Mike Schussler: The Crisis in SA May Trigger Action

The bad news is that we may be in a crisis.

The good news is this may be just what we need.

This was the message this morning of award-winning economist Mike Schussler of economists.co.za to the Northcliff Investor’s Club, at a breakfast session sponsored by PSG.

Mike suggested that with a cabinet war room having been set up to deal with the power problem, with joblessness increasing, with levels of unhappiness that lead people to block roads – the crisis is here.

Meanwhile, SA’s crucial water and electricity infrastructure “seems to be letting go.”

But it is not all negative.

Schussler suggested that in a crisis, things can get moving and we can unlock things.

“Crises are often needed,” he argued, looking back to the transition period from apartheid to democracy.

And he had one bright forecast – that better-controlled inflation might lead to an interest rate cut later this year.

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Government Drink-Drive Plans are Mad

It really is awful enough living under a kleptocratic, corrupt and inefficient government.  But at least we can occasionally pop out for a nice meal, to watch some sport at the pub, to a dinner party with some friends.  No more.

If The Star is to be believed, the Department of Transport bullies have decided in their infinite stupidity that no alcohol at all will be allowed to be ingested before you drive. None.

Now, I am not advocating that any of us should get sloshed, get driving, and pose a danger to ourselves and anyone within target range of our cars.   But let’s be sensible about this.

A few drinks are not going to lead to mass carnage on the roads. No drinks are going to cause massive economic losses.

Those trips to the pub, to the restaurant, to see friends, to those increasingly rare corporate and media events where they treat their guests as adults and offer a glass or two of booze. All of these would be threatened.

How could I gather people for our Die Vine Intervention podcast wine tasting recordings, knowing it would be illegal for them to drive away afterwards?

The impact on the pub and restaurant business would be massive, with many closures and a lot of job losses. Indeed the only real winners would be the convoys of corrupt cops who would rake in massive bribes for keeping drivers out of trouble if they are caught with a thimbleful of cough mixture or some other dangerous alcoholic beverage in their systems.

And what about the Winelands?   Disaster.   Many estates have diversified to offer not just tastings (ILLEGAL) but also meals with a glass of their own wine (ILLEGAL).

This is a growth industry, and an important tourist industry, and it brings jobs and prosperity.  And  a lot of pleasure to a lot of people.

Of course, there are alternatives to driving yourself.   You can have a designated driver, use public transport, or one of the services which will drive you – such as Uber.

But this should not be necessary, is inconvenient, irritating and expensive.   It is bad enough they call booze levies ‘sin taxes’. Now they want to err ever so far on the side of caution with desperately offensive new legislation which will do a hell of a lot more harm than good.

There is an active campaign to kill the e-Tolls.   This government garbage on outlawing a drink before you drive deserves just as much derision and opposition.

Tweet of the day

Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow): How long does it take to eat a tire? A good year. #ClassicJokeFriday

 

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