04 April 2007

Hitchhiker's guide to a failing state

A friend sent me this article from The Independent. It's about a journey through Zimbabwe. A sample:

It takes longer to count the money than to fill the tank. The pick-up takes 50 litres. More violence and more unrest has seen the exchange rate leap to Z$25,000 to $1. That means a little over Z$1m. And that kind of money needs to be carried in bags, not wallets. Hyperinflation and the ensuing fuel crisis has pushed petrol beyond the means of normal people. Zimbabwe is now a nation of hitchhikers, the lay-bys crowded with people waiting and waving, sometimes for days if they can't afford to pay for a lift.

For another, not very different, view see Tuesday's ABC RN Perspective talk.

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