I Need A New Country, Mine's Broken

in teamsouthafrica •  last month

Hey Steemians

While I'm always pretty optimistic about life and most things there comes a time when a man reaches his limits and I feel I'm getting pretty close to it. South Africa has gone through some serious turmoil of late in the form of blackouts.

We're running out of electricity

What started out as a manageable 2 hour shut down per day has now escalated to a 7 and a half hours per day and is now insanely disruptive and we've just heard the news that It could be getting worse.

Having a half day or full day without electricity countrywide will have serious ramifications for the economy as we are currently held hostage by the national power supplier whose incompetence, negligence and downright thievery has lead us to this point.

south-africa-broken.png

Image source stefanhippler

We were close to running out of water

While not a country-wide issue, the Western Cape where I reside was close to what we referred to as "Day Zero" There was a point where we were about 2 months away from completely running out of water and basically well you guessed it we would fight for the last drop until most of us would be dead. Thankfully we all make efforts to conserve water and with some rain, we were able to dodge that deadly bullet.

While there was a drought it wasn't fully a natural disaster but oversight and infighting from the government that almost lead one of South Africa's biggest cities to practically dry up. Are we in the clear yet? I don't think so, dam levels are nowhere near sustainable for the growth in population and construction and banter has died down on setting up contingency plans like declination and additional or extension of water catchment areas.

While a person could set up their own solar grid and catch or boar for their own water in order to reduce dependency on the national service providers there is only so much the individual can do at this point.

We're running out of money

Our economy has been flat for some time and with the exposure of state capture, the unrest from lack of mining, land appropriation and what I've mentioned earlier the country continues to stumble as it takes both self-inflicted damage and some from outside forces.

A Wits University professor told the Standing Committee on Finance that South Africa would run out of money by 2042. But other experts believe a disaster is much closer than that. Janie Rossouw said that we have around 23 years left before it all goes to hell in a hand-basket, explaining that the “exorbitant” cost of ministries is one of the most punishing features of the national budget.

We can only tax the South African middle class so much and we can only waste so much tax money on useless people and projects that don't benefit the country before the chickens come home to roost.

I think South Africa is a lesson on how you can take a place with enormous potential and smash it by the knee caps as often as you can to keep it from running never mind running at its full potential.

Are we running out of time?

I do love my country and I don't think there is another place like it, but I have to realistic. I'm seeing businesses go down, crime goes up, resources get scarce, our money is worth less and opportunities are starting to dry up too.

There is only so much a man can take before he needs to turn his back on his beloved nation. Has that time come for me? If my nation cannot allow me to achieve my goals and ambitions how can I stay in it?

Have your say

What do you think of the current plight of the country? Can we still turn it around? I know this place is for sure worth saving? Is it time we consider greener pastures somewhere else? Even temporary to limit the strain on a country that clearly cannot support the current demands of its people?

WIll we see a mass exodus of South Africans? Who will welcome us?

Let's connect

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I wasn't aware that you were facing so many troubles in South Africa. It seems that many developing countries are brought into trouble mainly because of incompetent and corrupt governments...

Posted using Partiko Android

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I'm not really surprised our news doesn't really get much exposure on the world stage lol. I agree plenty of developing nations limp along under wide spread corruption but we are the country with the largest disparity between the rich and the poor in the world, or so we claim.

I'm not going to lie, I am starting to fear the worst as the local economy continues to shrink. Our next elections are coming up soon so thats also going to be interesting to see what South Africans do, will we bother voting and how will we redistribute the votes there are over 300 parties competing for votes, its actually insane

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That is a lot of political parties ;-).

You say that your economy is close to recession? How is it with inflation? I've heard that the Rand has lost a lot of value in respect to other countries, is that correct?

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I would say we never left the recession personally we’ve just been stammering along, rating agencies like moodys have already declared the county as junk status and inflation while not as bad as other African countries is still pretty bad compared to where we once were! We pay double almost triple for a USD, EUR and GBP when compared to previous years and cost of living has increased!

Naturally for foreigners this makes for an attractive holiday destination since their currency goes so far! We are the top destination for travel in Africa at the moment!

But if we can’t keep the lights on, I don’t know how long we can rely on tourism!

Posted using Partiko iOS

Honestly, I don't know what's going to happen to us. Racial tensions are getting worse as well. I'm 20, my life has barely even started and I'm supposed to try and make a life for myself in this mess...

