The Straw that broke the Camel’s back

The Straw that broke the Camel’s back

A lot can be said about South Africa, her history and her people, some of it good, some of it bad, depending on how you want to view life.

But what can be said about her people is the amount of patience they have and ability to pull together when times are rough.

In a sense, one has to explain the backdrop of what I am speaking about, and one must stare the realities of the past in the face, confront it, work around it, as not to be haunted by it in the future.

For years South Africa has suffered the biggest failure of Imperialism, and that is to build your empire on top of the ashes of bones of a broken communities of people.

Imperialism, driven by the human “Greed Gene” has been the cause of great conflicts, but also great advancement, and one should already remember it in such a way.  The problem lies in the fact that someone need to do the work, and not all is really willing to work for it.

This Empire wanted the minerals in the soil of South Africa, and this also brought about a South African Genocide which few really remember these days, home and abroad.

This Empire also imparted the gift of Segregation Laws on us through a man called Sir Milner, and he and fellow imperialistic figures like Rhodes made sure that they would have “slave labour” to do their bidding.

This brought about the Apartheid State of South Africa which should also not be forgotten, because forgetting about your past is a sure way to repeat the mistakes you suffered in the past.

It brought great advancements in technology, healthcare, civil order and structure, but, it was broken.

Because all of these advancements were achieved on the backs of millions who didn’t benefit from these advancements or the money they generated.

These Segregation Laws revamped into the form we called Apartheid created the gap, a rift, which made terms like “middle class” and “lower class” acceptable.  It also created the situation where we are now sitting in, even after a Government change.

Now this is not the blame game, this is realty, and we need to confront it and move on.

There are two simple facts that one should face and that is

  • Government is dividing the people successfully by polarizing the groups in opposition with each other.  Fueling racial tension causing rifts with good policies which got badly implemented like AA and BEE. Creating strive between the different income groups, as well as racial groups.

    This in turn left  them up to their own devices and extra time to line their own pockets while we were busy fighting each other.

  • That even though everyone has said it a million times before, and even though most might be tired of hearing it, but that Apartheid had a massive role to play in this tragedy, because of the legacy of “Greed” it left behind in Corporate companies like Lonmin, and crafty State sponsored entrepreneurs in Government like Zuma who enriched themselves at the cost of the many.

The reason one must face this, it to understand how patient the people of South Africa really are.  After all of these years, nobody is really free.  We are all still slaves on a tax making machine for Government, but just divided along “class” lines more than racial lines.

Taxes which are supposed to be used to uplift the people, but are now siphoned off into the pockets of Corporate elite, dirty politicians who pay lip service and Government “Officials” (at some stage they manged to change the title from Public Servant” to Government Official without us even noticing)

These taxes do not only affect the middle income group, they also affect the low income group, and the unemployed.  Taxes like E-Tolls, which is one of but many such little surprise packages we found out about.  Who knows what we are yet to learn?

The problem is, that Government dealings are not transparent and nobody is accountable,  and the political parties who make up Government are also not really transparent, as they don’t reveal their party funding so that one can sniff out the rot of corruption even before it starts.

But now, the patience of the people of South Africa is wearing thin, and the emergence of a Civil Social Movement is on the grow, small communities are linking up and standing in solidarity with each other, united against a common threat to national security like the blatant corruption of Government “Officials” and asking questions about where all the money has gone.

Dodgy dealings which have surfaced in the last couple of years have created a platforms for people of all different groups in South African where they can pull together.  Pressing issues like unemployment, poverty, inflation, service delivery protests (Andries Tatane), wage related issues like Marikana (with Government ties),  Nkandla, WC2010, Armsgate and other scandals like GuptaGate and their kickbacks to Government and failures like Eskom has for once done something amazing, it has created an environment for Civil Movement Groups to grow, because people have seen that Politics is just about that, politicking and not really doing something about the problems.

Groups now have a chance to stand together, against a common enemy, The Corruption and Decay in Government.  People like Steve, Vavi and Rob can sit around the table and talk the same language, but first, for that to happen, we must start caring about each other again.  We must find our humanity and our empathy for each other and each others plight.

