"The African elite has been a total failure; they cannot raise their heads in the community of scholars or the intelligentsia. They want to continue to sit at the head of the totem pole, being spoon-fed, rather than at the head of the battle line leading the masses of Black people throughout the world. That they have not been able to understand that the total Black race is under economic slavery is a testament to their half-education and illiteracy. A community cannot survive when its so-called educated citizens are morally and intellectually bankrupt and decrepit. You cannot have a community whose intelligentsia are mere parasites of other cultures." -
Africans are not a forceful people, neither are they aggressive to the point of a fight to the finish. We are not resolute in our commitment to a goal and lack the devil-may-care doggedness needed to scale a Mount Everest or the Himalayas. We are easily influenced and distracted in pursuit of a quest to reach a set goal and to be the best that are destined for us. Intellectually, we are bankrupt and decrepit. We have a very short attention span, and have a very short burst of energy which easily extinguishes in the face of impediment. We prefer to be parasites of a culture which we had no hand in creating, a Caucasion culture which took them years to perfect, and which we cannot easily emulate in its basic tenets - a predisposition to make wars not only on themselves but more so on others for intimidation and supremacy. Unlike his Caucasian counterpart, the African is a compassionate fool, easily influenced to hospitality of known enemies because of their acts of deceitful intentions.
The balkanization of Africa by the six Caucasian nations, Britain, France, Spain, Italy, Portugal and Germany, resulted in the creation of disparate and at best, baseless boundaries, countries without geographic significance. The fig ht to gain independence, was not so much the aggressive pursuit of the goal of independence by African leaders, as the realization by the Europeans that they had looted all that they needed to loot from Africa. The leaders of Africa who benefited from the handout of independence to African countries had no concept of the ideals of rulership they were inheriting other than their desire to displace the Europeans in their oppression of masses of the people and their opulent lifestyles with the resources of the people. These leaders' vision was in stark contrast to that of Nelson Mandela and Kenyatta, the Kenyan Mau Mau leader, Kwame Nkrumah, Mwalimu Nyerere, and Nnamdi Azikiwe, all of whom were ready to give up their lives in pursuit of the freedom of their people. They understood what it was to be independent and free and were ready to give their lives to attain that goal. The lack of commitment to the real meaning of freedom and independence by those African leaders who "won" independence for their respective countries from their former colonial masters has done more to impugn the intelligence of the Blackman and raise more questions about his ability to govern himself.
Today, Africa is worse off than when it gained independence from the former colonial masters. The standard of living of the masses has decreased steadily since gaining independence to the extent that now there is more malnutrition, more diseases, less provision of essential services, such as good roads, clean drinking water, good health care provision and less freedom to express one's views. The promise of independence has hardly been fulfilled. Africa has incurred more debt, yet has nothing to show for it. The debts incurred were used more for grandiose projects than for services to benefit the people, such as the late Houphuet-Boigny's $1 billion to build the so-called biggest and best known Cathedral in his remote village in Yarmousoukro in the Ivory Coast. That is $1 billion to build a Cathedral that is now not being utilized by the people, a large amount of money gone down the drain. Was it necessary to build such a Cathedral and deny the people essential services?
The issue in this portion of the book is not so much to show that the leaders have not provided the leadership which would make us proud and show that we can stand on equal footing with the rest of the world, but rather to show the intellectual bankruptcy of the so-called African elite. The elite, rather than the majority of the crude African leadership, stand out as the single group which has damaged Africa most because of their quest for an easy life of luxury. This is the group that took over the baton from the former colonial rulers. They took over the opulent life lived by the oppressors. Rather than eliminate the excesses of the Caucasian masters, the elite saw their takeover as an opportunity to double the pain of the masses of the people. Their claim to the throne vacated by the Caucasians was that they had gone to school, an education in which practical learning was not a requirement.