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I try to be optimistic like we have come a long way but we seem to be regressing. I wouldn't be too worried about the racial tension those are just by products of people trying to point figures at a failing economy. The boot is really starting to come down on peoples throats, money is tight and people are reacting emotively.

I really hope we have a turn around, for sure, you're young and things like this limit opportunities for you, perhaps it is time to look abroad sad to say.

Canada would not disappoint (except the cold a little depending on where you go)

You know, in a bizarre way, I am more optimistic than I have been for a long time. I am frustrated, irritated and yes, also angry, about the loadshedding. However, have you noticed

  1. that it's happening when the election is just 2 months away?
  2. that the President and Minister of Public Enterprises are acknowledging that it's a mess and taking action - appropriate action. They are both singing from the same hymn sheet and while it might sound a little off key, at least there is candour. Including how long it will take to fix the mess. This is refreshing.
  3. what's coming out in the State Capture enquiry is seeing some results - already

Yes, we have a long way to go. In other respects we have come a long way.

On the water thing: it could have been better planned for and better managed, but we are a water scarce province and country and it will get worse - population and climate change. We just have to work with that.

So, what am I doing: I'm privileged that I work from home, so I'm planning my days to accommodate loadshedding. That doesn't mean that I don't get p*ssed off when they change the schedule, but, hey, it could be worse: there could be no electricity at all.

Me thinks: hope for the best, plan for the worst.

Hope you're having a good day.

All the best from Magic McGregor!

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You make very good points there but without actionable change I can't really be that optimistic, we can all talk until we blue in the face but if things don't change soon we're digging a hole that might never get out of, or take years to get out of.

I appreciate your optimism and who knows maybe its the swift kick in the pants everyone needs we were heavily coasting for years and papering over many cracks. I just think that from a personal stand point I am losing out

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We are all losing out. I completely understand where you're coming from. Remember this: the gravy train began 25 years ago and then turned into an express train under Zuma; thanks to the likes of the Guptas and all those who fell into their purvue. You cannot repair in 12 months what it took 120 achieve.

Baby steps.

On another note: when I had some peripheral involvement in the struggle in 1986, what happened on 10 February 1990 was inconceivable. Let alone 27 April 1994. Yes, this is not what we fought for and yes, as I've mentioned before, I've eschewed working in an area I loved because of the toxicity of working in parastatals and government, and am starting from scratch; with nothing. In my 50s. I was angry and bitter. Still am at times, but that's a waste of energy.

Perhaps it's the full moon and the equinox....

Hey, enjoy a glass of wine/beer and look at the stars when the lights go off; talk to your partner; plan something nice to do that doesn't need electricity. I work from home and plan my sh*t around it. Including the washing, cooking, work, etc., etc. It could be worse. There could be no electricity.....

I really hope that everything's gonna be fine in your country @chekohler, I think all countries have it's own problem right now. I feel sorry for what happened there too. Even when the same things also happened in the past at my hometown, but I dunno.. I just keep struggling and living my country is not an option to think about.

Please take care and be strong!

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I hope so too, but every day feels like its a little less easy to turn this sinking ship around. I realize every country has its problems but there comes a time when you need to decide on whats best for you and I think I'm coming to that point, patriotism can only go so far.

Ideally it would be a temporary thing, make some foreign currency stronger than our own while I wait it out for the country to sort itself out before I can head back. Exploring my options,

I kinda feel the same about Australia. Beautiful place; its just a shame so many people hallucinate a country on it.
Make sure you leave as soon as the door starts closing. The sooner you recognise its shutting, the more of your stuff you'll be able to take out with you.

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What’s going in Australia that would make you feel that strongly about leaving? I’ve got family in Perth, Sydney and Melbourne!

Also where would you go if you left? Well I’m in digital and the market here is still pretty small so I feel like my skills aren’t really worth as much here so if things start to dry up these sort of “luxury jobs” won’t have any value

Posted using Partiko iOS

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The housing market is a big concern here. The banks have been told to stop offering Interest-only loans, which may have stalled growth in a big bubble. Interest rates have bottomed out, and house prices are coming down any way, and its not like they can drop rates much further.

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That's very interesting, I'm going to have to really look into it, I think there are a few bubbles in the world economy I can see it with vehicle financing in the US too, all primed and waiting for one big failure and we will see economies hit like a pile of dominoes

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Once that depression hits, nobody's job is safe. Printing more money won't help if there's no wealth behind it. They're using it for toilet paper in Venezuela; and not out of spite either, because there's no toilet paper available.

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