Ethnic cleansing by rumour

Jacob Zuma said at a press conference in Sandton yesterday: I’m not certain whether there have been threats of xenophobia. I know that there have been rumours that have been reported. (Reported in The Star) As I drove towards Cape Town on the N1 on Sunday people were already streaming north, belongings in those hugeContinue reading “Ethnic cleansing by rumour”

Parastatals: fleshpot flashpoint

How to explain the decision to start a review of the parastatals by a presidential committee just as Public Enterprises minister Barbara Hogan was busy with that job? When anything in our country seems confusing it is always useful to abide by the famous injunction from Watergate’s ‘Deep Throat‘: follow the money. The raison d’êtreContinue reading “Parastatals: fleshpot flashpoint”

What would the ANC do without Cosatu?

You hear it bruted about that Cosatu provided the organisational structure and person-power to wrestle the ANC from Thabo Mbeki and his Xhosa-Nostra. You also might be told that the same strengths of Cosatu has won the ANC successive national elections. However, if you listen closely and to another set of people, you will hearContinue reading “What would the ANC do without Cosatu?”

DA success, Xenophobia and Malema – the hidden connections

Much is happening on the political front that I would love to be discussing here, but paid work is, thankfully, taking up my time this week. Thus the following is broad brush and a little rushed – the point I wanted to make is that the issues are all connected – in dark and unsettlingContinue reading “DA success, Xenophobia and Malema – the hidden connections”

A church so broad belief is optional is not all bad

I have often pointed out that the ANC’s clever- clever populism allows it to be all things to all people. I have mostly meant that that is a bad thing. It is a legitimate question to ask: what are Julius Malema and  Barbara Hogan (to name two arbitrary ANC leaders) doing at the same table?Continue reading “A church so broad belief is optional is not all bad”

The fearful symmetry of Terre’Blanche and Malema

I don’t really have time for this, but the moment seems to insist. So: I awoke this morning to a world framed as if by an immortal hand or eye. The bludgeoning to death of Eugène Terre’Blanche together with the Zimbabwe public display by Julius Malema feels like a tableau arranged by a naughty godContinue reading “The fearful symmetry of Terre’Blanche and Malema”

Highly recommended …

Two very recent articles: The first by David Brooks from the New York Times entitled The Return of History (a dig at Francis Fukuyama’s deeply mistaken The End of History and the Last Man – 1992). He constructs the history of Economics as a play in 5 acts. Act I is about a  discipline thatContinue reading “Highly recommended …”

The hidden hand in service delivery protests

It is starting to be whispered that there is a “hidden hand” in the service delivery protests*. The problem (of the protests) is serious and threatening and government is starting to worry about high-profile violence during the World Cup. These protest share a strong crossover constituency and architecture with the xenophobic violence that occurred MayContinue reading “The hidden hand in service delivery protests”

Who can say what the future holds for Zuma?

Will Zuma serve a second term? Will he serve out his first term? Who dares give an answer to these questions? Oh, alight I will. I have burned myself before by being a little too sure and a lot too wrong about what the future holds. Analysts like myself are constantly encouraged to take aContinue reading “Who can say what the future holds for Zuma?”

The State of the Madiba Nation

Twenty years ago today Nelson Mandela was released after serving 27 years in prison. Zapiro, as always, is the most elequent in his praise of the old man. Jacob Zuma will deliver his State of the Nation address tonight, in part in honour of the service and leadership of  Rohlihlala, in part to stand brieflyContinue reading “The State of the Madiba Nation”

Nationalise or Starve … or both

Here is a radio interview that was not conducted with me this morning: Why would the ANCYL want the state to grab 60 percent of an ailing mining industry? Because Julius wants everyone to be able to afford a R250 000.00 Breitling like the one on  his wrist … oops sorry, wrong piece of paperContinue reading “Nationalise or Starve … or both”

Goodbye Mister Zuma, it’s been …. unsettling

I am trying to work out if Jacob Zuma is condemned to be a one term president; shuffled off the stage by a shamefaced ANC leadership as soon as humanly possible. I think he will be, unless he is saved by a titanic power-struggle that is not settled in time for the 2012 ANC nationalContinue reading “Goodbye Mister Zuma, it’s been …. unsettling”

Sexwale: Oh I just can’t wait to be king!

The spat over Tokoyo Sexwale’s report criticising Gwede Mantashe for not stopping the booing and humiliation of Julius Malema at the SACP conference in December is more important than it seems. The direction a country takes (economically, socially and culturally) emerges from the interplay of too many factors to make the future even vaguely predictable.Continue reading “Sexwale: Oh I just can’t wait to be king!”

Prime Evil for the shabbiest Shaik – what kind of deal is this?

Could someone please guide me here. Has every hick journalist and political cartoonist received privileged notification that the Presidency is on the verge of jointly pardoning Shabir Shaik and Eugene De Kock? In a sort of tit-for-tat? I cannot work out which gallery would be being played to and for which purpose. Are we toContinue reading “Prime Evil for the shabbiest Shaik – what kind of deal is this?”

Apartheid Reparations and Foreign Investment

Could IBM, Fujitsu, Ford, General Motors , Rheinmetall and Daimler be guilty of “knowing participation in and/or aiding and abetting of the crimes of apartheid; extrajudicial killing; torture; prolonged unlawful detention; and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment”? Should they be tried for this crime in a US federal court? If they are found guilty shouldContinue reading “Apartheid Reparations and Foreign Investment”