Explosive Gupta emails at the heart of state capture

Posted 29 May 2017

Rumours that President Jacob Zuma was about to resign and take up residence in Dubai - with the assistance of the Gupta family - sent the rand soaring to R12,70 to the US dollar on Monday morning. The president is now besieged not just by opposition parties, but a strong and growing faction within the ANC. The Sunday Times added fuel to this fire with stunning revelations of the extent to which the Guptas had managed to gain control of ministers and state-owned enterprises. 

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Zimbabwe is a mafia state controlled by 2,000 super wealthy elites

Posted 26 May 2017

Zimbabwe has become a mafia-run state, where 2,000 super-wealthy elites hold the country to ransom. The Marange diamond field is run by a nest of thieves, where an estimated $20 billion has been pilfered. In a country with 80% unemployment, this sends a clear message to the rest of the country - take the money and run, says Zimbabwean member of parliament Eddie Cross.

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The e-tolls mess just got messier

Posted 23 May 2017

Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) has just barred SA National Roads Agency (Sanral) - which has summonsed thousands of Gauteng motorists for non-payment of e-tolls - from arguing 55 cases in court. Outa claims the Roads Agency has not followed court procedures and deadlines. Sanral will now have to restart court procedings from scratch. Further complicating matters is the issue of prescription, as some of this e-toll debt is now more than three years old and therefore may not be payable.

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Wednesday 25 May is tax freedom day

Posted 23 May 2017

The good news is that as of Wednesday 25th May, everything you earn is yours to keep. The bad news is that up until Wednesday, you have been working for the government - and you spent five more days as a slave to government than in 2015. Every year the Free Market Foundation meaures how many days it takes to discharge South Africans' "debt" to government - in other words, how many days you must work to pay off the government's share of GDP. 

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How the capture cancer spread

Posted 22 May 2017

SA Council of Churches’ Unburdening Panel report provides vital clues to the personnel and sequence of events that resulted in the Guptas' almost unbelievable capture of SA's state-owned companies. They are President Jacob Zuma and then public enterprises minister Malusi Gigaba. Eskom, Denel and Transnet were their prime targets.

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The story of a brazen hijack

Posted 22 May 2017

We now have a clearer idea of how the Gupta-owned Tegeta got control of the Optimum coal mine from Glencore for a song, using its "special relationship" with Eskom. The deal stinks to high heaven. It involved imposing an impossibly high fine on Glencore for supplying under-sized coal to Eskom, which allowed Tegeta to move in and capture the mine - and resume normal business with Eskom. Former mineral resources minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi was fired by President Jacob Zuma for refusing to co-operate with the elaborate scam. Here's how it went down.

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New laws that are killing free speech

Posted 18 May 2017

Free speech is under attack by an out-of-control government that seeks to monitor and regulate everything that moves (even sounds out of your mouth). Two of the most appalling pieces of proposed legislation to belly-flop before us are the Hate Speech bill - which makes it a criminal offence to jokingly insult a lawyer or a plumber - and the Information and Communications Technologies Policy white paper, which would create a semi-monpoly owned by the state with control over the radio frequency. 

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The climate science debate illusion

Posted 15 May 2017

The phrase "climate denier" has come to mean someone who refutes the facts of climate change brought about by humans. But as Scott Adams point out in this article, the climate science believers and deniers are actually talking about two different things. The subject has become so muddied by the word "science" that the term has lost its meaning. There may indeed be climate change - but don't expect science to solve this one.

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SABC's attempt to charge license fees on your cell phones and laptops must be stopped

Posted 12 May 2017

This is how you end up thinking when you have been too long in a state-owned enterprise. The SA Broadcasting Corporation, faced with plummeting revenue, has proposed that it be allowed to charge license fees on all viewing devices, including your laptop, cell phone and tablet. This absurdity - from a corporation drowning in corruption and incompetence - must be stopped.

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Lessons from China on how to spread wealth

Posted 11 May 2017

Why does South Africa keep embracing destructive policies when there is no shortage of proof that these policies will fail and spread poverty? Could it be that this is intentional, or that ideologues refuse to apprehend the lessons of history? Perhaps it is a bit of both. In this article, Temba Nolutshungu argues that we should heed the lessons of Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi and China's Deng Xiaoping, all of whom espoused free markets and individual liberty.

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SA's first Zim-style land grab has just occurred, says KZN businessman

Posted 07 May 2017

Sean Naidoo‚ a business from Marburg near Port Shepstone‚ has accused the Department of Public Works of orchestrating the "first land grab in the new South Africa". This relates to a lease agreement in a building, occupied by the SA Police Services, owned by Naidoo. He locked the Department out of the building, claiming he has been under-paid in terms of the lease agreement. 

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Truth be told, opposition parties pray that Zuma stays in power till 2019

Posted 03 May 2017

Be careful what you wish for. SA's opposition parties want Jacob Zuma dislodged as president, but keeping him in power for as long as possible may suit their electoral chances come 2019. The ANC members are having to read the weather vane: if Zuma goes then many jobs are on the line, but if he stays, party loyalists will be roasted for protecting a fatally compromised man. So long as Zuma remains in power, the opposition can mine his failing presidency for all it is worth, reminding voters for the next two years how seriously he has damaged this country. Bloomberg explores how this could play out.

