Constitutional Hill

Trial by media? No, that’s impossible

When magistrate Daniel Thulare took a swipe at the media this week during a routine court appearance by Oscar Pistorius, the magistrate displayed a rather archaic, pre-constitutional view of the way in which the media is allowed to report on criminal matters in South Africa. He also expressed concern that Pistorius was being subjected to a “trial by media”. But the use of this term is both silly and spectacularly uninformed. Members of the media do not have the power to either try or to convict any accused person. It is the appropriate presiding judicial officer who has the power to try and (if he or she is guilty) to convict an accused.

During the court appearance of Oscar Pistorius, magistrate Thulare expressed concern that the course of justice was being perverted by the fevered attention the case was receiving in the media. “There appears to be a trial by the media houses of Mr Pistorius,” he said. “It would appear some of the [media] activities may amount, if not to scandalising the court system in the republic, then to contempt.”

It is unclear how any media activities around the Pistorius case could amount to “scandalising the court”. I suspect that magistrate Thulare became confused about two distinct and wholly separate aspects of the crime of contempt of court. “Scandalising the court” usually relates to the publication of opinions which tend, or are calculated, to bring the administration of justice into contempt. For example, suggesting that all judges in South Africa are guilty of personal favouritism and allow themselves to be influenced by personal and corrupt motives in judicially deciding matters would constitute scandalising of the court.

As the Constitutional Court explained in S v Mamabolo, the real offence of scandalising the court “is the wrong done to the public by weakening the authority and influence of a tribunal which exists for their good alone”. It is not the self-esteem, feelings or dignity of the judicial officer, or even the reputation, status or standing of a particular court that is sought to be protected, but the moral authority of the judicial process as such.

This notion of scandalising the courts does not preclude robust and informed public debate about judicial affairs because such debate:

promotes peace and stability by convincing those who have been wronged that the legal process is preferable to vengeance; by assuring the meek and humble that might is not right; by satisfying business people that commercial undertakings can be efficiently enforced; and, ultimately, as far as they all are concerned, that there exists a set of just norms and a trustworthy mechanism for their enforcement.

In Mamabolo the Constitutional Court drew a clear distinction between important and legitimate comment and criticism of judicial conduct and the decisions of judicial officers, on the one hand, and scandalising the court, on the other, and stated the following:

An important distinction has in the past been drawn between reflecting on the integrity of courts, as opposed to mere reflections on their competence or the correctness of their decisions. Because of the grave implications of a loss of public confidence in the integrity of its judges, public comment calculated to bring that about has always been regarded with considerable disfavour. No one expects the courts to be infallible. They are after all human institutions. But what is expected is honesty. Therefore the crime of scandalising is particularly concerned with the publication of comments reflecting adversely on the integrity of the judicial process or its officers.

This means that there is absolutely nothing wrong with criticising the outcome of a case or even with criticising a judge for having got the law wrong or for having been too lenient in sentencing a convicted criminal. But where that criticism would suggest that the judge got it wrong because he or she was corrupt or otherwise swayed by impermissible factors, then the crime of scandalising the court would loom large.

Of course, as mentioned above, when magistrate Thulare said the media was scandalising the court, he must have confused this rule with the so called sub judice rule about which I wrote earlier this week. Pointing this out does not scandalise the court – it merely engages in a robust discussion about the magistrate’s seeming lack of legal knowledge or understanding of the relevant legal principles.

But apart from this obviously muddled and outdated view of media reporting of criminal trials, magistrate Thulare’s comments can also be faulted on the basis that the notion of “trial by media” is a nonsensical and legally completely irrelevant concept.

When famous, rich, politically well-connected individuals or others who hold social power because of their white skins or their class and status are charged with criminal offences, they often complain about being subjected to “trial by the media”. Strangely, the same people never get upset about the “trial by media” of someone like Johannes Kana, charged with the brutal rape and murder of Anene Booysen. Neither do they claim there is a “trial by media” when the media refers to murder accused Johan Kotze as the “Modimolle Monster” or when the media refers to Wouter Basson as “Doctor Death”.

The fact of the matter is that it is inevitable that the reputation of any person who is charged with a crime will suffer negatively. When President Jacob Zuma was charged with fraud and corruption after Schabir Shaik was found guilty of bribing him, Zuma’s reputation surely suffered (at least among everyone who are not his most ardent supporters) – even though he had not been convicted of any crime.

