News/Politics

Those who control the mind control society

Those who write what people read control the public mind. Those who control the public mind control the present and future. If you want to control society, you must control information and knowledge production. All that the average man knows, especially in the historically disadvantaged communities, is what he or she reads in the media….

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White people must stand up against white racism

When I was in high school, my headmaster used to say that evil triumphs when good people do nothing. It was not till I matriculated and grew older that I could fully comprehend and appreciate the gravity of his words. Racism, of any nature, defeats the ends of the reconciliation project we’ve been working towards…

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Penny Sparrow saga: Forget the outcry – racism is here to stay

Four days in, and South Africa already has its first bit of racial controversy for 2016. Penny Sparrow’s Facebook post — where she referred to black people at the beach on New Year’s Eve as “monkeys” — has surely got to be one of the fastest, and most bigoted, blunders we’ve seen. The post has…

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A new prism through which to view Zuma

Four days in December. They are the prism through which the actions of President Jacob Zuma will be viewed from now on. December is dozy time in South Africa. Whether you are in need an electrician or a lawyer, your options are few, right through to mid-January. Deprived of public interest, even politicians go into…

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How to show leadership

I have often stated that organisational success is only possible if four critical factors in the strategic framework are in harmony and aligned: purpose, vision, strategy and leadership. The state is no exception to this requirement. I have also cautioned that context is the first and most critical constraint or limiting factor to defining and…

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#ZumaMustFall: Whose hashtag is it anyway?

In the build-up to the #ZumaMustFall marches on December 16 (Reconciliation Day), a number of critical voices came to the fore. I wondered whether some #RhodesMustFall and #FeesMustFall activists were perhaps not proprietary in their response to the new hashtag and the planned marches, which appeared to be driven largely by white, middle and upper-class…

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Nene, nukes and Zuma’s timing

By Alex Lenferna Many have been confounded by the recent actions of our president: sacking Nhlanhla Nene from the post of finance minister, giving a weekend-long appointment to the relatively unknown David van Rooyen, and then kicking out Van Rooyen and finally rehiring Pravin Gordhan as finance minister. While much ink has been spilled trying…

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‘White land’ must fall, after Zuma

I know what you’re thinking — another irritating piece about “white monopoly capital”. This is not about the Economic Freedom Fighters and their policy of redress through wholesale re-disenfranchisement and nationalisation. South Africa is more nuanced than the high politics of the day. The outcry of the last week is testament to the vibrancy of…

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Is climate change a form of violence?

Over the past few years a number of studies have warned about the links between climate change and violent conflict. While the precise causal connections are not yet well-defined, it is likely that famine, flooding, and displacement will spur increasing conflict and war as the 21st century unfolds. This is a serious concern. Already the…

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The unravelling of President Jacob Zuma

President Jacob Zuma’s firing of Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene, after barely 18 months in the job, is one of those rare events that can leave even consummately slick political opponents spluttering for words. Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane’s flummoxed immediate response on Twitter was to state the blindingly obvious: “What we need now is a…

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