Letters

Dear Editor



Picture of Frame


Poor Philip Frame – chastised as the archetypal capitalist and exploiter – was everything regulators and unions detest.
Yet today his 30,000 jobs seem far more benevolent than the moral posturing of his detractors. A few more Frames might just feed the poor a lot better.
Robin Bosomworth
Newlands, Cape Town

Why is King still permitted to dominate the corporate governance arena after your Frame Trust exposé? Will any politicians – or the Institute of Directors – have the courage to stick their necks out on this?
Sam Hansen
by e-mail


Voyager to nowhere


Well done on exposing SAA for the arrogant, bloated organisation it really is.
After being abused once too often, I let my Gold Voyager status slide to zero. Do SAA care? Of course not!
Dieter Rencken
London

I tried to book a return flight to London. There was a seat when I needed to leave, but not a single economy seat back – from any European city – for a Voyager claimant till next January!
I called Standard Bank, who moved their credit card customers to Voyager when they closed their Accolades programme, hoping that my bank would consider me a sufficiently valued client to care. I was told that it was “out of their hands”.
The solution is to tell both Standard Bank and Voyager to stick it, and move all my accounts to FNB whose ebucks never expire and can be used to buy a wide range of items.
Shaun Hodgkiss,
Fourways

South Africans are notorious for putting up with bad situations. I am a Voyager member. I intend to e-mail a scanned file of your article (nose46) to my 10 best friends asking them to forward it to their 10 best friends. The message will include SAA’s e-mail address. Hopefully, within 14 days SAA will be getting hundreds of e-mails a day.
Stanley Cohen
by email


More Stannic panic


What happened to your promised follow-up article on Stannic? You’re doing sterling work. Don’t tell me you were gagged?
Sean Goss
Eldorado Park, Johannesburg

No, other matters intruded. But watch this space. – Ed.



Whale of a time


Allow us to add the detail Mr Pogrund left out of his letter in nose46 regarding his reservation at Whale Cottage, Hermanus.
When he sent an e-mail enquiry for accommodation, I offered him a good sea-facing room, as he requested. At no stage was the word “private” mentioned. He signed off our reservation confirmation form and cancellation policy. Our policy states that a walkout by a guest results in the full payment being due.
The Pogrunds arrived late on the day, and did not feel their room met their expectation. Mr Pogrund’s need for a “private” room was expressed for the first time. Our manager explained that a sea-facing room with a private terrace would be available in three days, and would be allocated to them. Mr Pogrund refused this, and left.
Within a day, I received an e-mail from Mr Pogrund, stating that if I did not refund him in full, he would sue. We offered him our Whale Room with private terrace, but received no response.
He then complained to Portfolio and Cape Town Tourism. Portfolio could not help him, as we do not advertise in it. Cape Town Tourism head Sheryl Ozinsky recommended we offer him a weekend at Whale Cottage. We did, but he rejected the offer. 
To put an end to five months of correspondence, we refunded Mr Pogrund for two days’ accommodation. He has not acknowledged receipt.
Mr Pogrund holds a poor view of Sheryl Ozinsky if he thinks that my status as deputy chairman of Cape Town Tourism would have restricted her “actions”.
The Pogrunds are the only guests who have walked out since we opened in September. 
We have done our best to satisfy Mr Pogrund in the hope that a positive approach would result in a happier ending for all.
Christiane von Ulmenstein
Whale Cottage, Hermanus


Gutter talk


I fear I am unable to renew my sub, as my financial situation since moving to an old-age home is no longer elastic. In any event I am finding the use of the language of the gutter – “arse” and “fucking” – rather dreary.
Although I am 90, I am not some stuffy Bible-thumping prude: I horrified my friends by buying a copy of Hustler because I like to know what I am talking about. (Female genitalia – in glorious technicolour – are hardly Leonardo da Vinci.)
But the sad conclusion I have drawn is that the splendid level of investigative journalism you practise is marred by colloquial vulgarism. If the new SA has nothing else to talk about or refer to other than things below the belly button, it is in a poor way indeed.
Dr Patricia McMagh
Rondebosch, Cape Town


Stuffed nose


Nose would be %@#$ed,
bowed and defeated
were it to have
its expletives deleted.