When Johannes Kana was charged with the rape and the murder of Anene Booysen, his reputation must surely also have suffered – even though he had not been found guilty of any crime. Similarly, if I were ever to be charged with drunken driving, my reputation would take a knock (except, maybe, with Jackson Mthembu) long before a magistrate would have had the opportunity to test the evidence to determine whether I was guilty or not.

Section 35(3)(h) of the Constitution does guarantee for every criminal accused the right to be presumed innocent by the magistrate or judge who tries his or her case. The magistrate or judge must consider all the evidence placed before him or her by the prosecutors as well as the defence of the accused and must then make an impartial decision about the guilt or innocence of the accused after weighing up all the evidence.

This right also entitles an accused not publicly to be branded a criminal before he or she has been convicted of a crime. But the right cannot prevent members of the public from forming an opinion about the guilt or innocence of an accused. Hopefully, members of the public will try to keep an open mind for as long as possible and will not quickly jump to conclusions about the guilt or innocence of an accused. (For example, just as we cannot say for certain that President Zuma will be found guilty of fraud and corruption if he were ever to be charged, neither can we say for certain that he will be acquitted.)

But ordinary citizens are not judges and they will form opinions about the guilt or innocence of a person charged with a criminal offence. As more evidence about a specific case becomes public (and especially as the trial progress and evidence is presented in court) very few members of the public who follow the case will not at some point begin to lean towards a view as to either the guilt or innocence of an accused.

Nothing – and especially not the constitutional right to be presumed innocent by a magistrate or judge – can stop that from happening. But this means the media does have an important task to report accurately and fairly on criminal cases. The media has an ethical and legal duty not to brand the accused as a criminal before he or she has been convicted of a crime. The media should also try and provide an accurate reflection of the claims and counter claims relating to an alleged criminal offence committed by an accused. Members of the public will then be placed in the position where they will be able to draw their own conclusions as to the possible guilt or innocence of the accused.

Of course, if members of the media (or members of the public commenting on social media) make wild and unsubstantiated claims in which they brand the accused guilty of a crime even before conviction, they will be defaming the accused. In the event of the accused being acquitted, he or she could potentially then sue the culprits for defamation.

This does not mean we cannot speculate about the merits of the case and engage in informed discussion about the possibility that a specific defence put up by an accused would be successful. For example, some commentators would be far from certain that (even on the version of events provided by Oscar Pistorius during his bail application) his defence of putative self-defensive will be accepted by the court. If any of them write that Pistorius’ defence team will have an uphill battle in convincing the court of this defence, they would not be stating that Pistorius is guilty of murder. They would be engaging in informed discussion about the merits of the case against an accused who has not been found guilty of a crime and there would be no legal danger in doing so.

I imagine that it must be devastating to be charged with having committed a criminal offence. Nothing in the constitution or the law can protect you from the effects of facing such charges. Rich and famous people used to adulatory publicity are often shocked when the media (whom they used to fuel their fame and power), turn against them and report honestly about the criminal charges they face. And it is usually exactly at that point that they trot out the “trial by media” complaint

  • Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?

    If I said ‘Thanks to the ANC’s policy of deploying cadres to our Courts but particularly to the machinations of Dumisa Ntsebeza at the JSC it is impossible for a white man to get a fair trial in a South African Court’ would that be ‘scandalising the Court’?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?
    June 6, 2013 at 8:30 am

    Brett, to make your day – welcome our new African hero – another great dictator, unapologetic racist and virulently homophobic African leader – I give you Robert Mugabe!

    “President Robert Mugabe is the greatest black statesman alive today in Africa. Greatness here must be evaluated on the criteria of whether the person who claims the position of leadership of his or her people against colonialism, apartheid and white rule has been able to guide the nation to greater liberation, dignity and independence. “If we judged only on these criteria, not on the whims of popularity gained from affability and praise by Europe and the US, then Mugabe stands head and shoulders above the rest,” Mngxitama said. He said President Mugabe had shown his visionary leadership in pursuing land reforms adding evidence showed that over 300 000 households and their dependents had benefited from the land redistribution exercise contrary to claims in Western media.”

    http://allafrica.com/stories/201306040169.html

  • Chris

    When I heard about the magistrate’s remarks on the news, my first thought was why on earth would he make such remarks? Was he seeking media attention himself, making sure he would be mentioned in every news report, or was there a genuine concern that the media reports could subvert the course of justice? Did any of the parties complain to him in court before he made made those remarks, or did he just decide on his own to air his perhaps misconceived views? Or magistrates and judges should remember that they are not policemen, and are supposed to judge on what is placed before them as evidencial material only. I read the news every day, and I certainly did not think that the remarks were warranted in any way.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Chris
    June 6, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Chris. PdV seems to be hinting that this [white] judge seems to be incompetent and doesn’t know what he is doing. Nobody would know why incompetent judges are appointed but there may be a clue here.