The Struggle is far from over, it has only yet begun.  Because we need to struggle against our Greed gene, which would allow for situations like this to come about, we need to struggle against putting ourselves ahead of those around us, because if the community is prosperous, the individual is prosperous.

A luta continua

Xenophobia, Strikes, Protests and Oscar … what could happen if Eskom goes down

Not to sound like Siener van Rensburg, the South African version of Nostradamus, or a “Doomsday” Prepper in Hamerica,  but things are looking pretty bleak in South Africa at the moment.

The reasons?  Well, there is seemingly a plethora of reasons if you look at it from the outside, but if you take all of these things and you boil it down to the core it is about what the Have’s are getting out of the system, opposed to what the the Have Not’s are getting out of the system it is pretty easy to spot.  Opulence and wastage due to corruption and maladministration while millions suffer in squalor  is the problem.

Recently, one of South Africa’s brightest mistook his girlfriend for an intruder in the bathroom.  He fired a couple of shots and neutralized the threat behind the toilet door.

During the same time the whole Nkandla issue was in the news, people were asking questions about Marikna and the Gupta wedding guests at Waterkloof, Eksom was failing, service delivery strikes went mainstream, E-Tolls took it toll and Andries Tatane got killed for standing up against a Government for demanding that which they have promised, service and reform, and a couple of thousand people become the victims of violent crime

Over simplified statistics from 1994 – 2014 from CrimeStatsSA

Murders – 194 507Attempted Murders – 213 470
Assault with the intent to inflict grievous bodily harm – 2 331 897
Unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition – 161 332

Let that sink in for a moment …

While all this was going on our political elite rallied to defend the choices they have made, rather than admit the faults they have made.

Now I am now someone who dwell on the past in general, if you make a mistake, well, then there is nothing you can do from it but learn.

Sadly, it does not seem to be the case in South Africa today.

Frustration on the ground in South Africa is boiling over.  The reason why fanatical groups such as the EFF can capitalize and gain momentum for their cause.  They know that “freedom” without economic freedom means nothing, and that one is still a slave to the system in such a scenario.  One of the very few points I can agree with them, but their approach, much like Steve Hofmeyer’s “threat” in from on Paul Kruger’s statute with a clearly military undertone with the commando detail with him at the statue is crude, one sided and ultimately disruptive in the sense that it is not building, but rather breaking down.

Cecil John Rhodes was no hero in the bigger picture of the South African story, but regardless, he was part of it, for better or for worse.  Even though I do not like the man or his legacy, I can appreciate what he has done for Africa, and I can also acknowledge the fact that he is part of my history.  Not because he was white like I am, but because his policies and action had such a huge impact on the landscape of what we call the Republic of South Africa today.

Yet, the statue itself if not the problem, it never was.  The problem is the ever increasing divide between the Have’s and the Have Not’s.  The inequity and the blatant difference between the lifestyles the Have’s enjoy in the stark contras with what the Have Not’s must endure is widening the gap, creating a us and them scenario.

A gap where one of the brightest gets away with a little slap on the wrist for taking a life, where a foreign national gets away with the murder of his wife and his South African accomplices end up paying on their own paying for his crimes.  A gap where a President allow the State to build him a mansion of R250 million and dine and drink on the best South Africa has to offer while millions go to bed hungry every night, a country where two siblings died of hunger in Soweto.

What does the Suicidal Dewani, Oscar and Zuma have in common? Money … and it seems that in South Africa your money determine how far you make it in life, and which bullets you can dodge, Matrix Style.

All this in a country where a normal man like Andries Tatane died for holding Government accountable on their election promises.

While millions suffer there are a good number of people living like there is no tomorrow without having any thoughts about the mother with the child on her back who is pulling a full trolly of garbage through the suburbs back to the recycling agent which can be as far as 15km’s away for a mere R1000 per month pittance.

A country with thousands refugees who fled their countries to come to South Africa in hope of stability and peace, are now again victims of violence in South Africa because of failed Government policies.

A country on the very brink of social collapse …

Now take all of these factors and add one failing power utility company and let your mind wander for a moment on what would happen if you take all of these problems and add a month long power outage, which is a very real possibility with the electrical grid under so much strain already, sitting at Stage 3 Load Shedding.  How will we survive the coldest months if we are already at our peak now?

