Advice to a friend

A sales representative came to see me this morning and he was visibly upset about the current upheavals in the country.

He was thinking of moving to Singapore and in fact, he had gone there to search for jobs.

His main complaints can be summarised into a few points:

1. His disposable income is getting less and less, and he is trying hard to tighten his belts and balance his budget

2. There is hardly any life in KL, with most of his time spent on working and rush hour traffic jams. By the time he reaches home, it is almost 7.30pm, and after dinner, he had hardly one or 2 hour a day to himself before retiring to bed

3. Being a Christian, he was upset about the current situation.

4. Corruption was so rampant that once he was caught for a failed third brake light and the officer hinted to help him. He instead asked for a summons while he settled online. (editor: you can in fact settle all police summons online at , so it is not really difficult to settle summons, and so please do not pay corruption)

5. He is worry for his 2 children’s education, and the polarisation in schools.

6. He sees double standard treatment everywhere

That’s about sum up his grouses to me.

So, I told him it is up to him to decide whether to move away. The pasture may really be greener on the other side, I told him.

BUt i told him, he has another choice. Stay back for 2 more years, and vote in the next election.

Of course, I cannot tell you how I advised him to vote since this post is not about politics, but rather the problems facing this young man, and many young middle class people like him.


16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Richard Loh
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 13:21:51

    It is really very painful to watch such things are happening in this country, yet the government keeps saying that what they did are right and they are never wrong. Your advise to your friend is right but its up to him to decide.

    Even though you are refraining to post on politic, it looks like everything is linked to politics. The very real truth is that a majority of our leaders and ministers are incompetent. Look at the way they argue and their presentation to the diplomats… there any word to describe them…


  2. pilocarpine
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 13:48:13

    stay back 2 more years is a good decision.

    last fight.

    if things don’t turn out good, tata…


  3. klm
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 14:09:40

    Dr Hsu. Ahem– I mean amen.


  4. mccann105
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 14:44:08

    Guess what guys, it’s time to embrace the horror! Look, we’ve got front row tickets to the end of the earth


  5. CYC
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 14:58:48

    Whether the youngsters are leaving or not, the foreign fund exodus already begun last year as some foreign analyst pointed out the quantum is much larger than during the 1997-98 crisis.

    Our economic competency is declining without any foreseeable measure to address it. Like what what the malay term it, we have all those “professor kangkung” in higher learning institutions which naturally produces the next generation of mediocre quality. How could we hope to become a developed country in the next 20years.

    We need political solution to address a politically created problem. Therefore, a firm political stand is very crucial though we hate to politicise everything the sun.

    Wipe out Gerakan and MCA in the next GE, this is the duty of all readers of this blog with a rational conscience. In Taiwan DPP succeeded to defeat GMT in 2000 by employing ” Round up the central govt by breaking up the local govt”. Similarly, we also could defeat UMNO by first destroy its guards, MCA & Gerakan etc. Its simpler than directly confronting UMNO.


  6. mccann105
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 15:14:19

    Great, I got that “excited/scared” feeling. Like 98% excited, 2% scared. Or maybe it’s more – It could be two – it could be 98% scared, 2% excited but that’s what makes it so intense, it’s so – confused. I can’t really figure it out….will they turn this country military run?


  7. cilipadi
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 16:21:22

    “Your” gomen has no time for “him” (your friend)

    “Your” gomen has time for “Him” only

    “Your” gomen disallows “him” to call “Him” certain way

    Ala-mak!!! my Malay friend exclaimed

    Him makan cili, him rasa pedas


  8. disgusted
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 19:54:08

    Superstitious or not, the Tiger year is not gonna be optimistic for politics. But before getting better, it got to be worse.

    Sit tight, grasp the straws and pray for the bad. Sorry, better than worse.

    The big quake/????


  9. KB
    Jan 13, 2010 @ 20:29:27

    The grouses of the sales rep basically sums up the grouses of the current generation who are disadvantaged by race.

    To add to the difficulty in coping with the cost of living, non-Malays have to spend a lot of money to educate their children to tertiary level.

    Dr. Hsu’s advice is apt. Wait 2 more years till the next G.E. and vote wisely. If the political situation doesn’t change, I don’t blame anybody for leaving. Under the same party Malaysia cannot escape becoming a maid exporting country.


  10. sourgrape
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 00:26:15

    He is lucky to be able to get home by 7.30pm. I got home at around 9pm almost eveyday and most of my friends works till 9pm-10pm. We are all professionally trained, either as lawyers, accuntant, engineers….


