If not fracking, then what?

The current debate about the proposed hydraulic fracturing (fracking) for shale gas in the South African Karroo region, in the Eastern, Western and Northern Cape provinces is a socio-economic dilemma with many complex components that are often over simplified for the sake of lobbying public buy-in.

The government’s posture of the issue is in line with government’s policies to address socio-economic challenges, redress issues of social inequality, reduce poverty, to develop the economy, to transform and reform the South African society and to always avail tools to access post-school training, which ties in with the social target of the millennium goals.

South Africa, in the past few years was struggling with the energy needs of a growing population, seeing load-shedding processes being applied so as to lessen the pressure on the national grid, affecting detrimentally commerce and disrupting the daily comfort and convenience of electricity to al. It is with this in mind that alternatives to the depleting energy source of coal are needed, especially ones that, unlike coal, are environmentally friendly as well, in the context of the global crisis that is climate-change, or global warming, per se.

Not only will it supplement experimental energy sources such as wind and solar energy, but it will provide a more consistent energy supply, that is also in-line with the techno-scientific advancements of the global-North. South African being an importer of gas and oil from Mozambique, makes South Africa at the mercy of the volatile markets and fluctuating currencies.

The Deputy Minister for Minerals resources, Godfrey Oliphant was quoted as saying the process will create “thousands” of jobs, which is another popular justification – that was offering much needed development to the Karoo region,

Farmers are in stark opposition of the process, citing the threat of fracking to the water reserves, which is a key resource in agricultural enterprise. The process does pollute groundwater and causes air pollution as well that threaten the livelihood of these agrarian entrepreneurs. The food security could be greatly as a result. Although the oil and gas companies like Shell, Bundu Oil & Gas Exploration are said to be offering fair compensation to farmers, most are residents that are also concerned for their personal safety and interests.

Environmentalists, such as the Academy of Science of South Africa, are concerned about a more moving motion, that could most likely result from fracking – earthquakes! The fracking process could activate dormant fault lines in the underground rocks, not only that, but also the activity of pumping high volumes of water back underground after the process has been seen to elevate the seismic activity.

In, Oklahoma, United States of America, where fracking has been practiced for years now, was surveyed by the Oklahoma Geo-logical Survey and found that the two earthquakes per day reality in that region, registering magnitudes of above 3 on the Richter scale. Natural disasters of this nature are not natural to South Africa and as such, could provide wide panic, and justly so, because of the life-threatening dangers.

The ideological standpoint, of regarding the significance of the Karoo, as an ecological heritage site, protecting the rural lifestyle in the place-of-origin rhetoric, whilst maintaining aesthetic quality is the line of argument for activists. The possible job creation element, as proposed by government, has been rebutted with highlighting that the jobs that will be possibly created are of no long-term benefit, and will be less that the jobs that will be lost as a very result of the fracking.

The historical lack of accountability by profit-chasing companies such as Shell in Nigeria, for instance, calls for a Fracking Agency to monitor this emerging industry, will the supplementation of legislative creation to create a fair point of departure for everyone involved.

 

#nbs

 

 

 

1.Government Views:

http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/govt-gives-green-light-for-shale-gas-fracking-in-karoo-20170330

 

  1. Landowners’ Views:

https://mg.co.za/article/2013-08-27-fracking-shell-south-african-shale-drive-riles-farmers

 

3.Experts’ Views:

http://www.iol.co.za/news/fracking-raises-earthquake-risk–experts-2079314

 

4.Views on unemployment:

https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/opinionista/2013-06-26-the-karoo-desperately-needs-development/#.WRFjuoiGPIU

 

5.The viability of it as a resource:

https://www2.deloitte.com/za/en/pages/finance/articles/a-fracking-boost-for-the-south-african-economy.html

 

6.Activists Views:

http://www.herald.co.zw/sa-gas-exploration-anti-fracking-activists-remain-resolute/

 

  1. Mining-related

http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/northern-cape/fracking-to-give-karoo-uncertain-future-8628880

 

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More than Cents, They Steal Sense: A Curious Case of Woollen Wolves in “Till the day we fly free” | a poem review #InMyHumbleOpinion

The essence of this essay is an analysis of a poem by Phila Dyasi (2017). It serves as a creative response to the concept of False Prophets and its embodiments.  This poem serves as a tool to analyse the plight of Christian contemporaries at the hands of false religious persons and why the very principles of Christianity ensure that these criminals succeed. The poetry piece will be examined using a critical analysis approach.