    The JSC must redefine merit to advance judicial transformation

    “This is highly problematic as it perpetuates the deeply entrenched white male-centric (some might say racist and sexist) notion that upper middle-class white men are almost always superior in “merit” to black and female candidates.”

    http://constitutionallyspeaking.co.za/the-jsc-must-redefine-merit-to-advance-judicial-transformation/

    So you can see as with or government, DPW and our health and education systems the problem is really that it is not TRANSFORMED and still dominated by heterosexual [pale white] middle-class males.

  • Chris

    Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR? says:
    June 6, 2013 at 8:30 am

    Yes Brett, I think you will be scandalising the Court. If you said “Thanks to the ANC’s policy of deploying cadres to our Courts but particularly to the machinations of Dumisa Ntsebeza at the JSC it is less likely that a white man will get a fair trial in a South African Court’ you may still get away with it. Remember that all judges are not equally competent. Some find their work challenging to say the least, but the vast majority of South African judges are extremely competent.

  • Chris

    Ozoneblue says:
    June 6, 2013 at 10:45 am

    Perhaps I’m wrong, but as far as I know Dan Thulare is Black.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Chris
    June 6, 2013 at 10:51 am

    “Perhaps I’m wrong, but as far as I know Dan Thulare is Black.”

    huh. Well then poor Oscar is certainly fucked anyway. How can they appoint a white judge to judge a black man?

    “Perceived justice is a prerequisite for a legal system to be wholly legitimate. But perceived justice requires judicial officers who citizens can trust. Such trust is fostered only when justice is dispensed by people who broadly look like the people who the justice system is regulating.”

    http://www.iol.co.za/the-star/jsc-is-consistently-inconsistent-1.1504039

  • Chris

    Ozoneblue says:
    June 6, 2013 at 10:57 am
    “Well then poor Oscar is certainly fucked anyway. How can they appoint a white judge to judge a black man?”

    Hey Ozone, throw that zoll out of the window now!
    1. Poor Oscar is lilly white so no Black man will be judged in his case;
    2. The judge who will precide over his case must still be appointed so the race is still an unknown factor;
    3. The most competent criminal judge in South Africa (in my humble opinion) isn’t White.

  • Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?

    Chris says:
    June 6, 2013 at 10:48 am

    OKDK. For how much longer shouldn’t I say it, do you think?

  • spoiler

    Spot on Chris – OB – OP will be tried in the High Court and Thulare isnt a Judge, he’s a magistrate. The case will be transfered for trial in the High Court once the pre-trial fomalities have been finalised ie the investigation, charge sheet and so on.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Chris
    June 6, 2013 at 11:07 am

    Ok Chris. Although some of your “facts” are highly debatable I can see where you are trying to go with this. You don’t want to see color, be “colour-blind” again when it suits your privilege. But what about his disabilities, from what I have heard he is a Calvinist and he has a bit of a coconut for a brain. [Like some other good people with I know coming from that community]

    Do we have any Calvinists with coconuts for brains on our bench?

  • Gwebecimele

    Gwebecimele says:
    June 5, 2013 at 14:43 pm
    What about the magistrate who is asked to go to a room and switch off the light and he decides to dance infront of the mirror for few minutes (have a moment of fame) before pressing the plug.

    What was that about media and these fellow is not even a presiding officer for the case?

  • Maggs Naidu – I am a crass obnoxious opinionated egotistical cunt

    Hey Dworky

    WDYSTT ?

  • Chris

    Yes Gwebe, the magistrate was just doing the postponement.

    Brett, at least wait until you are certain that Anonymouse has retired. You don’t know who he is, but he knows your name and he might just be the person judging your case!

  • Paul Kearney

    “For example, suggesting that all judges in South Africa are guilty of personal favouritism and allow themselves to be influenced by personal and corrupt motives in judicially deciding matters would constitute scandalising of the court.”

    well Mr PDivvy, don’t you regularly suggest that judges should be appointed that effectively ignore or discount the law and rule based on their personal motives and experiences and having sensitivity to historical disadvantage, gender and sexuality issues?

    Aka “transformation”.

