Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Idler, Wednesday, November 5, 2018


creeps up


AS IF TO give added point to the information being spilled out to the Zondo Commission, load shedding has crept up on us again. A sense of panic is afoot. It seems it will last indefinitely. We could be downgraded as an investment destination.

However, investment analyst Dr James Greener suggests in his latest grumpy newsletter that one remedy seems to be ignored.

"The boss man of Eskom has reported casually that the nation's electricity utility is 'locked in a permanent loss-making position'. This is alarming news. Naturally it's not his fault nor the result of poor decisions by any of his half dozen predecessors, most of whom occupied the corner office only long enough to find out how the taps worked in the executive wash room. And to arrange the pension plan.

"Those with time on their hands and the interim financials on their lap will note that while the annual cost of finance is around R15bn, this is lower than the R17bn which the municipalities owe the utility for power consumed. Doesn't this have the makings of a solution?"

Greener also notes the breaking out of hostilities between the EFF and the media.

"Most parliaments have members who are colourful, controversial and cuckoo. Generally, they have little real support from the voters, but the proportional representation model confers rather too much apparent legitimacy to our own brand of crazy populists.

"However, Julius Malema, who styles himself as commander in chief of his EFF party, is suddenly bumping up against the press freedom we still enjoy in South Africa. He, his cronies and family are being exposed almost daily as likely to be involved in one corrupt scheme after another.

"Virtually their sole response is to vilify the investigators and publishers of these allegations. Although South Africa is a very unequal country as regards wealth distribution, the numbers indicate that there are very few folk without a mobile phone and this ensures the rapid and widespread dissemination of stories both good and bad, true and false. Today, anyone with a story and a Twitter account can make embarrassing accusations."


AS FORMER president Jacob Zuma's hearing into various alleged shennanigans many years ago began in the Pietermaritzburg High Court last week, load shedding brought darkness.

As the funeral of Paddy Kearney – activist for multi-faith ecumenism, peace and justice – began at the weekend, St Emmanuel's Cathedral was suddenly ablaze with light as load shedding lifted.

If that ain't symbolism, what is?


MORE from Rosemarie Jarski's Great British Wit. Topic: Rugby.

·         Rugby is a game for the mentally deficient. Who else but an Englishman could invent an oval ball? – Peter Pook

·         Rugby is a good occasion for keeping 30 bullies far from the centre of the city. – Oscar Wilde

·         A bomb under the West car park at Twickenham on an international day would end fascism in England for a generation. – Phillip Toynbee

·         England's coach Jack Powell, an immenselt successful businessman, has the acerbic wit of Dorothy Parker and according to most New Zealanders, a similar knowledge of rugby. – Mark Reason'

·         Look what these bastards have done to Wales. They've taken our coal, our water, our steel. They buy our houses and they only live in them for a fortnight every twelve months. What have they given us? Absolutely nothing. We've been exploited, raped, controlled and punished by the English – and that's who you are playing this afternoon. – Phil Bennet

·         That has capped a superb season. It was an emotional high and I have only one complaint: both of the streakers were men. – Colin Todd

·          Every time I went to tackle Phil Horrocks-Taylor, Horrocks went one way, Taylor went the other and all I got was the bloody hyphen. – Nick England



AN APPLICANT is being interviewed for admission to a prominent medical school.

"Tell me," says the interviewing professor. "Where do you expect to be 10 years from now?"

"Let's see," says the prospective student. "It's Wenesday. On the golf course, I guess."


Last word

It pays to be obvious, especially if you have a reputation for subtlety.

Isaac Asimov


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