Togo situation so-so

The situation in Togo is little changed, but it seems that as a result of outside pressure from the usual bores Togo is inching toward democracy. Which is a shame, and is a sign of how out of control the whole democracy fad has become. Everyone knows Faure Gnassingbe, as son of a president and possessor of an MBA (I call him the African Bush) is the best possible president for Togo, and what everyone is failing to acknowledge is given the chance to vote, the Togolese will elect the scariest witch doctor they can find instead.

Fascinating Togo fact: In 1963 Togo was ruled by a man named Nicolas Grunitzky, who was half Polish and half Moba. (How can you tell that the kid who stole your bike is half black and half Polish? He's running down the street with the bike under his arm.)

I still have not been able to get past the palace security to meet with Gnassy jr. While waiting I’ve stumbled across the writings of Charles Onyango Obbo. I would describe him as a Ugandan Thomas Friedman, though less pompous and more original, and unlike Friedman his face isn't adorned by a ludicrous, vaguely homosexual moustache. In a recent article, Obbo wonders (as we all have at least once) what conditions lead a father who is in power to try and have his son succeed him? It does seem a mystery. Obbo notes a key factor (which we can call ‘The Rule of 20’):

most of the presidents who have handed or are planning to hand the jobs to their sons all over the world have a few things in common. First, they have all ruled for more than 20 years

Why 20 years?

as leaders head for their 20th year in power, they have been in the job so long, they view the presidency as private property. Secondly, the presidency gets to define their world so much so that they see their "after life" only in continuing to rule from beyond the grave.

In other words, 20 years is the threshold at which no human being can any longer withstand the corruption of power. But up until that point, there is still hope. But why sons, you are probably asking by now, and not daughters? Obbo explains:

plus the need for the First Family to protect the wealth it will have amassed and other privileges, that determines the choice of the son as successor. Daughters are excluded, on the reasoning that they could be married off, and easily come under the sway of their husbands - who could be from another clan or tribe.

Something for G.W. Bush to think about.


  1. "He's running down the street with the bike under his arm ... really fast." [Rimshot]

  2. If anyone ever builds a museum of Polish-Togolese history I imagine Nicolas Grunitzky will get an entire wing all to himself.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Christmas Books

Sacred Duty