South Africa’s crisis — calling things by their true name

Locking in to binary narratives of ‘good’ vs ‘bad’ governance can blind us to the depths of a crisis when it arrives. As I argue in  my piece (linked here, and published in The Conversation), there is a continuum between rule-bounded and patronage governance. At the far end of thatcontinuum lie predatory kleptocracy and institutional breakdown. These last are the threats that South Africa now confronts. Hopefully the crisis can be seen for what it is — and not obscured by the fact that ‘wolf’ has been cried so often in response to South Africa’s typical (and inevitably messy) pattern of middle-income governance. What is happening now is not typical — once predatory kleptocracy takes hold, a downward economic and political spiral can unfold rapidly.



One response

  1. Brian,
    Insightful, well written explanation of the unfortunate mess your great country is experiencing. Well done! Hope to see you in the fall. Best Roger

    Professor Roger Leeds
    Johns Hopkins University SAIS
    1717 Massachusetts Ave NW, Room 713
    Washington, DC 20036

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s