I am loath to contribute to the noise around the elections at this time as enough has been said on the topic. On the other hand, the goings-on at the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) and Zondo commissions of inquiry continue to fascinate me. One of my favourite theories when studying economics at university was called the prisoner’s dilemma. Although taught as part of behavioural economics it is actually premised on game theory and is a paradox in decision-making whereby two individuals acting in their own self-interests do not achieve the optimal outcome for the pair. A typical prisoner’s dilemma is set up in such a way that both parties choose to protect themselves at the expense of the other participant, and shows that two completely rational people are unlikely to co-operate with each other even if it appears that it would be in their combined best interests to do so. There are many variations on the theme, but a simple example is one where two people are arrested and kept in...

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