A SMAC in the Face #41:  The Rhino – A Reserve Currency

South Africa is blessed with many game reserves which are responsible for bringing in much desperately needed foreign currency especially as the ANC seems to be constantly on the lookout for ways to debase it with their wastefulness and inefficient policies leading to ever increasing government borrowings.

There is an abundance of flora and fauna to attract overseas tourists and their lovely moolah.  Up the West Coast there is a carpet of delicate daisies to delight in spring.  But if meerkats are your thing, then the veld near Oudtshoorn is the place to be.  You can trek out in the chilly Karoo predawn to join a mob of meerkats for an hour or two as they wake up, stretch a bit, particularly their hardworking necks, groom each other and generally get ready for a busy day of looking for kak (mischief for overseas visitors).  They are fascinating creatures, but at the size of a small cat or large rat, they are not particularly impressive. 

What the tourists really want are the big five.  Some just want to do the ooh, aah thing while others want to shoot them for trophies.  Unfortunately, the odd-toed ungulate possesses an impressive horn which is suggestive of a rampant libido.  This attracts the unwanted attention of Asians in need of a quack sexual pick-me-up which in turn attracts the poachers in need of a quick financial pick-me-up.  At up to 4kg of horn per beast and a price of around R300,000/kg, the Rhino doesn’t stand a chance against an AK-47.  It’s satisfying work.  You can dress casually and you don’t have to go into the office every day.  Also, it’s less dangerous than a cash in transit heist as the Rhinos don’t shoot back.

Picking up on an earlier theme on poaching, I decided to publish a little fun drawing that I did for myself.  Some time ago I redrew the R10 note showing a dehorned Rhino and wondered if the Government would ever have the balls to break tradition and use our currency as an international protest platform.  After all, over the years the ANC has never shied away from using all other platforms to protest, mostly destructively. 

Even more radical would be to change the Rand to a Rhino after all the Rhino even predated the Khoisan in South Africa.   Looking eminently prehistoric, if that is linguistically logical, they have first dibs on our country.  Then again, maybe the crocodiles will take issue.  But wouldn’t it be fun to go to a Ford dealership and pay 559,000 Rhinos for a Ranger or 299,999 for a slightly used Ranger only ever ridden by an old granny on Sundays after church?

Unfortunately, the Government won’t do it.  Their hide is too thick and they’re even slower at thinking and changing direction than Rhinos.

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