I thought it better to respond here than in the comments since it was such a long comment. Also I have not heard from Ben for a long time. So I think its only fair to give his statement a considered response. After all I still consider him a good friend even if it has been many years since I last saw him in person. The problem is not that he is wrong. He is actually right about most things. But, I still ended up wasting a big chunk of my life before I got here because I believed the lie propagated by academia that the only thing that counts is publications and that teaching is not considered important by universities. That turned out not to be true. You can argue I have nobody to blame but, myself for what happened. However, that just makes it worse because then I feel like an idiot for wasting so much time and effort.
OK, my friend Ben has a point that I do not think the people who control academia in the US gave me a fair shake. They did not. But, it is in the past even if nothing is forgotten and nothing will be forgotten. I think he is wrong about ideology playing no role what so ever. I have gotten a number of peer review reports claiming flat out that there was never any racial discrimination in the USSR under Stalin. This is different from people saying Stalin was a good guy. But, there is a very strong resistance led by people like Francine Hirsch to admitting that racism was ever an official practice against any group in the USSR other than Jews. However, all things considered it is probably only a minor factor as to why I failed to even get an interview in the US from 2004 to 2007.
The lack of teaching experience is directly tied with having a British degree. I am not sure why taking a long time to finish a PhD is considered a virtue. But, the problem is that a US citizen with a British PhD can't work in the UK or Canada very easily because they have laws giving preference to EU citizens and Canadian citizens before they even consider US citizens. At the same time since there is no teaching component to a UK degree you are effectively banned forever from working at a US university. This I did not know at the time because there is a barrage of propaganda claiming that publications are what are considered important not teaching. Nobody told me at the time that Africa was a possibility. Although to be honest part of this last failure is my own lack of imagination.
I am happy to be working in Africa. I am very happy to have fathered a child with a wonderful woman while in Kyrgyzstan. I hope to bring them here as soon as possible. Had I arrived where I am at now without being constantly mistreated, ignored, and disrespected I would have no complaints. But, even though I am in a very good position now I got here through a rather rocky road. If I was a better man I would have sucked it up and taken it. But, we all have our weaknesses. Currently, I plan to stay in Africa for a very long time. I have no real desire to go work in the US right now. I don't see this changing in the foreseeable future. Like many other Americans to come to Ghana I feel alienated from mainstream American society. In particular I feel alienated from American academic society and culture. Ghanaian academia has been much more accepting of me than they could ever be.