Gus Ferguson

See Backchat on page 30. – Ed


Hijacked by design


The graphic design of nose46 is simply awful.  The power of your marvellous magazine to communicate has been hijacked by your designer, who has no clue how to lay out pages that communicate quickly and effectively.
Fonts and design styles are used willy-nilly from page to page: bold, ugly and confusing.  A once good read has been made difficult. Buy your designer a copy of The Spectator to show how it should be done.
Anthony Bannister
Nottigham Road, KZN

What! No sex, no sin, no sensation – and no fun with layout either? Trying to be upper class is such hard work, we’ve given up. Jokes aside, I thought we looked pretty lively. But watch how we develop over the next few issues, and then tell us what you think. – Ed.



Yachties see stars


Congratulations on getting better and better!
Durban yachties are agog, following your revelations regarding the Cape-to-Rio and Royal Cape Yacht Club. We will probably be seeing some of the “stars” in July when Point Yacht Club hosts the NCS/MSC and Lipton Cup Regattas.
Were you aware that Anthony Stewart [RCYC manager who resigned his job and his membership of the club in 2000 – see nose45] is the son-in-law of [current RCYC commodore] Craig Middleton?
HR
Durban

No! –Ed.


Lazerson treatment


I have read and reread your article about Ivor Lazerson and can see no good reason why you published it.
A feud between Lazerson’s widow and his daughters from a previous marriage is the sort of thing that occurs everywhere. Of what consequence is it to anyone outside the family? The man is dead. What can be achieved by displaying this dirty linen?
There can be little doubt that any husband who received a divorce summons from his wife when he was terminally ill would disinherit her. The only surprise is that the “top lawyer” who urged Sue-Ann to do so as a tool to obtain maintenance from a dying man did not anticipate this!
HP Vermaak
Die Wilgers, Pretoria

You’ve correctly identified many of the issues we wished to raise. The problem of under-provision for the maintenance of a surviving spouse, particularly in a second or subsequent marriage, is indeed remarkably common – as is the potential for bitterness and conflict in such situations. The problem can be addressed in various ways: by means of moral pressure on those proposing to make such a will; by sharpening professional awareness among “top lawyers” of the available options – and by promoting appropriate changes to the law.
The central point of our story was that Sue-Ann Lazerson is probably the first surviving spouse in such circumstances to claim a right to maintenance by her husband’s estate in terms of the new law. – Ed.


I was fascinated by the message you tried to send Ivor Lazerson in your last issue. Pity I don’t have more influence at West Park cemetery, or I’d have delivered it myself.
One evening about 11 years ago my (now ex-) wife and I had a final showdown. She moved out the bedroom. I took a sleeping pill and went to bed.
Next door, in my office at the house, the country’s second-most-senior advocate, Attie van der Spuy, was working late, consulting with my client and accountant Leon Beinash.
Later, I was woken by my wife summoning me to the lounge to meet a surprise visitor. I pulled on some boxer shorts and was confronted by Lazerson. Without further ado he ordered me to sit down and sign a divorce agreement. I didn’t even know Nancy had already gone to see a lawyer.
I told Lazerson to f-off out my house, whereupon he grabbed me by the throat and started to throttle me. Weight for age I have to concede his superiority. The noise of the assault filtered through to my office and Beinash, weighing in at about 240kg, and Van der Spuy rushed to my rescue.
Lazerson had disconnected my phone, so I made a citizen’s arrest and Van der Spuy went to the neighbours to phone the police. Lazerson decided it was time to bolt. I pursued him to the locked front gate where he turned to face me – and kicked my lower jaw, smashing it.
Later, when I was discharged from hospital I went to the Law Society of the Transvaal to lay a charge. The Law Society scheduled a hearing on five occasions. Beinash, Van der Spuy and I turned up on each occasion – but Lazerson simply never pitched up. The committee refused to hear the case or make a finding in his absence. Case closed.
Peter Soller
Johannesburg

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