Brewer's Droop #232

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I’ve been watching the debates for the release of certain prisoners on “medical grounds” and I think it probably speaks well of us, as a society, to let some people go home to die with a little more dignity than they’d get at Pollsmoor. It shows that we are a humane society (or does it).

In fact I re-tweeted (Oh Lord has it come to this – Twittering?) what Max du Preez had to say on the subject. For those of you who missed it, it said:

Murderer Derby-Lewis should be sent home not because he deserves freedom, but because he’s dying and we’re not a vengeful nation.”

Well, it’s a nice thought Max, but like all magnanimous ideas it’s so open to abuse. If you check the records you’ll find that doctors swore that Schabir Shaik was dying and that he should be allowed home to die with dignity.

Last I heard his golf handicap was down to a 6 (because he gets a lot of practice) and he’s still getting into the odd brawl here and there. Many reporters have filed stories after seeing him in game parks, shopping malls and clubs. Considering that they let him go home “to die” in March 2009 (five years ago) he’s certainly having a lingering death.

Stop and think about this for a moment – it’s about the system we laughingly refer to as “justice”. This is the approximate time-line of any litigation or prosecution (with the possible exception of Oscar and Dewani who managed to get a ridiculously short time banged up in the first case and, in the second case, was allowed to walk out of jail and fly home as free as a bird after millions had been spent to get him here).

Anyway, back to a typical time scenario….

Mr. X gets arrested.
He appeals to a judge that the arrest was not legal.
The judge lets him go.

The same Mr. X is arrested on another charge.
This time the judge doesn’t set him free and the trial is postponed for 10 months.
During the 10 months, the key witness is accidentally killed by a reckless driver (who was never caught).
Then the docket is found to be missing.
It eventually goes to trial and he’s found guilty. But he immediately files for an appeal and gets bail.
A new case is set for 12 month’s time.
Another witness dies under suspicious circumstances.
The new trial takes place and he’s still guilty so he applies to the Appeals Court because he says “the judge was biased” and his new trial is set for 9 month’s time while he enjoys bail.
And it goes on, and on.
Then he’s sent to prison.
He suddenly becomes very ill and is sent home “to die with dignity” but actually plays tennis and throws parties for his mates (many of whom are high ranking government officials).

And by the way Max, I’ve given it a lot of thought and can’t agree with you. (Sorry if you lose a lot of sleep over this). But when someone is sent to jail for, say, 5 years then that’s what it should be – 5 years to the day. If he’s given Life then that’s what it means – Life. And if a prisoner has a terminal illness then he must die in prison.

When a judge passes sentence then that’s it. Do your time and if you die before your sentence ends then tough shit.

I’m getting damned tired of these rapists, murderers, thieves and corrupt politicians casually walking out of jail – and I’m fairly sure most of the population would agree with me.


I caught a glimpse of the “VIP tent at The Met” on TV recently and had rather a shock.

Everyone was fainting and saying “and here she comes, our very own queen of the turf, yes it’s Thandi Higginbottom and doesn’t she look gorgeous in her Mr Price ensemble?”

I’m only slightly exaggerating here. The only person who was remotely like a celebrity (but not really) was Chester Williams.

When will these broadcasters realise that we don’t have any celebrities available! Gary Player doesn’t ever seem to go, Chris Barnard is dead and Charlize Theron is too far away. Even Bob Skinstad would be better than the endless parade of people we’ve never seen or heard of before.

But seriously, we only have one or two real celebs in South Africa – the motley crew that turn up to these Johnny Blue parties hosted by recently qualified millionaires, or the pathetic J&B Met (Is it still called that?) are so, so, so NOT celebrity material. In fact many of them look like shop assistants you see in various malls around the country.

What is really excruciating is how they play it up to the cameras. There was one girl (whose name I forget) who has only succeeded in marrying or dating rich men – and telling everyone about it. That’s her claim to celebrity status. I will give her credit for nerve though – I mean, she looks like a small cabin trunk wrapped up by the Salvation Army at the best of times. Personally I thought horse number 3 looked classier – and had nicer legs.

If you want a real celebrity at your next function then send the invitation to me.


Everyone’s getting really excited about the “State of the Nation” address because we’re all wondering (a) what Julius will do and (b) how many times President Zuma will lose his place on his speech notes.

I was going to lay in some beers and snacks and get some friends around but then I realised it’s going to be a non-event. The smart money’s saying it’ll be over within five minutes.

If Julius arrives naked then they’ll close the session. If Julius keeps shouting “pay back the money” they’ll close the session. If Zuma suddenly realises where he is he’ll freeze and they’ll close the session.


A friend sent me this – quite succinct I thought.

Ironic place is our land
Petrol price down / booze price up.
Pay for plastic bags / condoms free

By the way, here are my other contact details in case you don’t already have them – and don’t forget our Twitter news feed which updates what’s happening in the Advertising, marketing and Media worlds – as it happens.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Mobile: 082 551 1371
Office: 021 702 4484
Twitter: @brewersapps

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  1. I agree 100 per cent that “time off for good behaviour” should be abolished. As you said “Life” MEANS LIFE. That means until your dead!

  2. I detest Darby-Lewis and what he did. Hani was a good man and, perhaps, if he was still around we would have an ANC that we could be proud of. A Madiba man. However, pardon for those fuckers that walked into the St. James Church and slaughtered innocent people and no pardon for him (and he is dying) is not justice. It’s bias revenge. God or whoever help us all.

  3. …thanks for the giggle …..luuuuuv your column!

    Sorry to be “picky”….. but like many before you….you fell into the apostrophe trap….NO apostrophe was necessary in your sentence…just “doctors” (presumably there were more than one)

    1 doctor
    several doctors (plural)

    … – “My doctors gave me 6 months to live, then when I got the bill, they gave me 6 months more !” LOL



      Believe me, that’s a typo – I would never make such a mistake!

      *hanging head in shame*

      • Hang that head good ‘n proper Mr B! Heh heh

        • Oh I just knew you’d pick that up too Auntie Irene!

          Even Saints make the odd mistake once in a while!

          • hahahahahaha :-)

  4. Brilliant, as usual, Chris!

    • Thanks Rebecca. You have such good taste.

  5. I was going to rib you about the ‘rampant apostrophe’ but since your forehead is already resting on your bellybutton courtesy of Pam and Irene, I shall refrain and instead thank you for another highly entertaining ‘look at life’ (or imminent death) in Souff Efrika!!!! :-)

    • Okay. Okay. I’ve fixed it now.

      I didn’t realise the Grammar Police were so vigilant! :-)

  6. Thanks for the laugh, I always enjoy your posts.
    Keep them coming.
    I didn’t notice your apostrophe catastrophe, I tend to read your posts too fast, similar to gulping down a cold one in this relentless heat.


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