The impact on South Africa would be devastating.  The Have Not’s will come looking for resources, and they will take what they want, if you like it or not.

“ .. let us reminds ourselves that our work is far from complete .. “

On the 5th of December 2013 the World lost a good man and a great leader, someone who taught us that love can overcome all, someone who showed us his dream, someone who worked tirelessly to realise his dream of the Rainbow Nation.  Mandela … the former terrorist, the murder, the bomber.

Five days after that the World lost another good man, but someone closer to me, my Uncle who is his own right was the glue which kept our small family together after my Grandfather passed on.  Someone, like Mandela, who had a good side, but who also had a bad side.

That which makes them human, and ultimately heroes in my eyes.

The examples which they have set will always be with me until the day that I too finally lay down my head for the last time, and today I want to remind you of the truths which men like Mandela shared with us, to remind you that we should not give up, that we can’t just let things slide, because that would be like us spitting in the faces of these great men who came before us.

At the 46664 Hyde Park Concert in London in 2008 Mandela gave a speech which included the following, which I would like us all to remember going forward for the next year, and to see how much we can do so that the Old Man’s idea and his dream can come become a reality.

”As we celebrate, let us remind ourselves that our work is far from complete.  Where there is poverty and sickness, including AIDS, where human beings are being oppressed, there is more work to be done. Our work is freedom for all …

Our work as children of the soil of South Africa is far from over

We have allowed our Government to trample on the dreams of visionaries like Mandela.  We have stood idly by while they spat on his legacy of greatness with their pity squabbles to cling on to power and to enrich themselves at the cost of those that suffer the injustice of the past and the dehumanizing grip of poverty.

None of the political parties have our best interests at heart, and the sooner we accept this, the better of we will be and the sooner we can start mending all the wrongs.  The wrongs of the last 20 years and the wrongs of the years during Apartheid and Segregation.

The ANC desperately cling on to power while rejecting all criticism, even when it is positive criticism like that of the Public Protector.  The two major opposition parties won’t be able to exist had it not been for the ANC doing such a dismal job at governing the county and the public servants of our country, so it is up to us as the people of South Africa to FORCE the ANC on the right path, to get them off the path of self service and onto a path of serving the people of South Africa.

“Since mankind’s dawn, a handful of oppressors have accepted the responsibility over our lives that we should have accepted for ourselves. By doing so, they took our power. By doing nothing, we gave it away. We’ve seen where their way leads, through camps and wars, towards the slaughterhouse.” – V for Vendetta

The fact is that the Zuma’s ANC has failed us as the people, but the ANC of Mandela did a lot of good for the people of South Africa, and we must force them back onto the route of Mandela’s ANC, or, we should simply just replace them.

Be critical, be honest, and above all else, be hopeful, because there are many of us who won’t see the country burn, many of us who do believe that dreams can come true, and there are many of us with enough love and tolerance in our hearts to look past our differences and focus on that which we have in common.

Amandla People of South Africa!

Red October 2014

It has been a while since I have been on here, and I really know that I should put more effort into voicing my concerns about certain topics and be more active in spreading the word and the information, but life (and the system) happens, and I get caught into meaningless social endeavors along with other distractions designed to keep us from liberating our minds and setting each other free from the delusion that our Governments really care for our needs.

With that being said I actually did decide on Monday to start posting again, and it just so happen that a tragic avoidable “accident” happened today which caught my eye and I knew I had the obligation to set the record straight here, because if I kept my silence then I would be part and parcel of the problem.

This brings me to the topic “Red October

According to Red October they are a movement which is dedicated to, and I quote:

“Raising awareness about the inhumane slaughter and oppression of the White Ethnic Minority in South Africa. We are dedicated to exposing the current South African government for Crimes Against Humanity. We will not be silent until the World takes notice and the Violation of our Human Rights is put to an end.”

The irony of it all, this group who want to raise awareness about the inhumane slaughter and oppression of the White Ethnic Minority in South Africa, quoting Martin Luther King, a man who fought against injustice as part of the Black Ethic Minority in America.

