Phala Phala

What ails our gaffe-prone president?

“Senescence” is defined as the condition or process of deteriorating with age. This week’s video announcement by President Joe Biden that he will seek re-election as US president next year sent the commentary class into overdrive on the risks of senility or physical impairment afflicting Biden, who would be 82 at his inauguration. Cognitive decline [...]

With Ramaphosa’s zugzwang, it’s goodbye to the new dawn

Goodbye To All That was the title of the 1929 autobiography of war-traumatised Robert Graves, the acclaimed writer and poet, which he described as his “bitter leave-taking of England”. It is a useful obituary note for the presidency of Cyril Ramaphosa. Technically, like Mark Twain’s reported death, this might seem greatly exaggerated. But only in the [...]

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