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Thursday, 29 August 2013

Are all colours black in the South African rainbow?

I have received emails which are aimed at keeping us all informed about the new South Africa, post Apartheid. The second is more optimistic than the first but, strangely enough, they don't really contradict each other than much.

My own views are simple. I left South Africa, my home and my parents and came to England alone when I was fifteen, because of the political situation there. Yes  I was a political animal even then!

However, I am now extremely concerned about the huge amount of corruption in the present ANC party, which is why, if I were back living in that country, I would vote for the DA (Democratic Alliance).


Here is the first letter. Naturally I have withheld names and addresses
I'm a fairly qualified 28 year old, “middle class” citizen. Yet for some reason I read I must apologise and pay for the sins of apartheid, an era I wasn't around to benefit from, nor contribute too.

I went through government schooling all my life, and from grade 1, our class was a mix of White, Black and Indian students. Blissfully playing on the fields, and seeing no colour, we were all friends.  
 This only changed when we got to high school, and main stream media started making us aware of the fact that the colour of our skin made us different in some way. 

 My outlook changed when I saw past school mates in an ANC march, demanding that BEE wasn't enough, and that white people need to relinquish the riches to the poor impoverished and previously disadvantaged. I went to school with these people, had the same education, played at each other’s houses in the suburbs, some of their families better off than mine, yet here we are, you demanding from me, a past equal, something I don’t have to give, nor would I give!  

What made you so angry at me, what did I do?  
Since leaving school, I didn't have the money to study straight away, so racked the internet for free qualifications, and studied like crazy to achieve today, 42 qualifications in total, 40 of which I have not spent a cent on. But then on enquiring, found that after school, the particular protester had achieved nothing. So now we are not equal any more are we? 
I was dealt the same hand as you, but I flourished and made the best of a difficult situation, while you chose to accept defeat, and then have the audacity to scream at me to relinquish my riches to you? I think not. Not even close, not even marginally within 100 miles would I feel a morsel of remorse or sympathy for you.  
Is it just me, or is anybody else seeing the humour in this on a daily basis. Must be me going crazy, surely, that’s the only rational presumption, because a whole nation couldn't be wrong could they, surely not, maybe I do need to apologise?   
BEE (Black Economic Entitlement)  
We are the only country in the world, in the world, that enforces a policy, by law, to favour the majority over the minority. StatsSA census reveals there are close on 47 million Black people, and 4 million white people. You only need to look at those figures to realise just how pathetic BEE truly is. 47 million protecting themselves against 4 million.  
Somewhere along the line, government screwed the lines of morality and made it law to have a BEE partner to gain tenders. So I must give, not sell, give BEE a third of my hard worked business, for doing - Nothing? We must just call them to sit in on meetings to add a face to the meeting room to acquire contracts. So enforcing BEE upon businesses did not assist in equipping new black business people to empower themselves, it actually encouraged laziness and the will to demand more, why, because if you gave me this, I want more of that.   
Is it just me, or is anybody else seeing the humour in BEE on a daily basis. Must be me going crazy, surely, that’s the only rational presumption, because a whole constitutional policy couldn't be ridiculous could it, surely not?   
The irony of the protests amazes me. There are roughly 7 “service Delivery and wage” protests a day, at a cost of R2.3m a day. This accounts for property damage, extra staffing to baby sit protesters  etc.  You protest by burning tyres and destroying property, all of which must be repaired or replaced, and cleaned up. So instead of dedicating numerous staff to increasing service delivery, we have them rather clean up after protesters every single day. Where is the sense in that?   
Not to mention, that the cost of the protests, every day, is the equivalent to 23 RDP houses at R100 000 each. Every single day, the protesters cost 23 RDP houses, which is not only R840m a year, but 8400 RDP houses [a year].   
Not only is this figure amazing to me, but it’s achievable only by behaving during protests. But no, we burn tyres, destroy property, throw bricks, attack police, adorn ourselves with pangas, machetes, and knob-kerries (oh its traditional rubbish). We charge police, kill some, and then are up in arms when the police shoot back like it’s a complete travesty, and lay murder charges against them?   
You charge with pangas and machetes, with intent to kill and then are mortified that they didn't use proper force as in they should have instead used rubber bullets and tear gas? So let’s get this right. You charge to kill, and I must put my life in danger and slap you with a fly swatter? If you are big enough to know what you are doing, then you are big enough to receive the consequences.   
Somewhere along the way, it became normal practice to demand something you aren't entitled to, instead of working for it.   
Is it just me, or is anybody else seeing the humour in these protests on a daily basis. Must be me going crazy, surely, that’s the only rational presumption, because thousands of protesters couldn't be incompetent could they, surely not?  
ANC took over in 1994, relegaded all white and Indian participants in government who had the expertise, and replaced their cabinet with ministers that can barely tell their arse from their elbows, and wonder why the country has gone backward. Non performing ministers are shuffled around to another ill perceived position of power, aggravating even more the damage they have already done.   
Our president is near illiterate, and incompetent is putting it lightly. Dumped textbooks, service delivery, health, education.. etc. is going down the toilet, but nothing is ever done…Why? Because the uneducated outnumber educated two fold, and would vote rather on skin colour and promises of grants than make informed decisions. Corruption is daily job hazard in South Africa, till the point where its almost blasé. Corruption and incompetence, old news man, what else? Wonder what Schabir Shaik is up to these days? Hope his fatal blood pressure is OK while he’s playing golf.   
Jacob Zuma accused of rape and the biggest corruption charge in history, and where is he today, that’s right, president of the country he screwed over. To think Bill Clinton was kicked out of power for receiving a mutual pleasure by Monica. Jungle justice for you.Is it just me, or is anybody else seeing the humour in this government on a daily basis. Must be me going crazy, surely, that’s the only rational presumption, because a whole government couldn’t be incompetent could they, surely not?   
ANCYL (ANC Youth League)  
Ah Yes, Malema, Shivambu, Lamola…same china, different vagina right?Who are ANCYL? Young ANC members I’m guessing, but wait, they spend their days throwing hate at the ANC. So the child, is hating its daddy? We exist because of you, but now we don’t like you. “We will kill for ANC” today -but tomorrow - we will eradicate you.
Nationalise the mines they say - OK - let’s ponder upon that for just a second, humour me. Regardless of the economic meltdown that will take place, you will chase away foreign investment, and just in case you are confused, it’s that very investment that allow most of your “League” members to have jobs.  
You are constantly droning on about non service delivery and how the ANC are fat cats and can’t get the job done. You do realise what nationalisation is don’t you Youth League? Its government owned enterprises, which would mean theoretically ANC owned - the same ANC you claim can’t do the job?

