Part 2. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Demography and Social Policy

2011/03/27

2. Demography and Social Policy
Originally posted in Russian, Mar. 5th, 2011
Original source: http://comrade-vader.livejournal.com/23405.html

PDF version

Previously we have seen that the Libyan regime leaves a significant part of surplus value wrung from the workers at the disposal of the country, thereby reducing the extent of international exploitation which it is subjected. But riches something from this stored value to the country’s population, to the working classes, or, as in Russia, is devoured in three throats by corrupt rulling top?

Firstly, such devouring policy is a characteristic for the comprador bourgeoisie, comprador policy that is the optimal conditions for devouring (everybody is friend to you, everybody presents you iPods, and in the whole sometime give you permission to aproach to feeders to play with his toy cars… not for long… until parents do not come back). From the above analysis we saw that the Libyan regime is not comprador, and shows independence, which appears nasty for the West.

Secondly, there are actual data and evidences, even from sources that can hardly be suspected of sympathizing with Gaddafi, which indicate that part of the saved surplus value comes to people / workers in significant quantities.

Here’s what «well-wishers» say about Libya, some of them say it during the frenzied persecution unleashed against the Libyan regime, in which they take the most lively part.

Choking with hatred Euronews about Libyan Social Policy:

Over the years, living conditions for ordinary people have improved. Women’s rights have been reinforced. Women are in the forefront of Gaddafi’s security arrangements, an all-woman team accompanying him on all official engagements. In 1984, a bill was published in which polygamy was abolished, divorce was authorised, and forced marriage made illegal.
Moreover, Libya is a contrast of socio-economic achievements and political misery.

[4].

Pressmen sometimes (often, always) are enchanting nonsense even without knowing what they say. If socio-economic achievements are present, how on earth could it be political misery? Or do political institutions have some other purpose, except for public social and economic well-being? (Of course they do. It’s a rhetorical question. We understand that purpose of bourgeois institutions does not maintenance of public welfare — it is just a fig leaf for the sake of propriety and control. The real purpose is management of the affairs of the bourgeoisie).
Under the political misery understood this: «Political parties and trade unions are outlawed. Society is represented by people’s committees the basis of which are families and tribes». In other words, bourgeois ideologists are annoying by claimed direct democracy without political organizations, firmly integrated into structures of capitalist production.
There’s also reports that: «When the neighboring countries had been brew the revolutionary sentiments, the ruling regime in Libya had taken proactive steps: entered subsidies for food items and essentials».

The same from english version (Euronews gives different dubbing in Russian and in English, often those versions contradict each other; it seems that truth for the Russian speaking people is not the same as truth for the English speaking people):

In response to the recent upheavals in Tunisia and Egypt, he has recently lowered prices for basic foodstuffs and medicines, and given easier access to credit. Over the years, living conditions for ordinary people have improved. Women’s rights have been reinforced. Women are in the forefront of Gaddafi’s security arrangements, an all-woman team accompanying him on all official engagements. In 1984, a bill was published in which polygamy was abolished, divorce was authorised, and forced marriage made illegal.
But these socio-economic advances have been offset by political regression. Political parties and trade unions are outlawed. NGOs are tolerated but only as long as their aims are in line with the Libyan revolution. Libya remains a tribal society, controlled by parental and family ties, even down to their football clubs. This complicates political movements and makes any effective opposition quasi-impossible. Any determined sign of discontent is paid off with the proceeds of Libyan oil fields.

[5].

Given reservations — improving living conditions, aditional subsidies for food, medicine, cheap credit, the current system of conflict resolution based on the pervasive horizontal ties, which «makes any effective opposition quasi-impossible», quenching any explicit expressions of discontent due to proceeds of Libyan oil fields — that all tell us that economic reasons can hardly be a cause of protests of masses.

CIA Factbook about Libyan economy:

Substantial revenues from the energy sector coupled with a small population give Libya one of the highest per capita GDPs in Africa, but little of this income flows down to the lower orders of society.

