last 60 years, and they have successfully achieved their evil atrocities against the billions of innocent people across the globe. The mass poverty in Ethiopia that is growing every passing day prove this fact; the evil nature of the IMF and the World Bank and their monster like policies.  It is our humanistic agenda to fight against this monster like policy if we want to save  Ethiopia as a nation-state, and build it on a strong foundation; that is science and technology. For how long can humanity be deceived by this satanic theory that is against natural laws and true Christian Values, i.e. Brotherhood and genuine civilization based on science and technology.   The case of privatization that is a part and parcel of the total misconceived package of the IMF is also another intriguing attempt to distort the Ethiopian economy. According to the IMF and the World Bank philosophy, one of the main characteristic features of those economies like that of  Ethiopia are, there is too much state intervention in the economy that hinders market economic operation. As usual, such kinds of “massive state intervention” which can’t be proved scientifically, the role of private initiative will be restricted, scarce resources couldn’t be efficiently allocated, and as a result there is price distortion that leads to disequilibrium situation among the different economic sectors. Therefore, the IMF experts say, that the only remedy for such kinds of market disequilibrium, and inefficient allocation of scarce resources, is privatization of the state owned industries. The IMF and World Bank experts that don’t think and analyse in terms of historical process, and that don’t believe in such kinds of comparative analysis, they never pose questions, why there is, according to their view ” too much” state intervention in those economies like that of Ethiopia. On the other side, this exaggerated state intervention if we compare it to that of the purely capitalistic economy of the West, doesn’t exist. If we look at the economic structure of Ethiopia, either during the Emperor time or during the era of the Military dictatorship, the role of the state in manipulating the economy was practically negligible. First of all, the majority of the industries and other so-called modern sectors are not the basis of the material reproduction of the masses. Since over 85% of the Ethiopian people rely on the basis of subsistence farming and informal sector activities for their reproduction, to believe that the state has the greatest role in conducting the movement of the entire economy is to put things on their head. There is no any scientific justification on this basis to make us believe that the Ethiopian economy is slowly growing because of the massive intervention of the state. When we look at the economic policies of either the Emperor or the Military dictatorship, both have wrong conception of economic development, and had never thought from a scientific perspective to develop a coherent and self-reproductive economy. As a result of the built-in mechanism of the import-substitution industrialization, and due to the historical nature of the Ethiopian society, the dynamism of the system is very limited. Secondly, the import-substitution industrialization is a false accumulation model; since it is not backed by machine-tool industries that has the greatest accumulation effect, and could easily encompass the entire economy if it is again backed by development and research. The lack of such kinds of industry is one of the main causes of underdevelopment of the Ethiopian economy, and as such not the massive intervention of the state in the economy that hampered economic development.  This false accumulation model is not only the problem of Ethiopia; it is the problem of so many African countries that were compelled to follow such a policy during the 50s and the 60s. When the state had “greater roles” in those economic sectors, not because it wanted to act like this, but the historical necessity of the country has compelled it to play major roles in those areas where private capitalists couldn’t afford. The fact that Ethiopia was pushed to follow such a distorted economic policy had compelled money holders not to invest on productive sectors. Due to the limited historical knowledge of the state and the ruling class, it was not possible to rare a bourgeoisie class that could play a historical role by investing on technologies that have greater accumulation effects. The state by opening its door and foolishly advised by foreign manipulators, had derived those money holders not to play active role in the economy. As a result of this cooperation between the ruling class and the foreign forces, the only option for the indigenous class that has remained is to concentrate on those areas where the turn-over of capital is quick, and becomes rich easily within a short time. Then the service and the trade sectors were seen as the only alternative economic sectors, and as times goes the class which is engaged in this sector become culturally bounded and remained there tightened for generations. When the military government came to power, whether knowingly or unknowingly, it wanted to correct these kinds of resource distortion that hampered economic development. But the problem of the military government was that it had not grasped the nature of the socio-economic backwardness of the Ethiopian society. Without knowing what socialism is, as any body does, it had started to fight on all fronts, and by that it produced so many enemies. As a result of blind nationalization and false understanding of the laws of political economy, its measures were destructive, and did not have any scientific basis that could alter the Ethiopian society on solid foundation. Such kinds of hasty measures by the military government, and the all-out propaganda against the supposed socialism, the west had begun its fierce attack against Ethiopia in order to destabilize the entire social matrix of the Ethiopian society.    

When the EPRDF government came to power, there is no alternative other than advising it to privatize the state owned sector. The hasty measure of the IMF and the World Bank to control the situation, and the incompetent nature of the EPRDF government, has created a situation so that not only the government, but also other forces that were not in favour of the government saw the policy as a correct strategy that could bring economic growth and eradicate poverty. The question, when privatization is introduced, how it is sold, and who competes to buy the industries and other economic activities were not resolved from the very beginning. All have seen as if there were forces that could afford to buy and ran the industries according to the principles of market economic efficiency. As times goes it became clear that only those forces that have direct access to the government or are related to the party, and get easily bank credits could partake in the privatization process. In  Ethiopia too, we observe a Russian type situation when private persons without prior knowledge of market economic principles, and without having money, easily get access to bank credit and could buy the industries. As a result of such kinds of direct and indirect intervention of the EPRDF government few individuals became rich over night by stealing the country’s wealth. This has created a new social situation; and new class relationship has been created that is not dynamic by nature, but arrogant and illiterate that has taken the country to unknown destination as we see it today. This new class relationship that is created by the holly alliance of the international community and the ruling class is not in a position to create new wealth by engaging itself on those areas whose accumulation base is wide; i.e. science and technology based investments.   This kind of privatization measure that is ideologically motivated rather than economically and scientifically justified couldn’t create a market economic dynamism that brings prosperity to the country by creating new jobs and raises real income of the worker. When we look at the entire economic reform that was introduced in the name of a free market, its agenda was clear. By making the economy more open to global players, that come and make their agreements with the ruling class and squeeze the maximum profit through such kinds of unequal arrangements, they want to drive the country to uncontrolled situation. At the same time, this kind of market reform proves the incapacity and ahistorical nature of the ruling class that has prostituted itself to the international financial oligarchic class that ruins nation-states across the globe. In this manner the new ruling class and those who have profited from this distorted market economic reforms have reduced themselves to a status of slave that obey and do what their master say. This is unique in human history, and it is against the interests of our nation that must be combated by any means. 

All in all, if we look at the neo-liberal policies of the IMF and the World Bank, the policies are based on wrong assumptions and identifications that are not existing in those economies like that of Ethiopia. The problem is not macroeconomic imbalances, but unique structural, economic, social, cultural and political crisis that arrest technological and scientific development. The problem lies that Ethiopia has a unique history of social formation of interwoven mechanisms that arrest the human mind not to go beyond the existing imaginations and social realities, that could be dealt only by metaphysical instruments of the highest order, and can’t be solved by simple monetarist ideologies that are perverse by nature and multiply the crisis to a higher degree so that no one could solve them. That is what the IMF and the World Bank are trying to achieve and confuse the world more and more as if there are no other instruments other than these misconceived policies that are based on false paradigm.  It is a fundamentalist ideology that is responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands of people across the globe, and many are still dying every day because certain foolish governments like that of Ethiopia are practicing it on our people.             

 Growth without Development!! Market Economy without Capitalism!!    

We are told that, since the introduction of the Structural Adjustment Program or the market economic reforms in 1993 the Ethiopian economy has grown by more than 7 per cent or on average by 5.7 per cent year after year. The statistics of the EPRDF led government, the World Bank’s statistics and other neo-liberal researchers that have made wide range analysis about the Ethiopian economy came to the conclusion that the economy has shown remarkable growth rate of 7 to 8 per cent over the last 15 years. If we study all these analysis made by all neo-liberal affiliated institutes that don’t derive their researches from the physical economic science point of view or from qualitative analysis, but take simple quantitative growth model as their point of departure, the supposed growth rate is not backed by science and technology, but is simply the extension of the old model of industrialization. The EPRDF government and its advisors didn’t have time to study the nature and the structural weakness of the old industrialization model that is known as the import-substitution industrialization, but convinced by their neo-liberal model and continued with the same accumulation model as in the past as the only viable road of achieving economic growth. Hence, after the government has taken all the necessary monetarist reforms as it is advised by the World Bank and the IMF, it perused the same industrialization policy as in the 50s and the 60s.   As wide range analysis and researches show that the import-substitution industrialization strategy that was introduced as a model of “capital accumulation” and modernizing the entire society in the 1950s as was imposed by foreign forces in most of the African countries and including that of Ethiopia, was one of the main factors that had distorted economic development and responsible for massive waste of resources. First of all, such kinds of industrialization model was conceived for consumption purposes without being backed by a machine-tool sector that is the backbone of a true capitalistic model or an extended capitalistic accumulation.   Second, as a matter of fact such a model was detached from development and researches, without which a coherent economy with its own self-reproduction base can’t develop and undermine the old modes of production relationships that hamper economic development. Third, such a model of industrialization was not again backed by any science led education system that could give it internal dynamism. As is known, the education system of the 1950s and 60s had produced a white-colour social class that by itself became the victim of this kind of distorted industrialization model. Fourth, as the total package of the industrialization model came from abroad, it was heavily dependent for all the input factors on outside sources. That means, it did not have backward linkages. In other words, this model couldn’t serve as a market for the raw material producing sector, including that of the agricultural sector. Fifth, its capacity of creating jobs for the million of the job seekers was very weak, and had only demonstration effects. Sixth, most of the industries were located in the capital cities, and in other selected cities that were not connected by multiple mechanisms with the rural areas. On the other hand, such a model had the capacity of absorbing resources from the rural areas, human and material resources. Job seekers and those young people after they have accomplished their secondary education came to the capital city to look for jobs, and this has created perverse conditions in those selected cities. The mass exodus from the rural areas and villages has created marginalization in the cities.  The widespread prostitutions and with its all kinds of aftermath that is by itself became a kind of industry is the by-product of such kinds of industrialization model. The spread of informal sector that becomes the only viable reproduction base of the city dwellers, and that we see it especially in the Mercato( a dense and chaotically organized market place in Addis) area is a vivid example of this false industrialization model of the 1950s and 1960s. Seventh, as is propagated in the universities, such a modernized sector couldn’t trickle-down, and encompasses the other backward sectors due to the limited technological base. Eighth, the workers who are working in this so-called modern sector earn wages that do not enable them to buy the products they produce themselves. Hence the money can’t come back to its original place so that capital accumulation takes place on a higher scale. Only through such kinds of interconnected relationships and continuous growth of the real income the industry finds its financing sources that enable it to expand and become innovative. These are some of the handicaps of such import-substitution industrialization model that threw our society to more deep-rooted crisis. 

