PRETORIA. The ANC is to start a campaign of tarring and feathering elderly people, exposing its buttocks at nuns and systematically groping citizens in an effort to gauge how recklessly it can behave before its voters start abandoning it.
"We're pretty sure we can do anything and they'll still vote for us," said a spokesman. "But we just want to make sure."
The ruling party has increased its majority in almost every general election since coming to power in 1994, despite a catalogue of corruption scandals, sexual misconduct allegations, fraud, perjury, nepotism and a penchant for ill-fitting suits with shoulder pads apparently bought in Eastern Europe in the 1980s.
"The great thing about our support is that as far as we can tell it's completely unquestioning," said party spokesman Kneejerk Kunene.
"Those who doubt our policies don't fight us. They just leave to form other parties.
"Dissent is therefore literally impossible in the ANC. If you agree with us, you're in the ANC. If you don't, you're not. It's a beautiful system."
He added that since 1994 the ANC had proved that "democracy is about sidelining minorities", and that anyone who disagreed was clearly a racist.
However he said that while the ANC had taken its voters for granted since 1994, it could not always assume "blind devotion" and wanted to test how far it could go before voters began to feel uneasy.
"We can't rely on logic, because South African voters don't," he explained.
"You'd think an official government policy of denying Aids in the country with the worst infection rate in the world would be a sure-fire way of losing support. Well, I've got three little words for you, china: 70 percent majority."
Likewise, he said, the party had expected its predominantly Christian support-base to accuse it of blasphemy – or at lease staggering arrogance – in repeatedly comparing its leaders to Jesus Christ.
"Again, not a peep," said Kunene. "In fact it's proof that the meek shall inherit the earth. Or at least every province except the Western Cape."
He said initial attempts to gauge how tolerant its supporters were had gone unnoticed.
"We were certain there'd be some sort of backlash when we destroyed the Department of Home Affairs and made South African passports a liability," he said. "Nothing. Not even a cross text message."
Kunene confirmed that the new study would be undertaken by the ANC Youth League, which had volunteered for the job.
"Many of them are still veterans of the heroic uprising in 2007 when they bared their buttocks in support of Comrade Julius Malema," he said. "They say they are eager to storm the barricades of oppression once more, especially if it means they can get their pants off.
"They are very eager democrats."