The elite inherited the European's position; he inherited his huge offices; he inherited his more than 10 messengers; he inherited his sex on demand from his numerous secretaries; he inherited his disrespect of his subordinates; he inherited more than three cars; he inherited his huge houses with several servants and drivers. He inherited his demand for unquestioned authority and obedience. He was pampered beyond human endurance by the masses who expected to see a difference from Caucasian behavior. Instead they found that their behavior, in most cases, was more tyrannical than their Caucasian predecessors. But the elite's excesses would not be allowed to go on forever unchallenged; unfortunately, the challenge came from the wrong quarters - the military. One by one, African governments were taken over by military men of questionable character - immoral and illiterates such as Idi Amin of Uganda, Emperor Bokassa of the Central African Republic, Sergeant Doe of Liberia, Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire, Sani Abacha of Nigeria. Jammeh of the Gambia is the latest in a line of idiots who seized power because they possessed the gun, and then quickly seized the ballot box in a corrupt election to declare themselves democractically elected.
The greatest sin of the African elite is not opening their mouths to challenge these despots. They feared for their opulent lifestyles. They feared losing their presents of money stolen from the masses for their prostitutes; they feared being deprived of air conditioned homes when the masses are out in the streets without electricity; they feared their swimming pools not being filled with water when the average man could not even get a clean drinking water and had to depend on polluted and infected streams to get his water; they did not want to be deprived of attending Clubs and drinking free drinks at the expense of the masses; they did not want to be deprived of trotting around the globe.
The Europeans, on the other hand, decided to let these buffoons be perceived as having taken over, and they exercised, and continue to exercise, power over these puppets in any major decision making.
Unfortunately for the African elite, the buffoonery called the African military had their own ideas of personal enrichment and aggrandizement. The elite was the first to congratulate any military idiot who seized power and protest how their predecessors had corrupted the country and looted its treasury. They danced to the tune of the new dictator in the hope that they would be spared their opulent lifestyle. But the military being who they are, preferred to spend the country's largess and money on their string of loose women rather than on the comfort of the elite and the provision of essential services to the masses of the people. They cut off their privileges and curtailed their attempts to question why their lifestyles were being scrapped. Those who attempted to question the military, were quickly jailed or executed to send a message of intimidation to others never to attempt such a "disrespect of constituted authority." At the first sign of a contraction of their lifestyle, most of the elite packed up and fled Africa, to the United States and Canada, and others to European nations.
Today, there are about 2.5 million Africans in the United States of America. The majority are the elites who fled and the new elites who are planning to return to an extravagant life of abundance. Hence, the African immigrant group has been declared by the U.S. Census Bureau as the most educated immigrant group in America. But beyond the fact that he is highly educated, the African immigrant, unlike his Inidan, Chinese and other immigrant counterparts, has not had any visible impact on America. Most are still caught up in their loss of opulent lifestyles in Africa, and have not been able to assimilate into a society which does not recognize whether you are a "prince," a "chief," a "commoner," son or daughter of wealthy parents, but only recognizes what you have accomplished by yourself.
There is this nauseating nostalgia about "life back home, where I had seven servants, who washed and ironed my clothes, where I did not know where the kitchen was situated in my own house, where I had five drivers for my five cars, where I could have as many women as I wanted, where I rubbed shoulders with powers that be, where everybody called me Sir/Madam, where people understood that I was a very important person (v.i.p.), where I took 30% of all contracts I awarded. Now I am just a number in America SS: 123456789. In America, nobody knows who I am and hardly cares; they don't recognize that I am a prince or chief who is a security guard, right? .... on and on, ad infinitum ad nauseam.
The so-called educated African in America is tragically damaged psychologically between his concept of his own importance and the reality of American life. Many have been living in a dream world of returning home to granduer, and avoid being assimilated in the American society until their coffin has to be s ent back to their homeland, without accomplishing anything: avoidance of participation in the American way of life, which is looked on as inferior, and the reality of not having made any contributions to a continent which is beckoning for people with ideas to return to contribute to the economic development of the area. Africans talk incessantly about their homelands - they know everything that happens there. They criticize everything. They will sit and talk a whole day about the leaders who are creating one problem or another, without ever offering solutions. They have all kinds of organizations - compounds, villages, towns, counties, provinces, states, countries - the missions of which is the betterment of the area back in Africa, but which in actual fact is used for displaying the same self-importance which the American society had denied them. Saturday after Saturday, Sunday after Sunday, there is this meeting or that meeting. People come there, list all their degrees, the schools they attended, the positions they occupied back home, their parents standings in society. By the time they finish reciting all their accolades, the time for the meeting has more than elapsed and the same happens the next meeting. In Africa, we have a saying that "You don't chase after a mouse when your house is on fire." But it seems that Africans in America have perfected the science of chasing after a mouse when their house is on fire. With the meetings, all the boastings, Africans in America cannot claim to have made an impact in America in matters concerning Africa, or in Africa with all the wars, diseases, famine and all kinds of problems going on there. More than 800,000 Tutsis and Hutus were killed in Rwanda; Africans in America did not lift a finger of help even in just expressing their sympathies, gathering blankets, foods, medical supplies and drugs or even toys for the children. It is the same story all over the continent. Even now when there is a pandemic of AIDS, Africans in America seem unconcerned. There is the war in Sierra Leone, where thousands of children and women have been raped, decapitated and murdered. Africans in America have not lifted a finger of protest against these genocides.
