Tag Archives: Zuma

A promising PhD-student’s take on the so-called ‘Zupta’- phenomenon

What follows here is a piece by one of my and Prof. Pieter Duvenage’s graduate students, Casper Lötter, who is a PhD-candidate in Social Philosophy at the University of the Free State – it first appeared in the Weekend Post on 5 November: ‘In a recent and valuable contribution, Raymond Suttner asks, “What is the…

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The unbelievable cost of South Africa’s bloated public sector

South Africa would be significantly more economically viable if it did not have to carry a civil service sector that far exceeds the country’s needs in numerical terms. This is one of the many things one learns from R.W. Johnson’s candid, if sometimes completely disconcerting recent book, How Long Will South Africa Survive? The Looming…

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Protecting Zuma by force: A dishonourable Parliament

Last night ANC MPs showed South Africa how far they were willing to go when others attempted to hold them to account. In the hours of bedlam, heckling, and howling[1] the ANC managed to push South Africa’s democracy to the brink. The ANC not only voted to protect President Jacob Zuma, who according the Public…

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Zuma’s State of the Nation address: Sona or just sonorous?

“Now is the hour. This is the moment. South Africa can no longer afford endless rhetoric and mutual recriminations. My government needs to act. It has an electoral mandate to act. And act we shall. We stand or fall by the deliverables that we pledge today.” These are extracts from what political observers, both locally…

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Magical thinking is behind the gloom over SA’s Constitution

Despite the evidence to the contrary – 20 years of successfully protected freedoms – it has becoming increasingly fashionable to badmouth the South African Constitution. Sceptics range across the political spectrum, from radicals, who want the state to be unconstrained, to liberals who claim that the Constitution has effectively already been negated by the state….

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Working class hero

If one takes a good look at John Lennon’s song Working Class Hero it must dawn on you sooner or later that, just like the song Imagine, it is powerfully revolutionary. In addition to targeting the family, school, college or university (Althusser’s apparatuses where ideology is inculcated in subjects), and the class structure of society,…

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Zumangaung

After the release of the National Development Plan (NDP) late 2011, the alliterative 2012 seemed to hold much promise. But it became a year of talk shops. For the first time ever, the national policy and elective conferences of the ANC, SACP, and Cosatu all fell in the same year. There was no implementing the…

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On Zim’s wounded political beasts

Addressing the recent ZANU-PF annual congress, party leader and Zimbabwe president, Robert Mugabe likened the (mis)fortunes of his party to those of a wounded beast. “We are now like a wounded beast,” Mugabe said, adding emphatically, “You know how a wounded beast fights. Let’s fight back and restore our own pride.” Mugabe’s unhappiness with the…

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How should we remember Zuma’s presidency?

History is a complex social construction but a few grand narratives tend to stick out. Among other stories we’ll remember Mandela as the reconciliatory president, asking us to throw our “pangas into the sea” and forgive. We’ll remember Mbeki’s poetic appeal to our African identity, an aloof renaissance man and, bitter-sweet, as the statesman who…

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Marikana: Political or economic unrest?

No one can argue that South Africa will never be the same again after the Marikana massacre. What remains arguable, however, is how the country moves forward in the aftermath of the incident. For business, the sooner everything dies down and workers go back to work the better. For workers, in sharp contrast, this is…

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