Koos Kombuis

Some thoughts on land reform…without ice

It has been said that every generation hates its fathers and makes friends with its grandfathers. In my case, my 70-plus father-in-law (though he is actually less than 20 years my senior) may be a case in point. I have always liked my in-laws. I like my mother-in-law because we share the same hairstyle and…

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Has the end of the world been rescheduled?

I must admit I was one of the millions of naïve people worldwide who was duped by the Mayan’s so-called “end of the world” prophecy. Not only duped, but my marriage was almost destroyed. From December 20 2012 right through to the 23, I insisted on sleeping alone on the sofa in our lounge. I…

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The butler did it

As a Sky News newscaster so aptly remarked “this is like a scene straight from The Da Vinci Code“. The trial of sallow-faced Paolo Gabriele, the man accused of stealing secret documents from the Pope and leaking their contents to the press, started a few days ago in the Vatican City. This is high drama…

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The country on the other side of the tracks

“…Perhaps there is an escape I have not considered, a voyage I have not heard about.” Yvette Christiansë (Castaway, Duke University Press, 1999) The other day I found myself in a discussion with a fellow musician about the merits of Martin Meredith’s well-known book The State of Africa. When I first read that voluminous tome,…

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Two weeks without the internet

Recently, our household had the misfortune of being stranded with no regular internet service for a fortnight. When I say “no regular internet service”, I mean that our main computer crashed. Stopped working. Showed me the famous “blue screen”. Then committed suicide. I am not one of those fundis who tweet from my cellphone. I…

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The African Renaissance for Dummies

I’m probably going to make a fool of myself publishing this column, as it is about the economy, and I know very little about the economy. Until very recently, for instance, I was still under the impression that the Eurozone was a trance state one reaches during deep meditation. Apparently, it’s not that at all,…

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Hanging out with Zuma

Is it racism or is it art? What is this thing? What the hell has happened to us as a country during this last week? Whatever it is, I’m afraid there’s no going back. Never again would an innocent phrase such as “honorary member” be spoken in Parliament or anywhere else without someone in the…

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The ANC is not a broad church but a narrow cult

One of the most frightening episodes of my entire life was the time when, years ago, as a young man, I got sucked into a bizarre fanatical religious cult. No, I’m not talking about the Dutch Reformed Church. Neither am I referring to Facebook. Neither of these organisations were quite as demented as the particular…

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Would YOU let a bricklayer investigate your prostate gland?

According to a recent report, dentistry, as a profession, faces extinction. This is very worrisome. Much as we all hate dentists, we cannot live without them. Dentists do terrible things to our mouths, but we need them. We need their expertise. Without the art of dentistry, I would have looked much worse on photographs and…

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Winds of change for the ANC

The winds of change have finally started blowing for the ANC government, just as they started blowing for the National Party government in 1960. In 1960, this event was formally announced by former British prime minister Harold Macmillan in his famous address in Cape Town on February 3 that year. In this Year of our…

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