It dawned on me, as the cogs started to slowly turn in my head, trying to fathom why this group would exist in the first place, that the White Minority in South Africa is under a serious delusion of what the extent of what is really happening in South Africa, or worse, that they might know, but that they don’t really care … leaning more towards optimism I would like to believe that the first is in fact that truth, and that they are ignorant of the crimes committed on a daily basis in our townships against our fellow black South Africans.

The mainstream media can’t possibly report on all the murders, rapes and other violent crime which occurs on a daily basis in the townships, and even if they could, I think that they won’t go as far as to publish it, because let us face it, “News” is business like any other business built on top of the capitalist system which aims for profit, and who in his right mind would want to buy a subscription to a media outlet who is forever publishing stories about the slaughter which is taking place on a daily basis.

No media outlet will do that since they will stand the chance of either scaring away their little cash cows to other countries, or worse, drive them to suicide in a final last attempt to rid themselves of the horror which might be in their future.

With that being said one cannot totally indemnify the media outlets, as I believe it is their duty as protectors of our Democracy, our civil rights and our way of life to make available information to everyone so that people can get educated and start thinking logically about everything which is transpiring in South Africa.

They can nudge people (like the ones who support Red October) in the right direction and to get them to broaden their goals to include EVERYONE, and not just a select few which includes me as part of the minority.

How can I then, in good conscious throw my support behind a group that only aims to stop the assault on a white minority?  Easy, I won’t! Not because I don’t want to stop the senseless slaughter, but because the problem is far reaching, and the reality of the matter is that unless we take a holistic approach to the problem that nothing will be gained.

Time for the people of South Africa to wake up and smell the sewage … One can’t cleanse one hand without cleansing the other!

I hope the folks over at Red October realizes this and work together with other groups and to form a unity movement which includes all South Africans which will go far towards building a unified civil society which can force the Government to listen to the people who endorsed them and trusted them to make the right choices on their behalf.

Only through the principals of Ubuntu, mutual respect and love will we be able to fix this, our beloved country, South Africa

Monrovia of South Africa

Interesting times we live in …

In South Africa a political elite has risen up from the ashes of Apartheid.  Politically connected, and with no shortage of power and wealth these few rose up and took South Africa by storm and even formed or was involved in powerful organizations like the Black Management Forum of South Africa.

AA and BEE was implemented by them through various policies formed in Government and the economically strong black middle class developed.  With this a big chunk of the populace rose out of poverty as intended by these programs, and prospered.  Bringing South Africa a bit closer to the dream I believe Mandela and the other leaders of his time in the African National Congress saw at night in their dreams, the fabled Rainbow Nation.

Sadly this is is where our fairy tale ends for millions of destitute poor and deprived black citizens of South Africa, still out their own their “own” …

This is also where the irony of the whole tragic story kicks in … somehow, through Government graft failures, corrupt politicians, civil servants, corporations, companies and individuals of society we’ve abandoned these people, we have all failed them.

Political parties only scram to sort out issues for these communities when voting comes around while mostly playing a Tit for Tat game in Parliament and in the mainstream media, while Government is battling to deliver on promises made by the last electioneering team, and kids are stuck at schools without books.

20 years after the fall of the monster that was called Apartheid things are still pretty much the same as it was for millions back when South Africa was liberated by the liberation party, the ANC.

For them, time has stood still, and little has improved.  There are still millions living in poverty and absolute despair.  Appalled and feeling cheated by the party which they thought carried their best interests at heart.

Many broke away from the party and other splinter parties were formed. One of these, which pose a very real threat to the relative stability of South Africa, the EFF has a strong support base in the millions of disgruntled poor, unemployed and unemployable youth of South Africa, and the number grows daily because of failed economical, social and educational systems and policies.

Often you hear leaders of both these parties blaming Apartheid and it’s legacy for the state of affairs in South Africa, never owning up to the problem which lies central to our problem, the corruption which exists in all the tiers of Government.

This is where Liberia comes into the picture.  I wonder how many EFF supporters actually know that Liberia is part of Africa.  I wonder if they know the history of Liberia and the state of affairs in Liberia?

Liberia was formed by freed slaves from America, given the chance to start their own country with help and resources from the American Government after the Civil War when slaves were freed.

