We White Monopoly Capitalists must dig in our heels to deepen the minions’ misery

I was relaxing in my fire pool the other day, you know, and wondering if there was any way I could oppress the working people of South Africa any further.

As a big, white monopoly capitalist, I feel it is my duty to constantly look ahead and make sure that White Monopoly Capital (WMC, pronounced “WhiMoC”) is ahead of the curve on this oppression thing. 

I mean, it’s not just a matter of having a whole lot of jerk-off politicians in your pocket because they want big houses and luxury cars and two-week trips to Disney World for a family of eight.

No. It’s also a matter of making sure that each and every one of the oppressed is feeling that oppression more fully, more personally and more deeply. As we move increasingly into the age so accurately described as “atomised”, one has to stop thinking of the poor, or the underclass generally, as one big undifferentiated mass. 

I’m talking personal creative solutions here.

The indolence and grabbiness that WMC induces in politicians of all stripes and, indeed, polka dots, cannot be allowed to remain there, at the level of the elite. It must trickle — no, not trickle! It must be driven downwards, pushed all the way down to the grass roots.

Cough. Sorry, let me just pour myself another Laphroaig … and relight this Romeo y Julieta … Mmmm. Yummy.

Okay, so, as I was saying … Right, we’ve got to make sure corruption spreads throughout society. Corruption of all kinds is a key pillar, or perhaps I should say piledriver, of the programme WMC wishes to impose on the world, and indeed has been either imposing on or insinuating into the body politic since, oh, let’s just say time immemorial.

Of course, WMC can’t take credit (ha, ha, that’s a little joke) for everything that goes wrong — for everything that contributes to the further immiseration of the working class in particular and, in general, anyone earning below parliamentary salary level. Much is contributed by the state itself, you might say spontaneously. We must encourage such tendencies. We should be in dialogue with the government all the time, giving ideas, planting seeds.

We cannot oppress just the working class, either. We have to ensure that the middle class, especially its lower stratum, feels the constant gnawing anxiety of a fall in status, otherwise they wouldn’t spend all their time trying to claw their way up, would they? Heavy taxation is essential in this regard.

We’ve outsourced the immiseration of the very poor and the indigent to, well, the very poor and the indigent, with a little help from the police and other local authorities, so that’s been a big saving.

Keeping 99% of South Africa oppressed isn’t cheap, you know. And we wanna up those numbers.


We make it make sense

If this story helped you navigate your world, subscribe to the M&G today for just R30 for the first three months

Subscribers get access to all our best journalism, subscriber-only newsletters, events and a weekly cryptic crossword.”

Shaun de Waal
Shaun De Waal

Shaun de Waal has worked at the Mail & Guardian since 1989. He was literary editor from 1991 to 2006 and chief film critic for 15 years. He is now editor-at-large. Recent publications include Exposure: Queer Fiction, 25 Years of the Mail & Guardian and Not the Movie of the Week.

Related stories


Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Latest stories

Lights, camera, action!

Meet Kuda Jemba, the emerging film director who went from directing music videos for some of SA’s biggest stars to directing Kelly Khumalo’s upcoming reality show

Is the US supreme court bent on doing harm?

Two recent rulings by America’s apex court are profoundly troubling

War on diamonds: Toil and triumph on the rich barren...

“I’m willing to take a bullet” says Northern Cape natives who claim the land, and its diamonds, belong to them.

Shell v Wild Coast: Science, research and erring on the...

Court applicants have argued that the company should be required to conduct an environmental impact assessment, based on the best available science, which has advanced considerably since Shell’s permit to conduct seismic surveys was granted

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…