Being a peace-loving hippy (and secret anarchist) I’ve always considered Nationalism a very dangerous beast, as opposed to say freedom of choice, global oneness and other sane concepts. Found this little gem at http://www.sharenator.com
Posts Tagged ‘politics’
I work in politics, or rather on the edge of it, as close as I dare get. Rather like alligator wrestling or base jumping, I prefer to remain a spectator and not get my mind too bloodied – I leave that to the experts (yes, they are scary people for whom scorpion pits and lion’s dens hold no earthly terrors, and no, to the best of my knowledge, they do not wear women’s undergarments (except the women of course) and engage in strange sexual practices asDie Son would have us believe).
So upon visiting one of my all time favorite sites today (asofterworld.com), I saw this irresistible banner:
I really do find part of my job very satisfying, especially with some of the mad and surreal things that happen in politics in this country – (as I’m sure Zapiro would agree) it makes ridicule and parody all too easy at times.
But there are times when my sense of humour slips a notch and reality sets in, and I realise that although at times comical, some of the things that are happening in this country are extremely worrying. Even more so because they are, in many cases, happening in an insidious and subtle fashion, and by the time the alarm bells are ringing, it is often beyond too late.
Two examples which spring to mind are the Expropriation Bill currently before Parliament which gives the Land Affairs minister almost free reign to expropriate property at below market compensation rates, giving the owner no recourse to turn to the courts for an appeal (the only appeal process is an internal ministerial procedure).
The other is the independence of the judiciary which is taking a bruising particularly where the cases involve government officials and the well connected. There are countless examples of outright attacks on the institution as soon as any motions are brought before it which threaten to tarnish the impeccable record of the ruling party – JZ is a case in point (pardon the pun).
These are two things, which in the mind of Joe Public, are usually filed somewhere between buying toilet paper and the mating habits of the lesser spotted hermit crab. I am by no means a political commentator and compared to some of the dizzying intellects I work with my analytical ramblings probably seem about as sharp as a bowl of jelly, but it really worries me that people (and I don’t mean WASPs and NIMBY’s) aren’t getting passionate and angry about things like this.
OK some of them are – those that are directly affected maybe. For example, the disbandment of one of the strongest instruments of judicial independence in South Africa, the Scorpions, managed to garner around 100 000 signatures, but the protest organised outside the high court buildings in Pretoria only roused around 70 people off their couches and onto the streets.
I really despair sometimes when I hear about things like this – only 4000 people attended the million man march against crime in Gauteng – a well publicised event, for a cause that I’m sure has touched every single person in this country either directly or indirectly. Where was everybody? Where does the apathy stem from? Do people really believe they can’t change the world one minute at a time, or are they too self absorbed and inwardly focused to care about what’s really happening around them and where it could lead to in the next 20 years?
The brainy people here blame this lack of interest in a new ‘disease’ made up by more brainy people which they call ‘cognitive dissonance’ which is highly contagious and seems to mean in a nutshell that people don’t like to think about stuff that makes them uncomfortable (duh?) and thus tend to block out the offending thoughts. No really, it’s a seemingly obvious and very interesting theory, but I’d hate to catch it, seeing as the only cure obvious to me is a swift heavy boot up the arse (actually, I’m pretty sure I do suffer from it as do most people, especially where the size of my bum and the ever increasing tightness of my jeans are concerned for example).
I sometimes envy the Americans and the level of local political awareness in that country (not that that detracts from their often astonishing arrogance, ignorance and other things ending in ‘ance’ when it comes to the rest of the world).
Ghandi once said “be the change you wish to see in the world” . . . it’s a saying which often leaves me feeling guilty that I’m not doing enough. But I’m safe in the knowledge that I’m not the only one … that’s just where it starts, isn’t it? No one else is doing it, why should I care?
I’d seriously like to bitchslap all the people I hear complaining about life in this country – 9 times out of 10 when I ask them if they voted, they say “no, what’s the point?”.
If you didn’t get your lazy arse off the couch on voting day and chose to stay in watching Harry Potter or whatever blows your skirt up, you have (listen closely)…FORFEITED YOUR RIGHT TO COMPLAIN
Remember that at voting time next year…you want to bitch and whine at the state of the nation? Make yourself a part of it first.