The weird world of politics: Iron ladies of the night

2013-04-21 14:00

Broad brush strokes

The DA’s campaign about its elastic history (stretching back to a time before the party even existed) kicked off on a controversial note.

Madame Zille’s words about DA stalwarts like Nosimo Balindlela were hardly cold when Tony Leon’s friends cried that he was airbrushed out of the party’s history. This wouldn’t be his first encounter with a brush.

During one of his final election campaigns, people remarked about how tanned he looked on elections posters in an apparent effort to broaden his appeal.

Tame duck tweets

It was relatively easy for the ANC to disband their Young Lions and replace them with the Tame Ducks (also called the national task team).

But wresting cyberspace from the hands of the roaring ones is not a job for a quack. It took the Tame Ducks a week before getting a handle on the @ancylhq Twitter account, which is now retweeting the ANC’s official info feed instead of Floyd Shivambu’s thoughts.

It is also tweeting inspirational messages rather than anti-Jacob Zuma ramblings. But the website is proving to be a challenge, with the league’s old leaders still living quietly there as a kind of virtual tombstone of the time when autonomy really meant anarchy.

Running the Gauntlett

It appears those rumours that Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng holds a rather low opinion of superlawyer Jeremy Gauntlett have landed in the learned advocate’s ears.

Gauntlett, who was in the past year twice passed over for appointment as a judge, was given a flowery introduction by attorney Max Boqwana at the Commonwealth Law Conference this week, where he was due to give a talk.

“Thanks Max, I’m very grateful it was you and not the chief justice who just introduced me,” Gauntlett said to uproarious laughter. It’s clear these rumours have spread to other lawyers too.

Iron ladies of the night

IFP’s Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi excitedly went to former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher’s funeral where tweeps mistook him (in sunglasses) for the late Ray Charles.

But his KZN compatriots in metalworkers’ union Numsa didn’t feel the love. They called Maggie a prostitute before their second deputy president, Christine Olivier, corrected them. She said that implied the saintly sex workers “are collectively on par with the reactionary Thatcher rather than members of the working class”.

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