Julius Malema’s appeal for people to be educated because then they will ask “educated questions” was the most inspiring aspect of his address to students of DUT (The Mercury, February 6).
Education that is liberal and non-ideological should indeed produce people who will scrutinise, rationalise and analyse. An educated person would examine socialism’s record of failure to provide a better life for all and recognise that Malema’s rhetoric is devious nonsense. They would also realise that when the state becomes the arbiter of all aspects of your life, you are not free. Without the right to individual initiative and enterprise, there is no freedom.
Malema’s other key priority is the creation of employment opportunities in order to “solve poverty.” Yet socialism, through grinding taxation and regulation, destroys jobs and replaces them with welfare and social grants. Yet he proclaims that all workers must have benefits and that all education must be free, despite the fact that in the real world, the only thing you get for nothing is nothing.
Governments don’t create money. They create debt and servitude, which is why Thomas Jefferson said “that Government is best which governs least.” Only the rescinding of inflexible labour laws, racist B-BBEE, and the Employment Equity Act can result in conditions in which free enterprise and job creation will flourish and poverty will recede.
Malema’s other favourite demand is that the land must be “returned.” The success of that ideology in Zimbabwe, 20 years later, is that unemployment remains at 90% and basic nutrition is a daily struggle. That is the extent of the “dignity” the Mugabe regime promised while his cronies seized and progressively destroyed once-flourishing farms.
Of the land restitution claims thus far settled in South Africa, 90% of the claimants opted for the cash value. With urbanisation accounting for 70% of human habitation, Malema’s demand for land to be “returned” is just demagoguery.
Apart from encouraging people to ask questions, the only other nugget of truth in Malema’s rant is that “the oppressed have become more oppressed.” Indeed, they have, ironically, as a result of the very policies Malema promotes.