After the introduction of their nasty neo-liberal model, and after wide spread privatization, the EPRDF government that does not know other economic policies, continued on a higher scale with the old industrialization model that has thrown our country to deep- rooted crisis as we see it today, and which was one of the main causes for the down-fall of the government of the Emperor Haile Selassie. If we compare the nature and mode of the industrialization between the pre-reform period, that is before 1990 and after the post-reform period, that is after 1992/1993, we see similarities in the nature and structure of the industries. All analysis made by the neo-liberal economists including those of Ethiopian economists came to the same results, without deep analysis about the nature and structure of this kinds of industrialization, without investigating the restricted accumulation base of such a model. From all the industries that are categorized under manufacture, still the food and beverage sub-sector is heading on the forefront, and has a share of 26 per cent from all activities, where as strategic parts, like machinery, metal and basic iron industries, have a share of only 2 per cent. All other activities are spread in those sub-sectors whose accumulation base are not wide, and that are weakened in the last 15 years by the same kinds of products that are imported from outside. In general, there is no shift in industrial activity from import-substitution industrialization to a more generalized industrial activity that is based on machine-tool industry that is the basis of real industrialization process.  Interestingly, one could also observe that very few dear to invest in long term activities; when they invest only on those areas where the turnover of capital is very quick and promising from short term perspective. As a result of such attitude, the service sector is the fastest growing sector in the last 15 years of market economic reforms, and has a share of 42 percent of the GDP. This shows that more and more people are shifting their activities to areas where the material reproduction base of the society is very narrow. This shows also that Ethiopia is moving more and more towards a more consumer society, where very few are producing and the majority are consuming. The importation of luxury goods for a certain class and with its demonstration effects, and at the same time the massive inflow of second-hand products that can’t be easily recycled at home become the material reproduction base of the Ethiopian society, that have altered the mentality of the youth not to engage itself in activities that are seen as minor and can be performed only by those people whose social origin is very low by Ethiopian standards. Such kinds of behaviour are also strengthened by the new education system that is introduced after the reform. The spread of private school systems which are not that much qualitative by any standard, but that are still seen as better compared with that of the government schools, and which are producing a new white-colour class of consumer society, have strengthened this mentality of not being engaged in real material production that is the foundation of physical capital accumulation. The spread of private schools is creating class division, and as a matter of fact, those who have accomplished their education have better chances of getting jobs and become slowly the social bases of the ruling class. If we see the overall performance of job creation of the new industrialization model leaves much to be desired. The increase of wage employment is not that much promising, and rose only to 95, 707 in 1999/00 from the total employment of 90,070 that was surveyed in 1983/84. This means that the performance of the economic reform on the general employment level is very negligible. Study shows also that in the real reform period starting from 1992/93 until 1999/00 the total wage employment has increased by only 1.9% per annum, where as unemployment remains rampant in the cities, where rural-urban migration become acute. The unemployment rate in Addis Ababa alone as conducted in 1999 by the Labour employment office is 38%, where as on average across the country lies by about 26%. This shows that the market economic reform has not brought the desired results as is supposed to be, and instead it has produced mass unemployment, especially during the privatization period, as the new owners began restructuring their companies to make more profitable. Those forces that are seen as redundant must leave their work places at the beginning of privatization. In general, still the agricultural sector is the main sector that employs about 89% of the total population; where as the manufacturing sector employs only 2% of the population, and that of the service sector about 4% of the population. If we look closer at the manufacture sector, there is no shift in employment over the last 15 years. Study show that according to the Annual Survey of Large and Medium Scale manufacturing Industries, there is not shift in employment among the various sub-sectors. Food and beverage industries that were the main employers before the reform are still employing almost the same amounts of labour force until 1999/00, and the textile sector employs before the reform 37%, while this share has been reduced after the reform to 30%. In general these two sub-sectors employ almost 65% of the total work force from the entire manufacturing sector.  The rest of the population is engaged in household activities. Such an economy with very narrow industrial base has very low accumulation capacity and the production of value-added on a higher scale and that has organic-links with other sectors, and that is based on science and technology is practically impossible. Economic growth without a valued-added chain effect which is in turn supported by science and technology can’t be called economic growth. Such economic growth as seen in the last 15 years is nothing other than growth without development.   Beginning 1992/93 until 2004/05 about 13 504 projects involving Birr 149.2 billion capital were licensed. Out of this total projects, 12 067 or 89% were domestic, 1364 or 10% foreign and 73 or 0.5% are public. In terms of capital investment birr 91.2 billion or 61.1% are domestic, birr 41.1 billion or 27.7% are foreign, where as birr 16.7 billion or 11.2% are public. Foreign investments are concentrated in those areas where low value-added gain is possible, like flower planting and other agricultural producing activities. That means the foreign involvement in the Ethiopian economy does not have an effect of creation of a new accumulation base that in turn has the ability of increasing employment and real wage. By concentrating their activities on those areas where the value-added effect is very low, foreign investors divert the attitude of domestic investors. In this case the possibility of growing a home market that is based on science and technology and that could yield internal cohesion and stability is impossible.  The distribution of the entire investment over the last 15 years remarkably shows the inner contradiction of such kinds of industrialization model. Like the 1950s and 1960s, the regional distribution of the investments beginning the market reforms is more or less similar, where as Addis Ababa and its vicinity take the leading role. Out of the total investment projects, 49.4% are located in Addis Ababa. Oromia, especially the major towns like that of Nazreth gets 24% of the share, the Amhara region gets 17.8%, and 5.7% of the investment goes to Dire Dawa. From this investment distribution only few cities and areas are blessed with such kinds of attraction, where as the larger area of the country is entirely neglected or not being considered as an area of investment and accumulation. This necessarily leads to wealth accumulation and real income distribution and concentration in few areas, and the majority of the Ethiopian people can’t be integrated into the entire economic activity. This regional disparity in investment project distribution has wide range consequences for the country as a whole. Economically seen most of the people remain untouched; human and natural resources can’t be utilized properly.  As a matter of fact, if many areas remain untouched by such kinds of market reforms, cities and infrastructures can’t be developed. This has the consequence that there will be cultural differences between those so-called developed and underdeveloped areas; where as such differences bring new tensions, since the majority of the people feel that they are not belonging to the system. From this perspective and from the perspective of social, economic development, and cultural integration and a new psychological make-up that give our people more confidence that they belong to Ethiopia, it is necessary to totally discard such a market economic reform that block genuine development. Only, economic policy that is science and technological driven, and that discards the neo-liberal market reform model, and that is resource based brings Ethiopia out of the present economic malaise.  To materialize this we need also a democratic culture that is based on true discussion and open debate without any fear. Without open debates and without presenting once own position to the people which alternative policy is the best avenue of achieving of a science and technological driven society with its all cultural facets, like beautiful architecture, literature and other sorts there is no genuine human development. That is why Ethiopia becomes an arena of cultural distortion, manipulation and psychological confusion by all those internal forces and their foreign masters. In this mass confusion and throwing Ethiopia into such a situation that is not seen by any human history not only the present government is responsible, but also certain backward minded Ethiopians, young or old that have closed their minds and march on the path of self destruction. Today we know the visible and main enemy of our country. That is not the point.  The most difficult task lies ahead is to teach all these guys that weave the Ethiopian flag and shout aloud without knowing for what Ethiopia they are struggling for, and what true democratic values are. 

Now let us come to the theoretical part so that my readers have clarity about the essence of capitalism, since most of us are trained by neo-liberal models, we can’t grasp capitalism which is genuinely based on true competition, that has inner logic, dynamism and laws, and without understanding this inner laws, it is very difficult to grasp market economy that is falsely preached world wide as the only viable avenue of human destination.   It is very difficult to put and analyse here the inner logic of capitalism on this piece of paper. There is a great confusion among Ethiopian economists in understanding the inner logic and historical process of capitalism. Since most of us are trained by neo-liberal manner, and know mostly by heart such simple constructions, like demand and supply, indifference curves, substitution effects, macroeconomic parameters, such as employment., inflation, capital market etc, production possibility curve, that do not show the inner dynamism of capitalism and that are more or less developed in the 20th century, that means after 400 years of the development of political economy as a science, we will never grasp the laws of social and historical process as has been developed and came to such a degree as we see them in most capitalist societies. Before the development of political economy as a science in the 16th century, most European societies had undergone major social process, and developed scientific instruments to cope with the social, economic, cultural problems and natural calamities that they had faced. Trade relationships with other nations, the development of handicraft activities from within, and the disintegration of the feudal order and the development of new forces that began shaping their societies, all have contributed to create a new system that is more dynamic than the old one. The major break-through in the European history came through Renaissance of the 15th century, that has laid the foundation for major city buildings of architectural beauty, the rise of new culture of performing theatres and operas, that have the unique message of shaping of the new class to take the leading role to shape the society according to its own image, the spread of handicraft activities and the emergence of a new merchant class that has developed the habit of accumulating money and wealth, all these have laid the foundation of present day capitalism. This new culture became effective and could be built on solid foundation when science became the true source of creating new devices and technologies, without which one can’t see such kinds of progress. 


After the 16th century, when the formation of nation-states become an accepted fact, the necessary of developing a theory that is instrumental in creating new wealth and maintaining the society become inevitable. Hence Mercantilism becomes the first theory of political economy, and that is developed as a true science and accepted by all scientists of great thinkers at that time. Most of the scientists of the first generation had thought how to maintain a social order and developing it to a higher order by developing science and technology. The political philosophers of mercantilism saw in nation-state the materialization of the human spirit by giving it a new accumulation base. For this they saw in monarchism the instrument of achieving this material and spiritual necessity. In order to develop the nation-state and create an integrated economy, they must design new instruments, and support those active forces that they are dynamic and create wealth for the entire society. The introduction of manufacture activities, the development of internal trade by destroying all internal barriers, by introducing a universally accepted money and currency system, that was based either on Gold or Silver, by controlling the foreign trade in order to protect the infant industries, and by exporting more etc, these are the first theoretical foundation of political economy, without which the development of capitalism is inconceivable. The idea of mercantilism as a science of political economy and that is not only based on simple aspects of economic activity, but on entire social, economic and political activity, has its central element in creating wealth by means of manufacture activities that has the capacity of encompassing the entire economic sectors. This was the central essence of political economy of mercantilism not as toady’s economists of the neo-liberal garbage teach and preach to create wealth for the few and throw the majority of the people to slave like situations, and by that to destroy the human soul.  This first and generalized political economic principle must be fought by new weaves of ideology that is based more on oligarchic principles, that is empiricism. As is known the theoretical foundation of empiricism is Sophism that distorts science as is developed by Socrates and Plato. The science of Socrates and Plato is based on the basis of truth by constructing dialectic and hypothesis in order to reach to the higher order of human imagination to create science and bring harmonic development in a given society. According to Plato, knowledge is given to everybody by birth. As this first knowledge is raw by its nature it must be cultivated again and again by making dialectic the true instruments of investigation. In that human beings are different from animals, because they pose questions again and again, and ask themselves why they are living in this world. The fact that they are endowed with this peculiar thinking capacity, they form social organizations and develop them to a higher order by developing the division of labour. The forms and intensity of the development of the division of labour could be transformed to a higher order when science becomes again the basis of investigation. When Plato followed his master developed his philosophy he saw the human development not as empiricist fact that can be reduced to sense perception in order for present consumption, but as an entire set of activity that can be studied and practiced as a whole and that can’t be reduced to a simple and single fact. As universe, human beings and their development must be seen as an integrated whole that must be cultivated from all aspects so that it can come nearer to God. This philosophy of Plato and the science developed on this basis was the true source of Renaissance of the 15th century and that was strictly applied by those great philosophers of that period. As the philosophy of Plato was seen as a danger to the oligarchic class, new ideologists came to the scene that had deeply involved in bringing forth the idea of Sophism that was heavily  fought by Plato to bring a just and democratic order. Sophism which is the instrument of the oligarchic class drive all laws as given by those who are strong, and the basis of science is not dialectical self-questioning, but sense perception. In other words, all knowledge is derived from what one sees and observes directly, but not by self interrogation to come to the true human life and create new scientific devices. 