  • beetle

    The media enthusiastically reported that paediatrician, Dr Heyns had been buried near a notorious rent-boy rendezvous.
    Ditto sexual predation by Eugene Terre’blanche.
    Its what sells newspapers.
    I feel sorry for Dr Heyns’ family.
    The smell will always stick- irrespective of whether any activity occurred or indeed whether private activities were condoned within the arena of a loving family. It should not be How we remember a decent man.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Maggs

    I say its all about RACISM. If Sheena had been black, the media would not have put her on trial in the first place!

    Thanks.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Paul Kearney
    June 6, 2013 at 14:05 pm

    Aka “transformation”.

    Yip. But more on this delicate art of sugar-coating a turd.

    “His pampered narrative of Mugabe’s so-called humaneness refracts through the prism of upper class naivety. Dali’s father, the late nationalist Oliver Tambo, president of African National Congress was a man of honour who abhorred racism. He must be turning in his grave to ‘see’ his son blatantly exploited like a willing spin doctor of a fading but violent political dynasty. The only legacy he inherited from Oliver is one – family name. Ahgh, Robert Mugabe has “made mistakes but in general he’s going to go down in history with a very positive perspective from Africans”. Which narrow-minded, politically disabled African does Dali cluster in this proverbial group of psychotics? Mugabe “has been misunderstood and ill-judged by a lot of the press”. Bizarre! Vacuum cleaning ZANU-PF with sanitised accolades to the point of self immolation! Dali, use the periscope of your rogue political submarine to encounter the harsh realities of Mugabe’s true political persona. In the 1980s, 20 000 citizens perished under the bayonet of Gukurahundi during Mugabe’s watch. Year 2000 and beyond, ZANU-PF ‘orderly chaos’ displaced millions of Zimbabweans into South Africa, Botswana, England, USA and Australia. During this decade of madness, we laboured under a billion % inflation that decimated incomes, destroyed industry and pushed unemployment to over 90%. Zimbabweans suffered from state-sponsored repression and electoral violence that saw thousands of villagers molested in torture bases.”

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71619?oid=380948&sn=Detail&pid=71616

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Maggs Naidu – I am a crass obnoxious opinionated egotistical cunt
    June 6, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    I agree.

    But it’s better to post under your own name.

    Coward!

  • Maggs Naidu – Drunken judgement! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    June 6, 2013 at 15:11 pm

    Dworky,

    “If Sheena had been black”

    Who’s Sheena?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Maggs Naidu – Drunken judgement! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)
    June 6, 2013 at 16:06 pm

    “Who’s Sheena?”

    I’m no race expert or CRT theorist but let my try – queen of the jungle?

  • Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?

    Chris says:
    June 6, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    Can’t promise, Chris. Dunno when I’m going to get the next speeding fine. Not that I do, often. But, when I do, I make sure I get my money’s worth.

    P.s. I can find anything on the net. Gotta see if I can find Dr Mouse. WOuldn’t a recusal application be hilarious?

  • Maggs Naidu – Drunken judgement! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Paul Kearney
    June 6, 2013 at 14:05 pm

    Hey Paul,

    “well Mr PDivvy, don’t you regularly suggest that judges should be appointed that effectively ignore or discount the law and rule based on their personal motives and experiences and having sensitivity to historical disadvantage, gender and sexuality issues?”

    Are you implying that there are no Blacks and/or women who are capable?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Maggs Naidu – Drunken judgement! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)
    June 6, 2013 at 18:23 pm

    Maggs – is that really you?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Check it out on poiticsweb.

    Comrade Blade rediscovered his Das Capital 9gain) and tryin to be genuine.

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71619?oid=381416&sn=Detail&pid=71616

    I guess he makes history. Never before in all history of Marxism, has a mob of RACIAL NATIONALISTS butt-fucked a “comrade” quite that hard. Except perhaps SA 1922.

    Prison style.

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Ozoneblue
    June 6, 2013 at 21:14 pm

    OB

    “Maggs – is that really you?”

    Yes!

  • John Roberts

    Ozoneblue

    At least Vavi can construct a coherent argument even if one disagrees with him.

    Unlike the puerile, child-like, circular and emotional drivel served up by de Vos

  • Paul Kearney

    Esih Maggo; take off them race tinted specs. PDivvy has been rabbitting on about judges who will consider historical disadvantage, gender and sexuality issues rather than the law. He somehow thinks that because a judge is of a particular background, race, gender or sexual proclivity he/she/hir is allowed/able etc to override/warp etc the law in favour of their particular characteristic (race, sex etc etc). All in the name of transformation.

    I think this is wrong, demeaning and bigoted. I would like to think that any and every SA judge rules based on the law and only the law. PDivvy thinks otherwise when it suits him.

