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Still, I can understand why the EFF is making such a fuss over its fith birthday. Five is a nice number. There are five fingers on a fist. Some people can get five fingers into a cookie jar. Stalin had five-year plans.

It also sounds good. For example, “five years old” sounds better than “has contested one general election”.

It also sounds better than “six percent”, which, let’s admit it, is a very small number.

The EFF is turning five. Which means that next year it will start getting schooled, and, in about 20 years, might be worth listening to. That’s not me being snarky, by the way. It’s the EFF that keeps referring to itself as a five-year-old: I’m just extending its metaphor. After all, it was Julius Malema who launched the party in 2013 by announcing that “a different baby is born today, a giant … A child that walks immediately.”

Now, some critics might say that a huge, perambulating infant blundering around the maternity ward is a pretty apt description of the EFF. I don’t know. But I do know that if you’re going to keep referring to yourself as a super-baby, or, in this case, a five-year-old, you’ve got to take your licks when people point out that five-year-olds might be cute and say the darndest things but they have absolutely nothing to offer when it comes to sensible government. Still, I can understand why the EFF is making such a fuss over its fith birthday. Five is a nic...

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