[1].

Indeed, of all countries considered here, Libya has the highest GDP per capita (see Table 1). The compilers say that the highest in all of Africa (we take it on trust, if there is doubts anyone can go through the Factbook, write down the values in a column and check). The claim that «little of this income flows down to the lower orders of society» is a standart curse (funny that at the same time all quantitative indicators of income differentiation for Libya have been expurgated from the CIA report). Here we do not believe the CIA. Firstly, if we assume that the percentage of conversion of gross income in favor of the lower strata of society remains at the same level as that of other African countries (we have no reason to suspect otherwise, but in fact it should be higher in the social oriented economy), the comparison in any case goes in favor of Libya. Secondly, actual data published in the same source contradict the compilers’ statement (Table 3).

Table 3. Demographic characteristics of Libya and its neighbors

Indicators

Libya

Egypt

Sudan

Chad

Niger

Algeria

Tunisia

Population, 2010 est.

6 461 454

80 471 869

43 939 598

10 543 464

15 878 271

34 586 184

10 589 025

Population growth rate (2010)

2,117%

1,997%

2,497%

2,038%

3,660%

1,177%

0,969%

Birth rate (births/1,000 population, 2010)

24,58

25,02

36,58

40,12

51,08

16,71

15,31

Total fertility rate (children born/woman, 2010)

3,01

3,01

4,93

5,18

7,68

1,76

1,71

Death rate (deaths/1,000 population, 2010)

3,4

4,85

11,66

15,79

14,47

4,66

5,24

Infant mortality rate (deaths/1,000 live births)

20,87

26,2

72,39

97,05

114,5

26,73

21,75

Life expectancy at birth, years

77,47

72,4

54,21

47,99

52,99

74,26

75,99

Net migration rate (migrant(s)/1,000 population, 2010)

0

-0,21

0,05

-3,95

0

-0,28

-0,38

Urban population (of total population, 2008)

78,00%

43,00%

43,00%

28,00%

16,00%

66,00%

67,00%

Rate of urbanization: annual rate of change (2005-10 est.)

2,20%

1,80%

4,30%

4,60%

4,00%

2,30%

1,70%

Literacy

82,60%

71,40%

61,10%

25,70%

28,70%

69,90%

74,30%

Education expenditures (of GDP)

2,70% (1999)

3,80% (2008)

6,00%

1,90%

3,70%

4,30%

7,20%

Education expenditures per capita (estimat., by GDP at purchasing power parity), $

372,60

235,60

132,00

34,20

25,90

318,20

684,00

Education expenditures per capita (estimat., by GDP at official exchange rate), $

325,56

102,38

90,03

13,68

13,06

197,68

298,23

Please note that Libya has demonstrated the best demographics in the region: very low death rate and highest life expectancy at birth, the highest percentage of urban population and the highest literacy rate (top values are marked in bold). Libya’s education expenditures per capita is far ahead of other countries in the region and only Tunisia could compete with it. It seems that Tunisia have made education one of its priority goals (funny that the bourgeois media smart enough to portray this as a defect of the previous regime, wringing hands on account of a brutal squeeze out the land from private owner not by the market price and building of school, which looks like a palace, on the site, see the sickly-sweet marasmic report in liberal tones on Euronews [6], where «instead of listing of combat wounds mosquito bites are combed»).
It is objective evidence that a significant part of the preserved for the country value comes to the masses. Since economic woes are not compatible in no way with high life expectancy and an exceptionally low mortality. For comparison compare demographics of industrialized countries in the region with similar indicators for Russia, which in recent 20+ years suffers a permanent disaster (Table 4).

