Nothing personal, it's only business, the magnates are fond of telling us.
Well, the price for thousands of lives in South Africa is now a few thousands bucks - a few cents apiece at the going rate in Johannesburg.
This calculation is derived from figures in the report we broke yesterday about the government's main condom supplier.
It appears the worthies at Latex Surgical Products found it cheaper to pay off a CSIR inspector than to produce the quality goods for which our tax money paid.
Sorry, sir, but this time it is personal and it affects every one of us.
In a country stalked by the HI virus every last one of us suffers when we find out that the ubiquitous government condoms aren't up to the job.
Joke about it if you will, but the matter is deadly serious.
The department responded by withdrawing millions of condoms, but the damage has been done.
It took at least 10 years to persuade South Africans that condoms were the most effective means of protection against the virus. Sceptics still abound.
What now? Will the greed of a magnate and the inspector who allegedly sold out his calling to approve inferior goods bring to naught years of education and persuasion?
If confirmed, we must make an example of these mass murderers. This time their business is our business.