It's Halloween on Tuesday, and I am considering going as Malusi Gigaba. Anyone know a tailor who does discount suits? There is nothing that is going to scare my middle-class suburban neighbours quite as much. The numbers in the medium-term budget policy statement point to a country in serious trouble. With little prospect of economic growth, and government expenditure projected to rise around 7% for each of the next three years, it's hard to see why ratings agencies should continue to give South Africa the benefit of the doubt. The minister should be applauded for his brutal honesty, but none of the fuzzy platitudes can make up for the government's lack of self-awareness about how it has driven the country into a fiscal cul-de-sac. It put itself at the centre of the developmental state and allowed the coffers to be looted. There are promises of stricter rules on spending, of ensuring better governance at state-owned enterprises. Talk is cheap. A life coach friend tells me that you h...

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