How the black market is saving two countries from their governments

Posted 11 March 2017

In desperate times, it is the black marekt that saves countries from their incompetent and rapacious governments. Two examples are examined in this article from TheAntimedia.org: Venezuela and Greece. To which we might add Zimbabwe and, increasingly, South Africa, where the shadow economy is reported to account for 25% of GDP. Governments traduce black marketeers as tax cheats and call them other horrible names, when they should be celebrated for pursuing the purest form of free enterprise. 

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Castro, the darling of the left, created an apartheid hell in Cuba

Posted 08 March 2017

When Fidel Castro died, the mainstream media in South Africa and elsewhere were beside themselves with grief over their fallen hero. If you are not a sufferer of Castrophilia, it is obvious that there is nothing good to say about this mass murderer, except that he was lucky enough to live into his 90s within 90 miles of the US coastline.

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Wrecking queen Dudu Myeni's reign at SAA may soon be over

Posted 08 March 2017

SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni's time at the airline may soon be over. This week Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse and the SAA Pilots Association brought an application before the South Gauteng High Court to have her declared a delinquent director. This is the first time in history an executive in a state-owned enterprise has been charged in this manner.

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The Cape Times has become a purveyor of fake news

Posted 06 March 2017

Veteran journalist Ed Herbst catalogues the instances of fake news coming out of the once venerable journal, The Cape Times, since Aneez Salie was appointed editor three years ago. This, of course, follows a pattern of journalistic outrages since Iqbal Surve acquired ownership of the newspaper. Take a look for yourself.

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Individual liberty has been corroded by self-serving politicians

Posted 02 March 2017

Individual liberty has been corroded by self-serving politicians, to the point where our rulers are emulating the apartheid social engineers who came before them. Medical students are required to enter the service of the state, businesses cannot chose whom they employ, and the unemployed are denied the right to enter into free association with employers at a mutually-agreed wage. This is what has become of the noble struggle for freedom that birthed this nation, writes Temba Nolutshungu of the Free Market Foundation.  

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Gordhan's growth targets best served with a pinch of salt

Posted 28 February 2017

Come budget time, government habitually overestimates growth. That throws out budgeting forecasts and would help explain the R30.4 billion shortfall in revenue collection last year. But 7 out of the last 8 budgets have over-estimated growth, so we should treat government forecasts (and budgets) with a pinch of salt, says Moneyweb.

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Gordhan's budget may not save SA from ratings downgrade

Posted 23 February 2017

Finance minister Pravin Gordhan's 2017 budget was probably the best he could do under the circumstances. It was probably enough to stay ratings agencies’ hands but SA remains on the brink of a downgrade and political uncertainty could tip the scales, economists warn. 

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Can Herman Mashsaba clean up the corrupt mess he inherited in Joburg?

Posted 22 February 2017

Joburg's new mayor Herman Mashaba inherited a frightening mess of corruption and graft in Joburg. City employees are being fired daily, and a special Forensic Unit has been set up to deal with the volume of corruption and fraud being uncovered. Sara Gonn at the Institute of Race Relations looks at what's going on in the city.

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Cheating banks face maximum penalties over forex scam

Posted 22 February 2017

When the rand dipped past R17 to the US dollar in January 2016, it looked suspiciously like a coordinated attack. Now it has emerged that 18 banks were involved in manipulating the rand, and the Competition Commission says it is taking no prisoners. But will anyone go to jail or will white collar criminals get another free pass, as they always do?

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Court declares withdrawal from International Criminal Court invalid

Posted 22 February 2017

South Africa's refusal to arrest Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir while on a visit to the country in 2015 prompted a move by government to resign from the International Criminal Court (ICC), which had an arrest warrant out for al-Bashir. The Pretoria High Court has now declared this withdrawal from the ICC to be invalid, and has ordered deput judge president Phineas Mojapelo to rescind the notice of withdrawal.

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If you're a Kuga owner, take on the finance companies rather than Ford

Posted 21 February 2017

The story of the self-immolating Kuga has become a PR nightmare for Ford, and a matter of huge concern for Kuga owners, several of whom are reportedly planning a class action against the company. Leonard Benjamin argues that this could be self-defeating. First, you have to apply to the court to be recognised as a class, then begins the long and agonising process of litigating. A far better solution is to hand back the car to Ford, stop paying the instalments, wait for the financing bank to sue, and then bring a counter-claim under the National Credit Act.

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Bank pays home owner R300,000 after being caught in insurance rip-off

Posted 16 February 2017

Maybe it's not the mortgage payments that are killing you. Maybe it's the insurance premiums buried in the monthly mortgage instalments. This is no joke. Three cases have come to light where home owners found themselves drowning - not because of the mortgage payments, but because of the insurance products they were sold at the time they took out the loan.

