Such is the extent of the decay today, it feels as if there is almost no point in making an argument anymore. Do arguments matter? Do facts matter? 2019 will be the measure of such things. Until then, without explanation, here are a few words and phrases that speak to just some of the problems that have brought us to where we are today, as you make up your mind. Each one says more than any columnist ever could. They would, at the very least, seem to be the best way to capture the national mood, which is now so despairing it almost defies description. 1. The "Arms Deal". 2. Police Commissioner Jackie Selebi fired for corruption. 3. Schabir Shaik. 4. Nkandla. 5. 2007’s rolling blackouts. 6. The commission of inquiry into the collapse of the rand. 7. Unemployment rate of 40%. 8. State capture. 9. The tragedy created by moving psychiatric patients from Life Esidimeni care. 10. Marikana. 11. The firing of finance minister Nhlanhla Nene. 12. Million-rand bailouts for the SABC. 13. Billion...

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