Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Selamat Menyambut Tahun Baru 2014


Saya dan isteri saya mengucapkan Selamat Menyambut Tahun Baru 2014 kepada semua rakyat Malaysia, khususnya pembaca blog ini. Semoga kedatangan tahun baru ini akan memberi kita semangat dan iltizam untuk terus menerus berusaha menjayakan diri kita sebagai rakyat Malaysia yang bertuah.

Monday, December 30, 2013

ORANG HALUS DAN HANTU JEMBALANG II

1. Saya amat tertarik dengan komen terhadap tulisan saya berkenaan tajuk di atas. Ada yang cuba takrifkan iblis, syaitan dan jin sebagai orang halus. Sebenarnya kita tidak diberitahu dalam Al-Quran besar atau kecilnya iblis, syaitan dan jin. Yang kita diberitahu ialah iblis dan syaitan cuba memengaruhi pemikiran kita supaya membelakangkan ajaran Islam, melakukan yang dilarang, yang tidak baik. Untuk menghalang pengaruh mereka kita membaca ayat-ayat Al-Quran supaya dikukuhkan iman kita semula.

2. Tetapi orang yang percaya kepada orang halus ini meminta izin daripada mereka ini apabila masuk hutan atau tempat-tempat tertentu. Air jampi disimbah kesana-sini. Ini bermakna kita memberi kuasa kepada makhluk ghaib ini. Al-Quran tidak menyuruh kita meminta perlindungan daripada iblis dan syaitan yang kononnya adalah orang halus dan makhluk ghaib.

3. Antara makhluk yang ghaib dengan ghaib terdapat perbezaan yang banyak. Kita tidak dapat lihat tuhan kita Allah s.w.t., malaikat, syurga dan neraka. Tetapi sebagai orang Islam kita terima adanya semua ini. Tetapi dalam fahaman orang Melayu ada pula makhluk lain yang kita tidak nampak tetapi berkuasa keatas kita. Janganlah cuba menyamakan hantu jembalang, pelesit dan orang halus dengan malaikat. Jangan cuba samakan orang halus dengan kuman bakteria yang membawa penyakit. Kuman memang halus tetapi bukan ghaib. Kita tahu penyakit tertentu yang dibawa oleh kuman tertentu. Kita boleh baca doa apabila diserang penyakit-penyakit ini tetapi Al-Quran menyebut bahawa Allah s.w.t. tidak akan memperbaiki nasib kita (menyembuh penyakit kita) melainkan kita berusaha memperbaikinya. Dan percubaan kita adalah dengan makan ubat atau bedah. Kita juga terima walaupun kita berusaha, tidak semestinya kita sembuh jika tidak diizinkan Tuhan.

4. Saya ingin cerita sedikit berkenaan kepercayaan orang Melayu.

5. Dahulu orang Melayu berperang dengan orang Siam. Kepercayaan orang Melayu ialah orang Siam mempunyai ilmu ghaib. Mereka percaya orang Siam boleh kebalkan diri dan meresap.

6. Apabila tentera Melayu berhadapan dengan tentera Siam, mereka naik takut kononnya melihat tentera Siam ini meresap, terbang ke sana sini dan tidak boleh ditembusi peluru atau senjata lain.

7. Dengan kepercayaan ini mereka percaya mereka tidak mungkin kalahkan pasukan tentera Siam. Dan mereka pun lari dikejar oleh tentera Siam dan ramai yang dibunuh.

8. Kita tahu sebenarnya tentera Siam adalah manusia biasa. Tetapi kerana kepercayaan yang tidak berasas ini kita naik takut. Sekarang ini pun ada sedikit sebanyak kepercayaan seperti ini. Fikirkanlah kalau tentera kita mempunyai kepercayaan seperti ini apakah dapat mereka mempertahankan negara.

9. Sebenarnya tidak ada orang luarbiasa yang boleh lindungi kita daripada makhluk ciptaan mereka. Yang boleh melindungi kita ialah Allah s.w.t. Kita perlu usaha tetapi jika Tuhan tidak menentukan kita akan pulih atau berjaya kita tidak akan pulih dan berjaya. Samada kita percaya akan pulih atau tidak, usaha kearah pemulihan dan kejayaan mesti dibuat.

10. Sampai bilakah kita hendak simbah air di keliling hospital dan pejabat untuk mendapat perlindungan daripada orang halus dan hantu jembalang?

11. Bukankah aneh apabila orang yang kononnya boleh melindung hospital daripada orang halus, apabila sakit mencari doktor juga, bukan di hospital yang telah disimbah air tetapi di luar negeri.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Cost of Government

1. Governments need money. It cannot function without money. It has to pay the people who work for it. It has to provide services and infrastructures. And now it has to provide more and more social amenities such as education, medical care etc. And of course it must defend the country and maintain law and order.

2. The funds are mostly raised through taxes on the activities of the people, on incomes, on profits, on the services provided by the government such as transportations, sewerage, water and power, ports and airports, approval processes and oversights etc.

3. Although there are many countries where people avoid paying taxes and rates, the people of Malaysia generally pay their taxes and other charges for services rendered by the Government. But as the cost of Government increase over time, the taxes and rates will need to be increased. Naturally tax and rate-payers do not like to pay more taxes and other charges. But they admit to a need for higher tax rates if for nothing else the rise in the cost of living when the wages and salaries of government servants need to be raised as well as the higher cost of Government procurements.

4. But the tax payers cannot suddenly come up with the money to pay the new taxes and charges. Lately Malaysian individuals and businesses have to come up with more money because of the many increases in cost due to Government policy decisions. Firstly the increase in minimum wage to RM900/-. This increase cannot be limited to those earning less than RM900/-. Those already earning RM900/- and above will also need to be paid higher wages. With this the costs of doing business and producing goods and services have increased and in turn the cost of living for everyone has increased.

5. Over and above this the Government decided to reduce subsidies on petroleum products. Then the electricity charges are going to be raised. For the people of Kuala Lumpur new rates, some increasing by 2000 % are to be charged.

6. In 2015 the GST (Goods and Services Tax) will replace the sales tax. Obviously the Government wants to collect more than the revenue from sales tax, and this must add to the cost of goods and services.

7. We must accept that the Government needs more money with the passage of time. But should the increase be as big as the Government says. Should the taxes and rates come all at the same time?

8. In business there is a thing called “cost down”. When a business is faced with competition or its cost of production reduces its profits, it can either increase prices or reduce cost. To a certain extent the price can be increased. This might cause a reduction in sale and also profits. It is far better to reduce cost and maintain or minimise the increase in price.

9. When a business exercises cost down, what it does is to examine everything that it does which contributes to the cost of doing business. It examines the efficiency of the process, the material cost, the reduction of wastage, the speed and volume of production. Invariably some cost can be reduced.

10. The same can be done by Government. All its cost can be examined to determine which are truly necessary, which cost can be reduced, which service can be curtailed or modified etc. etc.

