Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Thinking Zuma

I finally have started to poke my nose into the stories and information going on in the succession battle. Probably because the squabbling is no longer about inner politics, but now really is the country’s concern.

Or perhaps rather that we can no longer laugh off a Zuma president as a scary bedtime story, but it is time to face reality. Is this man really up for the job of leading a still-sensitive and just-balancing country towards stability & incredible development? And even more importantly, HOW does he plan on leading us there?

How is he expected to root out corruption when he, himself, is supposed to be facing such charges? Although, and I could be wrong here, if he does not appear in court concerning these charges before he becomes SA president, he will not have to worry about them until he hands over his presidency. Which means we might never know if our president really is guilty of international fraud & corruption. Not a notion that sits easy.

How can I trust him to have the Fight Against HIV and AIDS truly at heart when but a year ago he told citizens of SA, who hang off his every word, that he took a shower to prevent himself being infected with HIV. This statement set our fight back so many steps.

What about his anti-homosexual remarks? Can we trust him to leave the Constitution as is, so that my mates can remain protected under this top legal state document?

Is he a Socialist with the most simplistic outlooks and answers? Or one that considers & weighs up the repercussions of each decision, piece of legislature allowed through, and policies instituted?

Apparently Zuma has only a Matric. What does this means for his skills of analysis, his abilities at lateral thinking and complex insight? What does this mean for his knowledge of political science, international relations, trade & industry, economics?

These are all questions I have tumbling about my head as I search about for answers on what a Zuma presidency will mean.

And I think, as the country starts to accept that he indeed has a great chance of being our next president, we are starting to look at his benefits, his capabilities, and his brighter side.

He definitely sweet talks all of us when he gets media to follow him to his public HIV test. When he takes big business hotshots to lunch to ease their worries. Or when he speaks of how we need a Ministry of Law and Order “instead of safety and security because "we are not safe…We need to put in place more laws that are not liberal and user-friendly for criminals".

He talks of Free Education…but how??

Of better pay for police and others in the public service… but how??

Apparently his “administration would be modelled on the policies of Michael Barber, who turned around the delivery record of Tony Blair's UK government”. Not that I have the first clue what this model was.

How will he satisfy both the Unions and Big Business?

Jonty Fisher wrote a thought-provoking piece on “A contrarian view on Jacob Zuma”.

I believe Zuma to be an opportunist. I do not believe he is hoping to lead our country for anything more than selfish power-hungry reasons. But I do not believe that power-hunger will necessarily cause him to misbalance dearest youthful SA. Maybe he is intelligent enough to realise the strength of Big Business and keep them happy, while aiming to meet the complex needs and demands of the populace. Perhaps media and the constitution will keep him in check. Hopefully he will surround himself with many wise and experienced ad well-intentioned advisors. Or perhaps all his words now are simply words, so to step up and over us.

Right now, we’re stuck in a waiting game.

And I personally would prefer to be waiting & watching from a sunny beach, cocktail in hand.


Anonymous said...

Champs...i love your posts!!! I wish more young people will actually stop and think about these things...as i have started to feel quite alone in doing this. It makes my heart sore when i meet other younger generation people who actually care.

The picture of Zuma as president is downright scary. And i think the moment we start trying to see the bright side of him being president we have become desensitized and blind. Isn't there some law prohibiting someone suspected of fraud becoming president??

Champagne Heathen said...

Ah thanks. It's the political science student in me still alive & well!

I'm sure that the Mbeki camp has searched every last law book & past case to see if there isn't such a law, so I gotta assume not!

As for interest... I think people are interested but they are too scared of appearing ignorant. I rather prefer to embrace my ignorance & ask and ask and read to find out what I can about topics. You can't know it all, and as soon as you realise that you actually start to learn so much more about so many things.

But yes, there is also a very depressing apathy & insular element to our generation that sickens me. That some people know more about American entertainment that SA political movements, that which is governing their very lives...!

RB said...

I just popped in to see how my bitch is doing and WOWZER! she is doing politics.

So I left before Scorpions arrived and things got messy.......!

Bonk, bonk, bonking is best politics is not

Bonk, bonk, bonking is best politics is not

Bonk, bonk, bonking is best politics is not

Bonk, bonk, bonking is best politics is not

Patchwork said...

Champers H, it's so fucking refreshing to read a properly thought -out opinion piece by a young person. I am so sick of the columns in our press where if you took a red pen and marked it, you would circle, political correctness every other word.

Your frankness is much appreciated.

Champagne Heathen said...

Robs - did you have a whiskey last night?? And who are you calling 'bitch', biatch!?!? BISOUS!

Bridget - Ha ha, thanks, that is the joy of blogging, being able to say what you really think is really happening!

Anonymous said...

errr when did zuma get his matric? i heard something else, unless he did it through correspondence late in life.

Champagne Heathen said...

Anon, it seems you might be right...
"Owing to his deprived childhood, Jacob Zuma did not receive any formal schooling"

Damn scary!!