State Capture or Capture by State?

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State Capture or Capture by State? A possibility of how to move forward and find hope.

5 May, 2019

Recent events in South Africa have highlighted the plundering of the State coffers by ‘businessmen’ and politicians. I was going to add ‘crooks’ instead of businessmen but having thought about it, those that did this are crooks. The extent of this plundering is significant. If we could take a Balance Sheet of the State RSA on 1 March 1994 and grow it at a steady 3% say until today, then compare this Balance Sheet to the actual current Balance Sheet, we would be able to see the effects of the key changes in the thought patterns since 1994.

  • One change would be the removal of the apartheid laws with the resultant freeing up of human capacity.
  • Another change would be the effects of the plundering.
  • A third would be the loss of skills and expertise of the westernised thinking that emigrated or who are semi-barred from participating today.

Of course, to divide this all up accurately would be somewhat subjective at various points along the way, but it is nonetheless interesting to consider – what could our Balance Sheet have looked like today had we done things differently?

What should we have done differently?

Anyone clear and bold enough to search for the truth around what lies behind economy as principle, will discover:

  1. Firstly that economy appears only amongst human beings. Nature economy does not have money nor does it deal consciously with the transactions within it.
  2. Secondly, they will discover that money and thus economy is purely a consequence of where human beings provide for one another’s material needs. In essence, we need each other, each one’s specialisation, we need nature as the source of our raw materials and source of sustenance. From this, economy as we know it, arises.
  3. The value created that oozes out of this reality as a consequence of these relationships and interactions is then taxed. This tax is needed by us all and we’d prefer that the custodians of it, manage it in terms of agreements made, and frugally. When this tax is stolen and cannot go to security, courts, education and protection of the infirm, the societal consequences are significant. This ‘cost’ comes in the form of failed law and order, reduced ability to provide reasonably and reliably for others because of uncertainty, forced stoppages as a consequence of infrastructural failures, high costs of administering bias, education fails and the resultant spiral is reliably downwards for the whole.

The plundering of State coffers by either people in power within the State, or people in ‘business’ manipulating State processes or employees, has a significant effect on the viable functioning of the whole as noted above. (Just for clarity, these people that claim that they are in the economic sphere when they require undue benefits, preference, or rights to succeed in the economic sphere, are really not in the economic sphere but in parasitic and criminal mode. All people involved in the economic sphere have to be objectively both efficient and relevant to their markets or someone else will be, and they will fail. These are simply the realities of being in the economic sphere.) The cost can be measured in numbers and is limited largely to numbers in the form of loss as relatively few (one hopes) people are involved in this. In essence, there is, within any economy, a minority false economy where there are unfairly gained rights, preferences or benefits, for example in pricing. However, the question is, is there much more danger to a society from the State and political parties, than there is from plunderers, is this danger more costly, far more damning, and does it have a much greater effect on State coffers than direct looting?

In my view there is. The economy is only one part of society as a whole. It is however the only part that generates profits and, therefore, tax. These profits come:

  1. Firstly, from people effectively and efficiently transforming the healthy offerings of nature by way of farming, mining, forestry, fishing, and so on; and,
  2. In a second step, beneficiating these by way of shoe making, metal forging, making jewellery, paper, ink, tyres and so on; the list is endless; and
  3. The third step in value creation is providing services for this all to happen like software, communication, and banking.

It is of fundamental importance to note from the above however, that other than what is taken from nature in the economic process, the rest all hinges on human initiative, skills, competence, innovation, risk taking, insight into what society needs and how to do this efficiently. These are the key elements to economy, and I say them again – economy = nature’s offerings together with labour and the higher human qualities – some of which are noted in the preceding sentences. What happens then when these higher human qualities are scorned by political rhetoric, the State making points by targeting specific races or religions with special, ‘example making’ prison terms, embedding rights in the law for particular races or religious groups, forcing content into basic education to serve political agendas, and more? In order to draw out the significance of this, we can create the following formula in principle:

  • Nature + Human competence and striving = the size of your economy.