11. Government often waste money because it is not too concerned about the returns on its expenditure in whatever form. For example has a contract been given to the best offered price – though not necessarily the lowest. Every year the Auditor General reports on wastage through improper procedures and carelessness. Usually not much is changed so as to benefit from the Auditor General’s criticism. There is no doubt that much money can be saved if the AG’s criticisms are taken seriously. Even changing procedures can reduce costs.

12. If the Government is interested in reducing the cost of governance, it can do so and perhaps quite substantially. For example it can reduce the cost of electricity by switching to LED for street lights. The savings would be more than 50%. The subsequent reduction in the amount of electricity to be generated will reduce subsidy on fuel for power. But this has not been done by Government. The initial cost may be high but the savings will mitigate this.

13. With regard to taxes, the effect of the increase should be studied very carefully. Is it really true that the percentage fixed cannot be changed. It must always be remembered that increases in tax must contribute towards increases in the cost of living, the cost of doing business, the reduction in profitability and for the Government reduction in corporate tax on profits. Once a long time ago the Government was losing tax on goods brought in by travellers to Singapore simply because it was difficult to determine whether the costly watches, pens and jewellery items were bought in Singapore or worn by traveller when he went to that tax-free country. The Government decided to remove taxes on luxury goods. As a result tax-free shops sprouted in Malaysia and the Government collected more through corporate tax from these shops than it ever collected in import duty.

14. In another instance the government reduced corporate tax gradually from 45% of profits to 26%. More business was done and the collection in corporate taxes increased tremendously. Another case is the tax-free incentives for investments. With this investments increased. Indirectly the government could collect from income tax on executives. The nasi lemak eaten by workers increase the businesses of the rice wholesalers and the Government will collect corporate tax from them.

15. The public needs to find the money to pay the increased tax. Obviously it would be easier if the percentage is low, or spread over a longer period.

16. If the percentage increase is really necessary, cannot it be introduced in stages. For example the increase in electricity charges is fixed at 15%. That is a big jump. It will upset the cost of production of goods which all use electricity, some at a high percentage. Contracts which had already been made will result in losses and this in turn will reduce corporate taxes on profits .

17. Cannot the increase be in stages eg. 6 % per year for 3 years or longer. The losses on current contracts would be minimised. Future contracts would take into consideration the increases. There would be time for “cost down” and increase in contract prices.

18. At 6% per year for 3 years the rate would increase by 18% eventually instead of 15% now. But a 6% increase in the second year would be on 106% of original price and in the 3rd year would be on approximately 113% of the original price, therefore more than 18%. If this is too high, the yearly rate of increase can be reduced to 5%.

19. Clearly the Government would be getting more than the 15% of the current price. It will not really lose anything despite the delays in the increases.

20. Yes, Government needs more money with the passage of time. But with due consideration for the cost to people and business, the Government would really examine the tax rates to be introduced. It will not hurt the Government too much but it will gain a lot of goodwill from people. They might even remember in the next election.

21. Recently Francois Hollande, President of France decided to raise tax on profits to 50%. People left France to do business elsewhere. Far from collecting more tax, the Government may lose much when other businesses and business people emigrate.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Orang Halus dan Hantu Jembalang

1. Filem dan T.V. cerita yang paling popular di kalangan orang Melayu ialah berkenaan dengan hantu, pelesit, orang halus dan berbagai-bagai makhluk ghaib. Mereka bukan sahaja suka lihat dan dengar cerita-cerita berkenaan makhluk ghaib ini tetapi mereka amat mempercayai adanya makhluk ini dan kuasa luar biasa mereka ke atas manusia. Mereka diberi kuasa yang kadang-kadang menyamai Tuhan yang mereka sembah. Mereka mencari jalan supaya dilindungi dari makhluk ghaib. Dalam usaha ini mereka kerap mengguna doa dari agama Islam yang mereka anuti. Walaupun mereka percaya Allah S.W.T. boleh melindungi mereka tetapi kepercayaan bahawa makhluk ini juga memiliki kuasa ke atas mereka bertentangan dengan ajaran Islam yang menekankan bahawa hanya Allah S.W.T sahaja yang berkuasa ke atas segala-gala yang ada di dunia dan akhirat.

2. Kerana percaya akan kuasa makhluk ghaib ini mereka sering mengadakan acara yang dicampur aduk dengan agama yang kononnya boleh melindungi mereka daripada diserang oleh hantu jembalang dan orang halus.

3. Dalam Al-Quran tidak ada disebut berkenaan hantu dan orang halus. Yang disebut dalam al-Quran ialah shaitan, iblis dan jin yang suka memesongkan orang Islam daripada membuat suruhan Allah S.W.T. Iblis dan shaitan boleh disangkal dengan membaca ayat-ayat tertentu yang boleh mengukuhkan semula iman dan pegangan kepada ajaran Islam.

4. Di masa-masa yang lampau ini kita dapati ramai yang berusaha untuk melindungi pejabat dan hospital Kerajaan dari hantu dan orang halus. Acara ini termasuklah menanam telor, menyimbah air dan membaca doa-doa tertentu yang telah dikenalpasti oleh bomoh-bomoh. Ada juga yang menanam botol air di sudut-sudut tertentu bangunan berkenaan.

5. Yang anehnya Mat Saleh yang tidak percaya kepada hantu dan orang halus ini tidak dikacau oleh makhluk-makhluk ini. Mereka tidak perlu jampi dan simbah air di keliling bangunan-bangunan mereka.

6. Saya ingin tahu dari ulama-ulama akan kebenaran adanya hantu dan orang halus ini. Dari mana mereka datang. Apakah kedudukan mereka dalam agama Islam. Jika kita percaya mereka berkuasa dan kita perlu layan mereka jika ingin selamat, apakah tidak kita memperduakan Allah S.W.T. atau memberi kuasa kepada yang lain dari Allah yang kita sembah?

7. Saya percaya akan kejahatan manusia dan betapa ganasnya mereka. Tetapi saya tidak percaya dan tidak takut kepada orang halus atau lain-lain makhluk ghaib. Saya juga tidak percaya ada cara untuk jadi kebal dari tikaman dan peluru.

8. Dengan kenyataan ini akan adalah percubaan oleh orang tertentu dengan “ilmu ghaib” mereka untuk mengajar saya. Saya cuma akan menuntut pertolongan dari Allah S.W.T terhadap orang seperti ini.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

ELECTRIC CARS

1. Someone suggested Proton produce electric cars. It is a good idea. Electric cars cause less pollution because the electricity to drive the cars is ultimately provided by electric power plants. These use fuel oil, coal, gas water-power and nuclear power. The pollution is still there but minimised.

2. Electric cars need batteries, specifically lithium-ion batteries. They cost RM1,000 per cell currently. Tesla needs between 36 to 48 cells, adding to the cost of the cars.

