Swaziland Is For Lovers: Protests Over Consumption of Expanding Royal Family

Swaziland may be one of the poorest countries on Earth, but that did not stop its King Mswati III from throwing a massive birthday party for himself or send his various wives on a shopping blasts to Europe on private planes. Despite his control of the country’s finances, the King enjoys about $30 million was set aside for “royal emoluments.”

The King regularly gives a new BMW, palace, and large staff to his new wives.

The King’s family controls the nation’s most valuable industries, raking in $200 million.

His father, Sobhuza II, was more frugal with expenses but more free with wives — he had as mand as 110.

For the first time, some protests have been seen in the country, but they do not appear to have had much impact on the royally conspicuous consumption.

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10 thoughts on “Swaziland Is For Lovers: Protests Over Consumption of Expanding Royal Family”

  1. Obama-sama

    “Thanks, Bob. I haven’t played MadLibs since I was a kid.”

    What I’m here for.

  2. ” What is painfully self-evident to so many people — that establishment media outlets exist to serve and curry favor with those in power — is something that produces shocked disbelief from most of those in that “profession.” They actually continue to believe that they’re tough, independent-minded, adversarial checks on political power. The strength of that delusion — the total inability to engage in even the most minimal self-reflection or self-criticism — is one of the principal reasons why reforming the establishment press is virtually impossible and the creation of competing alternatives is the only real solution.” This is from Glenn Greenwald’s column of today as MSNBC caves to pressure from the right. I think he’s correct to say we need to keep creating alternatives.

    Palin and McCain should be under a press boycott, as should cheney and bush, until they hold a real news conference where they answer actual questions of importance to the public–where they cough up real answers like a cat with a hairball. Why are these people given free air time and a free pass? Talk about churches endorsing candidates! Jeesh! We need separation of media and power.

  3. http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20080906/pl_politico/13208

    … “The national media,” he added, “will be kept far away” from Palin.

    They may be at once close and far away. Top newspaper reporters will be on the trail with her day after day, including The Washington Post’s Juliet Eilperin. The New York Times will have a rotating cast, beginning with Monica Davey.

    And each network will have an off-air producer, or embed, devoted to the Palin beat: Matt Berger (NBC/ National Journal), Shushannah Walshe (Fox), Imtiyaz Delawala (ABC), Scott Conroy (CBS), and Peter Hamby (CNN). The bigger-name, on-air correspondents will also be on the road with Palin from time to time.

    Sam Feist, CNN’s political director, said that since Palin has had to focus on regional issues as Alaska’s governor, he expects she’ll begin with media avails on the road and only offer wide-ranging interviews after getting thoroughly prepared for them by the campaign.

    However, he said, “if a presidential candidate or a vice presidential candidate declines to do interviews, the news organizations will note that.”

    Even when Palin does begin taking interviews, it remains to be seen if she’ll grant them to outlets with which the campaign has had a hostile relationship — most notably the New York Times” …

  4. rcampbell,

    It figures! How sweet that he’ll go to AK as her lap dog. I can’t figure the “press” out either. Their ratings are in the toilet. Why don’t they try some real reporting and see if those ratings don’t go up? Their mindless blather isn’t making them as much money as actual reporting would. So I think these are bad business people in addition to damaging to this country through mass stupidity. ARRGGG

  5. Jill

    I read the piece attached to your link. In it the writer predicted the GOP would let the furor rise about shielding her and then they’d allow Sarah Palin to get a puffball interview from Larry King or Brit Hume or Charlie Gibson. I found the below this morning:

    NEW YORK — Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin has agreed to sit down with ABC’s Charles Gibson later this week for her first television interview since John McCain chose her as his running mate more than a week ago.

    Palin will sit down for multiple interviews with Gibson in Alaska over two days, most likely Thursday and Friday, said McCain adviser Mark Salter….

  6. Although this birthday party is begging for a fatwa, I share the concerns about cheneybush expressed by others above. Our already feeble “news” chatter is devoid of relevant content about the election. Worse, this inane chatter gives the perfect cover for cheney to get that all out war he’s been dreaming about. He appears to want Armaggden in his lifetime. Our country is disentegrating in many, many ways. Little is said about it and that is more scary than the disentigation itself.

  7. Swaziland maybe the intended model for the United States.

    From Wikipedia: “The Westminster-style constitution that was adopted in 1968 was suspended by King Sobhuza in 1973 under a royal decree backed by the royalist majority of parliament, in effect a coup by the government against its own constitution.”

    That sounds strangely familiar.

    And for some strange reason “impeachment is off the table”.

    I wonder what would happen if Cindy Sheehan defeated the first (and worst) woman speaker of the house?


  8. What Bob said except substitute “unjust” for “bizarre”.

    Other terms that come to mind are “unscrupulous”, “stupid”, “exploitative”, “selfish”, “venal”, “ridiculous”, and “ultimately self-destructive”.

    Thanks, Bob. I haven’t played MadLibs since I was a kid.

  9. So Bush & Cheney creating a trail of human carnage for their friends to contract and profit from, like bugs, while pushing the economy into the toilet is somehow less bizarre than happenings in Swaziland?

    You’re kidding me; right?

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