This Sophistic philosophical principle was taken by the English empiricists of the 17th century like Hobbes, Locks and later by Adam Smith. These new philosophers saw in human being a self-achieving animal that marches individually to satisfy its needs to the highest degree. Accordingly, human beings are egoistic by nature, and this built-in character is the true basis of their rationality, and everybody lives like Wolfs and lives in permanent fear. Everybody fights against everybody. That is the basis of the English empiricist philosophy that does not know society as a society, but as sums of individuals that are fighting against each other to maximize their needs. According to Hobbes, human beings that are not fighting to maximize their needs behave like animals.  Such individualistic philosophy that opposes the true individualistic philosophy of Socrates and Plato, and that investigates things not in their entirety, but singularly, and not as if they are not connected with other objects and social relationships, become the basis of today’s neo-liberal economic theory. Production for production sake, and consumption for consumption sake which is isolated from spiritual satisfaction and genuine human relationship becomes the deriving motive of human activity. In this case business making becomes the central aspect of human motive from which all other aspects of human lives are derived.  On the contrary, the individualistic philosophy of Plato that sees the materialization of the human need and its spiritual accomplishment within a given community emphasises that only in this way a harmonious order which is based on science and technology can be established and developed.  Only through science and technology, through architecture which is harmonious by nature, through classical music, human beings achieve the highest order of living together in peace and harmony. This idea which was reinvestigated during the renaissance time and further developed and practiced during the mercantilist era was halted after the triumph of empiricism in the 17th century and strengthened further by Adam Smith, Ricardo and all other classical economists who saw in the state as the opposition of individualistic materialization as was developed by Hobbes and co. in an empiricist manner. According to Adam Smith who had elaborated his theory of the division of labour not as a dialectical and organic order, but a technical aspect which is necessary for the market economy, is the basis of individualistic materialization which brings economic growth. Only the invisible hand could bring any society forth, and the basis of such economic progress is private property as was developed by Locks as accepted fact of any human society.  The question of acquisition of private property, and how it came historically, and how it could be distributed or there is inequality with its negative impacts was not posed as problems, but was seen as natural and economic necessity. The triumph of this individualistic market economic principles as is propagated specially by Adam smith and Ricardo who especially opposed the imposition of the corn law that restricted free trade and who favoured the rising capitalist class had only a short duration, as is highly elaborated by economic historians, and especially analysed by Professor John Gray in his well celebrated books, False dawn which shows the fallacies of free trade. According to his analysis there is no long duration of free trade or pure market economy in all capitalist societies, especially in that of England. Only in the short duration of the Victorian age one could see free market as was propagated by Adam Smith and Ricardo with all its negative consequences.  


The theory of market ideology based on invisible hand, the division of labour based on private property was extended to a generalized free trade. Adam Smith has developed a theory of international division of labour based on absolute cost advantage. Countries which produce the same products if they engage in exchange activities, should not concentrate on the production of, say both goods, because if they concentrate on the production of one good they save costs in absolute terms. In order to justify his theory of free trade and the international division of labour, Adam Smith took Portugal and England as an example. During the 18th century, both produce cloth and wine, where as England is more specialized in the production of cloth, but in terms of production costs she does not have any advantage compared to that of Portugal that produce also cloth. From the point of free trade and international division of labour, according to Smith, it is still advantageous for Portugal to concentrate on the production of wine and leave the production of cloth for England. The unit cost differences in the production of wine in both countries compared with that of cloth production is big; that means the unit cost of wine production in England compared to the unit cost of production of cloth is greater, and in this case it is advantageous for Portugal to concentrate on wine production, though it has absolute advantages in the production of both of the products. According to Adam Smith this cost differences is due to climatic condition and geological formation which Portugal has at its disposal. Therefore not only theoretically, but also politically Portugal was pressured to abandon the production of cloth and specialize in the production of wine. As a result of this pressure and concentration on wine production, many Portuguese farmers left other farm practices, and shifted their activities in favour of wine production, because they believed that they could sell their products on the world market. As more and more farmers had shifted their activities to that of wine production, there came an over production of wine that suppressed prices on the world market, and this had in turn resulted in trade deficits of Portugal and reduced real income of those farmers who were engaged in wine production.. The specialization on wine production had also resulted in monoculture production activities that had brought food shortages in the Portuguese households. As a result of such one-sided agricultural activities in Portugal, Portugal was hit by hunger catastrophe that had resulted in loss of lives. This was the practice we know from this kinds of international division of labour as is forwarded by Adam smith.  Though Ricardo does not differ from this view and stressed more on relative cost advantages, both aggressively represented the interest of England as the only industrialized and technologically advanced nation. Other nations are doomed only to specialize in agricultural products. The theory of Adam Smith was heavily refuted by Friedrich List who saw that such theoretical formulation prevents other nations to develop entirely, that means as political, social, economic entities that advances them as nations so that they could function as an organic whole. According to Friedrich List, who had formulated and developed the infant-industry argument, every nation is predestined to develop technology, and to expand manufacture activities so that it could function as a nation-state. Friedrich List emphasised that only through science, technology and extended manufacture activities, nation-states could be respected and defend themselves from external aggression. Those countries that follow the advice of Adam Smith could become easily the victim of external aggression.   After Germany and France had understood the ever growing dominance of the British Empire and the free trade policy that had negatively affected them, they had to concentrate more on in-ward looking development. Following the advice of Friedrich List, especially Germany took more mercantilist economic policy as guidelines to develop a manufactured based economy that enabled her to surpass England within a span of time.   In the 1940s and especially after the dominance of America as the emerging super power in all major fields, the theory of Adam Smith was reformulated and advanced as the main stream of economic development theory as we have learned it in the universities. The so-called factor endowment theory of Hecksher and Ohlin, that means countries that are endowed by certain factors, capital, labour and natural resources must specialize in their merits as nature has endowed them. Accordingly Third World Countries must not waste time in the production of technologies, but simply concentrate in agricultural activities and raw material extraction. Only through this kind of specialization economic development will be effected, and a maximum welfare will be achieved across the globe. The theory of international division of labour was refined by Paul Krugmann, and he advises Third World Countries not to be engaged in technological activities, as this brings  trade-offs; that means resource waste. His example of Rose production is a vivid example how economic science has changed to a simple abstract construction without any scientific basis and confuses especially Third World students, which believe that they study development economics as is forwarded by Professors Krugmann and co.    By opposing all physical economic principles as was developed by mercantilist economic thinkers, marginalism or the neo-classical economic theory was developed in the 19th century, by taking not production and the division of labour as the basis of economic science as is formulated by classical economists, but a mathematically formulated consumption model which is the basis of economic analysis. The basis of this consumption model is exchange, and not science driven technological economic development. By devising new monetarist instruments that have more manipulating effects rather than solving real social problems, economic science become more sophisticated, mathematic and acrobatic. Not given social relationships and physical economic principles are the basis of economic science and problem investigation, but privatization, deregulation, monetization all human activities, with by it, strip it and flip it mentality, become the economic philosophy of the American and British ideologists that propagate globalization and free trade that is synonymous with resource plundering and social disorder across the globe. Hence the economic philosophy of neo-liberalism is not wealth creation as such by developing the human cognitive power into the highest order, but by developing such economic instruments, indifferent curves, marginal utility, substitution effect, linear economic scale, opportunity costs, trade-offs, scarce resources, demand and supply that build the basis of price formation, not labour power as is developed by classical economists, become the unique characteristic of the neo-classical economic theory. Such a theory with every increasing sophistications, and being put into practice to absorb resources from the masses and transfer it to the well-off class as Professor Gray vividly analysed, bad capitalism has replaced the good capitalism that had operated on the basis of state intervention by taking the Keynesian model as the instrument of economic regulation too hinder social and macro-economic imbalances. When such kinds of bad capitalism as propagated by the Americans and the British starting the end of the Second World War is being put into practice in those societies like that of Ethiopia where the intellectual basis of the society is very low, it produces militaristic ideology and cements those traditional and backward attitudes, and suppress the development of science, technology and true culture that strengths the social ties of the entire society so that it could function as a family. The infiltration of the American ideology into the Ethiopian society starting the end of the 1940s has the effect of, on one hand militarizing the state apparatus by making it more ferocious, on the other hand produced a ruling class that couldn’t understand its historical role and that has alienated itself from the rest of the society, that hates the development of science and technology.  This ruling class and the system it has relied on reduced it to a slave like situation towards the American imperialism, by destroying the traditional social values that our society had relied on for its reproduction and social cohesion. If one investigates the social formation of the Ethiopian society and the psychological make up of certain class that is more affiliated to the American ideology than to the traditional value of the Ethiopian society, one could observe that such a class becomes cheat, arrogant and resource plundering that at the end ruined our society. Such kinds of mentality and social formation as is spread by the Anglo-Americans, one could observe that it becomes the main factors of social instability in many Third World Countries, especially in Latin American and African countries. We see this new class that does not posses true knowledge, becomes the basis of war and fascism that destroys the African society. Accordingly, the present small-headed government of Ethiopia which is led by the “macro-economist” Meles as the international community attests him, is a vivid example of a new hybrid class that has fused neo-liberalism with the feudal social order that does not know any tolerance, and leads our country to unknown destination by creating permanent social instability and chaos. This is a unique kind of social formation that must be investigated further, that I cannot dwell longer here for various reasons. From this vantage point of view one can’t wonder when such a class that is supported by neo-liberal ideologists ruins the social fabric of our society, and throws the entire society into abject poverty that the Ethiopian society has never seen before. We have a political, economic and cultural fascism that is produced and reproduced by the present government of Ethiopia led by the “macro-economist” Meles and its oligarchic mentors, the IMF and the World Bank.  