3. Mitsubishi MIEV and Nissan Leaf use slightly less number of batteries but are still quite expensive, certainly more expensive than Proton’s internal combustion engine cars.

4. Charging the batteries take 8-hours. The batteries would be fully discharged after running from 70 to 130 kilometres. Some run further but needs more batteries, increasing the price.

5. The batteries are said to last 10 years. This is by computer simulation. Replacing the batteries would be costly.

6. Toyota and Honda produce hybrid cars i.e. petrol engines together with batteries. They don’t seem to have faith in electric cars. Chevrolet produce the Volt which is also a hybrid and not electric. They are all more expensive than ordinary cars.

7. For the past five years Proton has been researching and developing both electric and hybrid cars. It cost a lot of money though not as much as the major car manufacturers who have spent more than USD4 billion each. So far nobody has truly succeeded.

8. We are still trying in Proton.

9. The Malaysian Government subsidises fuel prices. More cars on the road means more subsidies. To recover some of this money, the Government taxes motor vehicles including Proton. The high price of the cars is due to the taxes.

10. The only way to reduce car prices is to lower or abolish taxes. The Government would lose a lot of revenue. There will be affordable electric cars when battery prices come down considerably. That will take a long time.

11. I am presently in Australia. This rich developed country had a national car – the Holden. When foreign cars came in the Holden lost market share and money. It was sold to General Motors of America which agreed to produce Holden GM cars on condition the Australian Federal Government support it by 200 million Australian dollars a year (600 million Ringgit).

12. Now General Motors wants to pull out unless the Australian Government guarantees to subsidise it beyond 2015. The Labour Party is offering Aus$300 million a year. The high cost is due to the rise in exchange rate of the Australian dollar and very high labour cost. The cars on Australian roads are almost all from Korea and Japan though a small number are produced in Australia with 30% local content. Toyota which produces a lot of components locally is also contemplating pulling out.

13. Consider what would happen to Australia’s economy if General Motors pulls out. No one is talking about electric cars.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

CAR PRICES

1. Malaysians are perpetually complaining about car prices being too high in Malaysia. Yet we should know that on a per head basis, there are more cars in Malaysia than all the other Asean countries.2. Already there are traffic jams all over K.L., many half a kilo long!

3. It takes half an hour to move just one kilometre. If we lower the car prices, more vehicles will be on the road. And of course more and longer traffic jams. The jams also contribute much to pollution in K.L. as the engines run but the cars are going nowhere.

4. Actually the price of cars is high because we want to limit the consumption of fossil fuel. The big-engined luxury models are taxed 300%. Otherwise the rich owners would enjoy the subsidy more than the owners of small cars.

5. I believe these rich people will still buy big cars even if the tax is higher.

6. There was a time when Government protection of Proton was high that it won 80% of market share. Today it has only 26% of the market.

7. If it goes down further we may have to shut down Proton.

8. This will not lower the prices for foreign cars. The Government would still have to recover subsidy cost. But some 150,000 jobs generated by the national car industry will be lost.

9. There will be a big outflow of foreign exchange to purchase imports. We will lose much of our engineering capability which in turn would lead to more job losses as engineering-based industries cannot fund skilled workers. There will be more outflow of funds.

10. Business people do not like to do business with strangers. It is difficult to build trust with a business partner or an agent when you do not know their background. Worse still when you know the stranger has no capital and no experience.

11. It was because of this that Malays and other Bumiputras could not enter the automotive business. No one was willing to appoint them as agents or dealers or take them as partners.

12. When a few Malays imported used cars, the local agents had to be paid overriding commission. Only a very few Malays could do this. This frustrates the implementation of the NEP objective of eliminating the identification of race with economic functions.

13. It was to overcome this that the Government allowed the importation of Japanese reconditioned cars. APs were issued for the aspiring Malay auto dealers.

14. The recond cars were almost as good as new. They were cheaper and they enabled lower income people to own cars. The prices of new, small cars also went down. The big luxury cars kept going up in prices as they were not competing with the small reconditioned cars.

15. Now second hand Japanese cars are no longer imported. The AP system continued for new and second hand special models. The demand is such that auto dealers are prepared to buy the APs at high prices.

16. The way to avoid sale of APs is to issue them only to genuine auto companies.

17. Stopping APs will only flood the market with foreign makes which will be the death knell of national cars. The consequence of this has already been mentioned earlier.

18. APs are issued not only for cars but also for sugar, flour, rice and a variety of other items. Some people have benefitted from this system over the past 80 years. They have become billionaires. There have been no demand to stop these APs. The recipients live a charmed life.

19. If we must reconsider the AP system, it must include all the APs. The effect on our economy and trade balance must be accepted by us all.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Love

Love Conquers All   - blogtunm.blogspot.com

1. Two reports in the local papers attracted my attention. They are about love – the irresistible emotion which drives us to do great things.

2. Remember Romeo and Juliet. Their love for each other is as well remembered today as at the time of William Shakespeare.

3. Fans of Hindustani films will never forget the love story of Laila and Majnun. In Malay history there are many love affairs.

4. The first article which attracted my attention is the question by a man as to why he cannot marry the man he loves. Marriage is of course about lovers marrying each other.

5. It has nothing to do about procreation of the species by man and woman. If a woman loves a woman, that is enough for them to marry. And the same when a man marries a man.

6. Imagine when this becomes the culture and practice of the human race. We will not need family planning; no condoms, no birth-control pills and no human race before the century is out. Man’s will be done.

7. Another report on love caught my eye. It’s about a daughter’s love for her father. She had been having sex with her father willingly for the past three years. So she asks why cannot she have sex with someone she loves. Yes. Why not?

8. There is nothing wrong physiologically? She may have a child by her father. So what! Goats and cows mate with their fathers and grandfathers.

9. The scientists talk about passing on the bad genes. Religious people and narrow-minded moralists simply forbid such relations. But today we believe in freedom and human rights. And of course free love. Why should we be restricted in any way.

10. But why restrict to daughters who love their fathers. What about sons who love their mothers. Then there are sisters who love their brothers vice-versa, nieces who love their uncles vice-versa and nephews who love their aunties. They all should be entitled to sexual relations.

11. But love does not stop there. People love pets. They love cats and dogs and horses. Should bestiality also be part of love.

12. It would be a great world with everybody loving everybody else. It would make a great civilisation based on endless love.

13. Love I think is the most noble of human emotions. It is something that can be felt but never truly described.

14. But today love simply means having sex. And that is all there is to it.

15. I am no romantic. But still I feel the people today, especially the young are missing something.

Monday, November 18, 2013

SHAPING A NATIONAL AUTO INDUSTRY : HOW NATIONAL CARS CAN CONTRIBUTE TOWARDS ECONOMIC DEVELOPEMENT

This SPEECH was delivered at the KUALA LUMPUR INTERNATIONAL AUTOMOTIVE CONFERENCE ON NOVEMBER 13, 2013


1.​When the idea of a national car was mooted, it was met with widespread criticisms and cynical comments. We were a third world country and we know nothing about motorcar manufacturing. Our market was tiny. It would be a waste of our money.