So anyway  lets for shoots and giggles say ok, the mines are yours. Now they are in the hands of government that you don’t like. You want to take South Africa’s biggest export and investment, and hand it to people that clearly can’t even provide basic human amenities? Envision the management of the mines run by the same people who run home affairs? Say no more.   
But wait, that’s not enough, is it? No, you have nationalised the mines “for the people”, but how do you distribute this income to the people? The workers are saying “Where is my share of the wealth, the mine belongs to us!” So they strike, again, against you, for wage increases and shares in the wealth, and you plead with them that it’s a business and has costs and can’t meet their wage demands. So what has changed, other than gaining this stupid notion of “economic freedom” and causing the economic meltdown of the industry, as well as chasing away the influx of foreign investment, social upliftment schemes, tax money, and jobs?   
Oh, and land distribution without compensation, how can we forget that ol friend of yours.“Shoot the Boer” we know, we know, we know, bla bla bla.   
What do you intend to do with these farms you take? During the first round of redistribution, and thousands of farms were acquired, it has been proven beyond contestation, that it did not work. Working and productive farms were destroyed, without yield, and a booming export of farm yield, turned to an import. Export to import = cost to country, congrats on the turn around there. So it hasn't worked, yet you want it more? BUT, now you say the farms should be taken without compensation, and the white farmers should stay to teach the new affirmative guys to use his farm. So let’s get this right - you take his farm and livelihood, and want him to teach the new guys how to use it?   
Oh, and let’s not forget, you want government to give grants to the new farmers to get them up and running, although the farms are already running and productive. So just to add, so I’m not making any mistakes, take farm, give to another, make farmer teach non farmer invader to farm, throw money at him, watch farm fail...? That about sum it up? Good idea you have there.   
I don’t really appreciate being called “Mlungu”, as much as you don’t appreciate being called you know what, so what gives you the right to say it at rallies? I say it, and I'm racist, you say it and its free speech. You have money, and it’s celebrated that you fought the “struggle” even though you weren't born yet, I have money and I'm a capitalist pig and must share the wealth. I have a fancy car, I’m a capitalist pig, yet you have many fancy cars, but you deserve them for being the voice of the poor. I can’t afford a house, yet you have a mansion, but you are a voice of the poor and I’m a capitalist pig. As a matter of fact, any white person is by default just a capitalist pig aren’t we? Just checking. One thing is for sure though, I pay my taxes, but you are being investigate by SARS. But I'm the pig, and you are pro poor.   
I find it interesting that just when you are on the verge of being arrested because of tax evasion, you all of a sudden pop up to defend miners, an easy situation to manipulate. Why, because I guess that’s your backup plan when they come to arrest you isn't it? “It’s the Mlungu, they want me arrested for helping you”, and your followers will come running. Clever, I'll give you that one.   
We will make the mines and Western Cape “Ungovernable” - Really? We want service delivery and education, but we will make you ungovernable, and by definition leave you unable to provide any service delivery? Once again, Really? I'm no professor in intimidation, but openly threatening to make a whole province or industry ungovernable sounds a whole lot like intimidation to me. But hey, this is South African, and the ANCYL, you are the law, right? Does anything happen, no, course not, legal practice, naturally.   
Watched your interview with BBC this morning, Julius. Thanks for making a complete fool of yourself in front of the whole world. Would have been nice if you could have at least answered one of her questions, but alas, maybe you didn't understand them. And please, you don’t even know what a REVOLUTION is, so please stop with that word. There is no damn revolution, and please, what on earth is an “Agent”? As cool a title like “Agent” would be to add to my name, I can’t understand it in context of your speeches. But hey “Don’t touch me on my studio”. 
Is it just me, or is anybody else seeing the humour in ANCYL on a daily basis. Must be me going crazy, surely, that’s the only rational presumption, because a whole party with tens of thousands of members couldn't be incompetent could they, surely not?   
There are roughly two million tax paying individuals outside of the government sector, paying for roughly 48 million people in grants and aid. This means that each tax paying individual supports up to 24 people. You don’t need to be a brain surgeon to realise the impossibility of this being a solution going forward.   
The voting population or rather the amount of people who can vote is, by StatsSA, about 32 million (those of age). Now as per above, only two million are tax paying individuals. So we have a further tragic realisation that the contributing members of society don’t have the ability to change the outcome of the vote, as we are too few, and the uneducated and unemployed, who are currently receiving grants and promises of further grants, will vote for the hand that feed every time.  
Because of the lack of education, you cannot argue, debate, or persuade the majority as this would mean them seeing the situation rationally, a trait which comes with education. Informed and educated decisions thus fall to the way side, and voters side with that which promises everything, regardless of whether than can deliver. Even an idiot can persuade somebody who doesn't know better. So here we are, with ANC in power, forever as I hear it, and I don’t doubt that. Why do I say that? Well clearly education isn’t a priority in the ANC as uneducated populations don’t ask questions, nor do they see you for what they are. Keep masses in the dark, check!I’m quite peeved that my fellow 2 million tax payers have to pay close on R500 000 000 for Jacob’s multiple amorous discrepancies (multiple wives) over the next 5 years, as budgeted for by the government.   
I'm quite peeved that while I'm being called a capitalist pig for not sharing my non-existent “wealth”, Jacob is trying to acquire hundreds of seater luxury boeing planes for R2 Billion. Just so that we are on the same page here, that’s R2 000 000 000, or equivalent to 20 000 Houses, all because he wants his own jet.   
I'm peeved that I, and even my little brother, who at his age was nothing but a glint in my father’s eye, are told we must pay for apartheid.   
I'm peeved that even after being expelled, Julius is given a stage to incite violence. 
I'm peeved that even though I’m a tax payer, I pay for private security, private schooling, private medical, even though they are the very things I’m paying government for. 
I'm peeved that the ignorance of the nation still believes the cataclysmic failure by the ANC to provide, is still caused by a regime ousted 18 years ago.   
I'm peeved that my whole family have left the country (I'm the only one left) out of fear of a future.   
I'm peeved that protesters do what they want while law enforcement does nothing.   
I'm peeved that every night I live in fear of being robbed and murdered.   
I'm peeved that as an Mlungu, I’m told I don’t belong here.   
But most of all, I'm peeved that I'm angry. I'm angry because we are NOT a rainbow nation, and anybody that thinks we are is either an idiot or lying to themselves. We are as divided as we have ever been. We started making progress, but somehow the path was lost along the way.   
The question is how do we get back there. How do we mend the divide?   
How do we encourage hard work and competency to achieve?   
How do we change the mind-set of a nation we lost control of?   
How do we learn to love our country again?   
Now I ask you, Is it just me, or is anybody else seeing the humour in this country on a daily basis. Must be me going crazy, surely, that’s the only rational presumption, because a whole country with millions of people couldn't be wrong could they, surely not?  
The following email was part of an ongoing reply to the original and has been included to give a balanced view from two white ladies living and working in South Africa. Between the two, the people getting a raw deal are the people who work, of any colour, religion or creed. 

