Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Charismatic Dimwit

It seems to me that our country is generally run by a*s*holes, and this has been going on for decades, with one notable exception: Nelson Mandela. All the other presidents in my lifetime have been a national embarrassment. I include in this lineup notable disasters like BJ Vorster, PW Botha (the absolute worst that Africa can offer), FW de Klerk and Thabo Mbeki.
If PW and FW had their way, I would have spent time in gaol. So much for them and their "volk and vaderland" which never included white South Africans who didn't speak Afrikaans, and it was always debatable how many Afrikaners it included anyway. I still have difficulty singing "Die Stem" as part of the national anthem, but it's something I'll get over.
Mandela was a great president, even if he did allow thousands to die of AIDS while he was President, and largely ignored the question of crime. At least he did something about AIDS later, hence 46664. His successor, Thabo Mbeki, made all the right noises, changed the way government is structured, but never got a grip on the real issues. Instead he surrounded himself with incompetent dolts like the Minister of Health, who succeeded in screwing up the health system pretty successfully. I always thought she was just holding out for a bribe, but it turned out to be far worse.
So when the ABM movement started (this time it stood for Anything But Mbeki, not Anything But Microsoft) it wasn't because of outrage over health or electricity, but because a charismatic dimwit wasn't properly prosecuted and was allowed to engage in unprotected sex while being the head of the "Moral Regeneration Movement" [cough!]. Or something. As someone once said, "the rabble wants to be roused".
I guess poor people are sick of being given promises that aren't met. So they elected someone who made even bigger promises, while building a big mansion and accepting financial contributions. Go figure. I guess this just proves what American politics has taught us for some time: democracy is where the majority gets what the majority deserves. America got 8 years of George Bush. We've got Mbeki and now we're getting Zuma. Nothing changes, really.

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