2.​It was easier to simply buy imported foreign-made cars. At best we could import CKD (Completely Knock-down packs) and assemble the cars here. That was as much as our agriculture-based economy could do.

3.​But we did talk even at that time of industrialisation, of being an industrial nation. How do we become an industrialised nation if we have no industry other than assembling electronic components.

4.​Malaysia has always been and it still is a trading nation. Buying things from foreign countries must result in outflow of funds. This would be bad for our balance of payment. Our trade would be in deficit. Trade deficits are not sustainable. We cannot generate enough wealth internally to pay for our imports. Our raw materials, such as rubber, tin and palm oil exports cannot earn us enough to pay for imports. We will be in deficit.

5.​To prevent this we can do two things. We can limit imports or we can increase exports. Among the items which absorb funds in large amounts is the import of cars. The purchase of cars involves large sums of money. When we buy foreign cars there would be a big outflow of funds.

6.​In those days we could not think of exporting Malaysian made cars in order to increase the inflow of funds and have a healthy trade balance. Still if we produce our own cars and our people buy them then much of the money would stay in the country. There would be less outflow, less tendency to have deficits.

7.​But could Malaysian made cars compete in the domestic market against foreign imports? They could if the price is right. To ensure right prices the Government had to tax imports at a higher rate.

8.​This was not going to be welcome by Malaysian consumers. But all countries wishing to promote local automotive industry had no choice but to make imported cars costly. Japan and Korea had done this. Other countries simply make it bureaucratically difficult for cars to be imported. Apart from taxes on foreign cars, standards were raised in foreign countries so that imports find difficulty to qualify. The standards were raised periodically so that foreign cars wishing to enter the market have to be upgraded continuously.

9.​Any nation wishing to go into an industry dominated by foreign imports will not be able to match the imports immediately. When, after World War II Japan decided to build cars, the design was atrocious and the quality inferior. The Datsun Bluebird seemed to be an inferior copy of the British Hillman. The car was imported into Malaysia but was not well accepted despite the low price.

10.​But we all know how much the Japanese cars have improved. They not only meet the standards of European cars but are often superior to many of these cars. Today no one questions the quality of Japanese cars. Even though the price is no longer low they are able to penetrate foreign markets. Clearly it takes time to improve locally produced manufactured goods to match imported goods. To have an industry, especially automotive, time is required to achieve world standards and to be competitive.

11.​The same can be said of Korean cars. Their Pony by Hyundai was of poor quality but now Korean cars meet International standards and are able to compete even with Japanese makes in developed markets.

12.​Clearly when a country wishes to enter the car business, a lot of time will pass before their products achieve the quality level of established makes. If the industry is to grow it must be protected at least during its infancy. The protection must be reduced gradually.

13.​The automobile industry requires big capital – usually in the billions of US dollars. This is so especially upon establishment. But Malaysia’s national car had a capital of about RM400 million (about USD150 million). It borrowed from the Government 800 million Ringgit. It has since paid back this loan fully from internal sources.

14.​Admittedly at the beginning it was not a roaring success despite lower prices. But at one time later on it commanded 80% of the local market and it built up reserves of 4 billion Ringgit. Since the beginning it paid directly and indirectly billions in revenue to the Government. It certainly reduced outflow of funds with its high market share.

15.​Unfortunately for political reasons, the successful management was got rid off and then changed twice and the company lost money. At the same time Government decided to allow almost unlimited import of foreign cars from countries which effectively banned our Proton.

16.​All these resulted in a shrinkage of domestic market share of the Proton until today it makes up only 27% of the much enlarged domestic market. With almost half the domestic market now taken up by imports, there is a huge outflow of Malaysian money.

17.​Who gains? Certainly foreign car makers made much profit in Malaysia. Most of these cars come from countries where our national cars are not able to penetrate because of tax and other barriers erected against foreign cars including ours.

18.​But we are very generous. When foreign cars do not meet our specifications we give them exemptions. Some 70 models have been given such exemptions, which reduced their cost and therefore increase their competitiveness against our cars. Why we decide that non-conforming imports are acceptable but our own cars must comply with our standards is a mystery. Surely we must know that this is not good for balance of payments.

19.​Of some interest are the so-called free-trade agreements. There is much focus on automobiles. Import duties are to be withdrawn for national cars of member countries. A car is regarded as national if it has 40% local content. Foreign car makers are quick to take advantages of this simple definition.

20.​They simply produce their cars in the member countries of the FTA with 40% of the cost incurred locally. With that they can access the markets of the FTA members and benefit from the tax-free status of national cars.

21.​One has to remember that these foreign cars have been sold in large number in the manufacturer’s domestic market and in other countries. The cost of development would been amortised quickly so that even if the sale prices in the FTA countries are low, they would still be profitable.

23.​Proton’s local content is 90% and its sale is largely in the local market where it has to compete with imports. Even with reduced taxes it cannot sell well in FTA countries. The volume just cannot be big enough and it takes time to amortise the cost of development. In other words Proton is at a disadvantage in Malaysia and in the AFTA countries.

24.​So why should we have an automotive industry!

25.​Well, let’s look again at the contribution made by a national car industry. First it creates jobs, thousands of jobs not just in producing cars but also in producing components and parts. It enables Malaysia to acquire engineering knowhow. If the country is to become industrialised, it must acquire engineering skills such as designing, modelling, prototyping, testing, tweaking, upgrading and updating and a host of other things required for the manufacture of cars. These skills contribute to the industrial sector. It will qualify us to become a developed country.

26.​The oil producing countries have highest per capita incomes but they do not qualify as developed countries.

27.​Much of the money expended and generated by the industry stays in the country, reducing the deficits and contributing to trade surplus. This money also contributes to the GDP when it is spent.

28.​In fact the contribution of local industries to the GDP and economic growth is what enriches a country, what helps the country to develop. Importing goods, manufactures and services only contribute to outflow of funds and contribute towards imbalance in the trade.

27.​The United States is an interesting study. It has 52 states and 360 million people. Basically it is a small world by itself, having raw materials, power and manufactured goods. The states can buy and sell all their needs between them. They really do not need the rest of the world. That is why they can survive even when they have trade and budget deficits. When short of money, they can borrow from their own banks, the Federal Reserve Bank, which can print money when it is itself short of funds.

28.​We are not the United States. We need to trade with other countries because our domestic market is small and we need the raw materials and manufactured good of other countries. Trade should be balanced. But when we have to import all our needs we will be in deficit. We can borrow if we cannot earn money through exports. But loans have to be repaid especially loans by foreign banks. If all our money goes toward paying for imports we cannot repay the loans. We will be bankrupt like Greece.

