Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Malema: Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble!!

I'm not sure I get it and, if someone can show me I'm not getting it, please inform me.....

The thing I'm not sure about is this: is Julius Malema for real or is he a maliciously sanctioned propaganda imp with carte blanche to sow discord? Either way, his antics and rantings won't be doing this country any favours ahead of the "Greatest Show on Earth" due to kick off in a few months. One thing is certain: if I were a foreigner and informed of this crude debacle, I would be thinking a dozen times before I boarded a plane to come and watch my country's pride play for Soccer's most coveted prize!
Surely, those in high office should be sitting up and taking note of this grotesque demonstration of soap-boxing, or are they, will they..... want to, I mean? At the moment the silence is deafening.... Why has our esteemed president not stepped up to the podium and publicly removed this man from his office. It can be done: after all, he himself, was on the receiving end of such dismissal not so many years ago!
A side note to Julius: Well done, mate. Whether you're genuine, contrived or just plain delusional, you're doing just famously at possibly derailing the best chance this country ever had of actually standing proudly alongside all other host countries of the world and, for itself, perpetuating the miracle of reconciliation it has been lauded for, for almost two decades!!!
On the other hand, we may just be lucky and you will be labelled a raving lunatic, not to be taken seriously, which could present yet another uncomfortable scenario, when one considers a certain twentieth century lunatic who once started a World War!
The mischievous Facebook page which has been labelled a hoax (and now reported to have been shut down) has done the damage all the same. Regardless of any credentials that could be attached to it, it has recreated the old animosities, irrational ideologies and strife that existed before this country came to its senses.
I have just spent six years writing a novel on this self-same kind of madness; the unjust, pointless and dehumanising era of Apartheid, because I truly believed that the story I was telling was worthy of sharing - I still do!
It is with great sadness that I take note of these malicious discourses of recent days, both by the subject of this blog and his apparent supporters. The only thing I have left to say is: all right-minded, clear thinking South Africans, regardless of race or creed, should denounce this madness in the strongest possible terms and work in unison to rid our society of such charlatans! Those in positions of power and authority should step up to the plate, muzzle and remove him, if not because of public pressure, but in the spirit of all that is sane!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"For whom the bells toll" OR "Slave, meet thy master!"

Slave species

Who’s the slave?

We are… humans are. Apart from possessing two of the most debilitating genetic propensities, that of greed and violence, we are actually a slave species. That means we enslave and allow ourselves to be enslaved… it’s that simple.

Absolute drivel?... Really?... take a long, hard look at human behaviour in all facets of our existence and tell me it’s not so. I’m not going to expound on how we enslave ourselves to credit, ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ and the countless other examples I could dredge up… I think you get my drift!

What I would like to concentrate on, are the ‘blinding tactics’ foisted on the mass of humanity while this mass majority scrabble around frantically, trying to gain a larger slice of around 10% of the world’s wealth, while the minority of around 10% own 90% of that wealth. How do they do it? Simple….. enslavement!

Recently, I received a mail that explained how the Nazis in Germany, the Communists in both Russia and China and a host of other oppressive systems actually succeeded in their fanatic drives toward power and domination – ‘blinding tactics’ in the form of indoctrination and propaganda.

During World War 2, most Germans were not Nazi. A man, whose family was German aristocracy prior to the war, commented: “….but many enjoyed the return of German pride and many more were too busy to care. So, the majority just sat back and let it all happen and before we knew it they owned us. We had lost control and the end of the world had come…”

I would hazard a guess that Apartheid was successful for as long as it was, for very much the same reasons. Need we ask the question about Rwanda as well? The point here, is: If the silent majority will render themselves cowed and extraneous, then we, that majority will wake up one day and find ourselves ‘owned’!

The choice to be slave or not…

You quite rightly, may be asking: “So where are we going with this?” Bear with me. The point I am making, stems from the same principle of comfortable indifference, but the outcome remains the same, albeit from a very different angle, and that is:

While Eskom, with their proposed tariff hikes, has most people in the country blinded, SANRAL’s proposed ‘user pays’ tolling system for Gauteng’s roads is silently creeping up on the majority of the good, honest, hard working business people of the province and before we know it, they will own us, too!
The Eskom subject is a lot easier to circumvent if we all just go solar.... at a price of course, but it's possible. The roads thing? Well, unless someone comes up with a car that can fly (which, in the context of the Wright Brothers, may also be a possibility some time) we are all limited to using the roads that will play havoc with our pockets in the not so distant future.... I shudder to think!

Does this ring a few bells somewhere?
It should, because if the silent majority sit and compute the daily operational costs of such a system to businesses in the near future, we should be queueing to ring those bells ourselves! Already, we are taxed through the traditional system, through the fuel levies and, and… the list goes on. Now the proposed ‘user pays’ system could be taxing road users a third and even possibly a fourth time for the privilege of using the same infra-structure…. where and when does it end?

Maybe the silent, hard working and honest business majority should stop their frenetic scrabbling for a very valuable moment in time and ask questions about where the levies for the billions of litres of fuel pumped each year, have gone – questions like, for example: “Show us a simple accounting equation and it better balance… no smoke and mirrors, because that’s our hard-earned money you’re playing with!”

To be slave, or not to be… this is the question, I guess.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Are we awakened?

Somewhere in a small Buddhist shrine...
High among the mountain forests of the Japanese island of Honshu, a bee farmer and his friends, also farmers and men of the earth, gather to mourn and pay their respects at the demise of a hive of imported European Honey Bees. The cause of the slaughter? A very large squadron (about two hundred) Giant Japanese Hornets, the largest of all the Wasps.

