Daily Dozen: 28/02

Barack Obama for the first time calls on Col Gaddafi to step down [Telegraph]
#KenyaFeb28: Online Call to Nationalism [GlobalVoices]
Learn to Love The Revolution [TIME]
3 Years of National Discord [KDP]
The surreal playboy life of Teodorin Obiang [Very Interesting]
The price of food is at the heart of this wave of revolutions [Independent]
Suddenly, a Rise in Somali Piracy’s Price [NewYorkTimes]
Is your nation poised for revolution? Introducing the Revolting Index [WSJ]
Open Letter to Uganda’s Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhaburwa Museveni [Afrospear]
“si you’re my fans?”: how to be a kenyan ‘artist’ [Mugendi]
Would You Stop Acting Your Age? [H&H]
How To Make Money Online – For Absolute Beginners [LikeChapaa]

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Daily Dozen: 07/02

Why Kenyans may have to wait a little longer for new CJ [DN]
You are either for or against impunity [EAS]
The shaping of a New World Order [Al Jazeera]
Africa’s top five billionaires [ABR]
Nairobi’s Urban Digital Divide, or, NUDD for short. [MK]
The luckiest dictator in Africa [Independent]
Tweets don’t foment rebellion; rebellions get tweeted [ict4d]
Forget Arab Protesters; Kenya Faces A Bigger Crisis [Some Blogger]
Ten Reasons why KenyaFeb28 Failed [Kachwanya]
What Africa needs is good leadership, not just any kind of leadership [Captain Obvious]
Malawi set to make ‘silent but deadly’ a crime. Yup, they’re criminalising farting [BBC]
Of ‘Revolutions’ and University Graduations [Shameless Plug]

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To Whom It May Concern: ‘Revolutions’ in the Arab World and University Graduations?

Disclaimer: The letter below is meant for diasporadical purposes only. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead is purely coincidental.

This letter is addressed to you, yes you.

As you may have noticed, the news is saturated with coverage from Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen – what is now being dubbed ‘an Arab Revolution‘ by many. Like many observers, I have been very reluctant to refer to the unprecedented events in Tunisia and Egypt as “revolutions” and therefore I have had my own reservations against the use of the word “revolution” by friends, family and the world at large. Meanwhile, I have fruitlessly tried coming up with my own catchy imagery, symbolism or analogies that best capture the profound changes taking place especially in Tunisia and Egypt.
It was around then that I came across this statement taken from a recent speech given by Jeremy Gauntlett, a distinguished South African lawyer :

“I have often thought that the trouble with political revolution, velvet or otherwise, is that it gives rise to the same illusions as university graduation. There is the sense of attainment and finality, of a status achieved and no more to be learnt or done. I believe the converse is true. It is just a beginning.”

Ofcourse my first thought was to dissect this statement to see whether it holds true. Can political revolutions (I assume he had Tunisia and Egypt in mind) be likened to university graduations in as far as the “illusions” created are concerned?

My short answer: No. I totally disagree with my learned friend Mr. Gauntlett on the grounds that political revolutions by their very nature are made up of several key reforms taking place over a period of time and cannot be narrowed down to a succint moment in time as is the case with university graduations. We must distinguish between “political revolutions” and “political reforms”.

Indulge me, if you please.

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