IF it is true as is said that Nigeria is blessed with more natural resources than that the devil knows what to do with, a question then pops up: Why are Nigerians poor and impoverished people?
Many have in fantastical ignorance ticked leadership failures as the answer. But the leadership solution must amount to special pleading. The matter is simple. Leadership by definition is the production of a people [it is not the leader, who produces the peoples, rather the reverse is true]. That is, leadership is neither an otherworldly nor an offshore comet that befalls a people.
It thus follows that if the Nigerian people have insistently thrown up fantastically bad and odious leaders, a conclusion must then be indicated. It is that the Nigerian people are a defective or inferior people. Or, perhaps, to be kinder, gentler, Nigeria is an inferior and defective civilisation. In other words, it is their chosen paths and not their beings that are defective or in error.
A people’s leaders are representatives [that is in original meaning of the term, typical of; and not just in mere deputies-voter-parliamentary terms] of them. And this representativeness is in power [qualitative] and numbers terms. It, therefore, follows that people are their leaders and leaders are their people and the two are interchangeable.
We all must come to terms with these basic facts as their manifestations stare us in the face. A people do not fail because their leaders fail. A people fail and rise on their numbers and the qualities in those numbers. A people do not fail through their leaders. A people, therefore, will rise or fall entirely on their own as a people. Leaders are not proxies; they are a projection, a flowering. Since the times of ancient Greece, civilisation has been built by the people, guided especially by their teachers and sages. Jean- Paul Sartre, an originary sage, got a handle on the matter. If leadership is the real thing, then why was he drinking Coca Cola, sorry writing. The point is that leaders come in as dramatisers, not the authors or finishers of great civilisations. In fact, it is insanitary, psychologically, to be obsessed as we are with leaders, forgetting that it is man, the Homo Sapiens, that is, man as the thinker, is what elevates us above apes and millipedes.
Now, if we have the humility of being self-critical, we will come to knowledge that Nigeria is arguably the most ignorant nation on earth, and APC is the epitome of this fantastical fact. It is this ignorance rather than fancy leadership deceits that forever lays us low and down, throwing us into historical dustbins.
And no party epitomises, we repeat, this ignorance is bliss pathology more than the APC. Let’s forget the plain lies and creative loss of memory that have made APC worse than a faithless spouse, as they renege on their sacred vows and solemn promises. Just let us get to what they have been presenting to us as facts. To give on example, Reno Omokiri, a former President Jonathan’s handyman, exposed Lai Mohammed’s fantastically poor grasp of reality. Lai, as usual, got his topography and geography mixed up and wrong. Lai was speaking, and claiming against nature’s possible order, that cows will be marching across oceans to reach Nigeria. ‘Brilliant’ as Lai is, he forgot in his tale that cows don’t march across oceans. And there are no records of them swimming those deep blue waters either. Ponds and rivers? Possibly yes, but cows swimming in oceans? That is only in Lai’s pitifully poor imagine-nations.
But if this is a slip and one could attribute that to a Lai, who has come into more power than he has genius, what do you make of this. Within the APC, both Lai and Ibe Kachikwu leading others have noised abroad that the ‘deregulation and commercialisation’ of petrol supplies will reduce prices. This they attributed to the forces of competition that will ensue. And they repeatedly gave the example of the GSM regime.
The point is that they are completely in error and in ignorance, especially as to the GSM templating. First, let us make so primary observations. In free market economies, added competitions don’t lower prices, if at all, beyond miniscule thus negligible points. Actually what drives price reductions in economically significant leaps in competitive market environments are innovations, not competitions.
The point to observe is that the two are not one nor are they coterminous. It is true that competitions correlate with innovations in higher primes, but they are not their causal agents. If they were, there would not have been innovations in the old Soviet Union, which ran a unitary, non-market and thus non-competitive system. However, it is clear that the Soviet Union was a leader in innovation in its days, in light arms – Kalashnikovs AK 47s; sorry we didn’t have enough of that in Biafra – and in aerospace. They were, we all may recall, the first to escape the pull of gravity and get headed for the moon. And if we went to culture production and manufactures, the Soviet innovations in literature, the so-called Silver Age, for instance, has no competitor equal in the world of that day and age. Blok, Mandelstam, Akhmatova are the finest of their age anywhere in the known world.
So, historically, competition it is evident, has not been a causal agent of innovation. Competition is only an environment, properly speaking, a social technology. And that is as one of the many social technologies that correlate or help host the competitive spirits of Homo Sapiens, that is man as a thinker. If this is not understood, then every other economic argument and or practice is in error. At least, history, which cannot be illogical, says so.
So, we may now ask, why are Lai and troupe canvassing in blissful ignorance a matter that is better spoken ‘beyond their heads’? The answer is in evolution and those who are her winners and losers. In life, those who drive evolution win and those who like APC and Lai don’t, who merely ape things, lose. This is as they futilely attempt to cope.
Now the causal agent to all prosperities is in the science of knowledge, especially primary knowledge manufactures. But knowledge like all organic things evolve. And this evolution alters the ground rules and axioms. In old Adam Smithian economics, competitions were bundled together as innovations, both as causal and correlative agents.
But both knowledge and economies [society] evolved. And what happened? New discoveries were made. These new discoveries gave new impetus not just to new industries but to the rewriting of the Adam Smithian and other foundational texts of economics. Suddenly, Adam Smith and company were safely quarantined as classical economics. They were inadequate to explain the realities of post-World War 2 world, or properly European economies. Maynard Keynes and company stumbled in. And since then neither economics nor reality has stood still for longer than one generation. And in Europe a generation endures for just about 30 long years. In Africa of Lai and the sheriff, it may last 1000 years and more. In other words, the European man and more importantly, the European mind [sapiens] woke up to being a conscious causal agent of evolution.
That in part, led to Silicon Valley. And to Gordon Moore. Moore was one of the bright dudes, who founded and built up Silicon Valley. To cut a long story short, he in passing, quipped on an apercu. And the gist of his assertion captured the reality and became the lore if not a law. It is the famous Moore’s law. It says and we quote: “… Over the history of computing hardware, the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit has doubled approximately every two years.’’
The general implication of this is that while your digital equipment, say computers, become more powerful, the prices necessarily collapse. In fact, the joke is on. It is that if Moore’s law or the digital economies held sway in say motor manufacturing, a Mercedes Benz would have been selling at the cost of a packet of match box and making more profits.
Moore’s law is one of those imprecise laws or tendencies that hold generally true. Another would be Pareto’s law of 80:20 in economics. So also is the brace theory inspired by the words and works of Mother A’Endu. In more general terms, what Moore’s law says is that it is only imagination and innovation that may enrich man and his society beyond his beliefs.
Moore’s law it could then be said inaugurated a new economics – the post-industrial economics. It was in this that as, perhaps, never before that the distinction between innovations and competitions were most clearly as never before unbundled.
Let us now take examples. About 1920-30s, the United States motor making industry suffered a shakeup and shakeout. That is to say that competition and suppliers were much higher than the industry could bear. Therefore, marginal players were swallowed up or had to foreclose. The point is that in the end, for [price only] competitive systems, the big boys drive out the smaller plays by sheer staying power, deep pockets and economics of network effects. Prices will later return to near oligopolistic levels.
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