Podcast: Can we save SA’s restaurants and winelands?

A vital discussion on food and wine

By John Fraser

Recorded before the latest easing of the lockdown, but still of vital relevance, a top-tier panel chats about the Covid-19 impact on the food and wine sector and the SA government’s heavy-handed approach.

Joining me are lunch-out legend David Bullard, food and wine guru Michael Olivier, business strategist Duane Newman and Klerksdorp’s own James Lennox.

Listen, laugh and learn.

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SA Needs Marshal Law to Fight Covid-19

Or not….?

By John Fraser

Wanna hear a great joke? Cyril believes history will give him the thumbs up.

OK, he is not alone. Trump, Boris and that bozo from Brazil also stuffed up the Covid response, with millions paying with their lives for the inept political leadership.

South Africa was a case study, though, in both daft regulation and inept government communication.

That awful Zuma woman, fine-print freak Patel and the bore of the year Jackson Mthembu (who is supposed to be good at communications but isn’t), aided by the prat in the hat who is (scarily) in charge of our police, could not have done a much worse job.

The tone was wrong, the message off-focus, and the legislation woefully misguided.

I cannot think of a better way of messing up the message and pissing off millions of citizens than they achieved by their jackboot bans on booze and cigarettes.

Heavy-handed, daft , unenforcible and unjustifiable measures have led to a mass resistance in South Africa – not to Covid-19, sadly, but to ministerial messaging.

Cyril makes the occasional speech and often he does say all the right things. But the damage is being done by the preening politicians in their so-called ‘Command Council.’ Set the DeLorean for 1984, Mildred!

Far, far too many South Africans – maybe the majority? – feel the panic is over, now that the booze and tobacco bans have been eased, shops are open and we can all go back to work.

Not that it is entirely business as usual. You still cannot buy alcohol from a South African shop on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday. These nanny Nazis are still on the rampage.

This ineptitude by our leaders is not a victimless crime. Every time I venture out to go shopping or to have a meal, I see the regulations being shat over by a public which either doesn’t realise the dangers, or which doesn’t care. Are they so retarded they don’t appreciate that they are a danger to themselves and to everyone else?

Wear a mask? Most do, some have it jauntily below their noses – and that includes food-preparation staff!

Keep your distance? I try, and am greeted with laughter or hostility. From staff and from other shoppers.

It got so bad in Dischem that I now boycott the store. And it has not been a good week to switch to Clicks.

Just today, in a Pretoria East greengrocers I had to use my trolly to keep at bay a staff member who wanted to squeeze past me in an aisle which is so narrow that it was almost a squeeze just going along single-file. (The lockdown has not been kind to my waistline).

They really do not give a toss.

So what do we do?

A rare bit of sense from Boris

Unusually, I think Boris has had an excellent idea this week, with his suggestion of a team of Covid Marshals – people to police the regulations.

Why is this not happening in SA?

There is no shortage of unemployed, the health rewards would be massive, and an army of marshals could really help to control the brain-dead shoppers, and the often brain-deader staff.

While we are at it, why are shops not being forced to close down where they do not widen their aisles to allow people to pass one-another safely?

Where are the existing teams of State inspectors? Too busy fiddling PPE tenders?

Now if Cyril were to pop up on TV and announce that the bullshit is over, and government intends to enforce the simple social-distancing rules that its droning politicians have decreed, that would be a wise move.

I would even endure another briefing from Tannie Zuma or Jackson the insufferable if – for once – they stuck to the point and announced something sensible.

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