James Shikwati is a Kenyan Economist and the man behind The African Executive, a web site pledging to unleash Africa’s greatest capital. Shikwati is also a neophyte policy hack who has figured out that the way to get Western support is to beg for intellectual guidance from the bankrupt West. That’s not a genuis move considered the scope of the international bailout currently underway, but its all he’s got. This new shill for the Heritage Foundation was featured in the New York Times in 2006.
Mr. Shikwati’s group, the Inter Region Economic Network, or IREN, is part of a global span of policy groups that Western conservatives have helped build over the past quarter-century. Operating in as many as 70 countries, with varying degrees of outside support, these institutes push a wide array of free-market prescriptions, including lower taxes, less regulation and freer trade.
They have strengthened property rights in Peru, aided the privatization of state-owned companies in Egypt, protested union power in France and led the way in halving the Lithuanian corporate income tax.
As the architect of Slovakia’s flat tax, the F. A. Hayek Foundation drew a visit from Steve Forbes, the former presidential aspirant. He labeled the country an “investor’s paradise” in “no small part because of the foundation’s work.”
The movement even has a venture capital arm, the Atlas Economic Research Foundation in Arlington, Va.: over the last decade, it has given groups like Mr. Shikwati’s more than $17 million.
Shikwati is such a hack that his entire “intellectual face” (his website) is a compilation of pieces stolen from other writers. This is James Shikwati:
Shikwati is correct in noting that aid to Africa is structurally designed to increase debt. That shit ain’t rocket science. Africans have been saying that since Day One. Why suckle at the breast of the Heritage Foundation and perpetrate as if you’re a man of new thinking when the IMF and World Bank are on the same page of your sponsors? Maybe you’re just trying to get some coin — and live large…but you don’t have the acumen to write your own material or the skill to snatch an entire nation like Daniel Arap Moi.
Shikwati is just one more of Africa’s sons who have looked to the West for no good reason at all. Pathetic — and dangerous. He is precisely the type of man to sell the pipe dream of pseudo independence only to walk away with a huge personal pay day.
James Shikwati is a morally and intellectually dishonest person in serious need of a final correction. Let’s see if he has “a meteoric rise” in Kenyan politics and is billed as a Son of Freedom in about 5 to 7 years. If I run into him, I’m taking what’s owed right off his chin.