    What do you think?

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Paul Kearney
    June 7, 2013 at 11:15 am

    Paul,

    “I think this is wrong, demeaning and bigoted.”

    I agree.

    Judges must be feeling pretty awful to have been selected on that basis!

  • Gwebecimele

    Victory for the small. Congratulations to all involved including the court.

    http://www.timeslive.co.za/thetimes/2013/06/07/schools-win-big-in-court

  • Gwebecimele

    Ramphele and Njabulo Ndebele must respond to this unfair practice.

    http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/Cleaner-gets-UCT-degree-after-17-years-20130607

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Gwebecimele
    June 7, 2013 at 11:31 am

    gwebs. That is ‘n baie mooi storie.

    “His employer Willem Venter, said a farmer in the area Clarence Johnson heard about Khohlokoane’s situation and arranged for his debt to be paid. Over the years the debt had accrued interest and had grown to R100 000. On Friday, Venter will drive Khohlokoane, his wife, and their daughter to his graduation ceremony in Cape Town. Khohlokoane, dressed in a brand new suit, said he had never lost faith and always knew he would get his degree somehow. “I’m so happy. I’m free,” he said.”

    http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/Cleaner-gets-UCT-degree-after-17-years-20130607

    But I hope we all agree that real affirmative action means that he didn’t have to rely on some good samaratin to pay for his studies. I can only just hope that one day we will have a socialist to become our minister of education.

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Paul Kearney
    June 7, 2013 at 11:15 am

    I guess what makes it worse is the deliberate attempt by some in the JSC to demean, undermine, humiliate some of the applicants rather than simply selecting Blacks or women!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Some more good news for Andile Mangxitama’s heroic subsistence farmers – who make up about 2% of the Zim population (not counting the millions of whom worship Robert Mugabe but prefer to live in “white dominated” South Africa).

    “The world’s poorest nations are set to nearly triple spending on nutrition programs for mothers and children over the next two years to help cope with volatile food prices, the World Bank said on Thursday.”

    “The world’s poorest are particularly sensitive to big swings in food prices as they spend a large chunk of their income on food. In response to higher prices, households will often buy cheaper foods like rice or maize that have fewer nutrients, Hansen said.”

    http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/643683-world-bank-says-poor-nations-to-boost-spending-on-nutrition.html

    Soon all of Africa will be entirely dependant on the World bank for our food parcels.

  • Zulani

    “Ozoneblue
    June 6, 2013 at 21:14 pm

    OB

    “Maggs – is that really you?”

    Yes!
    Pierre, is this where your blog is drifting to?

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Zulani
    June 7, 2013 at 17:36 pm

    Zulani – I responded so because some moron has posted under my name earlier!

    This one :

    ” Maggs Naidu – I am a crass obnoxious opinionated egotistical cunt
    June 6, 2013 at 12:30 pm”

  • Paul Kearney

    Ah Maggs, the heart of transformation; let’s not be too fussy about suitability. As for candidates being humiliated etc, I think advocates can normally look after themselves under cross. If they can’t then they know what it’s like in the box.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    And here I agree with even the evil Robert Mugabe.

    If anybody stole land from the people. Let them give it back.

    “The government wants to take back state and private land that’s in the “hands of thieves” or those who got it illegitimately, when it reopens the land claims process after almost 14 years.”

    “But people falsify documents and have collaborators. There are agencies investigating this matter. And we refer some of the information given to us to them to investigate. The investigation has been going on for some time,” he said.”

    “Sizani said Section 25 of the Constitution states that everybody’s got a right to hold on to his property, “but if it is stolen it is not yours”.

    “Everybody who is found with stolen goods is sent to jail. So in this context we make this call,” said Sizani.

    “The government would be looking into cases where certain people got 99-year leases for less than a rand.”

    http://www.iol.co.za/business/business-news/give-back-stolen-land-says-state-1.1528938

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Hey Brett, OB and other racists (excluding JR),

    See what WHITE people do.

    Cederberg mayor has been suspended from the ANC for abusing the rights of women and children, the provincial disciplinary committee (PDC) said. …

    The PDC found [him] guilty on Thursday of sexual harassment, intimidation, victimisation, grooming a minor for purposes of soliciting sex, and accepting a bribe.

    http://www.timeslive.co.za/politics/2013/06/08/western-cape-anc-mayor-suspended-over-child-woman-rights-abuse

  • Gwebecimele

    OB

    If you were black what would you vote for in 94 between ” Willing buyer, willing seller” or “Land first, everything else shall follow”?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Gwebecimele
    June 9, 2013 at 6:58 am

    I get your point gwebs. And whatever you may think about me I’m not insensitive to this very important issue.

