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Wednesday, June 8

Update on today's Africa who? post

For readers who saw the post before 1:45 PM EDT, I've added a few sentences to my observation on the utility of Common Sense Reasoning (CSR):
Despite the great value of CSR and the human tendency to engage in such reasoning, trying to put oneself in the place of another has fallen out of favor--even though Game Theory is based on CSR. The modern problem-solving arsenal, which includes statistical reasoning and scientific epistemology, has tended to overshadow the prosaic mental act of trying to imagine oneself in the place of another.

Yet with all the modern skill sets for reasoning at their command, time and time again World Bank project managers have torn their hair in anguish, saying, "If only we had thought to ask."
Also, to head off inquiries, I deleted the sentence "Although African rulers resisted, many battles were one-sided massacres" from Pakenham's quote because it distracted from my point, which is that powerful forces, even in modern history, work against Africa being a 'nation.'

Frankly, I would be a little less worried about the consequences of planned "Commission for Africa" projects if there had been more than one commission; e.g., "Commission for Congo."
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