By "Papa" Maury Clark
October 31, 2012 (SSNA) — It is time for the world to adjust expectations. Any belief that the more prosperous economies will be able to significantly aid South Sudan, or any of the lesser developed nations, flies in the face of selfish reality. The economic facts simply are reflective of human nature. When threatened by risk, prosperous nations tend to protect themselves first, and then look at other nations anguish later.
South Sudan will fare better than most because of its political and geographically strategic location, as well as potential development of valued natural resources.
World economies are either falling, or threatened by economic collapse. The many reasons involve willing complicity by all parties: bankers creating ways to meet demand, regulators who failed to regulate, agency guarantors, and insurors who quit looking at underlying credits and, without question- consumers throughout the world who took on more than they could handle, trusting in the "Greater Fool" for salvation. Blaming politicians, economists, or bankers, et al, satisfies the consumers personal need to be the innocent victim, blameless in all respects. HORSE HOOEY!
The reality is that developed national economies are falling from a very lofty perch. Even accepting the fact of the fall, when we land, Americans will still be more prosperous than the rest of the world. The decline, and resultant economic stagnation, for the next few years is painfully necessary, but beneficial, in order to adjust the preceding 70 years of base building and wildly optimistic boom-times. Any quick return to the recent years of rampant consumption and prosperity risks bottomless, long-term collapse. Besides, what tools are left that would lead to even short-term prosperity in light of world-wide "Excessive exuberance"?
South Sudan will fare better than most nations, if for no better reason than when starting from a base of near-total destruction, South Sudans economy can only get better. Remember that you have most of the resources that will be needed world-wide for a future recovery.
I, again, remind you of a risk that I have expressed to you many times over the past few years. My statement is ridiculously overwrought, but when it comes to business, DO NOT TRUST THE WHITE GUY! I can assure you that he has centuries of experience looking for his own interests first and foremost. Any benefit to South Sudan will be secondary to their profit. You must look carefully at every proposal that may appear beneficial in the short term, but that could cost you dearly over time. Any arrangement beneficial to both parties on an equal footing would be the ideal.
As for economists failing to warn the world of this cyclical mess, I recommend boning up on the "Kondratief Longwave Theory" as expanded upon by Engels. Nicolai Kondratiev, a Russian, paid with his life for his seminal examination of the post civil war American economic cycles.
South Sudan will do just fine, as long as you examine every opportunity with an eye to your long-term benefit. Short-term solutions could lead to your long-term loss of land and resources. A good example of long term strategy might be similar to that in Polynesia. Wherein only natives can own land and, by extension, natural resources.
The Author is a retired investment banker/broker, as well as a Called and Commissioned Deacon in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), Northwest Washington Synod. He served under Bishops Appointment as pastor of Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church in Maple Valley, Washington in 1990 and 1991, and also served four years on the Synod Council. He has been deeply involved with the people of Southern Sudan since 1996, and is an advisor to the Government of Southern Sudan.