In South Africa, we’ve had farmers who were very wealthy in the past. When I got here in the 1980s there were farmers who were very wealthy.
But there is a side to black rule and the black seizure of land that I was never aware of until recently. This might even, in part, be helped along by Farm murders!
Dennis Fetcho once asked me: What happens to the land of the farmers that are killed? Doesn’t this land just fall fallow and nobody uses it? To be honest I had never bothered to ask that question myself and his proposal seemed reasonable. But the answer may in fact be different.
In South Africa, over the last 25+ years another form of farming has grown, that of farming with wild animals. These animals become a tourist attraction and above all, these animals become big money spinners for hunters from the USA and elsewhere in the Western world. We get very valuable US Dollars and other Western monies from this.
The economics of Africa versus that of the USA and Europe is itself a fascinating topic because we whites in some ways benefit from the backwardness and high risk of Africa. It means our money is worth less. The down side is that if we want to leave Africa, we really struggle because our money doesn’t buy us much overseas. Whereas monies coming in from overseas really buy a lot in South Africa. So you get many white pensioners from Britain and elsewhere who retire in South Africa and buy property here because they would NEVER be able to afford something similar in their own home country.
Game Farmers in South Africa can make huge amounts of money. I attended an auction in April, of a farm, that was owned by such a Super-Farmer – a white guy. He not only owned a game farm where the land alone was worth R32 million ($2 million), but he owned many other businesses worth much more than that.
In this era of black rule, where farmers are murdered and thousands of farms have been seized by the Govt since 1996, you might think that the farming industry is ready to collapse, and in many ways it has suffered tremendous damage for MOST WHITE FARMERS! Most white farmers have struggled more. Most white farmers are worse off … but, enter the era of the Super-Farmers… the white farmers with personal helicopters and private jets!
White farmers with personal helicopters and private jets never existed in the days of white rule to my knowledge. If they existed they must have been only a handful. But apparently there are quite a few such farmers these days and I think Game Farming is where you will find the most of these.
Some of them even hobnob with President Ramaphosa who himself owns game farms and game! Yes! Our black communist President has stacks of money himself in farming, and billions of Rands in many other industries, primarily health companies (and there is all sorts of talk of weird corruption whereever he and his brother go!).
I learned earlier this year that there are quite a lot of these super-farmers around who attend meetings and auctions, by arriving in their personal helicopters, etc.
My guess is that these farmers may have benefited from the damage that the blacks, including the farm murders, may have brought to this country. People forget that South Africa is very business orientated and capitalistic still. If anyone has something serious to sell, like land, especially at a cheaper price, there will be buyers.
I know of a farmer who lost his farm to black land seizure (paid for of course on the “willing buyer, willing seller” principle). He took the money and bought farms next to the farm he had lost. Later when the blacks did absolutely bugger all on his former farm and it was going to ruin, the farmer went and he rented part of his former farm from the blacks and he farms on it! He makes money even though he’s renting his former farm! The blacks are producing nothing and doing nothing! But he is still carrying on and doing very well!
There were 60,000 white farmers in SA before the blacks took over. The last I heard, there were 30,000 left (maybe even a bit less now). It could be that some of the farmers who remained bought up extra land and were able to make more money out of it since the demand for crops and even more so for Game Farming has either remained constant or grown. So while most farmers went downhill there are those who had the means to do well.
Some may even have made money in other industries and then invested in farming and were able to overcome the problems that a traditional farmer had. There are quite a lot of white businessmen, who when they can, go into farming. White men love farms and farming. I had a cousin who made money in engineering and then used it to set up a game farm for himself. So it could be these types of guys who were able to come in and have the financial backing of their own to survive where the common white farmer previously could not.
This turmoil that has come from the blacks and black rule shows once again that when given a chance, there are whites who can survive and prosper. But its not always easy for the common man. Similarly in Zimbabwe I knew people who made lots of money in business and then also got into farming. There were even white farmers who made money despite the communism and the many communist rules in Zimbabwe! So astoundingly, in Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia), there were less white farmers, and THEY MADE MORE MONEY! The land is a more or less fixed quantity and they could expand and they found ways to survive black communism. Some of them became stinking rich. They didn’t get to the helicopters and private planes stage of South Africa, but they were still damned well off.
So this may be the untold story of black rule. The same is true for the corporate and business world.