The Social and Cultural Consequences of the Structural Adjustment Program  

Form the outset it must be clear that the objective of any society is to build a harmonious nation-state that is based on science, technology and classical culture. From this vantage point of view the development of social and cultural ties with the basis of true science is the foundation of a coherent society. True economic development that is based on physical economic principles does not neglect social aspects as if they are not part and parcels of economic development. The way one lives, buys, consumes, brings children to birth and educate them so that they become true citizen of a given society can’t be seen isolated from the general economic development, and hence from the real income one receives. Likewise, the saving and continuous investment of any given society depends on the income what one receives as a reward for his duty. In this respect the social condition of any society is not only a reflection of the given economic development of that society, but also the cultural consciousness of the ruling class. The more the ruling class is historically conscious, the more the economic development takes its scientific path. The more the economic development relies on the basis of science and technology, the more the social and cultural system of the society is developed and secured. To think or imagine any economic development outside this context is reducing economic science to a voodoo economy that doesn’t have any scientific basis. Form this simple perspective let us investigate the social impact of the Structural Adjustment program in our society before we come to the genesis of the WTO and its importance as a free trade promoter across the globe.   First of all, it must be clear that from the structural adjustment point of view social chaos and poverty must be produced and reproduced so that they could be tackled later as externalities of the economy policy practices. This is what the World Bank and the IMF have been practicing over the last 30 or more years when they have been promoting their monetarist ideology in the Third World Countries. From this very intriguing malpractices of the neo-liberal ideology, the social situation of the Ethiopian people according to the survey conducted by the Ethiopian economists from 2003-2004 compared to the situation at the beginning of the 1970s shows little or no improvement. The basis or the methodological survey of this study is the consumption pattern and the income or the buying power of the households investigated. As the survey affirms, this non improvement or the deterioration of the living standards of the Ethiopian people shows that the supposed economic development has no any scientific basis; and it is not designed to solve such kinds of problems. The document pinpoints that as if the situation is out of control, and shows the incapacity of the government to cope with these very complicated problems that are produced by such kinds of unscientific economic policy. The study presents with lucid example that, especially the majority of the people who are living in the rural areas are out of human civilization with no or meagre contacts with the modern world. Access to communication net works or the capacity to get information via radio compared with the other Sub-Saharan countries is very underdeveloped. Likewise, the transportation system is out of human imagination so that the possibility of reaching them in case of natural catastrophes is very hard or practically impossible.  

As the study shows, because of the primitive nature of farm practices that have been practiced since time immemorial, and the meagre land holding system that one peasant household has at its deposal, and the repeated farm practices are the main factors that cause soil erosion and reduce the productivity of the land.  This is equivalent to 0.08 hectare land per household, and could not generate enough production beyond subsistence. The study shows that many peasant households buy more than what they are producing. This is in light of the propagation by the government that agriculture could be the basis of industrialization.  When the majority of the peasants are not in a position of producing even for their subsistence to sustain their entire family, how is it possible that one claims that with the present situation of farming practices the agricultural sector could produce enough surplus for the supposed industrialization. Following the study, there is a growing class that has neither land property nor capable of producing enough subsistence to sustain itself. Therefore, as the study demonstrates, the peasant class is loosing its reproduction base every passing day, and becomes redundant without having any futurity. On the other hand, the consumption pattern and differences among the Ethiopian population is not that much different with the Gini coefficient of 0.29, where as in the cities, especially in Addis the consumption pattern and differences is wide. Other study shows, as the result of the structural adjustment program, inequality becomes the inner logic of the system that affects more and more people who are living in the cities. This shows that there is a new consumer class that is involved in the international hierarchical consumption pattern without becoming productive or being involved in technological developments as a dynamic class. The class that drives modern cars, like BMW, Mercedes, Land Cruise and others, and phones with Handy and listen MP3 Player, and dances on the streets of Addis on one hand, on the other hand the majority of the poverty stricken people that observe this new consumer class as if it comes from another planet, proves that the social matrix of our society is entirely changed. And this new social problem and the consumption gap that is prevailing, is hard to correct, as the new class thinks that any correction of this pattern of consumption endangers its new social status.  In light of this very contradictory development, the poverty rate in the rural areas is almost 45 percent, and birth rate outstrips agricultural production.  The study shows that the more the people are uneducated the more they are prone to poverty and hunger. This is the case in rural Ethiopia where the majority of the people do not have access to modern education system or follow modern information that helps them open their minds and become creative. They are neither capable of sending their children to school, though there are no school fees. As the majority of the people are uneducated, they could be easily the victim of any kinds of disease that can be prevented easily. Most of the illness in all areas of the country is caused by malnutrition, bad hygienic conditions that reflect the living conditions of the majority of the people. Lack of sanitation, which is a reflection of the bad housing condition of our people, lack of clean water which is one of the main causes of diarrhoea, and the bad performance of the sewage system and the bad smell that prevails in the cities, especially in Addis, and the average life expectancy of our people proves that how the economic reform of neo-liberalism doesn’t have answers to such kinds of problems. Instead it creates new social fabrics that aggravate the existing situations. The unscientific nature of the economic policy must produce such a situation that throws our society into a situation never seen before.  As a result of the unscientific nature of the economic policy and as a result of the liberalisation of the foreign trade, and opening the door to foreigners, Ethiopia is exposed to new kinds of incurable diseases like AIDS that is encompassing many people. Study that is surveyed in the year 2003 shows that 4.4 per cent of the population is infected with AIDS, where as 2.6 per cent in the rural areas, and 12.6 per cent in the cities. When we compare the increasing number of infected people with AIDS, with that of the Military dictatorship, during that time only 0.003 per cent of the population was infected with AIDS. The 4.4 per cent in comparison to 0.003 is an increase by almost 1466 per cent in 15 years. Thanks to the “miraculous” structural adjustment program that has created new social conditions and produced new sexual habits, our people must face new challenges which they can’t surmount easily. Inevitably this is the by-product of the neo-liberal economic policy and the well propagated globalization. As study shows, because of the rapid spreading of HIV/AIDS, adult mortality rate has passed by far child mortality rate; and 300,000 people are dying every year because of this rapidly spreading disease.  


When the EPRDF government seized power in 1991 and as the country marches towards anarchy for a short while, many fled from the rural areas to the cities, especially to the capital city. The migration of people from the rural areas to the cities was again reinforced, when the government introduced and began practicing its ethnic based politics. Especially, those Amharas and the Gorages fled from small towns and rural areas, because of fear of executions by other nationalities. Until then, all Ethiopians lived together in relative harmony without being harassed against each other. The inflow of thousands of Ethiopians to the cities, especially to Addis Ababa had worsened the living conditions of the people there; and housing conditions could not accommodate the rising migrants that come from the rural areas, and that is estimated to 7% annually. It is estimated today that from 4 to 7 million people are living in Addis Ababa alone that has jeopardized the living conditions, and brought fear among the city dwellers, because of the rising criminalities. As the result of the worsening living conditions of the Ethiopian people, and because of the structural adjustment program and the market economic reforms, over 100 000 boys condemned to live on the streets. In Addis Ababa alone there are over 40 000 street boys that are condemned to sleep on the streets and in tunnels, without any perspectives. The present EPRDF government is doing nothing to tackle this problem, and see it as if it is a natural product.  Such a situation which has never seen in the Ethiopian history to a scale of this kind is endangering the social fabric of our society, and it is out of control. The answer to this rising explosive situation by the government is harassing the street boys and insulting them as if it is they are naturally condemned to live like this. The living conditions in the cities have brought also sexual harassment by boys against girls, and the unsafe sex had increased the number of Aids infected youth.  This being the case, the Structural adjustment program and the celebrated market economy that has been going since the last 15 years, have brought incalculable social and cultural damages in the Ethiopian society. The fact that a new consumer and wealthy class has appeared on the scene, the behaviour of this class has dramatically changed that is destroying the mentality of the youth. Instead of cultivating new culture that is based on science and technology, the new consumer class with new consumption habits is compelled with malpractices which are not compatible with the social norms of our society. A new sexual habit that was never known in the Ethiopian society, a new way of attitude is becoming normal in certain social strata and is s destroying the social fabrics of the societies. Child abuse, which is not known before in the Ethiopian society, the spreading of abnormal sexual habits are becoming the norms of particular groups. The spread of discotheques, especially in the capital city has created new kinds of sexual habits, and unusual dancing that can’t be accepted by any society, which is even tolerated by the government, is damaging the culture of our society. As the youth is being engaged more and more in such kinds of malpractices, the government can’t be confronted, and the people can’t think politically.  Besides thi, the spread of drugs and chat consuming has become common among the youth, and the government deliberately tolerates such kinds of activities that can’t be controlled later. Foreign forces that are going to Ethiopia without being controlled, and those without any purpose become common phenomenon that can be tolerated only in that poor Ethiopia, because we have a government that has at its aim to completely confuse the mentality of the youth so that no science and cultured based economic development is no more possible. With this, the importation of dirty Hollywood films, and the spread of video shops have compelled the youth to consume crime films that disturbs its minds and become again by itself sadist. One hears and observes today in Addis that sadism becomes a part of certain groups. Those Ethiopians who have lived long in certain American cities and Europe that have never engaged themselves in true cultural and scientific activities while they were living there, either exporting bad habits or take with them unnecessary mode of thoughts and consumption patterns that are contradicting the cultural lives of the Ethiopian people and destroy the social cohesion of the system. Due to the dollaraization of certain parts of the economy, and due to the inflow of hard currencies, certain groups that are engaged in black market activities, and do not know how to invest the money they have acquired without any work, driving consumer prices to a rate which can’t be paid even by the normal salary receivers. Because of uncontrolled price systems, hotels and restraints charge more than what they have to charge. This uncontrolled system has made life, especially in Addis unbearable. All in all, in the last 15 years Ethiopia become an experiment ground of bad cultures, and all sorts of activities that are contradicting the true human norms. The uncontrolled spread of foreign agent services that have the sole purpose of spreading bad habits, like in many Latin American countries, the spread of gangsters that is imported from certain America cities,  has put in question the viability of our society to exist as a nation-state. It is therefore very hard to correct all these cultural damages, even if a new government which is democratic seizes power. Thanks to the Weyane government, and thanks to those few educated Ethiopians who can’t think further, and who don’t have cultural and social responsibility, our country is heading towards an unknown destination. Whether we like it or not this is the outcome of the market economic reform that has been practiced over the last fifteen years, and become a phenomenon of many countries that have adopted such policies. In addition to these uncontrolled situations, the importations of second hand cars, that have filled the streets of Addis, and the environmental damages they inflict, create new situations, that can’t be tackled easily. Because of the absence of well regulated traffic systems and lack of alternative transportation systems, like underground metros and street cars( trams), and the narrow road system that doesn’t cope with the increasing  numbers of cars, the loss of lives due to car accident is becoming rampant. Many cars that are not fit to be derived on the cities, especially in Addis, because of their weights and hugeness are damaging the streets, which are not well constructed and designed. The heavy traffic system and the CO emission are becoming the main factors that endanger human lives and cause illness. In a country that doesn’t know any ecological standards, and doesn’t have institutions that study the effects of such kinds of environmental damages, the uncontrolled importations of second hand cars is unwise, and must be restricted.  

