Saturday, June 19, 2010

Eyes Wide Shut

Hantu Laut

I have not cared to comment on the NEM (New Economic Model) since it was first announced as I feel it would be a waste of time as I do not have much faith that the government going to implement it as it is.

As it is they say "the road to hell is paved with good intentions." Najib may have the best of intentions but he would not be able to deliver what he promised. The pressure from inside UMNO would be too high and too risky for him to discontinue the traditional politics of patronage.

Many bloggers have put forward their views on the subject including our prolix and prolific blogger SakMongkol47 who has written a number of articles on the subject.One that draws my attention is his "Conspiracy of the rich"

Malaysian politics is all about money.Without money the BN would have done even worse in the March 2008 General Elections.What SakMongol47 wrote of the big projects becoming preserve of the big guns is not far from the truth.I can't see any semblance of serious economic reforms in the 10 MP. Najib will be under pressure to keep rewarding the warlords in UMNO and other component parties.The money train, pardon me, the gravy train must continue to run along the same track.

The only way Najib can succeed is, if he is not afraid of losing his job and to be cruel to be kind.Nip in the butt any opposition from within the party before it become widespread.The success much depend on how unwavering is Najib in pushing forward his plans to change the fate of this nation.

Vision 2020 is less than 10 years away.Many things can happen or not happen.We can join the high income community or erode back to the low income.The ball is in the government's court, whosoever it is the next 10 years.

Do not ridicule Idris Jala. He was not wrong to warn Malaysians the consequence of an all encompassing subsidy mentality.Nations can and have slided back to poverty due to corruptions and poor financial management.Think of the Philippines, think of Argentina, think of all the African countries that have gone to the dogs and lately think of Greece and the other European PIGS.If it can happen to them it can happen to us.

The problem with Malaysians they do not want to hear the bad news preferring euphony even if it is far from the truth.They have now taken subsidy as of rights not as a privilege.

The right thing to do is to bring this nation to a higher income level to increase productivity that can boost our growth rate and GDP.Subsidies should only be temporaries.

I support removal of all subsidies.

Will Najib have the balls to do so? Not likely. Certainly not in the near future.Doing so will cost him the government.We have become a nation of blackmailers.

We much pretty screw ourselves up the past 50 years where those behind us have overtaken us.I will not mention Singapore as it is sensitive and taboo to some Malaysians when making comparison.Taiwan and South Korea are two countries that I can confidently quote as examples of what we could have been or better.I will not give facts and figures at this juncture for comparison purposes.I have one nation which is closer in comparison.

Do you know that in the seventies Malaysian and Singaporean men go to Taiwan and South Korean for sex holidays? Today, the situation is reversed, they are coming over here for cheap sex.If that is not telling of how far we have progressed what does? Malaysia has also been quoted as one of the busiest human trafficking transit point and destination.Not something we should be proud of.

My recent visit to Australia was an eye opener and realised how pretty screwed up we have been, not because nature has been unkind to us, because we have been unkind to ourselves.By right, we should have been better than the bloody Aussies.

Sorry mate!It's fair dinkum!

Let's begin with my internal flight in Australia which may not be the barometer for everything good about the Aussie, but it's a start.

I took a Virgin Blue flight from Brisbane to Perth with checked in baggage.Surprise, surprise! when I arrived, even without going through immigration, there weren't any, anyway, it's a domestic flight, I was amazed my bags were there waiting for me.It reminded me of Changi 25 years ago when I lived in Singapore, they were already delivering baggage ahead of passengers.

I have passed through KLIA six times the last eight months, both through the main and the cheapo terminals. I have to wait between 15 to 30 minutes before I can see my bags on the carousel.

My return from Perth was on Air Asia X.Bags took almost 30 minutes to clear and the terminal was jam-packed to bursting point.The air-conditioned was struggling to keep the terminal cool but failed miserably with the amount of heat generated from those human bodies.Restaurants filled to the brinks and me losing my mind.

I now agree with Tony Fernandez that MAB are run by morons who can't foresee what's coming.This is one airline terminal and yet busier than than the main under utilised terminal.If they have allowed him to build his own airport it would be on the way to completion now and cost a fraction of what the government's costing would be.

Australia has less population than Malaysia and a territory 23 times bigger.

Some Malaysians always have the strange habit of arguing that the reason Singapore is successful is because it is small and easier to manage and control which I find.....what can I say... ignorance, foolish or just plain stupid.

Now, let see what they have to say about Australia, which is 23 times bigger than Malaysia.Some, even called the Aussies lazy.Let see who is actually the lazy one.

There is a difference between working smart and working late.Putting too much time into your work can also mean two things....inefficiency and incompetency.You either do not know your job well or you are just a slow coach which, unfortunately, increases your unproductiveness.If you live in KL the situation is even worse, your productivity and quality of life goes out the window.You have to spend average 2 hours caught in traffic snarl unless you are very well-off and can afford those million dollar condo nearby.

The hotel I stayed in Perth has 123 rooms, has only 1 receptionist (she is also the cashier,the front desk manager and the concierge).The restaurant has 4 workers, 1 receptionist/cashier and three waiters.I still checked in without hassle and get my food and drinks on time.

