While you were sleeping: 22nd February 2017

Budget D-Day looms for Gordhan, humanitarian access allowed in S.Sudan, and significant drop in teen suicide rates in gay marriage-legal states.

Wednesday, 22nd February 2017

“Government’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidise it.”
Ronald Reagan


Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan will read his 2017 Budget in front of his enemies – main among them President Jacob Zuma – and his friends. But whatever he says, we’re so deep in a series of systemic crises that it has almost ceased to matter. RICHARD POPLAK sums up where we are, and where we may be going.


Budget D-Day looms

It’s going to be a tense ANC side of the House when Minister Pravin Gordhan delivers his state of the nati… Budget speech. Surrounded by political enemies, and quite possibly a newly-sworn in MP Brian Molefe, things could not be more awkward if Zuma himself let issue a parliamentary fart mid-proceedings. There will probably be no white shirt thuggery, but you should watch regardless. You can always follow the DM post-budget live stream on Thursday. Click here and bookmark it .


South Sudan to allow access to famine-hit regions

South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir has assured humanitarian aid workers that they would have “unimpeded access” to areas worst affected by famine. Kiir made the statement in a parliamentary address on Tuesday. Considering Kiir’s government is partly responsible for the outbreak of famine in the first place, the promise is a darkly ironic afterthought.


FARC disarmament to begin in March

The disarmament process for FARC rebels has been determined to begin on 1 March. Collections of weapons are expected to be performed in tranches of thirds, with the final portion completed in June. The Colombian government made the announcement late on Tuesday, although failed to note just where exactly said weaponry will be stored.


Significant drop in teen suicides in US gay marriageable states

Journal of the American Medical Association Pediatrics has revealed a 14% drop in suicides by gay, lesbian and bisexual adolescents in states where gay marriage is legal. The findings, according to one researcher, “may be something about having equal rights — even if they have no immediate plans to take advantage of them — that makes students feel less stigmatised and more hopeful for the future”.




The predicted chance of divorce among current marriages. The old chestnut of 50% is a dated figure from the 80s.



Today is South Africa’s Budget speech day. Far less violent than the SONA, but Minister Pravin Gordhan’s words will, however, have far more relevance to the average citizen.

Jaywalking is not illegal in the UK. It is left to the individual to determine the best time to cross the road.



NOT JUST 94: #SayTheirNames




Sassa’s Mysterious Tardiness

A column by PIERRE DE VOS


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