From this vantage point of view, the structural adjustment program and the so-called Washington Consensus, henceforth the fascist consensus, as it creates new social conditions and favours few individuals that are internationally linked to each other by different mutual interests, are endangering the existence of many nation-states, and creates social chaos which can’t be controlled easily.  The Washington Consensus which was formulated at the beginning of the 1980s by Milton Friedman and co. and that has become the main guidelines of the IMF and the World Bank policies, has this aim of bringing the world into the sphere of the American imperialism by producing a new fascist class that opposes science and classical culture. Meles and his gangs and the celebrated Alamudi are the products of this new fascism that are throwing their dollars to destroy Ethiopia so that our country can’t exist as a well functioning nation-state. To think beyond this and to accept this fact as a normal social process, it is just like collaborating with their evil agendas.  The book of Professor Gray, False Dawn, and the book of  Nederveen Pieterse, Globalisation or Empire clearly prove this fact as analysed above.   

Squaring Poverty! Becomimg member of the WTO Blocks Sience & Technology based Economic Development!!   

In order to make clear to my readers whether becoming member of the WTO for a country like Ethiopia is that much worthy, I would like to analyse the genesis of the WTO as a promoter of American free trade ideology. 

As I have analysed in my previous articles and here above, the free trade concept was developed first of all by Adam Smith and Ricardo who wanted to defend and maintain the dominance of the British Empire as the only industrialized economy. As we have seen the intriguing theory of Adam Smith and Ricardo have reduced many nations to appendages of England in the 18th and 19th centuries. The international division of labour has worked in favour of the British Empire, while science and technology couldn’t be internationalized. As science and technology remained tightened to certain areas, the spread of knowledge become uneven, across the globe. The dominating role of the English economy has also compelled many nations to accept the sterling pound which was supported by Gold as the only international reserve and trading currency. As a result of this dominance in all spheres, other nations could exist with the blessings of England. As some nations have began realizing that they are loosing grounds and couldn’t exist as nations-states, they have to find means how they will come out of this vicious circle of economic dependency. Germany and France and earlier the United States of America had to take bold measures to free themselves from this permanent yoke and degradation, and began the golden road of industrialization that ensures them true freedom and prosperity. These nations had to fight all the sabotages of the English imperialists, and fought vehemently against internal and external enemies. Especially, America by applying a strict mercantilist economic policy until 1933, it could build a strong economy that it in turn makes her super power The mercantilist policy that America had followed until 1933, and the deterioration of the British Empire, and its incapacity to administer the vast colonies was no more possible for England to continue like that. With this, the increasing trade balance deficit of England and its transfer of Gold to other countries and becoming more and more as a debtor nation had shrunk her supremacy. The Pax-Britannica must leave the way to Pax-America.  Though the basis of free trade was laid in 1934 by the Roosevelt government, by the so-called reciprocal act, and this could not be practiced widely due the deterioration of international trade, and because of the Second World War that had consumed millions of human lives and incalculable damages against material resources that had depressed economic development. After the victory of the allied powers and especially after the United States becomes the dominating power, it began dictating the world economy and political situation. In 1944 in the Bretton Woods meeting, both England and the United States brought two opposing ideas to improve world production and smooth international trade by creating favourable conditions. The British Empire represented by Keynes suggested that the world needs a new international currency which is out of the influence of any nation, and he called this artificial currency Bancor. In order to become operative a clearing union must be established through which surplus nations transfer to the deficit countries. At the beginning, Keynes demanded $ 36 Billions of dollars that was opposed by the United States, because this falls on the shoulder of the United States alone. The discussion between the two contenders was not friendly, because the Americans wanted to impose their own interests without taking into account the intellectual approach of Keynes. Keynes was surprised by the approaches of the American representatives and realised at the end that he was dealing with people who have different understandings of international politics. Later on he said:  “ I went to Savannah to meet the world and all I met was a tyrant”( Keynes, cited in Robert Skidelsky, John Maynard Keynes)   Blinded by their dominating role and  discarding the suggestions made by Keynes, the representative of the United States forwarded, that the dollar must the main trading and reserve currency, and not only one nation takes the burden but all member nations must take part in this burden sharing. Accordingly, deficit countries must fulfil certain criteria if they are legible to get credit. At the end the proposal of the United States was accepted and become the international economic frame work which all participating nations must practice. The dollar is fixed to Gold, as the United States holds during that time almost 70 per cent of the world Gold reserves. In turn the United States was obliged to covert dollars reserves outside its country into Gold that had worked until the break-up of the Bretton Woods agreements in 1971. 


The General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GAT) was an extension of this world wide dominance of the United States; and with the free trade ideology it becomes clear that the United States has clear advantages to impose its own interests. In order to make more acceptable, the free trade ideology is propagated as an instrument of welfare maximization across the globe; and countries that participate into this global trade regime will get direct benefit. As economic development is associated with trade, all countries that become member of this free trade regime must put their efforts on products which promise the best returns. Hence the Reciprocal Act of 1934 that was formulated by the Roosevelt administration became the basis of GATT; and it was entirely overtaken as a system of the new international trade regime. The Reciprocal Act has empowered the president of the United States and undermined the role of the congress, which has practiced until 1933 by emphasizing restrictive trade regime. With the new empowerment at his hand, the president could take any policy in the area of free trades that promotes the interests of the Unites States.  Accordingly, bilateral agreement is no more the rule of the system as it was practiced before the Second World War. This principle of multilateralism became the basis of the GATT. To form the GATT there were preliminary meetings in 1946 in London and in 1947 in New York, in Geneva and at the end, in Havana. At the Havana conference, because of differences in the area of economic development, which the Latin American countries brought as their main interests, the United States opposed to include the idea of development in the trade agreement. With the excluding of all important provisions, like economic development, supporting raw material prices, restrictive trade and services, the GATT was formed to reduce only tariffs.  During the final meeting of forming the GATT 23 countries were represented.  The main tenet of GATT in its initial formation was to reduce tariffs, and tariff reductions that are introduced once must not be overrun by other instruments. The basic elements of GATT were written in 35 articles; and from these the most important is the non-discrimination act, which is stated between article one and three. According to this principle, non-discrimination means that imported goods have the same status with homely produced goods. In other words, no extra price increases on imported goods that favour homely produced goods to boost internal market. The other very essential agreement of the GATT is the most-favoured trade agreement, which says that the agreement between two member countries applies to all member countries. With this article the multinational nature of the trade regime is firmly established. Other elements, like the fixing of quotas and other non-tariff barriers are major aspects of the trade regime that were written in the article and must be accepted by all member nations. Other mechanisms of regulating external trade, such as prohibition of other products which hinder the movements of goods between member countries were also strictly forbidden.  

There are many rounds held in different countries to advance the sprit of GATT to be more acceptable by many countries of the world. One of the main of these first 6 rounds was the Kennedy round that lasted from 1962 until 1967. The main agenda of this round was concentrating the discussion on non-agricultural products, and reduce tariffs step by step on non-farming products. In this 6th round it was no more possible to come to final agreements. Many Third World Countries that became member of the organization could not bring the agreement into their favours. As the many participating countries did not have the chance of seeing promoting their interests in the Kennedy round, they began implementing economic policies which they believed advances economic development out of the scope of the international trade regime as seen be the free trade agreements. In the Tokyo round, that began in 1973, and lasted almost 6 years, was also another setup, since many industrialized countries were hit by the oil crisis and must experience crisis from within. The economic crisis and the decreasing of demands, the break-up of the Bretton Woods system and the unilateral action of the United States to end the dollar-gold standard, and the rapid fall of raw material prices that had affected many African and Latin American countries overwhelmed such a round. New countries became member, as they thought that they could get benefit that favours economic development in their countries. Though there was intensive discussion over the reduction of tariffs on non-agricultural products, no agreement was reached. Especially, new member countries from Africa and Latin America hoped that tariff reduction in this area could advance economic development from within.  

The Uruguay round that lasted from 1986 until 1993 was also a kind of meeting to cope with the ever increasing economic crisis; and it was an answer to the second oil crisis of 1979 that affected many countries. 125 countries had participated, and 91 countries were from developing countries.  In this round the issues of tariff reduction on farm products and textiles were the main agenda of the discussion. These parts are of more interests for developing countries, which hope that they could export more of their farm products to the industrialized countries that dictate and dominate the world market. On the other hand, developed countries wanted to concentrate more on the service sectors, so that many developing countries open their market for the global players. Other areas of concern are the so-called intellectual property right(TRIPS) and trade related investments which the industrialized west had concentrated to impose as the main trade regime of the GAAT. Starting the 1980s the service sector become the major aspect of economic activity in major industrialized countries, and the encompassing of the service sector into the GATT arrangements will favour industrialized countries to advance their interests in all Third World Countries that are member of the organization.  The pharmaceutical industry and the banking sector were the main actors which were pushing their governments to incorporate these elements into the GATT agreements. With contradictory aims and ambition, diverse interests, by agreeing on certain elements, like reducing tariffs by 1/3 on manufactured products, the Uruguay round was signed in 1994 in Marrakech, in Morocco. From this time on, within ten years all restrictions must be abolished on textile products. Trade related investment was also one of the agreements reached at this round.  As hoped many developing countries could not profit much from the agreement, because Japan and the EU had persistently refused to reduce farm subsidy, which was the main focus of especially African countries. Especially those countries like Argentina, Brazil and South Africa, which are known as Cairns groups, and which are major exporter of agricultural products fought in vain for the reduction of subsidy, which was not considered by the industrialized west.  With this round the way to the World Trade Organization (WTO) is opened. 

The post-Uruguay round was overshadowed by many disagreements. Many developing countries wanted to see the implementation of the previous agreements reached by the Uruguay round. On the other hand, developed countries wanted to focus on trade related investments, on the role of the governments and on areas through which they could penetrate the markets of developing countries and control the vital resources.  The issue which was raised in Singapore was whether one should concentrate on old issues or on new areas. The conference in Seattle in 1999 which was overshadowed by demonstration proves that even many people in the west are not interested to leave the field of economic activities to Multinational Corporations which become more and more dominant to twist the rules of the GATT in their interests. The closed-door discussion over multinational investments between the GATT and the multinational companies is a direct indication how these global players wanted to use this trade regime as their instrument to dictate international trade and investments.  In this closed agreement, multinational companies could easily penetrate in the economies of the Third World Countries and control all major economic activities in their favour and by at the same time blocking internal development based on science and technology.  The new international economic order which had replaced Keynesianism of the cold war has created new situations that favour multinational companies. 

