As my regular readers will know, i don’t support any political party. But, from time to time, i include views from others if i believe it’s relevant to a topical issue or if it offers an alternative to the mainstream of bias media.
The goal, as always, is to remove the blind acceptance of status quo and encourage thinking for oneself.
The author of this blog is Nico Smit, a supporter of the ACDP (African Christian Democratic Party). Ironically, we bumped into one another on News24 when i blasted South Africa’s political parties and stated that “religion is not moral if it divides”.
In a democracy, we can disagree without being enemies. Nico, allowing me to re-post his blog, is a good example of that. You can find him at ZA Right View.
“I hate politics but I love the ability to make an impact on a national and international scale. Politics is a necessary evil in the times we live in, a vehicle for change that you can choose to ignore, observe, or drive. What will your choice be?” said Nico.
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WHY YOU DON’T HAVE TO VOTE FOR THE DA
I address the common misconception that conservatives have in believing they have to vote for the DA, and that this is the only option. I get down to the flaws of the DA and their policies, and why no conservative should vote for them.
Now there may be some of you who, off the bat, will ask the question: Why do you target the DA? Why not the ANC? My response: Really? There is absolutely no reason to try and explain to any clear-minded person why not to vote for the ANC, the ANC themselves are on the forefront of showing everyone why you should not vote for them. The whole world in fact is asking questions about why SA is still voting for the ANC, so I have no need to go into that as well.
I have observed under some of the most conservative people I know, a trend of voting for the DA. A feeling of hopelessness, the feeling that there is no other option. I believe this is unnecessary and wrong. That is why I would like to address all those conservative people now.
So let me start off by saying this: I support the DA in various areas, but I won’t vote for them. There is a very important difference. If the coach of the national rugby/soccer team chooses a player whom I would not have chosen – were I in his shoes – I would still support that player on game day against any rival. I would also like to cite the Arabic proverb: “The enemy of my enemy is my friend”. I may not agree with the DA on various issues, but I would rather have them govern South Africa than the ANC, solely based on their better administrative record.
That being said, I will now again address the countless conservatives who have been led to believe that you have to vote for the DA in order to “stand against the ANC”.
The main reason why most people believe that you have to vote for the DA, is because they are the largest opposition party, and they have a good administrative record. They believe that you have to be large in order to stand against the ANC, or else you will not be heard or make an impact. Now there is a very common misconception right here. The problem is that most citizens apparently do not understand how our democracy works, so let me explain the basics.
In all levels of government – municipal, provincial and national – the legislature is made up of a mixture of political party representatives, proportionally to the amounts of votes that those parties received out of the total. The leading party or leading coalition will be the main governing board – the mayor, premier or president – and they choose their main governing team. All legislature made on that level has to be voted on by all parties. So if there is any law to be made in any level of government, the party you voted for will have a say on whether it is passed or not. Your party also has the power to bring a bill to the legislature for voting.
Now some people still don’t get it at this point, so I will further explain:
If the ANC or any other party comes up with some law that will destroy the country, then all the other parties will vote against it anyway, as if they were one party. This is what happened with “The Protection of State Information Bill” for example. So whether the party up there voting is the DA or any other party really doesn’t matter. When it comes to other non-conservative legislature though, like “Choice on Termination of Pregnancy Act”, then you would want your conservative party to be voting for your views, and not the DA. So we see here that the “bigger” a party is has no impact on standard legislature in the current political environment, but if there are not enough conservatives voting conservatively, then we will end up with a lot of liberal left laws, which in turn will destroy healthy family/community life and the economy.
So what about who governs? Do you have to vote for the DA in Gauteng in the next election, because they are the only party who has a chance of winning the ANC to govern the province?
What would happen if the ANC got less than 50% of the vote, and the DA got less than the ANC still? The same thing that has happened every time in the past: The DA will form a coalition with other parties in order to be the majority, and doing so, govern the municipality. This is what happened for example in Cape Town in the 2006 municipal elections (and various others) – the DA needed to form a coalition with smaller parties to be able to govern – so they struck up a deal with the ACDP, which was at that time the third largest party. The end result was that the ACDP had the vice-mayor position in the Cape Town, leaving them with more power than even the ANC in the metro.
So we see that any party you vote for will have it’s impact. If you just vote for the liberal left, then that is what you will get – like the (official) annual naked bicycle ride in Cape Town, or our legalized abortion law. If you however vote for the conservative parties, then they will vote for your values in legislature, and be a voice of reason in the decision making chambers.