This [above] young lady has put her finger on all of our frustrations and fears about being a tax payer in SA. However, whilst I agree with most of this article, I fear the danger of making the problems a simple black/white issue. There are many black people who are anti ANC and their incompetence and corruption.    
We place our faith in the DA (Democratic Alliance), who already control the Western Cape, which is showing the rest of SA how local government should work. This is a multicultural party, they only need a 6% swing to take Gauteng the major urban region. Hopefully by showing the people local government can be effective, they can take more government seats and first an effective opposition then on to take the leading role. In the next election the "Born Frees " vote these are the young people who have been educated since 1994 they are by in large more demanding of the leadership, and less likely to put up with our present set up.   
 BEE (Black Economic Entitlement) is a system of evaluating companies to reflect the degree to which the company is encouraging black empowerment. The codes indicate the level of training, promotion and involvement in the company of those generally referred to as "the previously disadvantaged",  the codes are important as the points given to secure a government contract are in part based on BEE codes, this at first lead to token black persons in some positions, but as the educational levels even out this is less so.   
We were promised that like affirmative action which gave an order in which people should be appointed to a post this would be temporary only.  Affirmative action meant that if you were 1. black, 2. female and 3. disabled no one else need turn up for the interview.BEE also aided the set-up of new black companies.   
The  Schabir Shaik reference is the case of Zuma's financial adviser who was convicted of fraud and sent to jail he served only months most of it in the local hospital, before he was released due to his terminal illness from which he was going to die at any moment.  
That was several years ago, newspaper photos of him playing golf have been published, a new saying has been coined, taking over from 'don't hold your breath':  'at Schabir's funeral'.
Living in hope that this wonderful,beautiful and potentially wealthy country can see the light, as not a black controlled country, not a white controlled, nor any other race, religion but as a uniquely South African country, after all we avoided the civil war almost the whole world felt certain would happen.   
I am placing my faith in the "born frees" of all colours.

