A real disgrace!

How much has the standard of our civil service deteriorated can be seen from this picture in Sinchew (click here) .

 Another picture from Merdeka review:

In the official welcoming ceremony for visiting Chinese Prime Minister Wen, there was a backdrop with certain Chinese words which were grammatically wrong. One CHinese official was quoted that he could not understand what meaning that phrase was trying to convey. Apparently, it was translated using google translator. 

At the same time, a wrong picture was used instead of the historic picture showing our 2nd PM the late Tun Razak shaking hand with Mao during Tun’s first visit to China. The picture that was displayed showed Tun Razak shaking hand with an official of China which not even the minister in attendance, Dr Koh T K-a Chinese Scholar- knew about, according to Sin Chew report. 

This is really a disgrace to a country which has so many Chinese schools. Even a primary student would have written that phrase correctly.

I cannot understand how protocol officials  do not even know how Mao Tse Tung looks like in photographs. Even though he is dead, any recent world history book or diplomatic handbook on china would have his photos. 

This has confirmed what I have been harping all this time– that we have lost excellence in all fields, even in the Protocol Division of the PM department.

I really do not know where to hide my face!

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“Shuang Huang” act

I am secretly amused by the public exchanges of MCA and the outsourced racist NGO.

It is a classic case of playing what the Chinese people called “Shuang Huang 双簧“. In SH, two persons would go on stage and each would either play along with the other or rebut the other with words, jokes and stories.

The fact that both these 2 organisations have close ties to the BIg Brother points to an agenda both are supporting – – to win back the voters from their  respective spheres of influence. One is trying hard to instill fear on the majority group, and the other is trying to be seen as a champion of the Chinese Malaysians.

Many would fall for this game, just like many spectators like to watch “Shuang Huang”.

The fact that the Big Brother is not taking any action on the NGO as well as Utusan speaks so much for itself. In politics, you need to read between the lines and look for subtle signs. All the signs are telling me that these organisations have the tacit support of the power that be. They have also succeeded in gaining back some lost grounds from the unsuspecting and more straight forward semi-rural and rural crowds.  Now the burden has been placed on the DVD actor to try to gain back the urban votes. Even a few percent swing will be enough for the Master.

Be sure of one thing — there will be  more of these “Shuang Huang” acts in the run-up to the next Big One.

Socio-economic jam!

Yesterday,  Malaysian Insider carried an article ” NEP, Brain drain holding back Malaysia”.

This blog has been saying the same thing since 2006. For the past 5 years, in my many articles and comments, I have been saying this,  which has  now been confirmed by an expert from World Bank.

I have often compared us with South Korea, Taiwan, HK and the red Dot down south. When the British left, we were ahead of South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and were similar to the ‘Red Dot’.

In fact, I have spoken many times that in the 60s, our economic cake was 4 times that of South Korea . By early 80s, South Korea has caught up and our economic cakes were of similar sizes. By mid-2000s, South Korea has moved ahead so much, that their cake is 4 times our size. ( Our football standard more or less mirrors this: in the 80s, we were South Korea’s nemesis, and we used to beat them on and off. Now, even their 3rd team can beat us easily).

Had we not been dragged down by race, we would have achieved much better growth than now, and even if we have not expanded as much as SOuth Korea ( 4 times better it is now), we would at least be twice better.

Our wages would have been higher, and our purchasing power would have been better.

No one country can expect to move really forward, economically or culturally, without an inclusive policy.

Affirmative policies need not exclude anyone. We can still help the poor, and yet we can still go forward.

Malaysia cannot change without the majority race realising this. If we have a better economic growth rate, everyone , including the biggest ethnic group, would have benefited, and we would have higher living standard. Every Malaysian would be living better.

By higher living standard, I do not just mean income, but many other things too. More civil-mindedness, more politeness on the roads, better infrastructures, better transport system and  better education policies.

As it is , we are perpetually caught in  jams, not just on our roads, but on our socio-economic path as well.

The Big One

The big question in everyone’s mind is “when will be the Big one?

By Big One , I mean the next General election.

It was supposed to be in June or July had BN won a landslide in Sarawak. As it is, it has won only 55% of popular votes, even though it did well to retain the 2/3 majority.