The African in America does not understand what it means to be committed to a principle of alleviating the sufferings of their people. They are much more concerned with their stupid importance, where everybody is a "chief and," as they say in America, "no Indians." I have yet to find a group of Africans in America who have decided to volunteer to go to Africa for any relief work. Yet, they express all kinds of anger when they see a Caucasian man or woman carrying an African child, or leading a group of wounded children or women, in any war torn area in Africa. They will spend an eternity discussing the pros and cons of that Caucasian man or woman carrying that child, rather than do something about it themselves. I repeat that the African in America is intellectually bankrupt and decrepit. Here is a group which is regarded as the most educated immigrant group in america, they are yet to accomplish even one twentieth what their Indian, Chinese, and Korean counterparts have been able to accomplish in America. In America, Indians are one of the best shining examples of success in so many categories of American business that they can no longer be discounted politically, economically or socially. In New York City, the Indians control all the newsstands, they control all the taxis, and over 90% of the limousine car services; they control all the motels and all the gas stations including all the convenience stores attached to the stations. In fact, the Indian Yellow cab driver is the one most likely to refuse picking up a Black passenger in New York City than any other cab driver. The Indians have built major companies, especially in the computer and internet fields. Some of their companies are major players in these fields and have taken their companies public. Even with our preponderance of the "educated s." no African in America has started a computer or internet company from scratch and taken that company public. Africans cannot boast of controlling this or that area of business in America.
The Chinese on the other hand, control how America eats. Even in the movies, you always see the actors or actresses, ordering one form of Chinese food or another. Africans spend a lot of money eating or ordering Chinese foods, Our African missions to the United Nations, Embassies in Washington and all the African Consulates-General spend millions of dollars eating Chinese food a year. I have never seen an Chinese going to an African restaurant to reciprocate our patronage. The Chinese also control how America keeps its wardrobe clearn.
Keeping in mind that we are the most educated immigrant group in America, Africans can be found in thousands in Universities and Colleges throughout the United States as administrators, professors, senior lecturers, adjunct lecturers. There are thousands of African medical practitioners throughout the medical learning establishments and practice in America. But, the most puzzling issue is the nonexistence of any research on the part of our so-called intellectual establishments in matters affecting the continent.
Recently, I read two articles which I thought would ignite the anger of the African elite in the universities - one was an article which a Caucasian woman of Jewish descent had written arguing that civilization did not emanate from Africa, but rather from Greece; and the other article was about the new attempt to foist the origin of AIDS on Africa. Well, I said to myself, these two articles would certainly excite the response of our intellectual effete-snobs. I even challenged the so-called African Studies Association, the African university teachers group, and told one of their leaders that I was appalled at the lack of meaningful research undertaken by our so-called "learneds" to respond to critical and detrimental assertions affecting Africa. And that these two articles presented a challenge to them to refute these patently meritless articles, produced by Caucasians to continue to demean the supremacy of the Black man. I was assured that they would respond, but true to their nature, it is one thing to get a degree and quite another to exercise the use of that degree.
African scholars are the same the world over. They get their degrees to the highest level; they get a teaching position or job at a company. That is the end of it. You cannot point to any research that they have come up with which has elicited comment which could be regarded as controversial. No African scholar in America is called upon as an expert on matters affecting Africa in all the major television networks. (That was true when I wrote this book, but not now when I see people like George Ayittey on CNN; I have been on ABC-TV, NBC-TV, UPN-TV, CBS-TV). With the exception of the literary icon, Chinua Achebe, whose book "Things Fall Apart," is a staple for teaching in almost all universities throughout America, no other African can boast of a book they have written being utilized (in such a wide manner) as a teaching mateial in the universities.
