It's almost like there's a lull. Nothing controversial at the moment but I expect to post some illegal Eskom activity soon.
Hence I am drawn to anti-ANC rants with a smattering of "what the fuck is the government doing now" content. Issues like the New Age and Nkandla and corruption and Zuma must be kept top of mind. I know that the press is talking about it constantly but I do feel it's my duty to keep these stories alive.
On the subject of BEE, I am a fan of the concept. I know that if the economy was to grow like it should then there are simply not enough white or Indian people to manage it. We have to have competent black people running businesses, occupying management positions and starting their own businesses. This is not going to happen by accident, processes must be put in place to get it right.
Sadly this is where the practical and the theory part ways. We are half a step away from conducting DNA tests on beneficiaries to determine blackness; that anal probes are not required in the verification manual is a mystery to me. Our obsession with race has never been as intense as it is now. The lengths you have to go to show that you made a socio-economic development contribution negate the concepts of ubuntu and giving. The interview process to determine whether a person is a manager is almost always based on an antiquated view of master of servant. Few of the verification agents have the vaguest understanding of mathematics, accounts and HR. Yet these are the people that will determine whether a company can compete in the marketplace.
Once a company has gone through this process and have their piece of paper they run the risk of being accused of fronting, racism or colonialist behaviour. Our political masters who cannot run the country could never be expected understand the rudiments of running a small business. Yet it's these people who provide little or no recognition to the country for adopting this process. The private sector is reminded at every available opportunity that they are racist and anti-transformation etc. And the great examples of transformation, namely the parastatals are crippled under inept management and stay afloat by abusing taxpayer bailouts.
And yet we suck it up. We bend and compromise to meet the arbitrary whims of the likes of Eskom who would not exist if it wasn't for us paying for our electricity. We keep on assuring the government that we are committed to the process as we pump huge amounts of money into (what is deemed acceptable) training and the development of small black businesses. The reward we get is rampant tender fraud and a gross abuse of our tax money - sprinkled with that constant reminder that we as the private sector are sabotaging the transformation process.
And just when we have started to make headway in this process a few choice people decide that they will now make it harder for us to comply with their race agenda.
If BEE is going to work in future then we need a little respect from the government and in exchange we will start assisting them constructively in measuring the success of the programmes so far. I think it would be very noble if the private sector gives the government credit for this progress. In this way both parties would be able to set attainable goals across the board and go ahead and achieve them. We cannot continue being dictated to by a clueless government who set arbitrary targets without providing the basic resources to achieving them - the most basic of which would be education.
If this conversation is possible and we are able to move away from our adversarial stances I think that BEE as a process would become less racial and more about building a country that can hold its head as the other BRIC countries.
And I would not come out of a verification wondering why my clients, who have the best intentions, have to be subjected to this Verwoerdian process.