  11. Simon
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 05:52:44

    Dear Dr Hsu,
    Please tell your friend to leave for Singapore immediately.
    The present population of Singapore is 5.2M and the government target figure is 6.7m by 2020. Singapore needs more people like him. They are attracting pofessionals from China & India too. He could always take PR and then come back to vote during GE.
    I am already 25 years in Singapore and doing well indeed.
    So do not waste any more time.

    There is no future in Malaysia. The damage was already done by 22-year rule of Dr.M. He built 22 public universities to produce so many Malay unemployable graduates with worthless qualifications. This pattern seems to happen in most Muslim countries; Libya and Saudi Arabia too have many unemployed graduates. Why?

    He is no different from Idi Amin of Uganda. He came up with the concept of Ketuanan Melayu. One cannot demand to be ketuanan; you have to earn it.

    Let me explain with an example.

    Nissan’s has just produced all-electric Leaf, which offers a 100-mile (160km) range on a single charge.

    Now if Proton(Melayu) can come up with a better performance
    electric car than Nissan, then Dr. M you can use the word ketuanan and that you have earned it fair & square. Or else I am afraid you must use the word Bodoh instead.

    Guys I think it is a fair test. What do you think?


  12. 1MY
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 08:51:00

    Don’t imagine that the pasture in a foreign country is greener.

    I have friends who have migrated overseas for 10++ years but still returned permanently because the weather, food and culture over there are so “unkind”.

    I have friends who are in the management role working as supervisors/unemployed and though lonely, unhappy, stressed and seperated from their wifes, husbands, parents and siblings, they still clinged on overseas because of their children’s education.

    To those hoping to take a giant step venturing into a new world, best of luck.

    It’s a one way ticket but if you have abundant of cash, Sarawak is still a better place to migrate for those upset West Malaysians – no change in weather, food and culture and it’s an hour++ flight from Sarawak to West Malaysia.


  13. clearwater
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 13:49:27

    If you are in your 20-30’s, whether single or with a young family, what is there to lose going to Singapore to work and live? Especially if you are in a rut in KL, unable to move up the employment ladder fast enough, stressed up by enforced long hours in a dead beat job and with little quality time or spare cash left over each month. If the longer term future in Malaysia looks like more of the same, ship out as fast as you can.

    You don’t have to live in Singapore forever and KL, Malaysia is just 31/2 hours drive away so you can visit most long weekends. Give yourself a new direction and a fresh start. Sometimes we need a radical change to bring hope back in our lives. Do come back to exercise your vote in GE13 though.


  14. rising&fallingnow
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 15:26:11

    There is going to be an eclipse coming on the 15th of January.

    Does it going to bring some kind of protend? The ancient does not simply fear eclipse for nothing. We will soon know how things will fare in Malaysia and the world over in the coming months.

    There are those who advise to hang on to things that are true and good for there is gonna be a be one heck of a “roller-coaster ride” of things to come. Hang on to your faith that everything is in God’s hand and is under His control.


  15. ahoo
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 15:33:18

    To emigrate alone without family members will be much easier. In this case, the first step is to secure a well paying job first, gets confirm before even thinking of the next step. At this point of time, no need to think of emigrating. Get yourself the job and plan along. Of course you must come back to vote.

    I got a friend (Malaysian) from kampong who was educated in UK (early 80’s) and with some years of working experience in UK came and settled down in Singapore. Got a very high paying job in a multinational company and was paid in US$. Bought a high end condo costing over S$ 1.5 mil about 10 years ago and changing car every 3 years of those that I can only dream off. His parents are still in the kampong but having a much better life with foreign dollars to substain them.

    Just go for it one step at a time. In due time you will find better quality of life and your children too are better educated to face this globalised world. But don’t forget to come back and contribute in whatever way you can as afterall, it is only a 4 hours drive away from home.


  16. Chabalang
    Jan 14, 2010 @ 16:29:23

    If the sales representative can get a decent-paying job (at least S$5k, if not, tough to raise a family of 4) – he should just go ahead, mainly for the KIDS.

    I have studied and stayed in S’pore for more than 15 years and only back in M’sia not too long ago due to family commitment – personally, I still prefer S’pore. If the sales rep. is well-qualified (at least a good degree), he will be welcomed in S’pore and should be more comfortable in S’pore than KL (but comfort level is personal/subjective).

    I do agree with Clearwater (1.49 pm) – just go ahead and try. If not suitable, can always return…


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