The problem of African scholars is the same problem I had talked about at the beginning of this part of the book: a lack of aggressiveness, a lack of commitment to the goal of later rather than immediate gratification; and of course, being easily influenced by the pursuit for money. The African scholar is intellectually dishonest. At a time when thousands of Chinese scholars and researchers are swarming American research laboratories, African scholars are nowhere to be found in those intellectually challenging positions. In fact, one Chinese research, in responding to America's accusation that a Chinese had sold secrets to mainland China, intoned that he couldn't understand what the fuss was all about: "after-all," he said, "Mandarin (Chinese language) had become the lingua franca in most research establishments throughout the United States."
Today, China can boast of possessing and being able to build nuclear weapons through the efforts of Chinese citizens in America. India and Pakistan have been able to detonate atomic bombs through the disciplined research of Indians and Pakistanis in America in helping their counterparts in their respective homelands to acquire the techonology. The question really is how could Africa have millions of educated men and women, yet have to import experts in all fields to manage areas of economic development, engineering and others for which Africans had gone to the same school. All this is due to the shallowness of our "education," a non-commitment to the study of knowledge for the benefits of the people, rather than a study on how we can make money the fastest way without putting out much effort. In the early days when Africans came to the United States for studies, there used to be quite a few of them enrolled in engineering and science-related studies. Now, that is passe. Now, go to any university; Africans are enrolled in business administration, sociology, accounting, finance, prelaw, pre-medicine: you hardly get people in engineering and physics. It is no wonder that when we come out with some of these worthless degrees, we are herded into jobs with the Human Resources Administration - people with masters degrees, who after the last day of getting their degrees is the day they stop reading anything on paper. The African elite, as a mirror image of the larger Black society, is a consumer group rather than a productive group. A people which regards itself as independent should be able to produce independent thought. Yet, Africans still depend on Europeans, 40 years after "gaining" their independence from their former colonial masters and at a new millennium, to furnish us with books on any subject. Our so-called eltes cannot devote enough time to research to duplicate the same research already conducted and articulate it in a language Africans can understand.
It is any wonder then that we go to school and still come out illiterates. It is no wonder that despite our years of schooling, if we need our roads built, we have to contract them out to European engineering firms to build for us; if we need electricity, we get Caucasians or the Japanese to build them for us; if we need drinking water, we have to import European or American experts to do them for us. We are "highly educated," yet we cannot even assemble a bicycle - we have to import it; we cannot assemble a radio - we have to import it; we cannot assemble a fan - we have to import it; we cannot assemble a television - we have to import it. According to the United Nations, Africa constitutes the world's poorest land mass. There is poverty everywhere and the pay of the average man is the lowest in the world. Yet you could hardly see the industrial powers rushing to Africa to open factories, which would produce goods which would then be resold in their markets.
Africans go to school so that they can acquire half-educated knowledge to terrorize the masses in the same way that the colonial masters had done; other immigrant groups like the Indians and Chinese have been able to use their education to acquire knowledge beneficial to their people all over the world. It is quite amazing that even in the field of history, our African elite has failed us in not producing well-researched publications on the history of the African continent. The saddest part is that we have to be taught African history through the eyes of the Caucasian. But thanks to Africa's children who were sold into slavery, the history of Africa has started to be known through our own eyes.
The tenets of a Capitalist Nigger is a love of money and what money can do to uplift the masses and not terrorize them or steal them blind. The African elite has been a total failure; they cannot raise their heads in the community of scholars or the intelligentsia. They want to continue to sit at the head of the totem pole, being spoon-fed, rather than at the head of the battle line leading the masses of Black people throughout the world. That they have not been able to understand that the total Black race is under economic slavery is a testament to their half-education and illiteracy. A community cannot survive when its so-called educated citizens are morally and intellectually bankrupt and decrepit. You cannot have a community whose intelligentsia are mere parasites of other cultures.
Chika Onyeani is the author of "Capitalist Nigger: The Road to Success - A Spider Web Doctrine," which stayed on the South African bestseller list for 4 months and is still one of the most sought after books in southern Africa, as well as Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of the African Sun Times. Onyeani is a Fellow of the New York Times Institute for Journalists. His 452-page novel, "The Broederbond Conspiracy," will soon be published.