Saturday, April 22, 2006

Can the military run Zim's economy?

...The mind boggles at the concept that those trained in warfare and defence should become the supremos of the economy. What on earth does their background, training and experience include that has any bearing on formulating, guiding and driving the diverse elements of an economy, ranging from agriculture to mining, from manufacturing to tourism, from trading to finance, and much else? How can expertise in national defence be constructively applied to facilitating, enabling and motivating economic well-being?

Although Zimbabwe has pronounced scarcities of many items, ranging from petroleum to maize meal, medications and consumables in state hospitals, it has an overwhelming surplus, and that is of rumours, many of which are wholly without foundation, and most of the others being greatly exaggerated, but nevertheless a few that are of substance. Among the rumours currently in circulation is one that the ZNSC is now overseeing the operations of the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra). Should that be so, it is incongruous in the extreme.

What on earth does the army know about taxation, internal controls, audit and the like? Surely the responsibility for oversight of Zimra should vest in the Ministry of Finance and the Auditor-General and, if necessary, the Ministry of Anti-Corruption and the National Economic Conduct Inspectorate....

I would agree with the writer..the army is a stooge for protecting Mugabe and will only continue his failed policies.

But you know, the writer is wrong in thinking that an army could not run the economy...a major skill in a good military is logistics, being able to feed and clothe and shelter the army, keeping supplies flowing, building bridges, building houses and fortifications, starting gardens and raising animals for food to feed the army etc.
Armies tend to be bullies when left lose, but a good army is quite practical, realizing that if you kill the cow (or destroy the factory or confiscate the mine) then you won't have milk next week from the dead cow...
The question is if the military is so contaminated by socialistic theory and political corruption and general incompetency that they cannot do this. Not knowing much about Zim's military I cannot answer that question...

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