Starting 1979 on wards the world has seen a major shift in many areas of international economic activities. The counter-revolution of the monetarist economic philosophy in England that was introduced by Margaret Thatcher and Roland Reagan in the United States was indeed a shift away from welfare economic principles to less state intervention in the economy. All major achievements of the cold war between the state, the trade union and the capitalists must be smashed so that the invisible hand of Adam Smith must get the upper hand. Privatization, deregulation and globalization become the main aspects of economic policies that must be applied all over the world. All movements that hinder the global play of the market principles must be smashed, and universities and colleges must be restructured in accordance of the need of the market. Social cohesion which was the main tenet of Keynesianism, investments in other areas of social activities and theatres are seen as hindrances of economic growth based on individual participation. This philosophy of market deregulation and philosophy of hire and fire mentality become the principles of many corporations that dictate the lives of millions of people across the globe. From this perspective, the expansion of multinational companies and the systematic control of the WTO and the imposition of their interests in many areas is a step backward to limit the activities of many sovereign nations and create new volatile situation that endanger social cohesion, especially in the Third World Countries. In other words, the WTO becomes a part and parcels of the few corporations, which saw that their interests could be realized through the complicated agreements of the trade regime.  In this case the Doha and the Cancun agreements were major steps in laying the grounds for the formation of the WTO as an organization, which could be also conducted on ministerial level.  The question here is what will be the consequence for a country like Ethiopia that has a very weak industrial base and over 80 per cent of the population live under poverty line. When over 70 per cent of trade and investments are controlled only by three country blocks, Japan, EU and America, how could a country like Ethiopia which is on a very fragile situation build a coherent economy and exist as a nation-state. What are the experiences of many Third World Countries which became member of the WTO? Are they marching on the path of economic development or are they on the brink of collapse as nation-states?  Could Ethiopia get any benefit if she becomes the member of the WTO as is believed by the present Ethiopian regime that does not have any political legitimacy to rule the country?  These and other points are relevant to be analysed here.  


The situation in many countries that became already members of the WTO is not that much promising as is widely believed.  Reports from  India show that in the last 10 years almost 150 000 peasants had made suicide, as they couldn’t withstand the pressure from multinational corporations that control the fertilizer, seed and insecticide industries. The activist Dr. Shiva Vandana of Indian origin, and the alternative price winner shows in her many publications and radio interviews how the Indian peasants become poorer and poorer after India became member of the WTO. The penetration of the agro-business industry in the Indian farming system and the break-up of small and medium family holding agricultural activities must be replaced by more “ profitable” farming practices which are producing with high tech machines helped by hybrid seeds and chemical fertilizers. Some farmers that were heavily indebted as the result of this kind of intensive competition make suicide or leave their farm lands and join the reserve army in the cities. The situation of the Mexican farmers is not different from that of India. Mexican farmers who are the victims of the North American Free Trade Agreement must also experience pressures from other multinational companies. The border area which is a free trade zone had benefited corporations from the United States to squeeze the labour force with very meagre wage.  The social conditions in this free trade area are out of control; and because of the desperate situation the social matrix of the Mexican society is out of control. The 20 million city of Mexico is being controlled by drug cartels. Religion sects which come from the United States are creating new situations that have inflicted heavy damages on the society. New religious fundamentalism of the United States is slowly spreading and confronting the traditional catholic religion of the Mexican society, and there are reported clashes between the two religions.  We have seen above that the introduction of the structural adjustment program has altered the social matrix of the Ethiopian society, by throwing many people into desperate situations. The concentration of wealth in the hands of handpicked people and the mass poverty which is seen in the country in general is two sides of the same coin. Market economic reforms as dictated by the World Bank and the IMF have not by any means increased the production capacity of the Ethiopian society; instead Ethiopia becomes more dependent on outside sources for her very existence. In light of this situation that Ethiopia finds itself, becoming member of the WTO doesn’t hold her out of the present economic and social crisis. Instead the situation will be aggravated. 

Becoming membership of the WTO means that Ethiopia must open her markets to member countries that have more advantages. As the many rounds show, EU, Japan and the United States are not ready to reduce farm subsidy. Since this entails high political risks, there will not be any improvement in this area in the coming years. In this case, the situation of the Ethiopian small peasants will be jeopardised, and the Ethiopian market will be overwhelmed by farm products from these countries. The last 15 years of economic aid has proved this; and many farmers were frustrated by the low prices of their farm products, as wheat and maize which were imported from EU and the United States were thrown on the market. Due to the structural adjustment program and market reforms, many peasants were compelled to buy seeds, insecticides and fertilizers by borrowing money. Reports show that many farmers couldn’t pay back the money they have borrowed; and most must quit their farm practices and join the reserve army in the cities. If Ethiopia becomes member of the WTO this situation will be aggravated, and those that are not in a position to cope with the new situation will be compelled to leave their long farm practices. The situation in India and Mexico are clear examples which must be taken as lessons. On the other side, we have seen that the European farm products are not that much competitive, since they get subsidy from their governments. The fact that they use scale economics which has another law in comparison to that of the industrial sector doesn’t mean that they produce with minimum costs. Since land is a natural product and can’t be replaced by another land like a machine, the cost of cultivating with such kind’s of intensive farm practices doesn’t make it cost effective. Only under severe conditions of farm practices by constantly applying chemical fertilizers and insecticides and new variety seeds, the high yield of the farming system could be increased from time to time. Such kinds of farm practices in many countries of Europe have brought soil damages, and the poising of agricultural products affected the health situation of many people in Europe.  Intensive farming means also spreading of monoculture production activities that absorb water heavily from the soil and reduces the water table. This is the case in North America, where high farming practices become the rule of the system. With such kinds of farm practices there is no class in Ethiopia which is in a position to invest and compete against the European farming products. If certain farmers apply this technique, as experiences show us at the end of the 60s and beginning of the 70s in some parts of Ethiopia, expulsion of the very weak farmers will be the rule, since applying high tech means farming with few labour forces. The labour force will become redundant, and we will be having a new vagabond class that endangers the security of many people. We have already this in Addis; and become member of the WTO will square the situation. This is one side of the coin. The other side of the coin is that the importation of food from Europe and the United States and other member countries will alter the traditional food habit of the Ethiopian people, which is healthier than that of European farm products that entail heavy concentration of insecticides, if it is studied and applied well. It is in the philosophy of the United States which promotes free trade through the WTO to homogenise the food habit of the world and create unhealthy situation. Studies and reports from England and the United States show that Diabetics and other food related illness are increasing at an alarming rate and encompassing even children and young people.  

Ethiopia’s membership will have many negative facets which can’t be controlled by any government. First of all, there is unequal development, since the government can’t apply a resource and scientifically based development policy as we have experienced in the last fifteen years. It will be compelled to apply more and more monetarist economic policies that benefit the few and produces mass poverty on a higher scale. Monetarism means less state intervention, and more privatization. As the private sector is weak the probability of inducing new investments and creating new job opportunities will not be that much promising. On the other side, as we saw in the last fifteen years the weak industrial base Ethiopia has will be hit by the products from China and other industrialized countries which are competing for more market shares. The textile and other economic activities which apply less technology will be destructed, as those who could afford to buy shift their consumption habits from home made to foreign made products. As reports in the last three or four weeks show the General Secretary of the WTO Mr. Pascal Lamy, and trade delegations from the United States are advising the EPRDF government to liberalize the service sector. In other words, the water sector, the Banking sector, the telecommunication sector, the electricity, the health sector must become private affairs, and must be soled to those who could buy and ran them. As experiences in the Philippine, in Argentina and other Third World Countries which have sold some parts of the service sector to global players did not see any new investments which create new job opportunities and bring new technology, the fate of Ethiopia can’t be the exception. The service sectors which were sold to foreign companies must be restructured, and selected so that they become profitable and have synergic effects. After so many years of wait and see practices some of the governments in these countries must buy the service sector with high costs. As history shows, the service sector is a government affair, and it must remain always under the control of the state for the general welfare of the society. Since private firms operate under cost-benefit principles they are not interested to invest as long as they are not rewarded by maximum profits. In Europe, no government dears to privatize the service sector; if they are privatized they will be controlled from time to time. In countries like Ethiopia where no effective government and institutions exist the privatization of the service sector will damage the Ethiopian society, and those unable to pay can’t drink clean water; will not have access to electricity and health, and couldn’t afford to send their children to schools. That means the situation is bleak and Ethiopia will never have any investment advantage by becoming member of the WTO. As private investors want to reduce costs, the work force must be reduced from all the sectors which become the victims of these kinds of malpractices. Loosing jobs means adding more people to the reserve army and increasing more and more poor people in the country which have very minimal buying powers. With such higher and fire practices even the informal and subsistence sector will be hit since these sectors loose their customers. The principle of market economy teaches us that only those who could afford to buy and consume, have the ability to exist and the rest will be excluded from the economic activity. In a country with no social plan the chance of being helped is minimal. 

If the situation is so bleak and the experiences of market economy of the last 15 years are crystal clear why is the EPRDF government that was once weaving the flag of Marxism and Leninism marches towards to this death squad. The situation is mysterious on one hand, on the other side it is a matter of ignorance of political economy. Since by definition, and as is propagated that through exchange becomes growth, our leaders have taken this inverted and assumed fact as their principles of policy handling. The fifteen years of market reforms couldn’t illuminate their minds, and couldn’t ask themselves why poverty and hunger are hovering over our people which disintegrate more and more our society. As I have tried to show some where the Meles clique by bowing to the financial oligarchic class that dominates the world wants to preserve its power by being more and more integrated in the system, since it doesn’t see any other option other than implementing this bitter medicine which brings more deaths than cures. It is the duty of those patriotic forces to protest against the economic policy of the EPRDF regime, and its application to become member of the WTO. Since this equally endangers the very existence of our society, since without a solid economic foundation that is based on science and technology there is no a well functioning nation-state, it is very important to protest against the economic policy of the government. Political protests alone are meaningless unless one doesn’t combine with economic protests which touch the lives of millions of people. Before politics people must eat, drink and get shelter. Only thorough solid economic foundation they could articulate better and fight for political freedom. On the other side the substitution of the present regime by a democratic and patriotic government is the precondition of any tangible change in the field of economy which improves the lives of our people. From this vantage of point of view our position to the market economic practices of the regime, the neo-liberal policy of the IMF and the World Bank, and the Free Trade regime of the WTO is clear: We say that Ethiopia shouldn’t become member of the WTO, and must not apply again the neo-liberal paradigm that destroys the material reproduction base of our society.  



The Alternative

Many people may ask, if somebody opposes the policies of the IMF, the World Bank and the free trade doctrine of the WTO, what is the alternative therefore that brings a poor country like  Ethiopia out of the present quagmire. Is it possible that while the entire world is marching towards a global economic and political order that such countries like Ethiopia could build a coherent economy out of the concept of this global economic order? Even some think that globalization has benefited all countries irrespective of some negative consequences as we see them today.  Some think and believe that, even if there is a regime change in our country, there is no alternative other than implementing the kind of economic policy as is forwarded by the IMF and the World Bank, since Ethiopia can’t be the exception. Some politicians and their adherents see the problem of political crisis in Africa, and especially in Ethiopia not due to the market economic policy per se, but the political nature of the regime and the lack of democracy that hinders the materialization of such kinds of monetarist policies. With such kinds of misconceived analysis, they dissociates the political philosophy of the regime from the economic philosophy of the IMF and the World Bank, which seek such kind of a regime that can practice their neo-liberal market policy that can produce poverty, and creates wealth for the few. Only under unenlightened regime the practicing of such a policy which undermines the existence of a nation-state is possible. It is therefore unwise not to see both of the market economic policy and the political handlings of the regime as two sides of the same coin. The dissociation of the two aspects, and the efforts by some groups not to consider the roles of the IMF, the World Bank and the American Imperialism as the main causes of political and economic disorders in our country and other Third World Countries, leads us to political miscalculations that prolong the misery of our people. Only correct analysis, and the clear understanding that not market economic philosophy of the IMF and the World Bank type free our society, and paves the way for a science driven technological development, that brings us nearer, make us capable to show for our people the road of genuine emancipation and civilization. Any attempt to solve the social and economic crisis of our country within the paradigm of the IMF and the World Bank, will be doomed to failure, and can be seen by enlightened Ethiopians as an intrigue to see a weak and poverty stricken Ethiopia for the coming 10 or more years. From this perspective, let me try my policy option, not as program, but as analysis to make it more understandable.  