Any party large enough to have representation, can and will impact South Africa, it is the way our democracy is set up. Our small ACDP has championed the conservative view in parliament, and they will continue doing so. You don’t have to vote for the DA, for any reason, you can vote for your conservative party of choice, be it ACDP, FF+ or whichever may rise in the future.
THE DA’S LEFT-WING POLICIES FOR A SOCIALIST WELFARE STATE
Most people in South Africa seem to be voting for a political “label”, in stead of voting for policy and execution. People vote for the ANC because they are the “anti-apartheid” label. People vote for the DA because they are the “Not the ANC” label. Unfortunately due to this lack of policy research on behalf of voters, a lot of conservatives end up voting for the DA even though they will not necessarily agree with their policies.
One such policy of the DA is it’s social welfare policy. The conservative right political view is that the state should support those who can not support themselves, but that able-bodied citizens should support themselves. The socialist left believes all people, despite their abilities or inabilities, should be sustained by the state.
Support for those who can not support themselves includes grants (in the form of finance and other) for orphans and children who do not have access to life’s basics like food and a place to sleep. Also pensioners who can no longer work and disabled people. Now both conservatives and liberals agree on this point, but when it comes to young healthy men and women, the conservative view is that they should be left to support themselves, support for them is a burden the state can not bare.
On the DA website you can read up about their social welfare policies. One of these policies is that they believe the state should pay a grant of R110 per month to all people who do not have an income above minimum wage. Now at a glance this doesn’t seem so bad… but if you factor in that currently there can be about 8 million South Africans who fall under that criteria (aged 16-65), then all of a sudden it’s a whole different picture. The DA wants the state to pay R880,000,000 per month for unemployed healthy citizens. If unemployment goes up, then this can easily go up to 1 billion Rand per month for social welfare. If all the zero’s do not paint the picture for you yet, I will attempt to quantify it:
- With the amount of money the DA want’s to give away monthly for people who do not work, you can create 80,000 jobs by employing 80,000 more police constables and increase the South African police force by 50%.
- With the amount of money the DA want’s to give away monthly for people who do not work, the SANDF can purchase a whole squadron of 12 Challenger 2 battle tanks (Britain’s main battle tank) per month, or an Apache helicopter every two months.
- With the amount of money the DA want’s to give away monthly for people who do not work, the country can build 44km of highway per month, 528km per year (ironic that they battle against E-Toll).
- With the amount of money the DA want’s to give away monthly for people who do not work, you can pay off Cape Town Stadium in full in 5 months (it took more than a year to build it).
Now please do not assume that I suggest we plough this amount of taxpayers-money into the items above, I am merely stating the insanity in wasting so much taxpayers money on pointless welfare. Furthermore, it has been found, statistically, in both the United Kingdom and in America, that providing grants to able-bodied citizens does not enable them to find or create work, exactly the opposite happens. If you give money to people for doing nothing, then that is what they will keep doing, nothing. Won’t it be so much better to use that amount of money to stimulate the economy, the private sector, and so doing create thousands of jobs monthly?
The conservative parties have a better approach on this, the ACDP’s approach is to provide opportunities for the economy to grow in the private sector and to encourage family-businesses. The FF+ believe any group of people should be able to exist solely by themselves, without any funding from the government/taxpayer. The IFP maintains that government intervention should only happen once all streams of the private sector and NGOs have been exhausted.
HIGHER TAX RATES
The natural flow from a socialist government is higher taxes. If you continue giving things away for free, and encourage a begging/entitlement-mentality, in stead of an earning/achievement mentality, the lower class will remain where they are and grow larger.
The middle class will continually have to support the growing lower class through taxpayers money [Mike: happening in a big way in Knysna]. The DA keeps raising the taxes in the municipalities that they govern, even though this raises the burden of survival on the middle class, and stifles the economy.
The larger lower class then keeps voting for them, because they are getting things for free, but it is not sustainable. The final result is that you have a massive growing lower class, and you create a massive divide between the classes, working against the attempt to bring the two closer.
The conservative model is to keep taxes low, encouraging growth in the economy and giving incentive to work hard and earn more. Ironically, lower taxes have been found to increase a country’s GDP, in countries like Russia for example.
The ACDP has been fighting against the DA’s taxation in Cape Town yearly, but since conservatives are voting liberally (out of ignorance), the majority DA just ignores the conservative voice. And taxes keep going up.
SPINELESS STANCE ON ABORTION
The liberal view on morality and ethics, is that everyone is right in their own opinion, and thus you can’t enforce your views on someone else. What is right for you is right for you, and what is right for someone else is right for them. Now while this viewpoint has it’s merits, there are some limits that needs to be placed, for example: If it is “right” for someone in their own opinion to rape other people, you can’t allow them to live out that opinion, because it will infringe on other people, quite intensely I may add.
