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About Tony Leon

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So far Tony Leon has created 244 blog entries.

Ramaphosa is being swallowed by a widening credibility gap

In 1966, as the US escalated its involvement in the Vietnam War, beleaguered president Lyndon Johnson and his administration denied the surge. Congressman (and later president) Gerald Ford coined the phrase “credibility gap” — the discrepancy between what a politician claims to be the case and the facts of the matter. Columnist Walter Lippmann suggested this [...]

By |2020-02-18T06:19:36+00:00February 18th, 2020|Cyril Ramaphosa, Eskom|0 Comments

Come on Cyril! FW did it, Mantashe has just done it. You can do it too

To mark the 30th anniversary of FW de Klerk’s earth-shaking speech to parliament on February 2 1990, veteran journalist Tim du Plessis sent me an inquiry. “Can you describe”, he asked, “where you were and what you felt when you heard the news?” My answer – on the one speech ever delivered in parliament which [...]

By |2020-02-05T06:02:17+00:00February 5th, 2020|Cyril Ramaphosa, FW de Klerk|0 Comments

ANC replicating apartheid past

The rear-view mirror is the preferred reflector for our government. Far easier to remember the apartheid past, in which most members of the governing party were victims, than the dire times that confront SA. But even this litigation of the past has both its distortions and its ironies. Take, for example, the latest piece of constitutional nonsense [...]

Despite the jokes, climate crisis is no laughing matter

SA received an icy warning of its global dip from The Money Show host Bruce Whitfield, reporting from the World Economic Forum (WEF) shindig. “Davos is depressing — SA is barely here,” he lamented across the airwaves, contrasting the current invisibility with our golden yesteryears when “we used to have a very dominant position”. At one [...]

By |2020-01-26T06:09:16+00:00January 26th, 2020|Climate Change, World Politics|0 Comments

It would have been a false ‘New Dawn’ in Davos for Cyril

Imagine a pow wow in London this week, featuring the heir to the throne Prince William and his self-dethroning brother, Harry, and a cast of international and African worthies. The title of this gathering, “UK-Africa Investment Summit 2020”, of the great and the good, including a clutch of continental leaders, is both virtuous and self-evidently [...]

By |2020-01-22T06:37:41+00:00January 22nd, 2020|African National Congress (ANC), Cyril Ramaphosa|0 Comments

The good news first: SA isn’t as doomed as you think

As we end the first week of the year and enter the brave new world of the third decade of the century (not true for the pedants, as the last decade strictly ends on December 31 2020), note one big thing. According to the 2011 SA census, more than 40% of our 57 million population [...]

Well-intentioned men of zeal and the harm they do

In his famous 1928 dissenting opinion in Olmstead vs United States, US Supreme Court justice Louis Brandeis offered a warning to freedom-lovers everywhere. He wrote: “Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their [...]

Don’t even bother, Mmusi. Your ‘people’s dialogue’ will be a flop

Away from the Eskom horror show, far be it for me to rain on the “People’s Dialogue” to be launched soon by Herman Mashaba and Mmusi Maimane. However, a weather check may be in order to see whether a shaft of light may yet appear in our current darkness. There is an elephant’s graveyard in [...]

With left and right in flux, UK poll is bound to be a shake-up

A terror attack on London Bridge before polling day; opinion polls showing the governing Conservative Party on course for a huge parliamentary majority; the deep unpopularity of the Labour Party’s Jeremy Corbyn; and a desire by voters to end the impasse over Brexit. These are key electoral assets for the incumbent Tory prime minister. The [...]

By |2019-12-05T08:49:49+00:00December 5th, 2019|Boris Johnson, Brexit, World Politics|0 Comments

Corruption and conspiracies: the lies that bind our Zuma and Israel’s Bibi

At first blush, Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu and our dethroned former president, Jacob Zuma, have zero in common. The one presides over one of the most successful economies in the world, the other drove ours into a ditch. Zuma is a staunch ally of the Palestinian cause; Netanyahu has made a career out [...]