In The Word We Trust

Apart from being a dodgy rainbow nation with its daily changing dynamics South Afrika stands in enviable position of being one of a handful of countries that can claim to have invented a language and sustained it through scientific innovations and bastardisation of other languages. Afrikaans is our flagship language and we should equally feel appalled when some expatriate in France messes with its version of the national anthem.

I have been monitoring this phenomenon of inventing things since time immemorial. Up to this point almost every generation can claim to have had their own vocabulary and as it stands this looks like a trend we can sustain. The current generation are the ‘o kile wa bona’ bunch who punctuates everything with this ‘annoying’ noun. Or is it an adjective?

However what really interests me is not what one of my friends said that we should have been the first people to invent television for dogs if the comrades at the SABC did not mess up the public broadcaster but that we should have been the first people on the moon. Ja, I can see you dismissing me as a – for lack of a better sight- drunk dreamer. Ja, we all know that there are people who take to the skies almost every night and go far high up but they never want to do it under sunlight.

Maybe like the first people who tried to fly they might lose their spunk when the hot sunrays melt the wax that is supposed to hold the ‘feathers’ together. So, we should have been there but we blew our chances.

And now the Nature Channel has been designed to cater for dogs as well and we are still left behind begging parliament for R2 billion to resuscitate a ‘bank’ freshly looted by comrades.

My point behind this post is the ANC government and the vocabulary of comrades. In South Afrika the ANC has designed a whole language of passing the buck. Failure to provide water, ‘the legacy of the past which prioritised whites and not blacks’, failure to provide sanitation, ‘the infrastructure is there it just needs rehabilitation which we still need to ask the Treasure for funds’ – this they say at the time they jointly go out to buy cars worth R60 million while another fleet gathers dust.

When told that they can’t blame the legacy of the past for their failure to build quality houses since the old regime build stronger structures they accuse you of glorifying apartheid. Then there is the classic, ‘the former regime’ and ‘the Mbeki administration’. People are meant to believe that Mbeki came from the DA that’s why he messed up the social fibre of the country and to believe that Zuma is the second ANC president after Mandela.

Whenever AIDS stats are released talk is, ‘the Mbeki administration’s denialism’ instead of the ANC taking collective responsibility for messing with the AIDS prevention strategy. A leader is put in a position to push the collective’s position; that’s what we are told. But why does the ANC break ranks on Mbeki.

So given that there is a buzzword that ‘the former regime’ buried this country into a rubble of irresponsibility, in the event that the ANC is booted out of power as it happened in the Western Cape and they are occupying the opposition benches, who are they going to refer to as ‘the former regime’ since they will be such a regime.

Okay, people don’t get offended I’m just juggling words to make sense of the morass we have come to refer to as our democratic dispensation and our obsession with inventing things – actually reinventing as we see with the SABC, the Zuma ANC and recently ANC-Lite, better known as COPE.

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