Conservatives are more of the opinion that there is an ultimate right and wrong, and everyone, regardless of their views, has to subscribe to these truths. One of these main points of disagreement between the conservatives and liberals is the issue of abortion. Now if you’re not sure whether abortion is right or wrong, maybe you just need to look at the facts, I won’t go into it now, but you can read up all about it on ProLife Generation’s webpage. Not only is abortion the murder of innocent human beings, but more than 80% of South Africans believe it’s wrong.
The DA’s policy on abortion, is the typical spineless liberal stance on abortion, on their website, under FAQ, they state that “when it comes to issues such as abortion and the death penalty, we let our members vote “with their conscience”. In other words, they say that they do not have a policy about that, it is in the hands of their members/voters to decide for themselves. Surely this then means that they do not pick sides in the argument and stay neutral right? I cornered Mmusi Maimane (Gauteng premier candidate for DA for 2014, and DA national spokesperson) about the topic, and this is what happened:
I checked with Mr. Maimane what his stance on abortion is, hoping for a voice of reason to emerge from the DA, because, as they say on their website, each member is entitled his own view and can pursue it? He replied by saying the constitution allows women to choose, and the policy of the DA is to uphold this right. So either their website is lying or their National spokesperson does not know what their policy is (which I highly doubt).
So here is what is happening: The DA knows that statistically most South African’s are against abortion, so they claim to allow you to choose for yourself, to win votes. But when it comes down to reality, they are staunch abortion supporters, in spite of what they may say on their website. This is a spineless stance. In stead of defending the “right to life” (constitution) of the most vulnerable human beings, they allow others to violate their right to life, by taking it away.
The problem with liberals is that they never slide in just one area, it always flows into others. In the end they end up defending one religion and not the other. Liberals across the world are continually granting more and more rights to Muslims for example, and taking rights away from Christians, in spite of their “everything is right” approach. Where will this slippery slope lead us if people keep voting DA?
(NOT SO PERFECT) ADMINISTRATIVE RECORD
The DA’s main selling point is their administrative record. They keep bringing it up at each election. Their track record is that they are good administrators of public works and service delivery. Now I am once again not going to take away from the DA that which they are doing good. I believe Helen Zille is an awesome administrator, but she alone. If you compare the DA to the ANC, then of course they seem like excellent administrators, but that is just because the ANC ended up being a joke of a political party. If you compare the DA to real-world politicians in Europe or America, then they are at best average.
I will explain why I am saying this with one example: In their attempt to win more votes in the Western Cape, the DA merged with ID, and Patricia de Lille became the mayor of Cape Town to seal the deal [Mike – and Georlene Wolmarans, who lost her ward but was an ex-ID member, became Knysna’s joke mayor]. Now what Helen Zille has in excess, Mrs. de Lille is seriously lacking. She has an autocratic outlook on politics and runs the metro with a “do-as-I-say” approach [Mike: Sound familiar, Knysna?]. She fails to consult the community or her advisers (if in fact she has any) and makes decisions on her own. Her decisions are many times the wrong ones, and then when cornered by the media, she either ignores them, or blames something as ridiculous as “male chauvinism” – ignoring the issue. If I had a nickel for every time people complained about her choices and decisions on the radio station 567 Cape Talk…
The problem is that, in stead of handling the situation and sorting her out, the DA is now constantly sweeping all her mess-ups under the carpet. They don’t want to look like the party who “chose the wrong mayor” as it will tarnish their precious record. It’s just too bad that that is exactly what is happening. An IOL article sums up the issues quite nicely.
LESSOR OF EVILS, NOT FLAWLESS SAINTS
Yes, compared to the ANC, the DA is the lesser of two evils, but they are not the flawless saints they make themselves out to be. Some of their policies render them unelectable to conservatives, and some of their decisions show their weakness. There is no reason for any right-minded South African to believe that they have to vote for them. And as per this post, there is more than enough reason not to vote for them. As conservatives, we should keep voting conservative, or there won’t be anything left of our views and morals in the future South Africa.
If the DA comes to power one day, let there be a decent sized conservative weight in the benches of parliament keeping them in check, restoring the balance.
The liberal vs liberal thing we have now (ANC vs DA) won’t get any of our conservative values into South Africa.
This September 9 2013 article remains relevant so i’ve re-posted it ahead of the 2016 Municipal Elections.