PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Akani Mathebula
 
Comments: 0
Article views: 612
 
 
 

Trump and Ramaphosa: a tale of two presidents

12 June 2018, 11:35

Quite early into the billionaire Donald Trump presidency, within months actually, the unemployment rate in the United States dropped to record levels (as low as 3,8%). Predictably, Trump and his supporters hailed this as a result of Trump’s genius and "proof" that his "America First" policy was the best thing since sliced bread.

However, on closer inspection of the graph of US unemployment over 10 years, you would see that high unemployment which characterised the Bush administration started dropping sharply in the second year of Obama’s presidency and continued this trend throughout his administration. Trump was basically riding the wave of Obama’s success and attributing it to his yet to be tested economic policies.

Further afield, in a tiny country at the tip of Africa, another billionaire also became president. Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa rose to power after the Valentine’s Day break up between the country of South Africa and its’ no-so-beloved president Zuma who had presided over 9 years of chaos, state capture and scandal-fatigue that was visited on an agitated public. Years of parliamentary heckling, failed no-confidence motions, public marches, reams of #ZumaMustFall articles and electoral disasters had finally culminated in the political decapitation of the head of a defiant Zuma.

The early days of the Ramaphosa presidency were characterised by a short honeymoon period of relief and excitement at the prospect of a new beginning and a break from the disastrous Zuma years. This became known as "Ramaphoria". So pervasive was this feeling, that opposition politicians who normally heckled the president or walked out of presidential addresses in Parliament, leapt up from their seats at the end of Ramaphosa’s maiden Sate of the Nation Address and joined their ANC counterparts in adopting the presidents’ call to service: "Thuma mina (send me)!"

A new dawn at last! Or not! Or something like that.

Soon, the pilot Ramaphosa would have to fly the country back from the honeymoon in Wakanda, on an SAA flight. Yes, the bankrupt SAA with it’s now grounded sister SA Express. No less than 10 useless Zuma era ministers were axed from the Cabinet, but disasters like Bathabile Dlamini were merely shifted to other portfolios while Ramaphosa was attempting to appease the "other side" in his own party. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) swooped on the Guptas and their acolytes, only to arrest one Gupta nephew and none of the brothers, the same NPA was to later see three attempts to attach Gupta loot thwarted by the courts owing to the sloppy, amateurish way they had gone about their business. Even Zumanomic mathematics continued as RET propagandists tried to paint the R57bn Renewable energy independent power producer contracts as being R1trillion spending on White Monopoly Capital (WMC).

The dramatic increase in cash-in-transit heists that began in 2017 continued unabated in 2018, becoming part of the daily news bulletins. The ZAR also lost its Ramaphoria and tumbled along with other emerging country currencies to R13,03 to the currency of Trump-land. The horrendous petrol price increases which were dribbling motorists in the Zuma era continued and reached new record levels. The country didn’t feel so new anymore! Even state capture fugitive Duduzane Zuma could afford to taunt South Africans about the faltering "new dawn" on Twitter.

It will not end here. We have begun to see the results of years of political interference at the NPA and the Hawks in the disastrous Gupta raids and the Khomotso Phahlane case. We don’t know what the result of the Eskom capture will be? Retrenchments? More debt? Electricity price hikes?

What will happen to the collapsed water ministry? Failing healthcare system? Will state owned companies be able to survive in their current form after the hollowing out through state capture? Will the State Capture Inquiry yield fruit? Speaking of fruit, will the land return?

There are many questions that the president will have to answer through his actions over the next few months leading up to the scheduled national elections. He has had his share of PR coups like his morning runs in the Cape and Soweto where thousands turned up to walk alongside him, photo ops with Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, Bishop Tutu and many smiling babies. He has also had PR nightmares like the Supra Mahumapelo firing/not firing/resigning/not resigning/retiring tragicomedy and blunders like delivering a speech at the 100year celebrations of the erstwhile Broederbond who have rebranded and resurfaced. This was as insensitive and nauseating as Zuma’s 2010 visit to Orania, where he was photographed walking hand in hand with Orania founder Carel Boshoff.

So what does the future of the country under the "Buffalo" really hold? Should we be hopeful or pessimistic? We don’t really know how many, if any of these massive challenges we will be able to overcome. It is perhaps easier to pretend that we don’t understand the laws of sowing and reaping, or we don’t understand how processes of change work than to admit that it is too early to tell, too early to judge, whether the light at the tunnel is a new dawn or an oncoming train.

@Akanirelo

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

 

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Neil Clark
The fake universe

Like all mysteries, the discussion of the universe is always based on a bunch of theories. We've had hundreds of them over the years, some truly probable and others downright ridiculous. Read more...

0 comments 372 views
Submitted by
Mikaela Oosthuizen
The sucker-punch of sexism in pol...

After decades of political violence under President Robert Mugabe, it was the firing of his vice president, and his wife's alleged pursuit of the title of president, that proved to be the final instigator for a coup in Zimbabwe. Read more...

0 comments 1842 views
Submitted by
Sello Mampane
Farewell to unsung heroine, Veron...

From the depth of my heart, I extend my sincerest, deepest and profound condolences to the Sobukwe family for the loss of mama Zondiwe. Read more...

0 comments 286 views
Submitted by
Muhammed Zahid Jadwat
VAT and fuel price hikes: the unn...

Instead of further burdening a financially strapped nation with exorbitent fuel prices and a VAT increase, government should have explored other methods to garner the defecit. Read more...

0 comments 696 views
Submitted by
Lillian Arnold
Recycling problems in Gauteng

The whole bag which we put out this morning (containing two cans, lots of paper, some glass bottles and some plastic bags) was taken by a man with a trolley. Read more...

0 comments 3660 views
Submitted by
So,Recently
In defence of the DA's BEE propos...

SA seems to be stuck with a system of affirmative action that raises the cost of doing business, benefits only a minority of the people it is intended to benefit and seems to be in place indefinitely.  Read more...

0 comments 2333 views
 

services

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on Android Get the latest from News24 on your Android device.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2018 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.