allard at quicknet.nl
Tue Aug 17 10:06:32 PDT 2004
On Tuesday 17 August 2004 09:34, Rainer P. Feller wrote:
> On Tue, 2004-08-17 at 07:15, michael wrote:
> <snip much realy bad stuff>
> whoa! bad things are happening in the world!
Indeed, I thought South Africa was bad and understated in the media. The
kind of stuff mentioned by the Michael should receive media attention
but doesn't - ostrich phenomenon I guess (which is a myth btw - despite
not being the brightest of creations, they don't avoid danger by
putting their heads in the sand - they run, and if necessary kick with
formidable force). Such things anger me greatly. During the days of
apartheid SA was in the news daily here. Every little violation of
human rights was dealt with in detail on the news and talk shows (and
rightly IMO). After the victory by the ANC the only remaining news was
praise for the ANC and Mandela (also rightly). However, no mention was
made of the escalating crime and inept/corrupt beaurocracy until much
later, and then only matter of factly and out of context. Ditto for HIV
infections, although this is underreported in SA as well. I have
friends in SA who work in rural hospitals who give a more accurate
picture of the statistics than the media (similar stories of cues at
hospitals - furthermore, most beds are occupied by aids patients. To
make matters worse, patients have the right to refuse an aids test and
do). Thankfully SA doesn't have the drug/mafia problem to the same
degree that South American countries have (some African countries are
cursed with diamonds which I suppose is similar).
> I didn't thought that it is that bad in Brazil.
> Why the Hell don't some parties cooperate?
> Are they that different or don't they "just" want to
> share the power?
Ha - I came across a quote once which seems appropriate (can't remember
who it was alas) "It's not that power corrupts, but that power attracts
the corruptible". There are many problems as I see it - hang on, this
could take a while.
In no particular order:
In my experience the "have-nots" aspire to western coca-cola, burger,
cadillac and snappy-shoes culture. I suppose we should blame the
marketeers and proponents of consumerism and the myth of sustainable
growth here. The media predominantly show healthy people living ideal
lives. Little mention is made of stress, heart disease, obesity ...
Politicians use this, and somehow manage to raise the hopes of these
people with promises.
We tend to forget that "educated" and "enlightened" people are a small
minority. The majority of the people on this planet are not really in a
position to make a rational or informed decision regarding democracy
(SA, being one of the more advanced countries in Africa still has voter
education, which basically involves informing people that their votes
are really secret - it's anyone's guess what democracy really means to
People with a common heritage tend to stick together. The developing
world consists predominantly of artificially created borders containing
many peoples of different cultures.
Oddly, people who have experienced poverty and manage to get out of it
tend to turn their backs on the slums they came from. Perhaps they
think "well I managed to get out of it so you can too" - I dunno. The
champions of the poor generally come from an advantaged background and
are sadly overshadowed by the champions of the rich.
Family values are being (deliberately or not) degraded.
The current system of democracy (4 year term -> elections) has the
effect that parties make only short term policies that will "buy"
votes. Confuscious says: "If you plan for 1 year, plant rice. If you
plan for 10 years, plant trees. If you plan for 100 years, educate your
I'd better stop. There's lots more, I think I've been in Holland too
long as I seem to be losing track of some of these issues.
> And as far as I remember "nothing is off topic in lfs-chat"
Right - perhaps I'll open a new thread regarding my opinions on drug
policies ... Got to start getting ready for nightshift now.
Regards - Allard.
More information about the lfs-chat