"Virtually Bone from the Neck Up"
By Bryan Caplan
His Excellency President for Life, Field Marshal Al Hadji Doctor Idi Amin, VC, DSO, MC, Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Sea, and Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in General and Uganda in Particular (and also, curiously, King of Scotland) –decreed Africa should be for Africans. One of his first decisions as lord of beasts and fishes was to eject all the Asians — some 40,000 or so…
Not for nothing had Amin been mentioned in a dispatch, when he was on the British side during the Mau-Mau uprising, as “virtually bone from the neck up, and needs things explained in words of one letter.”
Having decided to eject the country’s wealth-creators, he further ruled that these people, uprooted from their country of birth, could take with them only what they could carry. They had 90 days to get out.
Yes, we can all see what idiocy this was. But in retrospect, the British public was hardly better:
[B]ecause they were Commonwealth citizens with British passports, the government, in the face of almost universal opposition at home, did the right thing and decided to give them refuge. [emphasis mine]
Throw productive people out in the cold, and people call you a fool. Keep productive people out in the cold, and people call you a patriot.