Before I give my own alternative I will try to clarify the confusion about globalization, since some see in it as a historical necessity, and it is the only alternative which we have to accept, and no one could withstand such a monstrous economic construction as we experience today. Historically, as human beings started to organize themselves in communities and developed division of labour it became historically necessary to go beyond their limited boundaries and started to communicate with other communities to exchange their goods with which they couldn’t produce. As communities became stronger and experienced that such kinds of communications with other communities are beneficial they expanded their scope of thought and develop cultural ties. Traders of one community took some of their cultures and goods and moved far away for trading, either came back to their original places or remained there for ever and expanded their activities and integrated in the community where they had settled. In this way we learn from history that with out constant trade and cultural contacts humanity couldn’t have achieved the present development. In history there have been always contacts among different countries that shaped the fate and the development of the respective societies.  If we study the human history in general, the first global trade and cultural ties had positive impacts on some countries that helped them to construct beautiful cities, mosques, churches and through that they came together and build strong communities. As they integrated more and more and live in communities, their scope of attitudes began expanded. But this positive impact of the first wave of globalization was halted as many European countries began developing nation-states. With the rise of racist theories in the 18th century, trade relationships were turned to become a one sided affair, and by using their naval, military power and economic strength, some European countries began subjugating weak nations and tried to change them as their peripheries. As capitalism developed from within certain groups had constructed theoretical frame works how they could justify exploitation and subjugate them as undeveloped societies. As many European countries turned to imperialism they even went further to attack other countries militarily, and distorted their initial social organizations and compelled them to produce raw materials and agricultural products for the further accumulation in their country. This second wave of globalization, subjugating other nations and developing their own economy become a natural fact which is given only to certain selected European countries, and developed different devices to manipulate these subjugated nations so that technology and science couldn’t spread across the globe. The third wave of globalization becomes even intricate and subversive so that one couldn’t understand at face values. States in the peripheries become simply instruments of internal subjugation and exploitation, while European and American firms supported by their states could manipulate the weak states of Africa and Latin American Countries. States organs, like the civil, military and security apparatus become strengthened and detached from their societies and become manipulative objects for the sake of international capital accumulation. Because of false internal accumulation models and unequal expansion of capital, poverty was produced and reproduced on a higher scale. With the rise and strength of international organisations, like the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO, western imperialist powers, especially the United States of America gets in its hand direct manipulating instruments how it could transfer wealth from Africa and Latin American countries. As the economic boom of the 1950s and 60s faded away most African countries became the victim of this globally organized manipulation and compelled to transfer wealth through unequal trade, debt bondage, and manipulating raw material prices, which could be bought before they are being harvested, and sold with exorbitant prcies.  At the end of the 1960s and at the beginning of the 70s most African countries become practically incompetent to go further with their first form of economic development, i.e. import-substitution-industrialization. As raw material prices fell dawn, most African countries could not generate sufficient income to finance their weak industrialization model which had absorbed much resource and brought unequal development from within. They were compelled to borrow from European and American governments and international organizations. In order to get credits they have to swallow the bitter medicine of the IMF and the World Bank which had distorted again and again the internal structure of their societies. Through such kinds of debt bondage systems and depending on one or two commodities for exports many African counties caught in vicious circles of economic crises and disintegrated social systems.  

After 1973 and later on we see a new global organized economic system, by which some nations are becoming more and more integrated in the global economic order where as African share in the global world trade distribution of direct investments become more and more negligible, and remained now by 1%. Where as strong trade relationships and direct investments become the affair of the tirade that means, Japan, EU and the United States most African and Latin American countries remained in their distorted developments.  With the begging of the 1980s we see a new trend of bringing the entire global order under the influence of the American corrupted model, and many nations must accept the so-called Washington consensus as the ideological frame work of this global free trade regime. More and more countries consume what European countries, Japan and the United States of America produce, while they are internally disorganized. In other words, their production potential must be reduced to a minimum level so that few could consume and the rest remains as helpless and poor. The privatization process across the globe, acquisition and merging with other companies, this is a new trend of globalization, without being engaged in direct investments. With the triumph of finance oligarchies, with the development of new financial instruments, investment banks and hedge funds could buy here and there objects, machines and other properties to acquire more and more profits. Under the triumph of finance capital everything that yields the highest profit becomes speculative object. Apartment blocks, once built by the states for social needy people under the direct participations of some individuals, Hospitals, Water and Gas supplies, Electricity and others which were run by city municipality, were sold to Anglo-American investors, which ran here and there like locusts, eat and destroy and ran to other countries. Because of such kinds of arbitrary handlings of people’s wealth so many people must live in permanent fear, because the new speculators will throw them away from their apartments. Today the world is controlled by few finance and industrial capital which are organized under multinational corporations, and have assets worth of $ 35 trillion US and yearly turnover of $ 11 trillion US. These financial and industrial complexes controls many states, and international organizations like the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO, and the amalgamation of the military and industrial complex which is waging wars across the globe in order to test its new high tech war machines on the innocent people of Africa and the rest of underdeveloped areas is the new international political order. In this respect globalization and waging wars with different intensities become two sides of the same coin. These kinds of military supported globalization and the Americanization of the world consumption pattern, McDonaldization and CoaCacolization are other faces of the global order. The diverse cultures, consumption patterns and production structures must be organized under monotonous way of living and monoculture products. The American way of lives must be internationalized and must be accepted everywhere. We the citizen of this world must dream the American dream, by discarding our own cultures, history and the desire of true human civilization. In our own action we must be individualistic and self-achieving, aggressive and destructive, and live under permanent tension and fear, because everybody stands against everybody. That is the American dream. See the major big cities of the United States, where drug, criminality and sexual abuses become the phenomena of the society. When almost two million people are sitting in prisons, and 60 per cent of them are blacks, this tells a lot. Not because that these prisoners are criminals by birth, but the system produces such kinds of human vandalism. And against this background of growing criminality rate, the well-off class must live with video camera protected houses. Such kinds of living styles are also expanded in Mexico and in other Latin American countries, where the rich has adopted the American way of life. This form of globalization with buy it, strip it, and flip it mentality becomes the norms of the global economy,  and norms of  these investment banks and hedge funds which disorganize many societies, tear up existing social cohesion by minimizing the role of the sates in many countries. This is in short what they call us globalisation, which couldn’t distribute wealth, direct investments and knowledge across the globe equally. From this perspective Ethiopia and other African countries can’t and must not expect too much if they want to build strong economies and social organizations. If the situation is so complicated and bleak, it is our own natural right to go our own way and formulate economic policies which create wealth and bring harmonious development. This is the natural right of every human being, and as a matter of fact this natural right can’t be ordered or blocked by any other superpower. To miss this fact or to interpret it differently is to submit for this global order which produces and reproduces poverty on a higher scale. Now let me come to my alternative.  It is clear that societies must be organized in any form which are suitable for them and are scientific. Societies which are not organized under certain rules and norms and from scientific point of view their fate is disorientation and purposeless. Any society must have principles and guidelines by which it organizes itself and move from the lowest to the highest stage of social organization. As human beings are creative by nature and differ by that from animals they are capable of organizing themselves under certain rules and develop instruments by which they create wealth and develop themselves as societies. The forms of social organization and developing new production techniques depend on the intellectual capacity of certain groups and on the political forms of organization under which they are living. The more the system is enlightened, the more it is easier to become free and creative. Hence it is easier to develop new techniques and instruments to exploit nature and use it in proper way so that the society under consideration develops permanently. To understand ones own role in a given society and partake in the social forms of organization, it is also essential to understand the role and essence of economy in any given society. When economic science as we learned in the universities is simply reduced to the division of labour as Adam Smith had postulated, and to demand and supply and then to exchange the produced products it is hard to transform a given society from one stage to higher forms of economic and social organizations. This is what we see and experience in many African countries and including Ethiopia. Since economic science as formulated by Samuelson and others have overwhelmed the African school systems, it is very difficult to organize such societies and give the people a decent and harmonious life. From this vantage point of view, let us try to define what economics is, and what one must understand if he wants to contribute something valuable for his society. 


Economics is not as such demand and supply, but the transformation of one thing from one state to the other by applying energy and through the help of human labour. In this way one form of raw material is converted to the other by applying some form of energy either to be consumed directly or being used as instruments of labour or building materials. The conversion of raw materials to the next stage and its quality and the productivity of the human labour depends again by the forms of energy one applies and the quality of knowledge what one posses. The less dense the energy form is the more time it takes to produce a given product. Likewise, the lower the technological development one has at his disposal the, lower the quality and the productivity of the labour and the machines. Therefore the forms of economic and social organizations are purely dependent on the quality of the energy system one has and the quality of the machines one applies. In order to develop higher and intense forms of energy and produce qualitatively better machines one must make constant researches and developments. As social organizations become complex and dense, and as population grows, it is likewise important to develop constantly to organize and feed the many people scientifically. Metaphorically, any society must be organized like our bodies. Since the parts and organs of our bodies have division of labours, and since every part of the organ performs its works and combines with others so that we can exist as human beings and breathe and walk, social systems must be organized in like manners. Since what we consume couldn’t be absorbed entirely by our body the waste must get out of our body so that we live healthy. The health condition of our body and our active participation in the society depends on the types of food we eat and drink. If we become excessive in our handlings, and are not caring for our health, the probability that we become easily seek is great.  Accordingly, if we want to have a healthy and good functioning society, it must be well organized and maintained. It must be well designed and so that the system works without major disturbances.  In order to produce certain products there must be some of organic, social and technological division of labour. Without constantly organized and improved social and organic division of labour there is no social and economic development. Among the different sectors and social organizations there must be exchange.  The intensity of the economic exchange depends again how the system is effectively organized on the basis of certain philosophy and scientific thought. Again the quality of the division of labour and the possible exchange of the products and their transportation from one area to the other depends on two vital aspects: In any country there must be well organized cities and transportation systems. If there are no well developed cities and transportation systems one can’t create markets. The effective organization of market systems within a given country depends again on the existence of well designed and organized cities, and well established transportation systems. Since market economy operates within space and time, and since the two aspects are the decisive parameters to effectively organize a market economy, the development of capitalism needs the constant improvement of cities and transportation systems. Without the developments of infrastructures and transportation systems one can’t talk about the development of market economy. Historically all major European countries which understood the necessary of nation building began first of all constructing well designed cities and market places. Only through that they could organize their societies. Today’s monetarist economists miss this fact and confuse the entire globe as if humanity could exist without having well designed shelters, market places and transportation systems. Their aim is simple: the rest of the globe must be converted to a plantation economy and supermarkets by which the majority of the people produce and live like slaves where as few live luxuriously. That is the philosophy of monetarism and the global player which are twisting the world as they like. Unfortunately this inverted form of thinking has become the philosophy of many Third World Countries that hold their people as hostages. There people must live like animals without any social and economic order. Since economic organization is totally detached from nation building and social organization, billions of people have become the victim of this kinds of inverted philosophy.  