29.​Proton may not be earning much money through exports. But it is doing the next best thing, it is preventing money from flowing out to buy foreign cars.

30.​Taking everything into consideration, the national car has contributed much towards Malaysian economy and its development. To know how much we save we can compute the total sum Malaysians pay for local-made cars and add that to our imports.

31.​We sell roughly 600,000 cars a year. Half the number would be local-made cars. Assuming an average price of 40,000 RM, the total sale value would be about 12 billion Ringgit. That would be the additional amount that will flow out if all cars are imported. It would certainly increase the deficit.

32.​The national cars clearly contributes much towards reducing our deficits. Additionally it has helped in the establishment of the engineering industry extending well beyond automobile manufacturing. It has certainly helped in qualifying us as a developed country.

33.​The national auto industry must be sustained if we are going to have a positive balance in our trade.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Pilihanraya Kecil Sg Limau

Saya tidak berniat untuk kempen dalam PRK Sungai Limau. Ini sebahagian dari kawasan saya pada tahun-tahun 1964 – 1969. Saya sukar berkempen di sini. Tetapi kerana sebab tertentu saya lapangkan masa pada 3hb November dan saya memutus untuk ke Sungai Limau.Sungai Limau tebal dengan PAS kerana terdapat guru agama yang terkenal di situ. Tetapi kali ini BN dapat masuk dan saya juga boleh berkempen. Sudah longgar agaknya.

Bendera PAS sama banyak dengan BN. Kit Siang turut berkempen tetapi DAP masih takut bayang-bayang saya. Tumpuan Kit Siang ialah mencaci saya, seolah-olah saya yang bertanding. Kit Siang tidak senang kenapa saya masih aktif selepas bersara.

Pada 1964 saya jadi Wakil Rakyat. Kit Siang menjadi Setiausaha Politik kepada Devan Nair. Kemudian setelah PAP tidak dapat aktif lagi di Malaysia Kit Siang menubuh DAP dan menjadi ketuanya. Saya bersara 2003. Kit Siang belum bersara, masih ketua DAP dan menjadi wakil rakyat Gelang Patah. Bila Kit Siang akan bersara? Sampai mati kah? Jika sudah bersara nak jadi pemimpin kanan (Senior Leader) DAP kah?

Kempen sekarang ini berbeza dari dahulu. Banyak wang diguna. Diadakan Karnival di mana ada acara hiburan, jamuan dan hadiah percuma seperti T-shirt BN, PAS yang belum memerintah terpaksa jual T-shirt. Apabila jadi Kerajaan T- shirt tentu percuma.

Ada Jabatan Kerajaan yang mengadakan pameran untuk mempromosi Kementerian Pertanian saya fikir. Mereka yang datang melihat pameran diberi sepuluh ekor anak ayam, dedak dan beras. Makanan disediakan untuk pelawat.

Saya tak tahu samada pameran ini adalah sebahagian dari kempen BN. Jika ia, amat jelas pelawat tidak terpengaruh dengan hadiah anak ayam. Sebenarnya pengundi tidak mengundi mengikut hadiah – samada berbentuk duit atau anak ayam.

Mungkin saya salah (dan saya mengaku saya kerap salah) tetapi saya fikir pemberian wang dan hadiah tidak akan memberi kemenangan. Ini jelas dari PRU 13. Yang tak sokong tak sokong juga. Wang yang diberi adalah pembaziran, samada wang Kerajaan atau bukan Kerajaan.

Sokongan kepada parti politik diasaskan kepada perjuangannya dan tingkah laku pemimpin dan calon. Kalau datang dengan Mercedes atau motorsikal 1000 c.c, saguhati dan apa juga yang diberi tidak akan menawan hati. Ada pengundi yang tidak arif yang berkata ini rasuah. Ini sangkaan buruk mereka. Tetapi sangkaan ini walaupun mungkin bukan rasuah mungkin mempengaruhi tindakan mereka.

Di Sungai Limau ternampak banyak rumah batu bumbung genting. Nampak sejak saya jadi wakil rakyat dahulu keadaan banyak berubah. Ramai dari orang kampung yang sudah berjaya dan ada duit, walaupun tidak kaya.

Tetapi masih ramai yang miskin, amat miskin. Kalau mereka diberi peluang dan bantuan mungkin mereka akan berhijrah – Wallah wa’alam. Dan mungkin BN disanjung tinggi semula.

Inilah politik semasa. Duit lebih banyak tetapi pengaruh masih belum cukup.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Mind of the Analyst

1. Among the cleverest people in the world are the analysts – the people who can see through solids, even see and recognise what lies behind. This gives them power and as we all know power corrupts. Few among the analysts can restrain the corrupting influence of their power.

2. The analyst who works for Malaysian Insider clearly is one who cannot resist the abuse of that power. Given a task by his master he comes up with a fantastic analysis on the recent decision by the court that the word “Allah” is exclusive to Islam and may not be used by the Catholic “Herald”. He saw an opportunity to serve his master like the toady he is.

3. His master had recently demonised me by incorrectly and clearly deliberately translating my statement on corruption. I had said that I was sold by my divisional representatives for RM200/-. The English version was correct. But the Malay translation implied that I bribed my divisional delegates with RM200/-. Why I should bribe them so they would not vote for me is beyond me. But the opportunity to blacken my name in the eyes of the Malays was too good to be missed by his master.

4. When asked to correct and apologise, Malaysian Insider decided to demonise me instead by stating that twenty-five years ago when “Tun Mahathir Mohamad dismantled one of the most respected judicial institutions in the Commonwealth and destroyed the concept of separation of powers in Malaysia rhetorically he asked “how many Malaysians were truly upset with his interference?” In one sentence he made a lie appear to be an indisputable truth, without stating what indeed I had done to deserve the demonisation.

5. The arguments by the great analyst are rather convoluted but the implication is clear. The Malaysian courts (and here Tun Suffian’s words are made use of) will never be able to recover the respect they had before I “destroyed” them.

6. The truth is that the courts often made judgements against me or the government I lead. The classic case is when UMNO, the ruling party was declared illegal because a few branches cheated. Yet recently when the Central Committee of the DAP was found to have basically cheated, it was simply asked to hold another election. But for UMNO, when four out of more than 6000 branches did not follow procedures, the whole party was declared illegal. The judge who made this judgement was then promoted. I did not object.

7. When Anwar sued me for defamation because I repeated to the press the judgement made by the Appeal Court which acquitted him I thought a Malaysian court would decide this in one sitting. If I was wrong, then the appeal court which found that Anwar did not commit sodomy on the day mentioned in the charge but averred that he did commit sodomy on other days must also be wrong. The third appeal judge concurred with the guilty verdict of the High Court. But on the basis of a wrong date, Anwar was acquitted and released. I merely repeated the findings of the Appeal Court when asked at a Press Conference.