Food prices are going up. Just yesterday, I went to the supermarket, and I was surprised that one brand of Korean KimChi instant noodle is now selling at 14.90 per pack of 5, almost RM3 a packet( I used to get it for around RM 11 or 12 just half a year ago). For that money, I could have a plate of fried kway teow or a One-Ton-Mee just a few years ago. Now for the same amount, I can only eat a plate of instant noodle. Milk has gone up so much, and so are those 3-in-one drinks like nescafe and so on.A pack of nescafe has gone up more than 40% in just a matters of years.

Property prices have skyrocketed, and so will be rental. Recently, I have seen uite a new few tenants taking over the old ones in some of the major shoping omplexes, indicating that rise in rentals have helped killed off some retail businesses . Expect more to do so.

Expect food prices to go up further. Petrol prices too, and it will not be long when the government can no longer subsidise food items and petrol. When thhat happens, TNB will also be allowed to raise its tariff, and every other thing is going to go up.  BN has to all an election before all these happen, otherwise they will not stand a chance in polls.

The PM is certainly facing a dilemma when to call the Big One. If he delays calling it, the city folks will be even more hardpressed. When people have little disposable money to spend , how do you expect  people to vote?

He has little time to win back the urban people. SO my bet is he will probably call it in the later half of this year after the fasting month.

My take is if BN calls an election this year, it will still win, but it will probably be denied 2/3 majority again. I expect BN will win back some seats in West Malaysia, but lose a few in East , and that will even it up. Unless, of course, if he can force Peh Moh out before the next one. To do so will need plenty of enticing…He has already almost everything in this world, what more can you give Peh Moh?

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For those worry about inflation, invest in gold or gold-related currencies such as Aussie Dollars. I expect it to go up further. There is of course a risk there, since money in gold would not give you any interest! Few years ago, I have advised my friends to buy Aussie dollars. Those who have done so will be laughing now.

It is not about race!

A developer patient of mine came a few days ago. Since it was in the afternoon, I was relatively free and after consultation we chatted for awhile. He read about my resignation news in the papers, and he congratulated me for making the decision.

I asked him how he rates the PR government in Selangor since his projects are mainly in Selangor.

He told me that under PR, it is now getting very difficult for housing projects to be approved. Because of this, there is a short supply of houses, and demand which exceeds supply has forced the house prices going to sky-high level. A link-house in SS2 now cost about 700,000.

He said that in the past, he could always seek ‘jalan’ to get his project passed. Now it is difficult because everything has to follow the book since the Big Brother is ready to pounce on any wrong doings.

But having said all these, his parting words were: despite getting less income and businesses, he will vote for a 2 party system for his future generation’s sake.

This is from a businessman who has extensive link with the former state government especially some of CSL’s exco members. He got his datukship from their recommendation too, and yet he has come around and said that we must vote for better governance and more check and balance. It has nothing to do with race and religion, for during the whole conversation that I had with him, like with many others, not a single word about race or religion was raised.

I recall some of the hawkers who were former branch chairmen of MCA in cheras and who were my patients and friends have quit that party. (BTW, I have been an adviser to the hawkers and RT in Pudu since the 80s, long before i joined a political party).

So the sentiments in urban area is now almost across the  board, for a 2 party system.

Contrary to the Big Brother’s propaganda that only the Chinese is against the government, I view this as an urban-rural divide.

IN fact, many Chinese and Indian voters voted for Malay candidates in areas where PKR or even PAS stood in the last General Election, and many Malay voters voted Chinese candidates.

With inflation rearing its ugly head, and prices of foodstuff going up and up, there will be more discontent in the urban areas. Unlike their rural counterparts, where life is easy and expenses relatively low — and income good due to the high prices of the commodities- the urban people are finding it more and more difficult to survive.

When people are finding it difficult to survive, and yet they see their own tax money being misused, how are they supposed to feel? It is natural that they feel disgusted and that translate to a vote against the power that be.

This is across the board, as I have said, and not confined to any particular ethnic group. So the urban revolt is not like what the Big Brother painted.. It is not really racial.

It is more about corruption, abuse of power, misuse of funds, lack of transparency and accountability, distrust of institutions which are supposed to safeguard the interest of the people, not the power that be.