“How bizarre!” someone might say. “A bunch of farmers mourning the deaths of a bunch of bees?” Someone else might say: “Serves them right for importing the European bees. Don’t they have any of their own?”

The answer: “Yes, Japan has its own Honey Bees and although they are brilliant at pollinating, they don’t produce the volume of honey that their European counterparts do; hence the importation.”

The point here?
The point is that this Japanese bee farmer and his friends did two things that make them good stewards and custodians of the earth. First, they paid homage to the bees for the benefit they and other humans derive from the bees' existence. Secondly, they mourned, taking responsibility for the destruction of the bees. You see, the European Honey Bee has not adapted to the Japanese ecological system yet and therefor has not evolved to the point that it can offer an effective defence against such an attack. These farmers know that and that is why they gather to pay their respects to their insect brothers.

Back in South Africa
I know a man who rents a large house on a smallholding. Apart from the large house, there are two cottages on either side. In the roof of one of the cottages, a swarm of bees has established a hive and have been very busy doing what bees do, these last few months. This man I know, calls up a friend, also a man who lives close to the earth and it just so happens that this friend is a bee keeper, who makes honey mead amongst other things.

This friend agrees to come and inspect the hive and tells my friend that it will cost R 500 to have the swarm removed. My friend, who realises that, although the bees are doing what bees do, their activity must eventually cause some damage to the ceiling of the cottage. My friend calls a meeting with his landlord and discusses the possibility of having the bees removed and placed in a proper hive, but the landlord, upon hearing what the cost of the removal would be, calmly says: “I’d rather get pest control in and eliminate them permanently.”

The real point

Have we so-called Westerners become so desensitised in relation to our natural world that some of us would regard a swarm of bees as being pests? Is R 500 to a property developer too high a cost, as opposed to safely relocating a swarm of man’s most under-rated friends, in the interest of a healthy ecosystem?

Something is wrong here.

Who is the more honourable custodian; the bee farmer who mourns the loss of a hive, or the wealthy property developer? I guess it’s a case of where you have your hands… in the earth or firmly gripping your cheque book!

I have said this before and I will repeat myself… we are all inter-connected and yes, Honey Bees are our insect brothers.

I received a mail today in which there were photographs of Koala Bears, suffering from the recent high temperatures in Australia, approaching cyclists for water. In another picture, one little creature, when entering a house to escape the heat, was offered a bowl of water and promptly decided to get into the bowl to cool off. The caption at the bottom of the mail read:
Until one has loved an animal, a part of their soul remains unawakened…”

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Avatar, The Movie - Some lessons in it for all of us.

If you haven't been to see James Cameron's 'Avatar', you might want to do so and soon. The reason being that to wait till it comes out on DVD, would probably downgrade the visual experience, to start with. No, seriously, take yourself off to a movie theatre and enjoy!

I watched it on the big screen during December and I came away with the definite feeling that my Clansman had done a sterling job in weaving a whole array of lessons into the story for mankind to take heed of, but before I launch into any of that, let me say that the cinematography was spellbinding, the musical score mesmerising. I even went out and bought the soundtrack!!

And the story...?

Well, let's get to that then, shall we?

The Age of Conquest

Watching, as the humans colonised the planet of Pandora, I couldn't help thinking of the Spanish conquest of Central and South America, the exploitation of the Congo, (well documented in the documentary, 'King Leopold's Ghost') and many other regions of the planet during the Age of Conquest. It highlighted man's greed, insatiable lusting after profit and gain, coupled with his wanton destruction of anything natural and beautiful to get at the perceived treasures of the world's 'El Dorados'.

Shades of man's obsession with gold...? That too, came to mind!

Disregard for cultures

The Na'vi, people who populate the planet of Pandora, are perceived as the villains, the simple race that are unwilling to relinquish the wealth of their home to a marauding monster race from another planet. Therefor, they must be eradicated, their culture destroyed and their forest home razed to the ground.

The Siritual Connection

To the Na'vi, their planet is a living thing, the forest and all in it is one with everything else.... including them! To surrender it, is to meekly kneel while the axeman sharpens his blade. Their planet is the centre of their beliefs and without it, there is no reason to live, so they do the only thing they can... fight back and fight they do!!

Pity it didn't work out with the same success when arrogant, ignorant, condescending colonialists and bounty seekers spread out across the globe in the preceding centuries of recent history and decimated almost everything in their paths to satisfy their insatiable hunger for wealth, fame and fortune.

And do you think it's any different today? Not on your Nellie!

Still we exploit the earth, ravage the natural areas of the globe, probe into her depths and then still have the audacity to spill our waste into her atmosphere and oceans... how dare we!!

Whoever created humans, did a bad job. For one, we have two destructive genes, (aggression and greed) that we pass on to every generation, as we rape, pillage and wage incessant war on each other, on our way to whatever is considered the utopia of existence. Never once do we stop and consider that the Earth, our Mother, is a living thing and sooner or later she will retaliate.

Humans beware... as I said in earlier inserts.... something has to give and when it does... Eish!

Watch and Learn

Like I said; go and watch the movie if you haven't already done so. If you have and missed this little perspective, go see it again... ten times if you have to, because subliminally, it's a warning to us. Pity we haven't already colonised a place like Pandora - sans the destruction - I'd be the first settler to sign up!