8. Apparently the court which heard the defamation case against me, upon hearing the arguments of the fearsome Karpal Singh, Anwar’s lawyer, felt that there was a case for me to answer. That was fine. But Anwar’s lawyers kept asking for postponements after postponements so that the case dragged on for more than four years.

9. During those four years I was deprived of the right to say anything against Anwar as the case was considered to be sub judice. I basically lost my right of free speech and Anwar enjoyed a long period of freedom from my criticisms.

10. If the courts of Malaysia are shackled forever by me, surely the decision would have been reached at the first sitting. I cannot believe that repeating the words of a judge when pronouncing judgement is illegal or constitutes defamation. That the court was forced to delay judgement by the frequent postponements is a denial of justice, for lawyers often repeat, “Justice delayed is justice denied”. In my case the court took four years to find me innocent. Justice was denied me.

11. And there are many cases where the courts of Malaysia find against the Government in my time – including unprecedentedly declaring UMNO, the ruling party to be illegal. At other times despite detentions under the ISA was not open to legal challenges, detainees were released on a writ of habeas corpus. Before I was Prime Minister no one ever challenged the right of the Minister concerned to detain anyone under the ISA.

12. It seems to me that far from the courts being constrained by me, the fearsome personality of Karpal Singh plays a more effective role in the courts. In fact when some UMNO supporters were charged, their preference was to engage Karpal because his fearsome and overbearing personality was considered enough to convince the court.

13. The Malaysian courts are as free as can be even though certain lawyers seem to get away with unruly behaviour in Malaysian courts. The decision of the courts on the use of the word “Allah” is an example of their independence. Whereas the High Court decided that the word can be used by the “Herald” the Appeal Court disagreed. If the courts are in thrall to the former Prime Minister, surely the lower court would decide supposedly according to my wishes and not the higher, three men Appeal Court. But the opposite is the case.

14. It is ridiculous to suggest that the courts of Malaysia had ever been under the control of the Prime Minister. I am reminded of the Israelis who insist that they are under threat of Arab aggression when in fact they are the aggressors who have seized Palestinian land to build their settlements and who arrested 10,000 Palestinians including children, torture and kill them with impunity. Malaysian Insider will trot out the same old argument against me, as the Israelis do, because it is really bankrupt of ideas to demonise me. You can bet that Malaysian Insider will come up with the same baseless accusation every now and again. It was the Nazi Propaganda Minister, Goebbels, who declared that, lies repeated often enough will be accepted as the truth.

Monday, October 21, 2013

NEGARA BERPENDAPATAN TINGGI

Artikel in telah disiarkan di dalam akhbar Mingguan Malaysia , Oktober 20, 2013

1. Dasar kerajaan untuk menjadikan Malaysia negara berpendapatan tinggi (high income country) tentulah diterima baik oleh rakyat. Tetapi kita harus ambil kira kesan pendapatan tinggi, terutama dalam bentuk upah dan gaji kepada kos sara hidup Negara.

2. Apabila upah atau gaji dinaikkan tidak dapat tidak kos barangan dan khidmat akan turut naik. Kenaikan ini akan mengurangkan dayabeli (purchasing power) berbanding dengan pendapatan yang dinaikkan.

3. Kita tahu benar negara-negara yang pendapatan amat tinggi dari segi upah yang diterima tetapi taraf hidup mereka jauh lebih rendah dari kita. Pendapatan tinggi semata-mata tidak bermakna kekayaan dengan taraf hidup yang tinggi.

4. Yang akan menjadi kehidupan kita setaraf dengan negara maju ialah daya beli pendapatan kita yang sama tinggi dengan dayabeli penduduk negara maju. Kenaikan pendapatan tanpa kenaikan dayabeli tidak bermakna sama sekali. Sebaliknya ia akan menghalang pembangunan Negara kearah sasaran menjadi Negara maju.

5. Negara-negara yang ditakrif sebagai negara maju tidak sahaja memiliki pendapatan per kapita yang tinggi tetapi mereka memiliki daya pengeluaran (produktiviti), yang tinggi dengan kemajuan mereka dalam bidang ilmu pengetahuan, kecanggihan dan kebesaran industri serta perniagaan dan perusahaan. Negara mereka dilengkapi dengan infrastruktur yang canggih dan mencukupi untuk keselesaan hidup rakyat serta membantu aktiviti perniagaan dan perusahaan. Infrastruktur ini termasuklah jalan-jalan yang menghubungi semua bandar dan kampung, bekalan api dan air, khidmat pelajaran dan kesihatan dan lain-lain. Banyak terdapat Negara yang berpendapatan amat tinggi tetapi tidak dianggap maju.

6. Kita perlu pisah kemajuan sesebuah negara daripada pendapatannya yang tinggi. Walaupun negara maju biasanya disertai dengan pendapatan yang tinggi bagi semua rakyat, tetapi pendapatan yang tinggi dengan sendirinya tidak bermakna Negara sudah maju.

7. Hasrat Kerajaan tentulah untuk menjadi bukan sahaja negara berpendapatan tinggi tetapi menjadi negara maju dengan kuasa dayabeli rakyat yang tinggi. Untuk ini tumpuan perlu diberi kepada usaha daya keluar (produktiviti) yang meningkat yang akan menyumbang kepada dayasaing (competitiveness) negara. Kenaikan dayasaing Negara-negara Timur inilah sehingga mengalahkan Negara Barat yang menjadikan beberapa Negara Timur maju.

8. Menaikkan pendapatan adalah mudah. Umpamanya apabila gaji atau upah minimum dinaikkan maka matlamat pendapatan tinggi tercapai. Tetapi seperti yang disebut di atas, kenaikan ini tidak menjadikan rakyat lebih kaya, disebabkan dayabeli tidak naik bersama pendapatan.

9. Umpamanya kenaikan upah minima katakanlah dari RM 700/- sebulan kepada RM 900/- sebulan akan membawa dua kesan. Mereka yang sedang menerima RM 900/- sebulan akan kecewa jika upah mereka tidak dinaikkan supaya yang berada di bawah mereka tidak mendapat gaji yang sama dengan mereka. Apabila gaji kumpulan ini dinaikkan maka yang dahulu mendapat upah yang lebih tinggi akan meminta kenaikan supaya jarak yang lama dikekalkan. Akhirnya kenaikan gaji minima kepada RM 900/- akan disusuli dengan kenaikan gaji atau upah di semua peringkat. Kenaikan yang menyeluruh ini tidak dapat tidak akan menaikkan kos pengeluaran semua barangan dan khidmat. Dengan perkataan lain kenaikan gaji dan upah, tanpa kenaikan produktiviti akan menaikkan kos sara hidup.

10. Yang kedua kenaikan gaji dan upah tetap akan menjadikan barangan dan khidmat yang kita beri kurang kompetitif di pasaran dunia. Pelabur tempatan dan asing juga tidak akan melabur dan yang menganggur tidak dapat bekerja untuk sara hidup mereka.

