Dear President Ramaphosa, I’m going to keep this brief, because I know you’re dealing with a lot: We’ve all been ready to support you and your administration in your efforts to save lives from this pandemic. Even people like me, who have questioned the idea of a lockdown as the best response have decided to comply and do whatever we could to help. We set aside our concerns over the heavy-handedness of the police and army; we swallowed and accepted that poor people in informal housing would be crammed into their one-room dwellings for a month; we limited our trips to the shops and even accepted not being able to buy hot food (for whatever inexplicable reason)...

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Ok, so we’re all coming to the end of our lockdown sentence - and you’ve probably been angry, depressed, anxious, frustrated, scared and numb - at least a few times each. I am not one to gild the lily and if you’ve ever read any of my stuff you know I’m not here to give you platitudes or the kind of “inspirational” but meaningless nonsense most people put on social media. We also haven’t made some simpering CliffCentral.com ad with piano music and quotes from spiritual leaders to pretend we care. We do care, and that’s why we haven’t stopped during lockdown - whether it’s my daily show or our award-winning podcast series. To those who have joined the podcast family because of lockdown, welcome! We hope you’ll stay, no matter what happens next.

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Time to level with each other, ok? You don’t have to prove you’re exercising at home during lockdown - we’ll know at the end when you roll out of your house if you did or not. I believe you’re working from home. Thanks to all the holidays, April was a write-off anyway, so we were only expecting 50% from you. Don’t feel bad if you’re not the most productive person on Earth - you’re not...

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Can you believe what this coronavirus outbreak is doing to us? It has everyone jumping, and in the midst of mass-hysteria toilet paper stockpiling and stock markets crashing, we should take stock of ourselves. Let’s take a sober, rational look at the madness that has taken hold in the last few days, all over the world...

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Imagine being the responsible parent in a family where the other parent has spent every cent, saved nothing, borrowed against the house, taken on mountains of credit card debt and siphoned off whatever cash could be found to their lover and their children. That’s what Tito Mboweni has to manage...

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Are you ready for the best decade in humanity’s history? No matter how much the news media, politicians, celebrities and climate change activists tell you we’re about to enter the gates of hell, we’re not. Things are pretty fantastic for humans...

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For as long as I can remember, I’ve been called an optimist. I think the people who called me that didn’t mean it as a compliment. Throughout human history, the cynics, stoics and mystics had more respect than the optimists - but it turns out that history is on the side of those who have a generally positive view of their existence and the overall trend for humanity. 2019 has been the year of Greta Thunberg, Hong Kong, Donald Trump, Boris Johnson, Jussie Smollett, Venezuela, Christchurch, Notre Dame and Jeffrey Epstein - so you’d be forgiven for thinking things aren’t great. But you’d be wrong… completely wrong.

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Siya Sangweni (CliffCentral Brand Manager), Rina Broomberg (CliffCentral co-founder) and I were in New York last week for a series of meetings, a conference and some interesting experiences in the world of podcasting. It’s always reassuring to hear other people’s stories of pioneering their businesses and ideas in new media and to compare them to your own. You quickly realise that the distance between Johannesburg and New York is shorter than it has ever been - and that we’re having similar experiences, challenges and discovering clever solutions to the flux that all media businesses find themselves in...

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People abuse the term ‘community’. A community is defined as "a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common.” It doesn’t mean the million things politicians want it to. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram talk about their community - but we’re certainly not in the same neighbourhood and we don’t have much in common (especially if you look at your feed on Twitter)...

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Turns out we’re not just vapid and superficial. Turns out we want more than 280 characters. Turns out we like complex stories with lots of characters and plot lines. Turns out we like interviews where people talk about philosophy, life and meaning. Turns out we’re smarter than the media people thought.

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