Edition: August/October 2018

The First Word editorial in this TT was written before release of the Eskom financials and before announcement of the Chinese loan. If anything, they support the argument in that nobody with accountability to stakeholders can justify ploughing more money into Eskom as it stands: seriously bust yet bowing to trade unions.

Horrible as prescribed assets are, use of force levels the playing field for pension funds and their asset managers (including the PIC). Prescription obliges them to invest where they otherwise wouldn’t. They can then explain reduced pension benefits by apportioning blame to where it lies. No prizes for right guesses.

So long as Eskom doesn’t restructure – this includes avoiding retrenchments, inflating its payroll and resisting competition from renewable energy – continued feeding of the animal will amount to a gigantic government-sponsored Ponzi scheme.

It’ll be bigger than Madoff who rightly landed in jail.

While the National Union of Metalworkers was doing its worst (or best, depending on one’s viewpoint) at Eskom, Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim was doing gym and enjoying breakfasts at the larney Virgin Classic in Melrose Arch.

It befits the lifestyle for which his union lambasts the Eskom directors.

Lawrence “Yogi” Berra was a US baseball player and coach, as famous for his performances on the field as for his remarks off it. His quotes are legend.

One piece of his advice lends itself to the Eskom funding options: “When you get to a fork in the road, take it.”

Those who grow depressed about SA’s future spend too much time looking at the government. They should look instead at events such as the recent MTN big walk in Johannesburg on a fine winter’s Sunday morning.

When there are 50 000 South Africans of all colours and ages enjoying themselves together in festive spirit, take heart that the pessimists don’t reflect the people.

Expropriation without compensation is less about the redistribution of agricultural land than it is, for some, about moving from Hammanskraal to Hyde Park.

Where is it again that a certain loudmouth is building a new house? Did he expect the site for free?

The last edition of the Financial Service’s Board’s Bulletin, distributed without charge and without revenue, runs to 32 glossy pages of the heaviest grammage and highest expense on which it’s possible to print.

This is the same FSB that has long told retirement funds’ service providers to curb their costs.

Einstein explains Eskom:


Prosecutor: What gear were you in at the moment of impact? Witness: Gucci sweats and Reebok shoes.