11. Malaysia adalah negara dagang. Pendapatan kita datang dari ekspot barangan, bahan mentah dan khidmat yang dipasar oleh kita. Jika dagangan kita merosot ekonomi kita juga akan merosot.

12. Sebenarnya pendapatan tinggi perlu disertai dengan daya keluar (productivity) yang tinggi. Ini boleh dilakukan dengan menukar industri yang mengguna buruh kasar yang ramai (labour intensive) kepada industri yang lebih canggih yang mempunyai nilai ditambah yang tinggi. Industri hitech yang memerlukan kecekapan akal fikiran lebih dari kerja tangan akan menghasilkan barangan yang tinggi tambah nilai. Tetapi industri ini memerlukan pekerja yang lebih terlatih, berpelajaran tinggi dan cekap, seperti jurutera (engineer). Gaji mereka (pendapatan) tentulah tinggi yang mana ini menepati hasrat untuk menjadi negara kita berpendapatan tinggi (high income).

13. Untuk mendapat pekerja yang berpengetahuan ini sistem dan kemudahan pelajaran mestilah terdaya untuk mengeluarkan penuntut yang memiliki ilmu-ilmu, terutama sains dan matematik. Untuk ini penguasaan Bahasa Inggeris adalah penting. Penggunaan Bahasa Inggeris untuk sains dan matematik akan menentukan kelayakan seseorang pekerja. Lagi pun Bahasa Inggeris yang sudah menjadi bahasa ilmu terpaksa diguna dalam melatih dan mengajar dan juga memberi arahan untuk membuat kerja-kerja yang canggih.

14. Kefahaman Bahasa Inggeris tetap akan menyumbang kepada penambahan pendapatan. Ini terdapat dimana-mana sahaja.

15. Untuk pengekalan dan perkembangan bahasa kebangsaan, kita tidak boleh guna Bahasa Inggeris sebagai bahasa pengantar untuk semua mata pelajaran. Kita perlu hadkan penggunaan Bahasa Inggeris kepada pengajaran sains dan matematik sahaja. Mata pelajaran lain mestilah disampaikan dalam bahasa kebangsaan.

16. Dimasa yang sama penguasaan Bahasa Inggeris perlu ditingkatkan. Pada kebiasaan untuk menuntut ilmu ke peringkat Masters (sarjana) dan Phd (doctorate) penuntut Malaysia kerap ke universiti luar negara. Bahasa pengantar di luar negara ialah Bahasa Inggeris, walaupun ada juga bahasa-bahasa lain yang diguna. Kebanyakan buku teks yang diguna seluruh dunia didapati dalam Bahasa Inggeris.

17. Yang jelas ialah Bahasa Inggeris adalah bahasa ilmu, bahasa dagang dan industri. Jika negara ingin menaikkan pendapatan melalui dagangan dan industri yang canggih dengan nilai ditambah yang tinggi, Bahasa Inggeris amatlah penting dan utama.

18. Oleh itu untuk menjadikan Malaysia negara berpendapatan tinggi, langkah pertama ialah peningkatan penguasaan ilmu moden di kalangan rakyat, bermula dari sekolah-sekolah lagi.

19. Etika kerja juga perlu ditingkatkan. Satu contoh berkenaan keburukan etika kerja merosakan ekonomi negara boleh dilihat di United Kingdom. Kerana kesatuan sekerja menjadi begitu kuat sehingga dapat mendiri Kerajaan tuntutan dari kesatuan untuk kenaikan upah melalui ugutan menyebabkan pendapatan naik tanpa kenaikan daya pengeluaran. Akhirnya semua industri British gulung tikar dan ekonomi negara merosot.

20. Kenaikan pendapatan memang baik bagi pekerja dan pengusaha. Tetapi ia bukan sesuatu yang boleh dicapai hanya melalui dasar. Banyaklah yang perlu dipertimbangkan dan diselaraskan jika kenaikan pendapatan tidak akan memburukkan ekonomi Negara dan kemajuannya.

BUMIPUTRA TIDAK KUALITI

1. Sekarang baru saya tahu kenapa kontraktor Bumiputra tidak pernah diberi kontrak oleh swasta Malaysia. Mengikut Fellow Kanan Institut Kajian Sosioekonomi dan Alam Sekitar (SERI). Dr Michael Lim Mah Hui, Bumiputra tiada kualiti.

2. Ketua Pakar Ekonomi RAM Holdings, Dr Yeah Kim Leng, pula berkata, swasta mementingkan meritokrasi, bukan menutup peluang kepada Bumiputra.

3. Kita tahu Kerajaan yang dikuasai oleh Bumiputra yang tidak berkualiti, telah mengambil hampir 100% Bumiputra untuk menjadi pegawai dan kakitangan Kerajaan. Hasilnya dapat kita lihat Malaysia tidak dapat ditadbir dengan baik dan pembangunannya memang buruk sekali berbanding dengan negara-negara lain yang mencapai kemerdekaan bersama dengan Malaysia.

4. Kerajaan yang dianggotai oleh Bumiputra yang tidak berkualiti ini gagal menangani kemerosotan ekonomi dan kewangan pada 1997/98. Ramailah peniaga dan pengusaha negara terutama dari kaum yang memiliki merit yang bankrap semasa krisis matawang kerana tindakan “control” oleh Bumiputera. Sehingga kini ekonomi dan kewangan negara tidak dapat dipulih oleh Kerajaan Bumiputra yang tidak berkualiti ini.

5. Sesungguhnya untuk mengelak kerosakan negara, Bumiputra yang tidak berkualiti ini tidak harus diberi apa-apa peluang menuntut ke peringkat universiti kerana mereka tentu tidak akan lulus dan mendapat apa-apa ijazah. Tindakan pemaju swasta mengutamakan merit memanglah wajar. Ini bukan kerana tidak mahu memberi peluang kepada Bumiputra, tetapi kerana mengutamakan merit.

6. Meritokrasi memang baik bagi Malaysia. Jangan bagi apa-apa pun yang tidak berasas kepada merit. Orang yang tidak berkualiti tidak mempunyai hak dan tempat di Malaysia. Biarlah mereka kekal dengan kualiti buruk mereka asalkan yang berkualiti, yang memiliki merit meraih segala-galanya untuk mereka. Kemerdekaan Negara dari dijajah oleh British bertujuan memberi segala-galanya kepada yang memiliki merit dan bukan untuk yang tidak berkualiti.

7. Dan saya bersetuju dengan pendapat pakar-pakar dari SERI dan RAM Holdings. Orang yang tidak ada kualiti tidak ada tempat di Malaysia kita yang Merdeka. Mereka harus tahu nikmat kemerdekaan bukan untuk mereka. Nikmat ini hanya untuk yang mempunyai merit walaupun tidak berjuang untuk membebaskan negara dari penjajah.