 

Phila Dyasi – “Till the day we fly free”

 

Till the day we fly free

 

I’m reaching but never gripping,

It’s soul ripping how they’re preaching,

yet are never teaching.

 

I’ll never hide,

even when I die.

I’ll be immortalized

in some formaldehyde.

Where my soul, spirit and skin divide

I’ll be like a deity,

the higher me,

doing the Lord’s work,

hire me.

 

The humble apple-pie

can satisfy no appetite

here comes the hunger tide.

 

When wings carried Icarus

through cutting winds

we were pulled feathers

of wisdom’s birdy-body of ink

taking flight to Olympus planes

the son, seeks The Sun.

 

I’m grown now,

dealing with chronic stress,

and I believe less in a deity,

it seems like too far a stretch.

 

The stench from a faithless,

hopeless, homeless.

 

 

REVIEW

In the presentation, the speaker employs a structured aaa rhyme scheme in the first stanza. The tercet- symbolises the Christian Holy Trinity concept, to illustrate a methodical system that is synonymous with organised religions. The tone is unsympathetic to the gullible masses.

The first three lines in stanza one are told from the first-person perspective, holding an interpretation sermon delivered by a false prophet meant to help the church learn something spiritual with the teachings in the preaching. Instead, he delivers a ‘religious’ talk that is devoid of the teaching element as it does not empower, but lacks spiritual depth that resonates with the brethren. This idea of this sermon not being enough is further supplemented by line 1, showing a desire for spiritual understanding, and what religion can and cannot do for a believer, but is ill-equipped to do so by not substantiating theological resources. It always seems out of reach, ensuring congregational return and with that comes monetary offerings by the truckloads.

 

The speaker liberates himself from all forms of fear, by guillotining death. By claiming he will forever be physically whole, not subject to decomposition (ll. 4-7), he cannot be held hostage by soothsayers who will emphasise the mortal nature of man, to force persons to bow down before them, and give their tithes to ‘God’ through them, supposedly. He says that the chemical formaldehyde, which preserves the corpse and can cause its demise – so this introduced the double-edged sword argument, that without moderation all things have capacity to do good and evil, and religion is no exception. This could be advice that believers must be constructive in their opinion and not be blinded by the opium. In cases of blurred lines, false prophets appear as exploitative.  Through the usage of a personification and a simile, the speaker extends the immortality argument to the abstract realm of spiritualism, proposing that he will be divine quality posthumous, (ll. 8-12) which is the popular claim of the falsifiers of the gospels –they punt God’s work, however the puns “higher” and “hire” suggest that theirs is for monetary gain.

 

The Greek myth of ‘Icarus: The Fall’ has a moral teaching that is consistent with the theme of moderation, as “the son, seeks The Sun” (l. 21), where the sun is symbolic of the concept of God, the highest form of all.  Daedalus’ son disobeyed nature and instructions, as feathers are dually used to soar and for the archaic form of writing here, which “we were pulled feathers/of wisdom’s birdy-body of ink” could refer to the divine knowledge in the Holy Bible, and disobedience proves fatal for the falsifiers of the gospel as it did for Icarus, as he was stripped of his power.

 

The last stanza is amalgamated with stanza three because it offers a final warning that if prophets and pastors who claim to be Christians, continue to command congregants to not fall short of the contemporary gimmicks that prophets use, then Christians will lose hope, belief and trust in the word of God. The ordinary sheep of God’s flock, entrusted to the guidance of prophets and pastors, are being hunted by wolves in wool.

 

#nbs

Day 1 | 21 FOR 21

Question: What is the most bullshit advice adults give to children?

Answer: That only strangers are dangerous.

‘Pursuit of Happyness’ by Azola Dayile | a review #InMyHumbleOpinion

Pursuit of Happyness
I have spent countless hours
At church,
Pubs
And strip clubs.
With pastors,
Prostitutes
And drunkards.
In pursuit of happynes,
The truth
And fleshy desires.
Sang happy songs with Hedonists
Travelled with Nomads,
Got high with Rastas
And broke bread with Pariahs.
Camped on bended knees around
hell-like fires
To listen attentively to grown men
liars.

Slaughtered sheep,
Goats
And cows
For this little bit of sanity
And crowded peace of mind,
But my hands are smeared with
blood
And the dark cloud still looms
closely behind
Where the hell is this love?
I only know hearts for pumping
blood.
Not as an asylum for
Said feeling you people cannot
even describe.

