Natural disasters, terror attacks, blackouts and indecisive leaders are the cast in a drama akin to the reckoning predicted in Christian Blomkamp’s sci-fi movies. Remember District 9? Cyclone Idai is a symptom of the ecological dimensions of this drama, as is the Christchurch terror attack of its ideological profile. In response to this social crisis with its economic and political roots, society has retreated to conservative notions of liberation and post-apartheid life. It is not surprising that the Freedom Front Plus would emblazon “Slaan terug” on its election posters. Hitting back against what? More importantly, against whom, and in whose interest? This is not a new campaign. It is part of a project (remember Tony Leon’s “fightback” campaign?) in the face of post-apartheid governance failures, to put lipstick on the apartheid pig and fashion it as a system that worked for all, rather than the tannies and ooms and their families who remain its intergenerational beneficiaries. De...

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