NeverAgain Again

NeverAgain Again

neveragainpietersenThe #NeverAgainMSD may be the first public movement to actually tackle our paralyzed government while confronting and beating such behemoths as the NRA. We should have known. Remember South Africa.

Hector Pietersen is one of the most revered persons in South African history. He moved the struggle against apartheid further along in one day than it had in the previous 100 years. He died doing so, at 12 years old.

Read more

Enough Law

Enough Law

gunsinsaandusThere’s only one of 52 countries in Africa where individual citizen gun violence reaches the level of America’s : South Africa.

Citizens – huge percentages – in both America and South Africa believe banning at least some guns will reduce this horror. Guess what? South Africa has already passed some of the toughest gun laws in the world but gun violence is still increasing. Does this mean laws against gun ownership don’t work? There’s a pretty terrifying answer.

Read more

Free At Last

Free At Last

ramtakesoverWatch South Africa, Americans!

The election of Jacob Zuma, a year or so of excessive celebration by his base then an accelerating deterioration of the economy, the scandals which mounted until his ouster yesterday with one year left in his second term, instantly followed today by a police roundup of all the scoundrels involved … this, my friends, could be Donald Trump in America.

Read more

Show And Tell

Show And Tell

zuma hesitatesImagine Ryan voting to impeach Trump and Pelosi voting not to: American political strategists better closely follow what’s happening right now in South Africa.

The South African president – despised in every corner of his land while retaining the steadfast loyalty of an enraged minority – was thrown out yesterday afternoon, or more correctly, the process began to oust him. At last! you exclaim, a unified South African sigh of relief and joy? Not quite. The opposition is remarkably subdued. It seems they believe that might have lost all chance of coming to power now that their one-and-only issue is moot.

Read more

Puppet Masters

Puppet Masters

puppetmastersWhat do the leaders of Zimbabwe, South Africa and the U.S. have in common?

In South Africa, today, the first real action to oust President Jacob Zuma is expected after at least 5-6 years of planning to do so. In Zimbabwe the destructive dictator Robert Mugabe who was ousted by a coup last November may be on the way back!

And in the U.S.? Neither Zimbabwe or South Africa provide as much surprise and contrast to the past as Donald Trump in the White House. Impeachment by the book is simple; by historical standards a slam dunk. But the chances of impeaching Donald Trump are about as great as winning the super lottery. So why is it so hard to get rid of these monsters?

Read more

Pictures & Words

Pictures & Words

TheFilmWoundToday cast members of South Africa’s entry for the 2018 Oscars best foreign film of the year were herded into a “safe house” to protect them from growing threats against their lives.

The “Wound” (“Inxeba” in native dialect) is a film about a young urban gay factory worker in South Africa who returns home for the traditional circumcision ceremony. Gay relationships are renewed among mentors and initiates suggesting this has been going on for years. In this particular year, though, the closets crumble. Some are outed threatening traditional marriages, parents are scorned and disgraced and the film ends in a quagmire of depression and loneliness.

This is a change in South African culture. Why now?

Read more

Not A Drop To Swim

Not A Drop To Swim

No swimming CapeToday Cape Town authorities announced that the city’s water supply will likely end in 80 days. The normal dry season extends into April. “Day Zero” on April 15 presumes Capetonians will continue restricting themselves to 50 liters of water daily.

The severe drought effecting the city, the winelands and extending up a fairly narrow sliver of the country’s west coast is climate change at its starkest: The rest of the country including its agricultural regions have had normal to above normal rainfall.

Read more

#4 – Year of the Tribe

#4 – Year of the Tribe

copyright, GADO
copyright, GADO

Stronger religious protections, more affirmative action and new constitutional protections of minorities is the #4 story of Africa for 2017. Sounds good until said simply: tribalism on the rebound.

The political catastrophe of South Africa and the election circuses in Kenya are the best examples. Democracy and tribalism bring out the worst of each other. Africa may be no different than the rest of the world, but understanding Africa is fundamental to untangling this mess.

Read more

Donald Descent

Donald Descent

trumpbyflagThe Mideast has not exploded because of Trump’s announcement on Jerusalem, but the effect on the U.S. is substantial and getting worse.

In response to our UN Ambassador’s childish threat that she’ll be “taking names” when the UN General Assembly votes on the resolution she vetoed last week, many African countries responded quickly but much more maturely. Their actions reflect not just how much of the world discounts the U.S., but how they now see us as the evil power in the world.

Read more

Robot Food

Robot Food

SAGMwarThere’s a lot in common between South Africa and the U.S. Among the very most important and very least spoken is their shared agricultural power.

South Africa outperforms the U.S. producing oranges and performs about two-thirds as well for barley. South Africa outperforms China and India in corn, barley, oranges and fresh milk as well.

So agricultural companies pay a lot of attention to South Africa, and especially after last weekend’s seed conference at the African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) which focused on defeating a proposed South African law heavily favoring GM seed companies like Monsanto.

Read more

Whoisit Now?

Whoisit Now?

WhoisWho is Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma? Well, she’s a presidential candidate in South Africa. But after she appeared at one of her scheduled political rallies recently, and not a person showed up but her own team, South Africa’s most provocative political publication asked Who is Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma?

There’s a very important election in America, today. But I’m wondering – like Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma – if elections as we currently endure can really tell us anything about what the electorate wants? Do elections matter, anymore?

Read more

Mānuka Mess

Mānuka Mess

manuka honeyOn Saturday, September 30, Kathleen and I drove our black Jeep Grand Cherokee from Taos west on highway 64 through Dulce, New Mexico, past a facility that aliens had built under the ground to conquer the world. With a prolonged drought depressing South African honey production, the government has removed restrictions on the importation of mānuka honey, which purports to better many antibiotics and is natural.

The first item of fake news is amusing and mostly benign. The second item of fake news can kill South Africans. Like zero tolerance for sexual harassment the cultural revolution needs to debunk one just as ferociously as it debunks the other.

Read more

Death by Elephant

Death by Elephant

elechargeAnother two tourists were killed by elephant Saturday.

There are conflicting accounts of the deaths. The official Zambian police report claims that the 57-year old Belgian woman walked “too close” to take photos. But family members of the two killed told the Lusaka Times “the duo were looking at the giant mammals from a distance” and were charged unexpectedly.

In the big scheme of things, here’s why the details matter less than you might think.

Read more

Donalds Everywhere

Donalds Everywhere

pithouse&kenelectionDemocracy isn’t working, anywhere. South African Richard Pithouse predicted all of this in his summary of Trump’s election: “The Donalds are Everywhere.” Since that analysis nearly a year ago, Kenya, Spain, Italy, South Africa, the U.S., France, Britain and probably to some degree every democratic nation on earth has grown increasingly tumultuous.

Be prepared, folks. If you think the hurricane season is just about wind and rain, you’ve got another thing coming.

Read more