    I have never disagreed with the policy of historic justice, redress and of national land benefaction. What I do take an issue with is a simplistic, dumbed-down narrative of history meant to racially mobalise, to manipulate the electorate and to consolidate political power – “whites” are like this and stole all or “our” land, “blacks” are like that and have done no land stealing of their own. The truth is that today a very, very tiny minority of whites owns any land except of course for the home bond.

    The racially loaded rhetoric is simply not necessary.

  • Michael Osborne

    @ PdV Nov 5th, 2008

    “My man won and I am ecstatic – I cried when the announcement was made and again when Obama delivered his victory speech. The same feeling of watching Nelson Mandela saluting the SA Airforce jets at his inauguration came over me: maybe human beings are not always that bad.”

    OK, now can we all agree to bury political idealism in all its forms forever?

  • Gwebecimele

    “There’s poep on my stoep” by Chester. Hier kom kaka!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Michael Osborne
    June 9, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    I don’t see any “political idealism” in thinking that electing a “black man” would somehow make anything better. It is naive, extremely stupid, if not racist – that is all it is.

    http://constitutionallyspeaking.co.za/the-onion-on-the-obama-win/

  • Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?

    Especially if the black man’s name is Barry Soetoro and the ballot says Barack Obama….

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Brett

    “Especially if the black man’s name is Barry Soetoro and the ballot says Barack Obama….”

    Brett is wrong. Obama’s actual madrassa birth name — according to the certified Bangladeshi birth certificate that I have deposited temporarily in Nedbank’s Braamfontein vault — was “Barakar’i Al-Husseini Osama Bin-Bama”!

    Thanks.

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    June 10, 2013 at 1:25 am

    Dworky,

    “Bin-Bama”

    Hmmm.

    Any chance Brett’s surname is actually Bin-Liner?

    Not that he spews out a lot of garbage or anything … ok, I lie, it’s cos he does!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?
    June 9, 2013 at 20:44 pm

    Brett please. Maggs will tell you only WHITE people believe national leaders should show integrity, be honest and have to comply with all these stupid little rules that govern the nation.

    As Pierre said, this black man, leader of the most powerful nation on this planet, saved us all from this obnoxious White Supremacy.

    The killing of Trayvon Martin and racial politics in America

    http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2012/04/pers-a05.html

  • Maggs Naidu – Pistorius didn’t know what he was doing! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Ozoneblue
    June 10, 2013 at 8:52 am

    OB,

    “only WHITE people believe national leaders should show integrity, be honest and have to comply with all these stupid little rules that govern the nation.”

    Any examples of such national leaders?

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Maggs

    I suspect OB has in mind brave struggle stalwarts like Colin Eglin. BTW, did you know that the DA fought apartheid? Probably not. That is why I support the “KNOW YOUR DA” campaign!

    Thanks.

  • Maggs Naidu – The DA fought apartheid! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    June 10, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Dworky,

    “brave struggle stalwarts like Colin Eglin”

    Hmmm – perhaps.

    Since Eglin was in the struggle then he was not poor!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Maggs Naidu – The DA fought apartheid! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)
    June 10, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    Maggs – I am getting worried that you and dworks are turning into a race-blind trolls. When last had you suffered as much as Eusebius at the WHITENESS that keeps him from becoming owner of the company. I mean just how much PAIN and SUFFERING can one very privileged, gay middle class black man tolerate?

    “And because whiteness is normative. You can be, as political analyst Aubrey Matshiqi beautifully puts it, in the numerical majority but still be in the cultural minority.”

    And the 50 mil poor Bleck people who live in South Africa don’t have any culture you know?

    http://www.iol.co.za/the-star/the-unbearable-whiteness-of-being-1.1529686

  • Gwebecimele
  • Gwebecimele

    @ OB

    What about the WAR OF THE CHICKEN? White men are fighting over which chicken we must eat. Where is the GUAVAMENT?? Are they not making the laws? I luv my chicken with 60% salt water.

    Truth is the Chicken Politics are like this

    Chicken Breast goes to Sandton or Rondebosch
    Wings to Soweto or Umlazi
    Heads and feet to Diepsloot
    Thighs to Venterdorp.

    LET THEM EAT MEAT.

