Sunday, February 15, 2009

Zimbabwe on $65,000,000 Zimbabwe Dollars a day

The London Times reports that Robert Mugabe, ruling thug of Zimbabwe, has used an associate and a shell corporation to buy a $6 million luxury home in Hong Kong. That's a lot of money, but since Zimbabwe under his rule currently boasts an annual inflation rate in the millions of percent, he's used to seeing figures with a lot of zeroes on them.

There's been neglect in Zimbabwe, but also a great deal of vicious political fighting, cronyism, ridiculous spending initiatives, and confiscatory taxes. Then, run the printing presses night and day, and you'll see your currency worth far less than the paper on which it's printed. Nobody would buy the country's sovereign debt, no matter how heavily discounted.

With its sources of borrowing cut off, no real economy, a government firmly entrenched with single-party rule (And glorification and worship of that party's leader), and continued ruinous spending it's no surprise that Zimbabwe's only option has been hyper-inflation. The average citizen lives on about $200 million a year in the local currency, which is approximately $200 U.S. In short, it is the very definition of a failed state, and Mugabe is readying his exit strategy.

With this hyper-partisan, cult of personality thug preparing to bolt after borrowing and inflating his country's economy to ruin, it brings a question to mind. Where will Obama's secret hide away be located?

No comments: