1 March 2008

Scoundrel Time

ANC Today is the on-line publication of the African National Congress. The current issue contains a clear statement about the “Special Browse Mole Consolidated Report” that was procured by the Scorpions and composed by Scorpions employee and former Yeoville resident and Mail & Guardian art reporter Ivor Powell. The Parliamentary Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence (JSCI) has declared in a report tabled in parliament this week that what Powell did was illegal. We fully expect that Powell will be charged soon. See the ANC Today report, linked below.

The liar Leonard McCarthy (pictured, looking suitably shifty and sly) is the head of the Scorpions. It is the JSCI that has found him to be a liar, saying one thing and doing another. McCarthy instructed Powell to do what Powell did, illegally, so he is also a crook. McCarthy defied direct instructions, so he is a treasonous rogue. Why has McCarthy not resigned yet? Is it because people like him think that if they have support in the media of mass communications, they can do anything they like? Undoubtedly, that is what they do think.

McCarthy must resign, and ministers must resign, if not the whole government! This situation of treasonous state agencies running disinformation and political vendettas based on concocted stories is intolerable!

A facsimile version (1020 KB PDF) of the JSCI Report can be viewed or
downloaded by clicking here. Apart from Powell and McCarthy, Adrian Mopp’s name is also directly mentioned in the JSCI report.

In South Africa, our media want to make us think our energy problems are unique, and have been brought upon ourselves by our guilty habits and by the stupidity of our government. But if we read a little more widely, we will be able to discover that these strictures, which are designed to create a fear of scarcity, go back as far as
Thomas Malthus. A recent article by Ian Boal in Counterpunch brings the argument up to date in a general way.

Essentially, capitalism can only operate in conditions of scarcity, but continues to create glut (abundance, or oversupply, or overproduction, depending on your point of view). Therefore, as a matter of policy, supply must be made problematic by all sorts of artificial means and stratagems. Once that has been done, the capitalists can sweep in and make contracts, in the new conditions, at new, high prices, for the long term into the future. This is what the French President (Sarkozy) and his crew of business operators have just done over the heads of the South African people and Parliament. It is equivalent to a new arms deal, but it is much bigger.

Part of the nonsense of creating the conditions for this trick is the familiar exhortation to be more efficient, which comes at us from “green” propagandists as well as from patronising government officials. This, too, happens all over the world. Yet it has been very well known since at least 1865 that increased efficiency will lead to greater consumption, not less. The phenomenon is called the Jevons Paradox. It can be empirically confirmed. What it means is that if stuff is in effect cheaper (i.e. is more efficient), more of it gets sold. It is not really a paradox at all. See the second linked item below.

Nonsense efficiency/conservation propaganda should not be tolerated for five minutes, but you can bet there will be plenty of willing South African bourgeois drummers for this infantile pied piper’s dance, even though it is false, because it conveys their favourite message of scarcity.

COSATU has now issued the Political Report passed at the recent CEC (Central Executive Committee). See the linked document below. Annexure A to that report, given a separate link below, is a tabulated comparison between the resolutions of the 52nd (Polokwane) ANC Conference and the previously-held “positions” of COSATU.

Click on these links:

Browse Mole Report, Democracy must be defended, ANC Today (1093 words)

The Jevons Paradox, Robert Bryce, Counterpunch (902 words)

COSATU CEC Political Report, 25 - 27 February 2008 (11902 words)

Annexure A, Analysis of ANC Resolutions against COSATU positions (Table)

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