When these settlers arrived in what is today known as Liberia they encountered the indigenous tribes of the region, all whom have migrated to the coastal region from the north and the east, driven by drought, tribal wars and the need for expansion.

From the start tensions were high between the settlers and these local tribes as the Afro-Amercian settlers saw themselves superior to the local tribes in every sense.  These Afro-American settlers banded together and formed the Commonwealth of Liberia and later declared independence and JJ Roberts declared the colony the free and independent Republic of Liberia.

A Constitution in line with that of the US was drawn up and a new country was born.

These Afro-American settlers became known as Americo-Liberians and even though they never accounted for more than 5% of the population of Liberia they dominated key resources which allowed them to dominate the local native peoples because of varying factors like modern technical skills, literacy and higher rates of education.

A new caste system was born, a new political elite, and the once before Slaves were now reborn into Masters of their own, oppressing a majority and building mansions and amassing wealth on top of the blood, sweat and tears of the majority who they oppressed.

Today, Liberia is gripped in chaos, it’s a country with one of the highest unemployment rates in the World, almost no infrastructure due to constant civil uprisings, and very little hope of a future because of a failed Government, corrupt to the core.

I wish that people will see, that our failures have very little to do with race, but more to do with greed, and once we can grasp that concept, we can start moving ahead and work around the problems in our country.

Apartheid exists everywhere, even between people of the same colour.  Xenophobic attacks, which are common in South Africa just underlines the issue even more, although our Government plays this down.

It is up to us, as Citizens to move beyond what has happened in the past, try and understand each other, and where possible to uplift each other in the Spirit of Ubuntu. We should learn from the past as to never repeat it again, so that we can force Government to serve the people of our country through educated opinions and decisions in a transparent way.

Disarming the Law Abiding Citizen in South Africa

For some time now gun control has been in the background, every so often moving into the public stage again when something terribly goes wrong, for example the Columbine High School massacre, and then it gets obscured again by various other issues which arise.

Sadly, the call for stricter gun control is back in light of the Oscar Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp tragedy, and now the African Nation Congress Women League and various other parties are calling for it.

I think this, is a very very very bad idea, particularly in South Africa

It would be nothing else than a collective suicide if South African law abiding citizens give up their right to defend themselves given the current state of affairs in South Africa, and the utter inhumane violent crimes which are purported against the citizens of South Africa by murderers and rapists.

In March of 2011 when Lidiwe Sisulu was still Minister of Defense it was reported that 82 000 weapons were missing from the South African National Defense Force.

In the same year it was reported that South African Police Services has lost 20 428 weapons since 2004.

Now the question begs to be asked … “Where are these weapons?”

Certainly, these weapons won’t be with the average, run of the mill Law Abiding Citizen since he would not have a need for it.  He would have his own licensed weapons I would think, since he is a model citizen of South Africa.

No, it makes more sense to assume that some of the weapons were sold and left for neighboring countries while others have been found in the hands of local thugs and criminals,  many of them used in violent attacks on our fellow citizens.

Of course one could argue that the weapons which were not already found in the system simply just got lost, but given the track record which the SAPS has and the corruption allegations which surface regularly against members of the Police, I’m going to go with to go with the first scenario.

It would then stand to reason that if you disarm the average citizen, that you would make him and easy target, effectively painting a bulls-eye on his back,  for those who would have the need for unlicensed weapons, like criminals.

If a criminal already has very little or no moral values, with nothing to lose or fear, then what would deter him from coming into your home while you sleep to liberate some of your earthly possessions?  Heaven forbid he enters your home with a darker, more sinister plan in mind.

Are you simply going to ask him nicely to leave you and your family in peace?

No, you can’t … as Dr Marthin Luther King once said,  “It is criminal to not teach a man how to defend himself”.  You have to protect those who you love, those dear to you, the innocent.

Now, what if this criminal was armed with a firearm?

It would basically mean mean that we will be settings the wolves upon the flock, and this cannot be allowed to happen.