The problem of economic theory and market economy as we have learned at the university is very confusing, and it is seen as an end by itself. The necessary of organizing economic activity to satisfy human needs is not the core of economic teaching, and as such the material production is detached from spiritual needs. Since development is associated with market economic activity, the necessary of developing a given society through science and technology is not the foundation of economic theory. The interaction of man with nature, the biological, physical and chemical process of producing a given product can’t be found in any conventional economic books. For example to produce furniture we must see the entire metabolism of the production system, from growing tree, cutting , and drying it and converting it to furniture by applying energy, human labour and machine. As the tree needs water and minerals, and sunlight to grow, its conversion as a finished product is a physical and chemical process. The aesthetical design of the furniture and its constant improvement is a matter of metaphysical act; that means the application of our mental activity to give particular furniture unique beauty so that it will become attractive for the consumer.  Form this vantage point of view development economics in general, and economics theory in particular can’t see the production of a particular product an act of biological, physical and chemical process. Likewise, since production factors are seen scares by nature, the production of certain products has always its limitation. The problem of scarcity which is the central element of the neo-classical economics can be overcome when one takes the metaphor of the development of embryo as an example of self expansion and growth from the lower stage by multiplying and differentiating in the different directions to the higher stage until it comes as fully developed body. Likewise, through the development of the cognitive power of the human brain one can produce multiple products from one particular element or matter. From this perspective the problem of scarcity has limited application, i.e. to natural products, like land, water etc. which couldn’t be produced by man.  Since economic theory operates within this limited boundary, it halts from the outset the imagination and creative activity of human beings to transform their social systems from the lower stages to the higher stage.  It is therefore very important to detach oneself from this very limited boundary and thinks further and broadly to organize a given social system from different perspective so that the entire society could take part in developmental process.      


The problem in Ethiopia is not as such to organize the society under the principles of market economy, since market economy is not the ultimate aim not only our society, but any society. But on the other hand any society needs any kinds of market exchanges. Since production, exchange and distribution takes place within time and a given space, some forms of market organizations which operate under certain rules and norms are necessary. The development of a market economy as is organized in capitalist societies is dialectical and historical process and not outcomes of monetarist constructions. From this perspective, if we want a well functioning capitalist economy which is based on science and technology, and which will have also social and cultural character, such kind of a system must not be the affair of certain individuals and international organizations, but must be the affair of the state. Without enlightened state apparatus and without well educated class capitalism which is based on science and technology is inconceivable.   In this case the organizing of the state apparatus democratically, and the dismantling of the backward oppressive structures which hamper development it is of a paramount importance for any genuine and resource based development.  Among most intellectuals there is a great confusion in understanding the nature of a given state and the kind of functions it practices in order to maintain a given social order. The state in general is the organized principle of any society through which societies bring their interests and articulation. Any state can’t be instruments of any class nor a manipulative object by which certain groups materialize their interests. As the state is a historical and a natural product it can be formed and improved in accordance with the need of the society in question so that technological development and scientific thought will be advanced. A state which is incapable of organizing the society according to certain philosophies and scientific principles must be dismantled, and therefore any state can’t be above the needs and aspiration of its people. There is a great misunderstanding concerning the nature of the state in any given society since certain powers in order to manipulate the majority of their people and exploit them by reducing them to the status of animals, they propagate as if the state is equivalent to God, which can’t  be put in question even, though  it destroys the wealth of the society through diverse mechanisms by absorbing from innocent people and organize the state apparatus in order to reduce it to the service of certain groups who have money and power. From this perspective if we want to transform our society from the present state of underdevelopment it is necessary to organize the people under democratic principles and rules so that they could have the power of controlling the state organ. If this is clear let us go to the next step. 


In any society the state is part and parcel of the society, and as such it must have the power and role to develop always new economic instruments through which it can advance economic development. If the society is not well developed the existence of the state will be put into question, and therefore it is in the interest of any government to advance the interests of the society generally without favouring one particular group or becoming instrument of a certain class which is oligarchic by nature.  Therefore such a state must have the power of organizing the society so that science, technology and cultural activities could be developed.   We have to reject therefore the view of liberals and neo-liberals alike which undermine the role of the state in a given society by organizing the economy, where as on the other side shout under the slogan of law and order to convert it as instrument of certain groups by making it more oppressive and subversive in its action to control the entire society through refined methods. Since the state and all its organs and those who ran the system earn salaries which are collected from innocent people in the form of taxes and some other forms of tributes, the people have the right to demand equality in any form so that they could exist as human beings.  

If the role of the state is so clear the next step is to organize institutions of various types, which promote and articulate the wishes of the people. These institutions could be either part of the state structures which are autonomous in nature or non-governmental in character. Development related institutions, ecological institutions with various capacities, institutions which control and study the development of cities, those which control the nutrition and food system of the society, whether these are compatible with human health or not and others. Only in this way any society which is viable and sustainable could be organized and promoted.   If the function of the state is like this, it must further organize the financial and the banking sectors so that cheap credit could be allocated for those active forces which want to participate in the economic organization of the society. The central bank must have the purpose of allocating the necessary amount of money in accordance to the need of the society. Money transactions and black market activities, and including money exchanges outside the control of the banking system must be forbidden and must be punishable. Only so the system can get the necessary financial instruments for productive activities. Without organizing various financial instruments to mobilize the money which is available in the society and allocating this for productive purposes, to develop the economy in an effective manner is practically impossible. As is propagated by monetarist economists that saving creates investment, the other way round must be the rule, as Keynes teaches us. That means it must be first of all invested, in order to create income and through generating income one can create saving. This has been always the history of capitalistic development. In this case investment through credit creations and mechanisms is the engine of capitalistic development.   If is this the role of the state and the related institutions, different groups must be organized and must get advice to take part in the economic process. For this they must be trained how they invest, in what areas they can invest and how they generate the necessary capital to finance their projects. The organizing of the private sector effectively and efficiently in a modern way and protect it from internal aggression could bring genuine capitalist development. The promotion of small and medium sectors of investments, and their equal distribution across the entire country is the precondition of equal development which has the power of mobilizing the human and material resources of the society. Besides this, the joint action of the state and private investors to mobilize huge resources to finance infrastructures, like rail road systems, and other strategic investments is crucial important to bring a generalized social and capitalist accumulation. Through generating enough capital and through joint actions, and by organizing different state related and non-governmental institutions which could mobilize the entire labour power and material resources, we can develop Ethiopia within one generation as a well functioning society. To follow the monetarist line and practicing it again and again will lead us to social disintegration and create at the end permanent social chaos. The road of human civilization is not monetarism, but physical economic principle that brings forth the cognitive power of our people and gives them real power so that they could build a society based on science and technology. The road of monetarism is slavery and self destruction, while the road of physical economic principle is the road of equality and harmony.   



March 18, 2007

Fekadu Bekele, Ph D 

Fekadu Bekele is teaching International and Development Economics at colleges and makes researches in the field of human civilization and can be reached at       Litratures and Documents

  1. African Economic Outlook, Ethiopia 2003
  2. Central Statistical Authority, Report on Large and Medium Scale Manufacturing and Electricity Industries Survey, Addis Ababa 1998
  3. Constantine Michalopoulos, Die Kredivergabe der Weltbank zur Strukturanpassungsprogramm,1987 ( The Credit Policy of the World Bank for Structural Adjustment Programs)
  4. Document of the World Bank; Poverty Reduction and Economic Management-The Federal Democratic of Ethiopia, 2004
  5. Economic Report on Africa, Ethiopia- Good Policies, Decent Outcomes, 2002
  6. Fekadu, Bekele, Development Planning in Africa, Berlin 2002
  7. Fekadu Bekele, GM Food does not solve Africa`s Food Problem; Berlin 2004
  8. What is Globalization, Berlin 2004
  9. Fekadu Bekele, Min Teyzo Guzo or the Lack of Political Philosophy, Berlin 2005
  10. Fekadu Bekele, A New Development Theory or Ending Poverty by means of Foreign Aid: A Comment on Prof. Jeffery Sach`s Book: The End of Poverty; Berlin 2005
  11. Fekadu Bekele, The Impact of Current Trade Relationships nad Strategies for Improvement; Seminar Paper, Berlin 2005
  12. Fekadu Bekele, What gets Ethiopia if she becomes member of the WTO? Amharic Publication published on TOBIA Magazine, Addis Ababa 2005
  13. Friedrich List, The National System of Political Economy, 1885
  14. International Monetary Fund, Ethiopia Second Review under the Three Year Arrangement under the Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility, Requests for Augmentation of Access and Waiver of Performance Criterion, 2002
  15. Jan Nederveen Pierterse, Globalization or Empire? New York and London 2004
  16. John Gray, False Dawn: The  Delusions of Global Capitalism, London 1998
  17. Maria Mies and Claudia Werlhof, Licence for Resource Plundering: The Multinational Agreement over Investment, Hamburg 1998
  18. Michael Hudson, Super Imperialism -The Origin and Fundamentals of U.S. World Dominance, London 2003
  19. Ministry of Economic development and Cooperation, Report on Macroeconomic Development in Ethiopia, 1999
  20. Mitike Molla, Shabirbir Ismail, et al, Sexual Violence among Female Street Adolescents in Addis Ababa, 2000
  21. Mulat Demeke, Fantu Guta, et al; Growth, Employment, Poverty and Policies in Ethiopia: An Empirical Investigation, 2003
  22. Report on Poverty by Economic Department of Addis Ababa University, Amharic Publication, Addis Ababa 2003/04
  23. Shiva, Vandana, The Sexual life: Women, Environment and the Third World Countries, Berlin 1989
  24. Shiva, Vandana,  How to End Poverty: Making poverty history and the history of poverty: A Comment on the Books of Prof. Jeffery Sachs: Unpublished paper
  25. S N-A Mensah , Structural Adjustment Programs in Africa: Lessons from Ghana and Nigeria, 1993
  26. Stefan Dercon, The Impact of Economic Reforms on Households in Rural Ethiopia, 1989-1995
  27. The World Bank, The Social Dimensions of Adjustment Priority Survey, Washington 1991
  28. Worku Gebeyhu, Has Privatization Promoted Efficiency in Ethiopia? A Comparative Analysis of Privatized Industries Vis-à-Vis  State Owned and other Private Establishments, Addis Ababa 2004


Published in: on March 19, 2007 at 12:18 am  Comments (3)  

Ethiopian Year 2000

Published in: on March 18, 2007 at 2:22 am  Leave a Comment  

Criminal Walk (As translated by Belijig Ali)

Published in: on March 17, 2007 at 11:54 pm  Leave a Comment