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Zuma's love affair with alternative facts

Posted 14 February 2017

Wits University academic Patrick Bond takes a look at President Jacob Zuma's State of the Nation address and then proceeds to separate fact from fiction. The outcome is a president who makes all the right noises, but fails to deliver in the key areas.

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Sanral slapped down by Concourt over Western Cape toll roads

Posted 13 February 2017

SA National Roads Agency's (SANRAL) has failed in its appeal against a High Court decision issued last year blocking it from launching road tolling on the Cape Winelands route. It seems SANRAL's legal troubles are getting worse, and as the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse has laid charges of perjury against former CEO, Nazir Alli.

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Soweto man in court for trespassing in his own home

Posted 10 February 2017

Solomon Nhlapo appeared in the Soweto Magistrates Court this week charged with trespassing in his own home. This bizarre case is by no means unique. Nhlapo has lived in this house since 1965, but when a sherriff arrived with an eviction order in 2014, he realised his house had been sold behind his back for R100 by Nedbank, which claimed a R22,000 loan taken out by Nhlapo's late mother Mary was in default. Yet Nhlapo has written confirmation from the bank itself showing the loan is paid up.

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Remember those power outages? Turns out they weren't necessary after all

Posted 09 February 2017

Eskom’s claim that electricity tariffs are too low is hardly credible, says an uncensored report into the mess at the power utility. Among the problems it uncovered is that too many in management seemed far more focused on leveraging Eskom’s vast buying power for their self-interest, rather than to drive efficiencies, according to this investigation by Financial Mail.

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Litany of allegations in Barclays mortgage suit

Posted 09 February 2017

The fallout from the 2008 subprime crisis continues to rattle on down the ages. This time, a US law suit involving Barclays shows how employees knew the mortgages they were underwriting were bad, yet continued to securitise them. 

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How to defend your home against bank foreclosure

Posted 05 February 2017

Of all your assets, your home is the most important. More than 100,000 homes have been repossessed by banks since the Constitution came into effect more than 20 years ago. Most of these were repossessed because the home owners lacked sufficient knowledge of the law. The good news is that it is getting easier to prevent the banks getting away with this. The object of this article is to try and save your house and explore your legal defence options when the bank attempts to foreclose on your bond. 

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Goldman Sachs appointees fill the Trump administration

Posted 31 January 2017

Has US President Donald Trump, like his predecessors, been captured by Goldman Sachs? One would think so, looking at who he has just appointed to his administration. If that's the case, former Goldman Sachs alumni Nomi Prins says we can look forward to another administration doling out favours to the banks. Already, Trump has made six appointments comprising former Goldman Sachs employees. How did this onetime boutique bank end up on top of the world? Nomi Prins explains.

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New hate crimes bill turns petty insults into a crime with 3 years jail

Posted 31 January 2017

In terms of the new hate crimes bill, calling lawyers "blood-sucking parasites" could land you in jail for three years. This new bill will make South Africa unique in the world by creating 17 different categories of potential victims of insulting language, over and above race, ethnicity, religion and gender. These new categories include culture, belief, occupation and gender identity. Should this bill become law, South Africa will become a frigid, humourless place where every work spoken or written will have to be carefully measured.

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Can you consent to an illegal eviction order?

Posted 25 January 2017

Nearly 200 people living on a commercial property in Berea, Johannesburg, are challenging an eviction order, on the grounds that they did not agree to it and that even if they had agreed, the order was unjust.

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The Joburg township where outlaws make the rules

Posted 24 January 2017

Thousands of illegal miners descend each morning into the bowels of the old Modder B mine to the east of Joburg. This is outlaw country, where guns and knives are the arbiters of petty squabbles. You can hire a hitman for a few thousand rand. The centre of this activity is Lindelane, which is - literally - the garbage can of Joburg.

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Tony Webbstock on SAFM - how to get out of debt slavery

Posted 23 January 2017

In this SAFM interview, Tony Webbstock of Debt Admin explains how to get out of debt slavery. What prompted this interview was a controversial article on Acts Online which advised South Africans to simply stop paying unaffordable debt. Tony explained how this position is supported by the law.

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Is it constitutional to make hate speech an offence?

Posted 23 January 2017

Do we need a hate crimes bill to stamp out racism, sexism and other forms of unacceptable speech? As some legal commentators have already pointed out, laws already exist to stamp out hate speech, and incitement to violence is already a crime. Why do we need this new legislation? And will the government apply it equally, in which case several members of parliament, including the EFF's Julius Malema, would now be in jail? Safura Abdool Karim at Groundup argues the case.

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SA cannot afford its over-sized government - Nedbank

Posted 22 January 2017

SA's debt burden has now reached 50% of GDP, and government has expanded the public service to the point where it is unaffordable. This is one of the factors weighing on ratings agencies as they contemplate a sovereign downgrade for SA to junk. If this happens, about R600bn will flow out of the country. 

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