Exit of BMF from BUSA?

Sitting in a lobby between meetings with resource funds in Edinburgh – they want to know about the “nationalisation of mines” call and where I think that is going. I will try and give feedback about that as I go along (London tonight and USA next week.)

But meanwhile briefly: the Black Management Forum pull out from Business Unity South Africa?

“The Capitalists” have never been a unified block; but the split between what BMF and BUSA represent is important.

As I have said elsewhere, BMF (along with the Youth League and similar groups) want the goodies out of employment equity and black economic empowerment legislation and regulation for themselves. They do not care about the functionality of the parastatals or the state or legislation that encourages economic growth. They care about maximising their advantage from transformation – getting the top jobs in parastatals and getting access to control of the linked patronage networks.

BUSA represents productive business – that needs a functional state and needs working utilities. It needs the best management. Its interests are in direct opposition to the BMF’s –  which represents the most parasitic elements of the new elite and see the public sector (as well as their leveraged advantage in the private sector) as an opportunity for rent seeking and looting.

I am delighted that they have pulled out of BUSA. At some point in a struggle to persuade a group to see the bigger picture and take account of the broader set of interests (especially of the poor and unemployed) a line is crossed and a cartel morphs into a gang. Beyond that point the laws of engagement have changed.

If you could see the sneering disgust from a whole lot of fund mangers about cronyism and corruption in South Africa (that I am experiencing as I move around Europe and the UK), I think you would agree that it is past time for us to deal with those who have proven that all they are concerned about is looting and getting the best for themselves and their members.

Let them go into the wilderness and raid as the outlaws that they are.

2 thoughts on “Exit of BMF from BUSA?

  1. uh, Nic… while I think I share your sentiments wholeheartedly, I rather suspect that a scotch or two too many may have influenced “sneering disgust … about cronyism and corruption” – you rather forget that your present hosts rather perfected the art of cronyism and corruption, not to mention patronage networks, not to mention networking the spoils of war and pillage; as they rather still tend to do, somewhat more cynically and blatantly these days (in Libya, et al), as their Europe / Homelands implode…

    1. hmm – the sneering disgust is not mine … my feeling are slightly more complicated and ambiguous than that. I have seen it (sneering disgust) in the reactions of some of the investors I am speaking to … and btw the one thing that you can be sure of is I will never put finger to keyboard on this website (or any social media site) after even a whiff of alchohol … especially at 09h00 in a hotel lobby between meetings this a.m? The intoxicant (that appears to have led me to use words that are a little provocative) is the bombarding I am receiving from many who own our equities and bonds … many who are about to sell them. They work for pension funds … mostly public sector and mostly from Europe. Do we care if they sell … or fail to buy … that stuff? Are they responsible for cronyism and patronage networks under colonialism? Their heritage is not innocent of the pillages of colonialism … but the culpability of the actual individuals I am seeing or the investment processes they are involved in would be a very complicated business to establish … but be that as it may … I write here about the predations of elements of the domestic elite and I do believe the BMF represents pretty much of the worst of those seeking to manipulated transformation in their favour – although all the elites must, given what they are, do that. Does this put the BMF anywhere near the top of the list of bad guys? If course not … they are (it is) following the logic of the moment (using the slight edge BEE and employment equity and the power to capture tenders and the ability to manipulate parastal spending to their advantage) gives them in a world entirely dominated by global corporate and powerful foreign sovereign interests that have long kept them at the bottom of the pile … and will do so for all of eternity if they can. When they (this particular element of the domestic elite) say: “it is our turn to eat”, I get it that someone denied them a turn, but I am convinced we have to criticise them every mouthful: you are taking too much and your share is not coming out of global capital’s portion, it is coming out of the measly resources available for development in this country … I might be wasting my breath on a minor baron while the king pillages here and abroad … but its what I have ended up doing here …

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