We could adjust this formula to highlight the cost of plundering of State coffers by restating it as:

  • Nature + Human competence and striving = the size of your economy less the plundering (5% at most?).

However, if we restate the formula to reflect the rights plundering and dignity defying attacks on any significant groupings and between groupings, then your formula would look like this:

  • Nature + (Human competence and striving) x (rights plundering and dignity defying attacks on significant groupings and between groupings) (Between 10% and 30%?) = the size of your economy.

From the above, we can get a sense of the magnitude of the effect on the economy of politically introduced and motivated false and failed conceptual thinking that leads to skills loss, imports rather than exports, lost tax revenues, increased State borrowings, less education, fewer jobs, and more misery.

The solution then? Get the concepts right, understand them, and desire their implementation. There are three key elements to include;

  1. Fair laws targeting Equity and Equality and applied equally to all;
  2. Allow societies to educate themselves in the way that they want and free this from State or Economic intervention; and
  3. Allow the economic sphere to provide for the material needs of society without false rights and only by those competent in this sphere.

This is what we should have done differently.

As the above is probably a stretch too far for the constrained, prejudiced self-interest of the way we think today, the best way forward for sensible people involved in the economy, in situations like those distilled out above, is to invest in drawing out the higher qualities of all staff as this is what makes your small business more relevant, more efficient, and more likely to survive despite the disturbing influences of the false thinking and value systems of today.

Don’t allow yourselves as human beings to be captured by your State. Uphold your human dignity as this is where clarity, diligence, skill, experience, patience, positivity, objectivity, openness, compassion, selflessness, ownership of self, and courage come from. You and your endeavours cannot be beaten if these are your priorities. Hold them and share them.

5 Comments
  1. Dear David
    Thank you. I was/am in my room feeling tiered and heavy hearted at the situation in our country….and so grateful to have read your word and feel again strengthened not be captured!
    with love
    caroline

    • Dear Caroline, I can just imagine your circumstances and I smile warmly with you. I am glad that there is some homeopathy in the article ?. Kindest regards, David.

  2. Dear David,
    it is so satisfying to read and “digest” your clear thoughts! They deserve to be moved and practiced in the context of a free University – dipped intoall Kinds of art-Poetry, Painting, Sculptering, Eurythmie, Music, dancing,….. in a way that every “student” has to impregnate his thinking/toughts with different kinds and means of feeling and warmth. The question how a very basic cult-(starting of with fife to ten minutes) might be implemented is very delicat and needs a lot of sensibility. The participants of such a “Free University” should pay a certain amount(10-20 % of the “running costs”) and being given little “social tasks” to achieve better life conditions for “selected cases” . Would it be possible to support such a “Private Free University” with some money out of the “Guy-Trust” and tax- reductions resp. Bosun provit-deduction ?
    I would love to discuss the whole matter more detailed with you – these thoughts were triggered by your last essays.
    Just take it as an incitement!
    Yours Michael

    • Dear Michael, thank you for sharing your excitement. I will take this discussion further by email. Kindest regards, David. PS I am glad that your book is moving forward with the French edition.

  3. Have recently moved into a Retirement Village in Plett… and am amazed at the accumulation of highly skilled persons who could still be playing an economic role as mentors, elders to influence the young generations. So find myself in a self imposed security prison, with gate house, high fences, alarms etc to protect us from connecting to society…. Funny picture actually.
    The separation of generations is in its way anti-generative …. but the young do not want the advice or assistance of the elderly because of rampant individualism….
    I sense an evolution of autonomous folk – seeking new economies of giving for free , without expectation of reward, just contribution because you are passionate about
    advancing and exploring the subject, for the joy of it, or it is the right thing to do, and then surprising openings emerge that guide the process in advancing ways that include you somehow.

    Could this be the emergence of a contribution driven economy (society) different from a needs driven one, that expects needs to be met with outcomes expected or contracted…

    Avice.