OK, let's get to the nitty-gritty.

Country Land Mass Pop GDP(2009) GDP (Per Capita)

Malaysia 328,867 sq.km 26 mil $381 bil $14,800

Australia 7,682,300 22 $824 $38,800

You can tell when a country is rich and the people is well-off, not by the number of posh cars on the streets but by the number of mariners and the number of luxury boats in them.Even the smallest mariner here is bigger than the biggest we have in Malaysia and they are dotted all over the country.

Now, Australia 23 times bigger (75% desert), population slightly smaller, GDP 2 1/2 bigger and is almost 3 times richer than us.

Hello! Anybody out there? Can you hear me? Why? Why is Australia doing better than us?

When you travel keep your eyes wide open.

I am beginning to like this man.

(The title is taken from the 1999 movie 'Eyes Wide Shut' starring Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise)

7 comments:

vinnan said...

'We much pretty screw ourselves up the past 50 years where those behind us have overtaken.Taiwan and South Korea are two countries that I can confidently quote as examples of what we could have been or better.'

No, WE the poor Malays, Bumiputeras and the 'pendatangs' did not. It is you corrupt UMNOputra bastards who have been screwing everyone in Malaysia.

Anonymous said...

HL,
You should be able to see by now what corruption, cronyism and inept leaders has done to the country. So how to develop the country? You deserve the leaders that you elect.
Many of our leaders chose to buy properties in Australia so that they can opt to migrate there should life be unbearable in Malaysia after plundering it's wealth.

antuduit said...

All about MONEY

The god we worship

and

all for the money

Hantu Laut said...

vinnan,
The government is only a quarter of the problem.It is unproductive people like you indulging in wasteful nonsense that's the bigger problem this country is facing.

Let's hear something more constructive coming out of your mouth instead of your constant expletives.

SM said...

Brother HL,

Again I repeat, "those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"!
Vision 2020...Developed Nation Status?! Hahahahaha! Ya rite!!!
We don't change things & expect the situation to get batter?! Ya rite!
CHANGE is what we need! Change of Govt, change of attitude, change of leaders...geeezeeee...it ain't going to happen!
Malaysia is going to stay the same bah!

Purple Haze said...

One of the differences between Oz and Malaysia is that in Oz, the democratic ideals of checks and balances exist. If the ruling party is corrupt, you can bet that the electorate will vote them out at the next election.

In Malaysia, we are in the process of building up a credible opposition. The current batch may not be ideal but Rome was not built in a day. That is not to say that the incumbent govt is incapable but the statistics that you have put up indicate that the govt for the past 50 years has slacked.

We also have a bloated civil service, no doubt created for political expediency. And an education system that needs fixing but we lack the political will to change direction after the inadequacy of the NEP to position Malaysia in the global economy.

eddy said...

Pretty angry posting this time Bro. I hope Najib find the time to read all these critiques of his BN Government especially those from among BN supporters who cares.

Najib has had a blessed poltical life coming back from the UK after his father Tun Razak died becoming youngest Menteri Besar of Pahang at 29 and has not looked back ever since until now where he is the PM of Malaysia. He was trained for the PM job but he really have to stop being too compromising in his approach to things, tough unpopular decisions necessary for the people and country to progress to developed nation status will have to be made. He should also listen less to overseas consultants but listen more to locals who have their ear firmly to the ground. Najib should not be too happy with the 72% popilar rating, I thinks its just a drug to hallucinate a person.

Like you I do not want to comment much on the NEM, preferring to see what Najib's next move will be responding to the critiques from NGOs like Perkasa and others. I for one think that in its inception Najib's NEAC led by Amirsyam( trained as a banker chairing an economic caucus?) is not inclusive enough, it should have involved a whole spectrum of experts from the local acdemicia and also the opposition DAP and PAS who have knowledgeable economists in their midst as well, Tony Pua(DAP) and and Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad(PAS) and their team. It should above all be chaired by a experienced Malaysian with economics background, perhaps Ramon Navaratnam or even Ku Li or co chaired by both. As it is the NEM is floating in mid air not here not there.

The difficulty with our Malaysia is that our mutiracial and multireligious composition with very unbalanced wealth distribution will depend too much on compromises for a decision to be accepted by all. For example the issue of subsidies, the Government had to backtrack and flip flop themselves to contain public dissatisfaction. Kita ini terlalu sangat dimanjakan oleh kerajaan sebab nak panching undi kita selama berdekad-dekad, now we are like a small child throwing tantrums if we do not get what we want.

Same goes with the education system the one force that can unite us as a people moving towards developed nation status have to be compromised and the PPSMI were sacrificed on the altars of political expediency. We have not begun to talk about the "Satu Sekolah untuk Semua" idea. We have a long way to go yet Bro.

You mentioned Australia Bro...ya I should think we should aspire to be a developed nation like Australia, I am reliably informed that many of our ministers and former ministers and our rich and famous have homes there too, I suppose they have discovered Australia long time ago. TQ.