Monday, October 14, 2013

POLITICIANS vs JOURNALISTS

1. The world is in a bad shape because politicians instead of journalists run it. I came to this conclusion after reading a copy of The Economist, the British magazine. The writers in the Economist seem to know everything that ails the world and they also know how all these ailment can be cured.

2. The copy begins with the front page illustration of the statue of Christ tumbling through the air from its pedestal on Sugar Loaf mountain in Brazil; down, I suppose to crash on Rio de Janeiro. I suppose it is to illustrate the grave situation in the country.

3. The articles on Brazil began with “Grounded”, followed by “A rough ride for (President Dilma) Rousseff”. Then “The price is wrong”, and an advice on agriculture, “Leaves Well Alone”, followed by “The Road to Hell”. “Money no Object” (on the football stadium), “Land of the Setting Sun”, “Look Good” followed by “Reality Dawns”. The articles describe all the wrong things that are being done by Brazil and how they should and could be corrected.

4. Other articles are entitled “A new Face of Terror” (which Western Governments do not know), “Sending the Wrong Smoke-Signal” (on E-cigarettes), “Angela’s Dilemma” (telling Angela Merkel to look to the Greens).

5. “Curb Your Enthusiasm” is to warn everyone not to put too much faith in Iran’s nuclear deal “and keep the sanctions on”. Cameron, the Prime Minister of United Kingdom is told to “Remember what you once were (the Prime Minister should reclaim the radical centre of British politics)”. “The Unquenchable Fire” is about the Al-Qaeda still being around and deplore the fact that Mr Zawahiri, its current leader is not dead yet. This seems like hinting that the United States should assassinate the Al-Qaeda leader as they did Osama Ben Laden. I suppose Zawahiri’s corpse would be dumped in the sea.

6. And now Malaysia. “Bumi, Not Booming” is about Najib’s announcement of a policy known as “the Bumiputra Economic Empowerment”. This hideous policy discriminates against the Chinese who make up 25% of the population but run much of Malaysia’s business, and Indians 7% but having disproportionate presence in the professions.

7. Apparently any attempt to give the Malays and the indigenous people (68%) a share in the business (and the wealth) and to become professionals is unfair, wrong and unjust. Liberal people should not do this. If they get no share of the wealth and places in the professions, they should just be poor spectators.

8. Prior to the Elections Najib had tried to win over the Chinese by ignoring the plight of the Malays. He even ignored the National Education Policy by supporting Chinese education with money. He tried to endear himself to the Chinese with more money. However the Chinese voters rejected him. Only 3% voted for him. Sounds like gross ungratefulness. For this Najib should dole out some more money, which would be the right thing to do.

9. But the Malays supported him. Apparently according to the Economist it is wrong to support those who support you. You don’t do that in civilised countries. Let the supporters rot.

10. The proper thing to do is to help people who are already well off to be even more well off.

11. In fact one should help the richer community get even richer and the poor community poorer. If there are poor people among the rich community make sure they become rich first before taking any notice of the poor in the poor community.

12. Now on Pakistan. They are giving the “Cold shoulder to Sheriff”. India’s informal economy has “Hidden Value”. Sri Lanka’s Tamils have to face “Harder Lines” – reconciliation is further off.

13. On scientific research “Looks Good on Paper”. Xilai’s “End of the Road” is worth gloating over. On China’s relations with America it is “one model, two interpretations”. The American Budget is about “Nightmares and Bedtime Stories”.
14. And so on, and so on and so on. Really the silly politicians should make way for western journalists. From the words of wisdom in the Economist and generally in the Western press, it is obvious that with journalists and the expert writers at the helm, the world can sleep easy. Why didn’t we think of this before?

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Chin Peng

This article appeared in the New Straits Times, Oct 1, 2013


1. Attempts to declare Chin Peng a patriot, nationalist and freedom fighter reflect how far derailed some Malaysians are from what the Communist Party of Malaya represented and what was its real objective.

2. Firstly, it must be pointed out that the CPM continued with their insurgency long after Malaya and then Malaysia had gained independence in 1957.

3. In their fight against the Government of independent Malaysia, the CPM killed civilians and security personnel by the thousands without considering their role as defenders of independence or their innocence. Senior police officers were assassinated and police patrols were ambushed and gunned down.

4. Nationals of an independent country do not kill fellow nationals who were only doing their duty to provide security for the citizens who wanted just to earn a living, who wanted to live a normal life. Yet the CPM ignored the independence of the nation, the democratic rights of the people in its single-minded desire to create a Communist dictatorship in Malaysia. The CPM were prepared to use extreme violence so as to install its leader Chin Peng, as the authoritarian ruler of the country.

5. To make it more horrendous, much of the atrocities and mutilations committed by Chin Peng and the CPM are not only on soldiers but many civilians were their victims.

6. Government records show that the CPM in a classic move infiltrated the trade unions and political parties so as to destabilise the nation and bring down its elected Government.

7. In the 1969 General Elections, the CPM defied the Government by holding a funeral procession to arouse hatred against the Alliance party. This contributed to the inter-racial tension and the subsequent riots.

8. Until the Haadyai agreement of 1990 the CPM guerrillas planted booby traps which caused many policemen and soldiers to lose their legs, arms and eyesight. Many were killed.

9. The agreement was to stop to the mindless killings of members of the security forces even though there was no possibility for the CPM to seize power in Malaysia. The agreement provided for the laying down of arms by the CPM insurgents. Many of the insurgents chose to live in Thailand. A few who wanted to visit relatives in Malaysia were allowed to do so. Those who pleaded that they were forced or were mislead into joining the CPM and wished to reside in the country were allowed to do so. The agreement was a practical solution to the problems faced by the nation and it was a solution also for the CPM which had lost all support in Malaysia following the Government campaign to win the hearts and minds of the people.

10. The CPM would not have entered into the agreement if it still had substantial support of Malaysians. It must be admitted that certain extremist groups in the country still harbour the hope of a CPM-ruled Malaysia. Besides, after the visit of Tun Razak to China in 1974, the Chinese Government stopped supporting the CPM. It stopped radio broadcasts in support of the CPM that year. The nation celebrated this stoppage of China’s support for the CPM by giving the BN party a big majority in the 1974 elections.

11. All these point towards the fact that from the very start the war waged by Chin Peng and the CPM was with the objective of turning Malaya into a dictatorship with the CPM leader as the dictator. There was no intention to give the people the right to choose their Government. The CPM wanted to change British Colonial rule with a Communist dictatorship, not an independent nation.

12. It is important to remember that Chin Peng never made any effort to register as a Malaysian citizen. He has therefore forfeited all rights as a Malaysian citizen. But it is entirely possible for his leftist supporters to try and rally around his burial place as a symbol for the resurgence of the MCP in Malaysia. Already race relations in Malaysia has deteriorated. With Chin Peng as a symbol it is most likely that race relations might explode in violence.

13. The Government is right in not allowing the burial of Chin Peng in Malaysia or bringing his ashes back.
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