Tag Archives: economy

Will “Blockadia” help, or “Is Earth F**ked”?

One of the most revealing threads running through Canadian investigative journalist and tireless anti-capitalism activist, Naomi Klein’s rivetting book, This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate (Alfred A. Knopf, 2014), concerns what she terms the “new climate warriors”, or in one word, “Blockadia”. This unlikely-sounding word names a movement which has arisen in the shape…

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It’s a simple choice: Are we going to make South Africa great?

Last week I wrote about racism in our public discourse and I was accused of merely describing the problem and negating the role of politics in fixing our economy. Well, here is a stab at a solution: – Every South African corporation with a national footprint should employ one intern aged 20-29 for every 10…

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Why American market capitalism is broken

Yes, you’ve read correctly. You may not know who Rana Foroohar is, so let me inform you that she is a highly respected business and economic journalist working for TIME magazine, who has just published a book called Makers and Takers, published in May (Crown publishers), in which she makes this (to some startling) announcement….

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We are rebuilding an economic apartheid instead of dismantling it

In the mid-1980s South Africa’s prime overdraft rate went to 25%, inflation rocketed to 20.9% and the apartheid government abolished the financial rand exchange rate system in 1983 as international banks refused to renew credit lines for South Africa. The world was punishing South Africa for being a pariah, a scum state, violating the fundamental…

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Zuma-Concourt saga: Constitutionalism (Episode IV)

The widespread use of the phrase “a victory of democracy”, when referring to the Constitutional Court Nkandla ruling, is a disservice to South Africa. Words have the power to shine light on a meaning. Words have the power to marginalise. The choice of the word democracy in this instance is not a trivial matter because…

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Zuma-Concourt saga: National question (Episode II)

Thabo Mbeki for a long time used to set and drive the public socio-political discourse agenda in South Africa. Journalists would excitedly wait for his regular newsletter and general musings. After Mbeki was dethroned, we entered an interregnum where political discourse largely oscillated between affairs concerning the person of Jacob Zuma and an extended obituary…

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How to avoid an economic war

Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister of India said “Life is like a game of cards. The hand you are dealt is determinism; the way you play it is free will.” Nehru led a nation of hundreds of millions of poor Indians groaning under the postcolonial legacies that had shaped the subcontinent. Colonialism was not…

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How the university can recuperate itself

In my previous post I wrote about the question raised by Bernard Stiegler on the pervasive stupidity characterising global societies today, and the failure of universities to live up to their historical task under present circumstances. The latter amount to what Stiegler calls “hyperindustrial” society, that is, a society in which it is not only…

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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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Axing Nene: Give us the reasons

One of my most powerful insights during the height of the #feesmustfall protests was that the media has its own agenda and bias. Nuance, the sympathetic depiction of all sides, fair coverage of silent constituencies: these are all niceties in the hurly-burly of a reporting frenzy. So with the axing of Nhlanhla Nene sending the…

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