And do you remember
When god said “let there be light!”?
I was unfortunate
And cast out
To write this poem
With my tongue in this grim dark
I am convinced collecting empty
beer bottles
and picking bread crumbs is my
birth right.
I am still in hot pursuit
And the journey now leads me
To a mad house.

Review:

We journey with the speaker through multiple contexts, tracing for a seemingly fleeting and insatiable feeling of contentment through discovery, trial-and-error and experimentation. In the many cultural and social spaces, we are introduced to: “Church / Pubs/…strip clubs” for which are institutions to cater to human needs in varying ways. A sense of seeking a ‘home’, the longing of a person wanting to belong in a set society could be interpreted as the message of this poem. A place of refuge, whether physical or otherwise, is sought and is never found. The unattainable asylum has been searched for within the confines of organized religion and in areas of ‘profanity’, and neither house the happiness the speaker wants. It appears that the search is for inner peace is pursued outwardly, and it is because of this that it is never attained. Furthermore, want can understand the subject not to be an individual but the personification of a place, that is ‘home’ to churches, pubs and strip clubs, but still has citizens who are not happy, a place where poverty exists even in the presence of church, pubs and strip clubs, institutions were money is found in abundance.
In wanting to make sense of the world, find comfort, balance and peace, and meeting the demands of life, all the while having faith and hope that a connection to the world will be made somehow. Church offers to fill the spiritual void of humans, pubs hope to pump gallons of socialisation down the throats of its regulars, a ‘holed-liver’ of fun, while strip clubs seek to fulfil the “fleshly desires” of our Hedonist core as humans, all contributing to the wholesome human experience. With pubs being a platform for the social activity of drinking alcohol, we see this as an escape from the negative feelings, the chemical-imbalance causing beverage tends to remove the anxiety and stress. Also, in South Africa, drinking is a social norm, if fact one of the leading nations in consuming alcohol, furthermore if we examine the black community, particularly, this is customary. It is a behavioural expectation to as the speaker attempts to be one ‘fit in’ with his contemporaries, and not be relegated to the margins as nomads are, as gypsies are, as Rastafarians are, all minorities made ‘pariahs’ of society.
We get an idea that the state of mind of the speaker is deeply troubled and unsettled, perpetually anxious and stressed from his unending quest for ‘the truth’, that alludes him, and he cannot even receive it from the elders as they are deceptive – “grown men liars” in the first stanza. “For this little bit of sanity /And crowded peace of mind” of stanza 2 continues this image of mental instability. An “asylum” is mentioned in this stanza as well, an institution that provides care and protection to needy individuals, such as the infirm and destitute. It is a sanctuary, away from profanation and violation. Both physically and psychologically. It is a homely setting. Here one enjoys liberty from what is required by society and law for and from most people. It would appear that not even the feeling of love, “what the hell is this love”, can save the speaker from feeling like an outsider. He dismisses ‘love’ as “said feelings people cannot even describe”, an abstract concept that people do not comprehend therefore cannot practise. Stanza 3 sees the speaker reaching his destination, “And the journey now leads me/ To a mad house”. He has resigned his fate to insanity. Here he can find serenity. Ironically, he can feel a sense of connection to the world once removed from it. His spiritual transcendence, like prayer or meditation is his soloism. Isolation from the madness of life, and its many demands.
The intertextuality is rife herein, borrowing a number of images from the ‘Holy Bible’ to fit his spiritually rich poem and references. The first stanza’s chaos and the sliding scale from extreme holiness to extreme profanity, the polar opposites that are presented in closeness show how samey we are in our differences. We are united in our separateness. “Let there be light” from the Book of Genesis, Chapter 1, verse 3, represents the void, the darkness ceasing, the birth of something from nothing. The light here is not literal. The light of the world is man, as in ‘human being’. Human being who has dominion on all that happens on earth. The abject poverty presented in “picking up bread crumbs”, is a human construct, the great ill of neo-liberal capitalism, a zero-sum game that sees individuals with billions while some go without bread each day. As some would collect “empty beer bottles” to sell as to make money, to buy basics like bread, for example. This could also be a critique of the movie, “The Pursuit of Happyness”, the title of this poem, where the protagonist seeks for fulfilment in the material world. We can deduce that the speaker establishes his pursuit of happiness in the world outside of worldly things is of higher moral ground, or, that the for any community, more than money, we need to find spiritual fulfilment, or risk something of the most high value, our peace of mind – sanity.

– nublaccsoul #InMyHumbleOpinion