In these disruptive times, people from crime infested, communist South Africa are seeking help for successful relocation. Following centuries old patterns, many would like to relocate to enclaves where they might find a significant number of people with similar values, background and social standing. This article focuses on a comparison between New Zealand and the US to help insure successful planning.
If families or even larger groups from a given region want to move to the same proximity in a new country, they must also find ways to adapt and constructively assimilate into the new environments. It is necessary to consider one’s values, skills, cultural likes and dislikes, earning power, geographic contexts and much more, including ‘a sense’ of being “led” in one direction rather than another.
In today’s uncertain and fragile world, many relocated people will want launch their own business – either right away or in the near future. Others may be willing to be retained in steady work within a professional or corporate domain while others in the same family or close group will be focused on pursing self employment.
It is all but impossible for a white farmer or indeed any white person in South Africa to feel safe or firmly believe that remaining in the country is the best option, and especially not a viable option for young people under 40. However, denial and wishful thinking are strange bedfellows that can greatly undermine prospects of using time and resources at hand to plan for a better life for oneself and love ones in the future.
On a really good day, feelings of well being can prevail and draw a curtain over the nasty realities, both behind the curtain and out in the open. However, in a flash and individual or loved one could experience a serious attack resulting in loss of life or health. Living under the duress of such trauma will present serious setbacks for making an adjustment in a new place like the US or NZ.
Already, for many farmers, the psychological difficulties of processing major losses in property will be trauma enough. It is difficult to leave property matters behind when there are barriers to sell imperiled holdings at a fair price. Abandoning a land mortgage or commercial loan and not looking back may seem unbearable, but it is doable. Maybe something can be worked out if the bank has been authorized. executive power to negotiate the transfer of the property.
Mortgage issues are undoubtedly a major obstacle for many to plan in the best way. Do you have any suggestions for a farmer with a 3 million dollar farm, $500,000 in loans and $400,000 in liquid assets? Maybe someone would like to discuss this and related issues in Facebook Comments Section underneath this article
Consider, did any of the Zimbabwean farmers who recently recovered confiscated land have a mortgage. If so, what underlying legal processes pertained to enable them to recover their property. If yes or no, does this not set a precedent for international law that might perhaps be relevant when a rogue government, elected or not breaks its own constitution and international norms?
Since South Africa presents a very charged, politically divisive set of conditions, countries like the US might possibly intervene, but be hard pressed to undo the objectives of the communists. Overturning their hold on the social and political apparatus may require an unprecedented (unacceptable) level of violence that would be largely rejected on the world stage. However, I respect those who disagree with this assessment. There are certainly other ways to view the while farmer’s situation in South Africa.
It could be that when the dust settles, white farmers will only be required to give up a percentage of their land to the government. However, there are few indicators that the government officials possess this level of sophistication and have already violated basic conventions creating major barriers to form functional relationships with adversaries. What would convince them to take this approach after having taking an absolute position?
There has been no public announcement to suggest this is their intention or that they are even thinking about such accommodations, but even if it was, how would this work out? Do they have the magnanimity, honor, ability, bilateral trust, foresightedness and good will to carry out such a mission?
Returning to the mortgage issue, rather than banks likely losing out completely as the SA government moves to confiscate entire parcels, maybe they could advocate for no more than 8-12 percent of any holding be taken, thus leaving farmers and banks with enough assets to still make a go of the operations.
Of course there is big difference between a mortgage on land only and a commercial loan on the collective assets in a given farming operation. These matters can be complicated, messy. Resolving the future disposition of goods produced on a partitioned transfer of land would require many creative agreements that involving good will, trust and respect from both sides.
The bottom line as I see it, is if commercial means of production and the bulk of land is retained by white farmers, then former owners / banks that release the 8-12 percent parcels free and clear to new owners, will still possess the central operation. The new owners of divided parcel can participate in farming in a variety of ways. They can lease needed farm equipment from the former owner, now a neighbor or make agreements with the former owner to help cultivate and harvest the land with existing equipment. The two sides could then work out various cooperative arrangements to bring produce to market.
Can the current government take a step back and authorize some type of quasi principled formula as indicated? Why was such a proposal not considered earlier? Is there still hope for such adjustments. Surely it is not impossible. For those keen on remaining in South Africa, perhaps they could approach the government with a proposal for a pilot program to resemble what has been described.
Perhaps they could pass legislation exempting those white farmers who participate and the program could grow, eventually offering the same opportunity for all white farmers and those who want to be on the receiving end. For those who think such a program to be unrealistic or too aggravating to consider, it seems reasons to move will be increasing in the future, rather than decreasing.
On a sober day, those with adequate resources, health and vitality must be mulling over the question: “What is the best place to move?” The answers may not obvious or easy to discern. Australia and New Zealand 1, 2 are obvious options; other possibilities like the United States 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6; Canada; Brazil; or Europe 1, 2, less apparent, but well worth considering given the limitations of the first two options.
In my view, the prospect of farming families who are able to EXTEND farming operations into ventures considered “non-farming” (i.e. local farms selling to restaurants) or partial farming (i.e. farming and tourism combinations 1, 2, 3), makes the US a formidable competitor indeed. There are a number of places where these kinds of setups could become very lucrative.
Conventional farming can be a good occupation in the US for carefully planned specialty farms, perhaps for aquaponics and other select venues, however, it can be perilous for those in the bottom 75% and yes, often really good for those in the top 25% 1. What is the remedy, as a business professor at my Alma Mater frequently remarked “prior planning prevents poor performance”. If you do not want to compete head on in conventional farming and want to operate a profitable small farm, visit restaurants and food stores in your targeted area and find out what their demands are how easy it would be to sell to them on a regular basis.
We live in times where families or portions of families may well wish to relocate to a better country. In the case of South African farms 1 and white farmers under constant siege and family members thinking about transition, each person will need to assess how he or she may best serve in a new country after thoroughly examining many inner and outer variables. This can be a most daunting task for those who plan on farming or other self employment.
Farmers and many other categories of people who value self employment as well a corporate opportunities will find both the US and New Zealand offer great possibilities. For those motivated to serve various sectors like education and healthcare, the potential in either country is similar, with each state in the US having significantly different pay scales as well as broad differences in cost of living.
The prospects of a charming South African transplant successfully teaching in an American rural school (generally with fewer discipline problems than city schools) for a fairly decent salary is high. Probably the wages possible for teachers and other mid level professionals in the US are generally a little higher than New Zealand. However, there is a serious shortage of medical professionals in NZ and gaining admission for long term residency in this venue should be quite simple for most white South Africans and others.