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King Shaka International - an airport in desperate search of passengers

Posted 28 April 2017

Durban's King Shaka International is an airport in desperate search of passengers. Like most public sector projects of the last 10 years in SA, it ended up costing between two and three times the original estimates. But this one was a corker: it was foisted on Airports Company of SA (ACSA) by then minister of transport, Jeff Radebe, and has lumbered the organisation with crippling debt since then. This crass decision explains some of the other bizarre goings-on at ACSA in recent months. Minority shareholders in ACSA - who have been trying to sell their shares back to government (without success) at something approaching fair value - say the company has abandoned its commercial mandate and now operates as a development arm of government.

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Another instalment in the march towards tyranny

Posted 24 April 2017

The Hate Speech Bill is a ridiculous attempt to protect 17 different categories of perceived victims from insult or injury. Of course, it does not pass the Constitutional test, but perhaps it is not intended to. It allows politicians to indulge their favourite pastime of race-baiting to distract from their own failings. Former Judge Rex van Schalkwyk explains what is going on. 

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How to stop the sale in execution scam in its tracks

Posted 19 April 2017

It is reckoned that 100,000 South Africans have lost their homes since the Constitution came into effect in 1995 – despite its guarantees of fair administrative justice and its supposed enforcement of property rights. This outrageous scandal has been enabled by insouciant judges and a court system that operates as the enforcement arm of the banks.

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Absa and Standard Bank face big fight over internet fraud

Posted 18 April 2017

Several people, who have each lost large amounts of money due to Internet banking fraud, are taking their fight to ABSA and Standard Bank – with legal action on the cards. The victims say numerous banking staff members must have been involved. The evidence suggests the crooks knew exactly what funds were available in the victims' accounts, which accounts were linked, and from where money could be transferred. 

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Tens of thousands of protesters take to the streets to denounce Zuma

Posted 09 April 2017

Tens of thousands of South Africans took to the streets in major cities across the country last week, calling for President Zuma's removal. This follows Zuma's dismissal of finance minister Pravin Gordhan as part of a cabinet reshuffle that resulted in SA's credit being downgraded the junk by credit ratings agencies. 

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The world's best economist explains how banks have captured the wealth of the world

Posted 09 April 2017

Michael Hudson is a former bank economist whose job it was to work out the balance of payments surplus of South American countries so the major banks could capture this surplus for themselves. In his new book J for Junk Economics, reviewed by Paul Craig Roberts, Hudson explains how banks have become the new "rentier class" that has displaced the feudal lords of old. They produce nothing, but capture rents in the form of interest that have no costs associated with them. 

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ANC allies turn on Zuma - call for his resignation

Posted 05 April 2017

The SA Communist Party, trade union federation Cosatu and leading ANC figures have called for President Zuma to resign following his firing of Pravin Gordhan as finance minister last week. This comes as S&P announced a credit-rating downgrade that left SA on junk status with a negative outlook. Zuma removed Gordhan using a bogus intelligence report to justify the move to ANC officials. He is now appealing to provincial ANC leaders to buttress his support, but the tide has turned against the president, who appears to have grossly misread the public outrage triggered by last week's cabinet reshuffle. 

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Is ours a superficial democracy?

Posted 04 April 2017

Democracy cannot simply mean voting every five years. Participation is a crucial ingredient that breathes substance into the system. It also breathes legitimacy and longevity into the mandate the government receives every five years. Without the government ensuring meaningful participation, ours is a superficial democracy that, only on paper, is distinguishable from dictatorship.

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Doug Casey on The Diamond Age

Posted 31 March 2017

International investor and author Doug Casey writes that the world is entering the Diamond Age, where nation states will disappear and groups of like-minded people will organise themselves into clans in pursuit of freedom and optimum survival. Far-fetched? Maybe. But the evidence of social atomisation is already visible all around us.

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Zuma goes for the nuclear option

Posted 31 March 2017

To hell with the rand, the ratings agencies, the people of South Africa. President Zuma is a desperate man with bills to pay trying to stay out of jail. His cabinet "reshuffle" has the fingerprints of the Guptas all over it. He sacked finance minister Pravin Gordhan and put a dandy in his place. No matter that the rand lost 6% this week. Zuma wants a finance minister who will sign the nuclear power stations cheques and green-light all manner of suspect deals. This is now an open declaration of war, and the fight back has begun. 

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David Rockefeller dies - the MSM airbrushes his deadly role as slavemaster

Posted 28 March 2017

David Rockefeller Sr passed away earlier this month at the age of 101. In death, as in life, he remains the scourge of conspiracy theories the world over. He presided over the shadowy Council for Foreign Relations for decades and is widely assumed to be a key architect in the "deep state" government that survived more than a dozen presidents since World War 2. So who was this man, and what did he really stand for?

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Rand tumbles on fears that Zuma will replace Gordhan as finance minister

Posted 27 March 2017

After a strong surge in recent weeks, the rand reversed some of its gains as speculation spread that President Zuma intended replacing finance minister Pravin Gordhan. This time, the economic fundamentals for South Africa are on a firmer footing, but the president seems oblivious of the damage his arbitrary policy making causes to the country.

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Columnists are a useless breed

Posted 26 March 2017

Columnists are the rodent class of journalism. They tell their readers things they already believe. They are expected to take an ideological position and never stray from this. They end up spewing unoriginal, predictable and only mildly controversial ideas.  

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