Only a racist would have labelled this urban rural divide as racist.  And to label as ungrateful those who voted opposition is an insult to the principles of democracy.

I have often stated that the world today is a different world altogehter, and all of us need to use different approach,  to our own family, our children, our friends, in our work and so on. Political parties should learn to adapt too, and looking around the world, it is obvious that corrupt and dictatorial regimes are falling like bowling pins.

When urban people vote for a coalition whose platform and manifesto is for fairness and equal opportunities for all, rather than the coalition that emphasizes on race, can you call them racist?

If they want to win back votes, they have to do better than just labelling others being racist.

A crab telling others to walk straight

CSL’s call to SUPP not to accept appointment into the Sarawak cabinet may seem sound on the surface.

He is a a very shrewd person, and he is using this to achieve several aims.

He is trying to  create a ‘scare’ mentality in some of the not-so-well informed Chinese people that if in the next GE, they do not choose his party, the Chinese will have no more voice inside the government.

Anyway, even with representations inside now, the actual fact is there is also very little voice inside, but being a person with an agenda , he would not divulge this, of course.  (please read one of my recent posts of how i argued that ineffective representation is worse than no representation).

The message he is trying to convey to the Chinese community is akin to  a husband telling the wife that if she does not listen to him, he would abandon her and the children.

In the first place, if the husband has neglected the wife and the family,  why should the wife and family listen to him again? If he has failed their trust before, why should they trust him again?

By the tie of matrimony, a husband has certain responsibility to his wife and family.

Similarly, by being a political party, the party has a certain obligations to the people even if the people reject them.

The people, in a democracy,  have the right to choose whom they think is their best representation .

By an act akin to a child throwing a temper tantrum when he cannot get certain things he wants, CSL is actually going against the principles of democracy.

A responsible party would instead seriously go down to the ground and find out why the people has rejected it, and take step to win back what it has lost.

The problem with the component parties is that the component parties actually know what is the main reason they lose. It is the reason stated in my resignation statement —  none of the component parties dares to challenge the hegemony of the Big Brother, and when such hegemony leads to unfair policies,  none has really objected to it.

It is the unfair policies and the rampant corruption and abuses that lead to the revolt of the urban people, turning against all the lackeys that put their own interest above all else.

I think what CSL has suggested is really wrong and when he puts the blame on MCA’s cabinet positions on his predecessor OTK, he is also misleading people –trying to kill 2 birds with one stone perhaps– because at the time of 308, the president was OKT and not OTK; both has the same English alphabets, but in different sequence..

If he really believes what he preaches, I suggest he should take the lead and ask his son to resign from the deputy minister post. Otherwise, he is only playing politics; not clever politics, but a kind that has already long been obsolete and no longer apply to the current situation.

Questions, questions and questions!

1Malaysia email account?

Free?

Are you sure?

Is there such a thing as a free meal?

Will the 50millions come from the government? meaning the people’s coffer since government money is from the people.

Will it be better and more secure than yahoo, gmail, and hotmail where you can have almost unlimited storage space FREE? Of course these giants earn by advertisements and so on but at least to the end users, it is free.

Why give it to a company that is financially-trapped and on the brink of being delisted?

Why the need to create email account in the first place? Aren’t there other more pressing things to do? Like giving me a better broadband width at rate comparable to other countries?(read my article on ‘speed’ vs ‘speed’ here to see how Singapore broadband at 100Mpbs  is only 49.50 whereas ours at 20Mpbs at 249).

Just to digress, I went to Telekom a few times to apply for Unify 5MPbs, but they say my area does not support it.It will be a few more months down the road before I get it.  Please build the infrastructure first before giving me the DAMN email account!!!!

Sorry to lose my cool.

These are questions that we need answers.. Do not tell me like what other middlemen used to tell us when mandatory middleman companies are being set up to provide services which we can obtain directly.

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Excerpts from my previous post:

It is about Singapore broadband service: 100Mbps at Singapore$49.80 (equals roughly to RM118)

Second one is our unifi service advertisement . 20Mbps at RM249.

There is a cheaper VIP 5 for RM149, for a speed of 5Mbps.

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