Table 4. Demographic characteristics of industrially developed countries of the region in comparison with Russia

Countries Libya Egypt Algeria Tunisia Russia
Population, 2010 est. 6 461 454 80 471 869 34 586 184 10 589 025 139 390 205
Population growth rate (2010) 2,117% 1,997% 1,177% 0,969% -0,465%
Birth rate (births/1,000 population, 2010) 24,58 25,02 16,71 15,31 11,11
Total fertility rate (children born/woman, 2010) 3,01 3,01 1,76 1,71 1,41
Death rate (deaths/1,000 population, 2010) 3,4 4,85 4,66 5,24 16,04
Infant mortality rate (deaths/1,000 live births) 20,87 26,2 26,73 21,75 10,32
Life expectancy at birth, years 77,47 72,4 74,26 75,99 66,16
Net migration rate (migrant(s)/1,000 population, 2010) 0 -0,21 -0,28 -0,38 0,28
Urban population (of total population, 2008) 78,00% 43,00% 66,00% 67,00% 73,00%
Rate of urbanization: annual rate of change (2005-10 est.) 2,20% 1,80% 2,30% 1,70% -0,50%
Literacy 82,60% 71,40% 69,90% 74,30% 99,40%
Education expenditures (of GDP) 2,70% 3,80% 4,30% 7,20% 3,90%
Education expenditures per capita (estimat., by GDP at purchasing power parity), $ 372,60 235,60 318,20 684,00 620,10
Education expenditures per capita (estimat., by GDP at official exchange rate), $ 325,56 102,38 197,68 298,23 413,25
GDP – per capita (PPP), $
2010 13 800 6 200 7 400 9 500 15 900
2009 13 600 6 000 7 200 9 300 15 300
2008 14 000 5 900 7 100 9 100 16 600

The few indicators on which Russia has an advantage over countries under consideration are nothing but vestiges left over from the Soviet Union. And just those institutions and relationships which provide them are sawed right now without anesthesia (we are talking, e.g., about the education system and on the education expenditures). Welcome to Chad, guys.

And, as a conclusion, we can bring the results of systematic comparisons with the Human Development Index (HDI) published by the UN (Table 5). Those who interested can follow the link, download reports, and get acquainted with the multicriteria methodology.

Table 5. Human Development Index (HDI)

World Rankings

Country

Index

The level of development

53

Libya

0,755

high

65

Russia

0,719

high

81

Tunisia

0,683

high

84

Algeria

0,677

high

101

Egypt

0,620

medium

154

Sudan

0,379

low

163

Chad

0,295

low

167

Niger

0,261

low

Note: Source [7].
There were 169 countries in the survey. Russia is given here for comparison.

In 2009 Libya took on HDI 55 position in the world and was part of a group of countries with high HDI [8]. In 2010 Libya has moved to the 53 position [7, p. 142].
Of all Arab countries are listed here in Libya in 2010 had the highest HDI and other countries have been left far behind (and I suspect that this is the highest index for the entire African continent).

Thus, there was illustrated the fact that the regime of Gaddafi is the most socially oriented of all countries in the region, and probably even in the continent. Such social orientation is expressed very clearly, and this takes place despite the fact that the regime is in worse circumstances in comparison with industrialized neighbors, is subjected to constant pressure (bullying, sanctions, etc.) from Western countries.

Contents:

Part 1. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: The role of the region in the international division of labor. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-1-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-economy-the-role-of-the-region-in-the-international-division-of-labor/
Part 2. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Demography and Social Policy. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-2-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-economy-demography-and-social-policy/
Part 3. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Class analysis. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-3-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-economy-class-analysis/
Part 4. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: The course of events and strategies. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-4-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-economy-the-course-of-events-and-strategies/

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3 Responses to “Part 2. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Demography and Social Policy”

  1. […] Part 2. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Demography and Social Policy. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-2-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-econo… Part 3. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Class analysis. — […]

  2. […] Part 2. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Demography and Social Policy. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-2-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-econo… Part 3. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Class analysis. — […]

  3. […] Part 2. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Demography and Social Policy. — https://comradevader.wordpress.com/2011/03/27/part-2-libya-its-neighbors-and-a-bit-of-political-econo… Part 3. Libya, its neighbors and a bit of political economy: Class analysis. — […]

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