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This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading. Currently can only be used by a single user (myself), but I plan to extend it to support multiple users eventually.

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5

Africa's Leaky Giant

10
terms
3
notes

on the development of the DRC, and the role played by structural adjustment, outward capital flow and transnationa corps. goes into some of the regional context as well (esp Rwanda).

Trapido, J. (2015). Africa's Leaky Giant. New Left Review, 92, pp. 5-42

9

[...] while for some European states internal and external conflicts were a laboratory for new and more productive forms of debt financing, African leaders tended to raise the capital needed to finance authority by selling the means of production, both human and ecological. Historians have located the origins of this strategy in Africa’s relative labour shortage: unable to control subordinates who could easily disappear into the vast tracts of unoccupied land when things got tough, rulers saw forms of ‘outsourced exploitation’, notably the transatlantic slave trade, as an attractive alternative. [...]

—p.9 by Joe Trapido 1 year, 7 months ago

[...] while for some European states internal and external conflicts were a laboratory for new and more productive forms of debt financing, African leaders tended to raise the capital needed to finance authority by selling the means of production, both human and ecological. Historians have located the origins of this strategy in Africa’s relative labour shortage: unable to control subordinates who could easily disappear into the vast tracts of unoccupied land when things got tough, rulers saw forms of ‘outsourced exploitation’, notably the transatlantic slave trade, as an attractive alternative. [...]

—p.9 by Joe Trapido 1 year, 7 months ago

(noun) the point in the orbit of an object (as a satellite) orbiting the earth that is at the greatest distance from the center of the earth / (noun) the point farthest from a planet or a satellite (as the moon) reached by an object orbiting it / (noun) the farthest or highest point; culmination

10

Violent extraction reached its apogee under the Belgians, following the establishment of King Leopold II’s Congo Free State in 1885, gifted by the European powers assembled at the Congress of Berlin

—p.10 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

Violent extraction reached its apogee under the Belgians, following the establishment of King Leopold II’s Congo Free State in 1885, gifted by the European powers assembled at the Congress of Berlin

—p.10 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

a specific case of kleptocracy; translates into plunder/predatory/rapine economy, where the whole economy of the state is based on robbery, looting and plundering the conquered territories (either its neighbours, or its own territory, as long as it can)

11

Leopold’s ‘Free State’ was a paradigmatic Raubwirtschaft (predatory economy)

—p.11 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

Leopold’s ‘Free State’ was a paradigmatic Raubwirtschaft (predatory economy)

—p.11 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

(adjective) constituting a class alone; unique peculiar

18

In this, Zaire’s catastrophe emerges not as sui generis, but as an extreme variant of a wider pattern of financial mise-en-dépendance.

—p.18 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

In this, Zaire’s catastrophe emerges not as sui generis, but as an extreme variant of a wider pattern of financial mise-en-dépendance.

—p.18 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

a form of governance in which all power flows directly from the leader, which results in the blending of the public and private sectors; most notably defined by Max Weber in 1922

20

This form of distribution is often referred to in Weberian terms as ‘neo-patrimonialism’—the ‘neo’ indicating that the apparatus of a modern state is used to administer patronage, yet without the forms of institutional separation between individual networks and office said to be characteristic of modern forms of authority.

—p.20 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

This form of distribution is often referred to in Weberian terms as ‘neo-patrimonialism’—the ‘neo’ indicating that the apparatus of a modern state is used to administer patronage, yet without the forms of institutional separation between individual networks and office said to be characteristic of modern forms of authority.

—p.20 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago
22

[...] while the powerful cultivated their image as a fruitful bough, the gifts made to underlings in these performances were in reality a tiny fraction of the whole, obscuring the fact that most wealth was being funnelled offshore. [...] the African trajectory differs in an important respect from the classic capitalist one. Here the alienation of public debt incurred from foreign loans involved re-shipping it offshore—and thus undermining capital formation. Though it is ignored or pushed to the margins by conventional Africanist accounts, capital flight provides a far more elegant and empirically robust explanation for the failure of accumulation in Sub-Saharan Africa than ‘neo-patrimonialism’ or ‘the politics of the belly’. [...]

—p.22 by Joe Trapido 1 year, 7 months ago

[...] while the powerful cultivated their image as a fruitful bough, the gifts made to underlings in these performances were in reality a tiny fraction of the whole, obscuring the fact that most wealth was being funnelled offshore. [...] the African trajectory differs in an important respect from the classic capitalist one. Here the alienation of public debt incurred from foreign loans involved re-shipping it offshore—and thus undermining capital formation. Though it is ignored or pushed to the margins by conventional Africanist accounts, capital flight provides a far more elegant and empirically robust explanation for the failure of accumulation in Sub-Saharan Africa than ‘neo-patrimonialism’ or ‘the politics of the belly’. [...]

