Economist Dambisa Moyo has received some attention from conservative bloggers, many I assume are looking for other fronts to fight the war against Keynesian economics.  Her interviews reveal that she is not quite the ally they would prefer.  Beneath the ridicule  of the pretensions a help from the Bonos of the world, there is a critique of how aid has been used, rather than of aid in itself.  Raising the issue of Cold War strategy and calling on the interested in contributing to microfinance rather than charity, Moyo calls attention to the fact that aid has largely been mislabeled as economic (when it really kept governments in line) and that it could be more precisely tragetted at economic development.  A grosser argument could follow: aid ought to be specifically economic, not political.  On the other hand, her comparison of Africa to China doesn’t seem to find sufficient depth.  Yes, China did better without financial assistance, but it did so by rewriting the rules of capitalism, displacing its association with democratic institutions.  Do the Glen Reynolds want to turn Africa into a mini-China?  Time will tell.

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