  • Maggs Naidu

    Gwebecimele

    June 10, 2013 at 14:31 pm

    Eish Gwebs,

    “I luv my chicken with 60% salt water”

    You are so not up to speed with developments!

    It’s not WATER.

    The proper term is FUNCTIONAL MOISTURE which apparently Black people appreciate a lot.

  • Gwebecimele

    Fransman continues to deliver victory to the DA.

    http://mg.co.za/article/2013-06-07-00-oudtshoorn-spat-opens-door-to-da

  • Gwebecimele

    General Mpembe at Marikana Commission.

    “He said he told officers at an earlier briefing that if the striking mineworkers crossed the police line, officers should allow them to do so because he did not want a confrontation.

    While the strikers were headed to the hill a police officer fired teargas at them and the strikers then turned on police and hacked two of them to death. Another was injured.

    “Chairperson, at that moment I did not give an order and I am not aware who gave the order [to fire the teargas],” said Mpembe”

  • Dmwangi

    OB:

    So to recap that link:

    Eusebius is a victim because some Boers on twitter misunderstood his phraseology. Who cares? Why is this guy as prominent as he is? This isn’t “political analysis” so much as a jeremiad of self-pity.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Dmwangi
    June 10, 2013 at 19:54 pm

    There is more of the same here Dmwani. White liberals in particular (most regularly amongst the most privileged whites) are absolutely obsessed with it, in the false belief that if they keep on talking about it without doing something personally about it – well then their white privilege will become invisible and their black bosses will not notice.

    In Afrikaans we call it “gatkruip”. Literally crawling up the arse of those who are in power to benefit yourself, usually at the expense of others.

    “Sally Matthews lectures in the department of political and international studies at Rhodes University”

    http://mg.co.za/article/2011-09-12-inherited-or-earned-advantage

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Dmwangi

    “Eusesbius is a victim …”

    I too feel desperately sorry for Eusebius. How could he have known when he enrolled for a PhD in philosophy that he would end up ensnared in the oppressive GRAMMAR OF WHITISHNESS? In hindsight, he probably knows that he should have chosen a more AFRICAN institution. Too late now! Shame!

    Thanks.

  • Maggs Naidu – The DA fought apartheid! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    June 10, 2013 at 20:15 pm

    Dworky,

    Did you know that Juju completed a diploma in Youth Development through UNISA?

    Not that it’s any use to him now that he decided to become a cabbage farmer.

    With his farm sold, his cabbage planting skills may gather rust as well.

    But Juju being the wise guy that he is, is studying politics at UNISA.

    Hmmm – I wonder what he will do with that.

    Maybe he should learn to build bridges (literally AND figuratively speaking).

    Anyway I digress – did you know that Dm is a qualified UBUNTU practitioner?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    June 10, 2013 at 20:15 pm

    Eusebius is in fact a novel sort of new-Apartheid thinker. He believes, in relation to the JSC for example, that people can on be judged by people who look like (racially) like themselves.

    He doesn’t mind his fancy whitish car though, or his fancy whitish cellphone, or logging in to the whitish social sites of the internet, created by very whitish White Supremacist scientists, he doesn’t mind living in a fancy whitish suburb next to fancy white liberals who all shop at Woolworths, and he doesn’t mind indulging in those very same whitish cardinal sins of the flesh. In fact he gets quite angry and upset with the “bigotry” of traditional Africans about some of them less politically correct “patriarchal” pov. Much like some other people I know.

  • Gwebecimele

    Just like e-tolls sometimes we just provide ammunition for the DA.

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71619?oid=382065&sn=Detail&pid=71616

  • Gwebecimele

    OB

    From “klip gooier” to “kak gooier”.

    Why Helen is not biting the bullet and tell shack dwellers that DA govt will not provide toilets that are better than their shacks instead she will deliver houses with toilets? Instead she wants to compete in providing cabriolet toilets and modern indoor bucket system.

  • John Roberts

    Hey Pierre here’s a story right up your alley :

    http://www.techcentral.co.za/shuttleworth-declares-war-on-exchange-control/40994/

    1. There’s a rich white guy you can attack
    2. It involves the Constitution and a current lawsuit.

    I suspect however that the constitutionality of exchange control regulations may be a bridge too far for your Huisgenoot blog

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    John Roberts
    June 10, 2013 at 22:12 pm

    You sense when the calibre of Mark Shuttleworth decide throw in the towel that South Africa is well and truly fucked.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Grebe

    “Why Helen is not biting the bullet and tell shack dwellers that DA govt will not provide toilets that are better than their shacks instead she will deliver houses with toilets”

    Gwebe, Madam Botox can only achieve this if she adopts the same brilliant FUNDING model that has enabled Gauteng to make DIEPLSLOOT such a success. That is why I am marching on Wale street on Tuesday morning to demand that Zille embark on a study tour of Gauteng to pick up a few tips!