We must not forfeit our rights to defend ourselves because the Government can’t assure us that our lives will be safe in their hands.  They blame all sorts of failed policies, their favorite of course, blaming the violent nature of South Africa on Apartheid, but never looking inwards, to what their corruption and greedy grabs for high paying jobs, flashy cars and fortress mansions projects down onto the still suffering, still marginalized, still uneducated, economically and socially devastated, masses.

Masses who need to eat, who need to feed their children. Masses who get pitiful handouts in the form of social grants, like the famous “Baby Grant” without permanent solutions to their grievances from Government.  Instead they get empty promises, some lip service and a whole lot of dancing while singing “struggle” songs which could incite violence, like Zuma’s favorite struggle song “Umshini wami” and others like “Dubula Ibhunu” …

Remember, criminals didn’t start out as criminals, society and Government allowed this to happen …

The normal citizens then become the easy targets, those of the diminishing middle income group living in Suburbia and the poor who are still stuck in informal settlements.  Never would these criminals try to steal from very well fortified mansions of political leaders who are guarded by guards with automatic machine guns purely because it is just not that easy when someone is shooting back at you, and you might actually lose the only thing you have left, your life.

Government has failed us, and now they want us to give up one of the tools we us in order to protect ourselves because they cant?  Certainly, they must be mad!

Fight the Government with everything you have on this …  think about it this way, had there been no violent crime, or a reason to own a weapon, then Oscar Pistorius might not have been in the situation he is in because he would not have had a gun.

The gun and Reeva are the only true innocent objects in this sad scenario.  The gun didn’t fire itself, it was fired by Oscar, Oscar pulled the trigger … the gun didn’t fire itself.  The fact of the matter is that this slogan rings very true.

Guns don’t kill people, people kill people”

So people, keep your guns, fight for self preservation, in fact, if possible, arm yourself, go for training.  Protect yourselves and those you love.

Heaven forbid that we would need to protect ourselves from the Government or our fellow countrymen someday when our country slides down into total anarchy …

Basic Education, Rainbow Babies and Sheeple

Today there is cause for big celebrations all around South Africa, and far be it from a grumpy sod like me to rain on anyone’s parade, but I do have a couple of things which I ponder about.

The reason for my turbulent thoughts lies in something which is very important to me, well, not only to me, but to South Africa in general, and in turn the World community, of which South Africa forms a part.

This year is the year in which the first “free born” non Apartheid babies graduated, or well, were supposed to graduate.

Our Grade 12, or as we call it, Matric results got posted, and everyone is all of the sudden very happy about it because of the 73.9% pass rate … but, as most things in South Africa, and in life, there are two sides of the story.

Of the 73.9% who successfully completed the tedious journey through the shocking OBE Education system, only 26.6% will actually have access to tertiary education, and that is to say if there are not other circumstances like financial or logistical problems.

We all know the story, not everyone has the money to put their kids through Varsity, and apart from that, there is no space to accommodate all of these learners since no new Univirsities we build during the last 18 years of our beautiful “Rainbow Nation” came into being.

Funny enough, The World Economic Forum placed South Africa last in a ranking of 62 countries in the quality of maths and science education, there we severe disruptions in Limpopo, the Eastern Cape and the Northern Cape with regards to schooling, but our Minster of Basic Education, Angie Motshekga hails this pass rate as one of the best since the fall of Apartheid.

I would be inclined to agree with her, had it not been for the standards of the education which had dropped, how can you pass a subject by scoring 30%  in the exam?  How can you claim that you are a subject matter expert?

How can you pass people on age?

Is it just me hearing the alarm bells here?

Apart from the obvious drop in standard one also has to think of the possibility that political interference might be the reason for all of these truly “amazing” results?

She (Angie) was directly involved in the whole Limpopo text book scandal and one could argue, that it would be in her best interests to have as many pupils as possible pass so that she can get her claim to fame and save her sorry ass, all in one go.

The only way to bring a halt to the endless corruption, the plundering of state coffers, the lack of service delivery and the empty promises made by the Government is through education … but I suspect that the cANCerous Government is more than happy enough with an uneducated “voter” base, since it is way easier to control sheeple than people.

Congratulations to those who did work hard and did achieve the scores they were hoping for; your education is something which nobody can take away from you once you have gained it.

All of the best for 2013