—p.22 by Joe Trapido 1 year, 7 months ago

"eating parties"; refers to political parties created for the purpose of enriching their leaders, not to advance an ideology, specifically in the context of Africa in recent years (I think)

23

In place of the old party-state, hundreds of parties were established—many of them simply ‘partis alimentaires’, ideology-free ‘eating parties’ designed to sell their support to various power-brokers, and filled with hungry cadres in search of (often pathetically small) financial rewards.

—p.23 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

In place of the old party-state, hundreds of parties were established—many of them simply ‘partis alimentaires’, ideology-free ‘eating parties’ designed to sell their support to various power-brokers, and filled with hungry cadres in search of (often pathetically small) financial rewards.

—p.23 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

a communal uprising or revolt; named after a popular revolt by peasants that took place in northern France in the early summer of 1358 during the Hundred Years' War (which was itself named after the "jacque", or tunic, that the peasants wore)

25

In these circumstances, popular jacquerie was not directed by any kind of hegemonic leadership and went nowhere.

—p.25 by Joe Trapido
uncertain
1 year, 7 months ago

In these circumstances, popular jacquerie was not directed by any kind of hegemonic leadership and went nowhere.

—p.25 by Joe Trapido
uncertain
1 year, 7 months ago

(noun) preponderant influence or authority over others; domination / (noun) the social, cultural, ideological, or economic influence exerted by a dominant group

25

In these circumstances, popular jacquerie was not directed by any kind of hegemonic leadership and went nowhere.

—p.25 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

In these circumstances, popular jacquerie was not directed by any kind of hegemonic leadership and went nowhere.

—p.25 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

(noun) revenge / (noun) a usually political policy designed to recover lost territory or status

25

The RPF saw the camps as an existential threat, supplying a base to Hutu revanchists as they plotted their return to power

I vaguely remember reading about this in A Thousand Hills, though that was from Kagame's POV so I guess I didn't get the full story

—p.25 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

The RPF saw the camps as an existential threat, supplying a base to Hutu revanchists as they plotted their return to power

I vaguely remember reading about this in A Thousand Hills, though that was from Kagame's POV so I guess I didn't get the full story

—p.25 by Joe Trapido
notable
1 year, 7 months ago

a set of 10 economic policy prescriptions considered to constitute the "standard" reform package promoted for crisis-wracked developing countries by Washington, D.C.–based institutions like the IMF and the World Bank (in a nutshell, neoliberalism); term first used in 1989 by English economist John Williamson

37

Kabila’s government had no independent access to capital markets: the only way of securing credit lay through the IMF’s Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) programme, where debt relief was tied to the usual requirements of the Washington Consensus

I've seen this term a whole bunch but I stupidly didn't realise that the IMF and WB were based in DC! of course it makes sense now that I think about it though

—p.37 by Joe Trapido
confirm
1 year, 7 months ago

Kabila’s government had no independent access to capital markets: the only way of securing credit lay through the IMF’s Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) programme, where debt relief was tied to the usual requirements of the Washington Consensus

I've seen this term a whole bunch but I stupidly didn't realise that the IMF and WB were based in DC! of course it makes sense now that I think about it though

—p.37 by Joe Trapido
confirm
1 year, 7 months ago

(verb) to deviate from the truth; equivocate

38

Western governments prevaricated: they had never warmed to Tshisekedi, and many had some lingering attachment to Kabila.

—p.38 by Joe Trapido
confirm
1 year, 7 months ago

Western governments prevaricated: they had never warmed to Tshisekedi, and many had some lingering attachment to Kabila.

—p.38 by Joe Trapido
confirm
1 year, 7 months ago
40

[...] scholarship cannot isolate Congo from the dynamics of global capitalism. This is not just a matter of resource privatization and giveaway mineral rents, oiled by multi-million-dollar kickbacks. The channels for funnelling value away from on-shore jurisdictions into a netherworld of ‘treasure islands’ benefit from a state-of-the-art grid that Western elites have a big stake in leaving safely buried. The various tax havens are ‘spider’s webs’ with, at their centre, northern financial hubs like Britain, the Netherlands, Switzerland or the USA. The British Virgin Islands, which seem to be the major destination for much of the DRC’s recent capital flight, have a very strong connection to the Square Mile. The flows that have helped sap capital formation in Africa’s giant involve a considerable shift of economic surplus from the many to the few, and from South to North.

—p.40 by Joe Trapido 1 year, 7 months ago

[...] scholarship cannot isolate Congo from the dynamics of global capitalism. This is not just a matter of resource privatization and giveaway mineral rents, oiled by multi-million-dollar kickbacks. The channels for funnelling value away from on-shore jurisdictions into a netherworld of ‘treasure islands’ benefit from a state-of-the-art grid that Western elites have a big stake in leaving safely buried. The various tax havens are ‘spider’s webs’ with, at their centre, northern financial hubs like Britain, the Netherlands, Switzerland or the USA. The British Virgin Islands, which seem to be the major destination for much of the DRC’s recent capital flight, have a very strong connection to the Square Mile. The flows that have helped sap capital formation in Africa’s giant involve a considerable shift of economic surplus from the many to the few, and from South to North.

—p.40 by Joe Trapido 1 year, 7 months ago