It's all very sad when South Africa could be a dominant player in world affairs. I've just had a postscript from the second person's email above which reads as follows:
I'm sure that we have too many of the new black middle class to allow a Zim set up here. The differences in the county have changed they are no longer based on colour but on the successful v the unsuccessful.  Those who have good jobs, education and insight will want to keep those things. To do that they need an internationally accepted government. The Zim set up would not benefit them, black,white nor all shades in between. The corruption only benefits a few. It is notable that many of our ruling party leaders would not have the education or skills to be successful if they were not in politics, crime would be their best option, hang on a minute!  
The growth of the Black, Coloured and Indian middle classes will, I believe, be our saving grace. The more who make it, the more who believe they too can get there, and to do that they need  stable effective accountable leaders.  
When I was working full time I had more in common with the black doctors and nurses than the [previous] young lady would have us believe, we lived in the same suburbs, kids at the same schools, drove the same cars and expressed the same concerns about the ANC and the leaders. The ANC gets back into power because of the rural black vote.   
Now the ANCYL is split by Julius's new party they may open the way to other parties. Almost all the white people I know would vote for a black leader given that he, or better still she, could give us good governance. We have some real talent in the ruling party but as soon as they start to question to closely they are accused of something or other. If a member in favour is caught with sticky fingers they just say 'sorry' in Parliament and that's an end to it. This happened this week, but there was more complaint than usual, even suggesting she resign, 
Zim itself is a constant warning on the doorstep that only the few prosper across the border. 
Hoping for better results in the local election this year,
Ryno Geldenhuys, The DA's Parliamentary Research and Communications Officer tells me that the DA’s Federal Chairperson, Dr Wilmot James said recently: 
“The DA believes in the potential of South Africans to build a better future for all our people. We believe that every citizen a has a role to play in our historic project of establishing an open opportunity society for all in which your path in life is not determined by the circumstances of your birth, including your ‘race’ and material circumstances, but rather by your talents and efforts.    
Most people agree that sustained economic growth is essential to create job opportunities and that excellent education is needed to enable people to improve their lives. This is why, in government, our top empowerment priority must be to fix public education and create jobs by way of economic growth. Our goal is to establish a national government founded on four core principles:  
1. Defending our constitution and securing its promise of equal rights and fair opportunities for all; 
2. Nurturing genuine non-racialism on the basis of reconciliation and redress;  
3. Growing an appropriately regulated, market-driven economy that can achieve the levels of sustainable growth needed to reduce unemployment significantly and lessen inequality; 
4. Building a civil service that puts competence above party loyalty, values service and punishes self-interest and corruption” 
So a picture is beginning to emerge that although things a bad in South Africa there are green buds of hope. I would hazard a guess that the first lady lives in a zone controlled by the ANC and the second lady lives in a zone controlled by the DA (Democratic Alliance). No doubt the ladies will let me know if I am right, if they see this.

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