Saturday, December 24, 2005


Short thoughts

Ever had one of those emails that asks you strange questions, like whether you prefer coke to pepsi, or pizzahut to KFC? Well, I thought I'd make the questions a little deeper. Feel free to leave your own answers to them here... or not...

Pro Life or Pro Choice

Sadly, pro choice. Yes I do believe that it's "wrong" but having come from a continent where there is a dire need for it I can understand that it is a more humane and healthy choice. Often when we look at this question we see it from the viewpoint of a first world country. We think that all children will eventually be loved. That unwanted children can just be given up for adoption and the mother can get on with her life. Sadly, in Africa anyway, that's not true. Poverty is extreme. Healthcare in vast swathes of the continent just does not exist, and women face dying in childbirth. More than half a million women die of pregnancy complications or in childbirth in Africa EVERY YEAR. To put that in perspective, we are shocked and horrified if a commercial jumbo jet crashes and everyone on board is killed. This is the equivalent of a jumbo jet crashing every four hours. In fact, childbirth is the leading cause of death among women aged 15 - 45 in developing countries. According to a BBC website, women in Sierre Leone and Afghanistan have a one in six chance of dying as a result of pregnancy. Compare that to the figure of one in 2,500 in the US, or one in 29,800 in Sweden.
Rape in developing counrtires is endemic. Often ,when a woman has been raped, if her husband has survived the attack himself (in Africa it's often an act of war in which men are slaughtered), the chances of him accepting the woman back into the relationship is not good. In some Arabic countries she would be stoned to death at worst or outcast at best. Imagine this traumatised woman with no means of supporting herself and her child being forced to give birth, alone. No hospital or doctors to help her, no sanitation. What chance does she have, and if she manages to survive, what chance will her child have?

Capitalist or Communist

It's amazing how many people confuse capitalism with democarcy and communism with dictatorship. Oh well. Communist, of course. Simply because I believe that any system we follow should strive to make us better. Communism appeals to the noble ideals of an equal society, a society that protects its weak and holds the good of its people above all else. Capitalism appeals to greed, a dog-eat-dog world that hopes, vaguely, that businesses will become so fabulously wealthy they will become bored with making money and allow some crumbs to fall from its banquet tables to feed the starving. Communism views people as basically good. Capitalism views them as lazy, stupid, unwilling, except of course for the Richard Bransons and Bill Gates of the world. Communism advocates hard work, loyalty and striving for the greater good. Capitalism thinks that people who rip people off are clever or to be admired. It judges people not on who they are or what they stand for but what they own or what they look like.
Personally I don't believe that capitalism makes us free. I believe it merely revives the feudal system and we have swapped the lords of old for corporate bodies of today with the serfs of the fields now slaving away in soulless cubicles, or worse, in sweat shops.

Capital punishment?

Yes. Preferably with only one appeal. Some people just deserve to die. I'm tired of psychologists telling us that criminals are "sick". Most of them are not, they're evil. Serial killers, while they make for great reading material, deserve to die. No matter if their daddy didn't love them, or their mother dressed them up as girls. In between their killing sprees they know what they are doing is wrong. Yet, they continue to do it. People who rape babies need to die. There is no accident, no excuse, no leeway. Sometimes I'm sorry that they get to die humanely.

Herbivore or Carnivore?

Carnivorous, milk drinking, egg eating human being alert. Sorry, animals get to die. I hope it's quick. Nature/God gave me canine teeth and only one stomach. Leave the weeds to the herbivores.


Damn I love fur, but I prefer it on the living animal. I used to believe that if something were commercially viable it would be safe. Now I am not that sure. Having been exposed to the abject cruelty of fur farms in mainland China I realise that, like with abortion, sometimes existance isn't all it's cracked up to be. The idea of an animal being hunted and killed humanely is natural and right. The reality of what happens haunts my dreams and I cannot in good conscience support any "farmed" fur for the simple reason that you never know where it comes from. You have no guarantee that the animals were kept in decent conditions and killed humanely. You don't even know which country it comes from. Until that mess is sorted out, I'll have to stick to wool.


Go Green Peace!

Free market or National control?

Control, control, control. Businessmen should not be in charge of people's lives. It just stands to reason. Some things should never be for sale. If someone is ill and needs medical attention money should not buy them "better" care. Sure it could buy them a nicer room, a bowl of flowers, better food. But at the visceral level they should not get lesser care. How would I ensure that? I'd force professionals to take on a certain number of cases for free and make it a criteria for keeping their licences. There was a huge uproar in South Africa when the minister of healthy forced medical students to work at state run hospitals for a year. She had the right idea. It gives them experience and fills the manpower gap. It should be mandatory in every profession in every country throughout the world and should be part of their qualification. How countries would grow if they had this resource, and how little it affects the workers.

Friday, December 02, 2005


The Russians Are Coming!!! (again again)

Growing up in Apartheid South Africa, I was fed a steady mental diet of fear about "Them", i.e. Blacks, and "Communists". The Communists wanted to help "Them" kill us. It was as simple as that. The Communists wanted to kill all of "Us" because they were jealous. (Now where have I heard that recently?). Ah well.
It was only after I began actually speaking to some of these Blacks and Communists, that I realised these fears were pretty far from the truth. I've since had to revise that theory too. One just cannot deny the orgy of violence and crime in South Africa, and one cannot deny that it is black on white.
On his website a racist ex-Rhodesian Jan Lamprecht pulls no punches in pointing out the foibles of the South African government and the crimes of "Them". While I have no reason to doubt the veracity of his reports, his comments are blatantly racial, as if "They" are the only people in the whole world who rape "their" daughters, or commit corrupt acts in government. In Lamprecht's world there are no white criminals, no whites deal drugs, get involved in shootouts, rape, plunder or even litter. Only "THEY" do that.
In his latest "Southern African Report" though, tucked in among all the crimes, is a little piece about the Russians testing a new missile. Naturally this peaked my curiosity.
We have known for some time that the Russians - by their own admission - had a missile that would negate the Americans' Star Wars system.
Lamprecht, of course, sees nothing less than a full scale attack on America as being behind the latest move and froths on about the need to nuke Europe. Yes, he too is a victim of the "Commies are coming and they're going to kill us all" diet.
He seems to forget the naked agression of the Americans towards the Soviets, from right back to the Russian revolution in 1917 the US, like they did in Iraq, planted evidence, made up stories, entrapped, created false evidence, and basically lied in their efforts to keep their enemy. The west was bombarded with stories of collusion between the Red Chinese and the Soviets, the Cubans, the huge plans of world domination. Entire generations of American children practiced drills in case the Commies dropped the bomb on them. The McCarthy witchhunts were indeed a dark time in American history.
I don't suppose that anyone growing up in this climate of constant brainwashing can be expected to be objetctive in viewing the lastest advances in Russian military technology. Yes, the Russians devloped their own nukes, and thank God for that. Since the fall of the Soviets we've seen the naked agression of an unchecked America and it's not pretty. So if the Russians want to keep up with the latest American technology and develop their own answer to it, I, for one, am quite relieved.
I notice Lampercht doesn't once question why the Americans might need nukes. Maybe he thinks the rest of the world should just leave themselves defenceless and learn to say "Yes Baas" to the Americans.

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