    Thanks.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Ozoneblue

    Looks like Mr. bean found a job in a German bank.

    German bank supervisor unfairly fired over ‘sleep error’

    ‘A German labour court has ruled that a bank supervisor was unfairly sacked for missing a multi-million-euro error by a colleague who fell asleep during a financial transaction. The clerk was transferring 64.20 euros (£54.60) when he dozed off with his finger on the keyboard, resulting in a transfer of 222,222,222.22 euros.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22850791

  • Gwebecimele

    http://www.iol.co.za:80/news/world/snowden-is-a-hero-says-assange-1.1530207

    Give HIM “Freedom of the City of Cape Town” and vote for Secrecy Bill.

  • Gwebecimele

    Dworky is right, Helen wants give CT its own Diepsloot

  • Zoo Keeper

    John Roberts

    When it comes to tax we seem to run two different Constitutional streams.

    For everything that is not tax, we seem to have a Bill of Rights (mostly).

    For everything that is not tax, we have fuck all (every time).

    I wonder if the Professor can turn his pen to the legal problems of the waiving of rights when its comes to tax (warrantless searches, invasions of privacy, reporting of confidential and private information by third parties without consent, guilty until proven innocent).

    And the ConCourt supports the State in viewing tax as being effectively beyond the Constitution.

  • Brett Nortje – 19 years of ANC rule! Is South Africa FUBAR?

    Ooh, I wouldn’t hold my breath, ZooKeeper!

    Pierre has shown himself pretty oblivious before to the creation of the surveillance society that is so necessary to enforce ‘law and order’ in the kleptocratic state.

    SARS are the bagmen.

    Two more nails in the coffin: Cde Blade is pushing for more state controls over the universities (their finances is what he is after) and the state is more than halving training subsidies to the SETAs in what can only be a sign that the ANC can no longer be bother to keep up the pretence of job-creation and would appreciate it if the peasants would just shut up and sit down.

  • Zoo Keeper

    Brett

    I won’t hold my breath!

    I have asked the Professor numerous times to confront real constitutional questions, the kinds that would make fantastic subjects for doctoral students to tackle.

    Maybe he’s farmed them out to doctoral students. I would appreciate it if he’d let us know.

    Unfortunately, when dealing with tax it is hard-edged constitutional stuff and there simply isn’t a way of blaming white male racist homophobes.

    Maybe if we could tell him tax is a white male racist homophobe concept he’d awaken from his slumber…

    Anyway, Professor is a liberal. Liberals have worked out exactly what the right way to live and think is, and will promulgate laws to force everyone else to do exactly as they say. They will spy on everyone and outsource all their security needs to the State. That’s why they hate gun owners like you, you want independence, Liberals want dependence.

    The term “Liberal” is incredibly ironic, borderline oxymoron.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Zooks

    “I have asked the Professor numerous times to confront real constitutional questions.”

    Zooks is right. Speaking only for myself, I would love to hear the Prof say at last whether the ban on private ownership of HYDROGEN BOMBS can be justified under s 36. But I suspect he thinks such questions are beneath his dignity!

    Thanks.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    Maggs, just last year you dismissed Mr Malema as a “spent force”. Now, he is forming a new party to restore the dignity of blacks.

    How do you explain that?

  • Thomas

    The Supreme Court of Appeal attributed the phrase “generally corrupt relationship” to Squires in its judgment upholding Shaik’s corruption and fraud convictions last week. Judge Hilary Squires, who sentenced Schabir Shaik to 15 years in prison for corruption and fraud, says he never found a “generally corrupt relationship” between the controversial businessman and former deputy president Jacob Zuma. Yet the court attributed it to the judge. Media reports had come up with the phrase.

    How therefore Prof was this judgement not influenced by the media? It does not matter whether the finding was right or not. The fact of the matter Zuma was judged according to a media report.

    Therefore to me a trial by media is possible.

  • Maggs Naidu – Malema is a Future President (Prof Jansen and Prof Zuma)! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    June 11, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Dworky

    “How do you explain that?”

    I explain it as follows :

    No wait, I cannot explain it!

    p.s. Has anyone seen Terence Grant? I have a message for him!

  • terence grant

    Terence grant is a figment of your sexual desire. He is everything you secretly aspire to be