I wish to contend that government ineptitude is killing the economy.
The quality of the government has deteriorated so much that it is detrimental to all and sundry who are unfortunate enough to those who are part of the economy, not just who has to deal with the government.
1. It is morally wrong for the government to raise its revenue through additional taxes and fines. What is worse that with its latest objective of raising raising money for the government, government ministries and departments and their officers are now behaving like gangsters terrorising ordinary people with threats. Small businesses now would rather close down their businesses altogether rather than having to deal with this new crop of government officers who are inept and who try to show result through psychological and pecuniary coercion. Small businesses are forced to react in a manner that these officers imagined the real business world to be, accusing businesses of being greedy and dishonest. It takes a thief to imagine that everyone is crooked. Small businesses have to lower prices because the price of petrol has fallen regardless of the mighty fall of the local currency and the imposition of the GST which is now kicking up the honest nest of business tax reporting where businesses are being fined for every conceivable accounting crime, helped no doubt by the accounting firms which concocted such schemes in the first place before. Yes, the government will get its bucket of blood but the economy will die in the end.
2. The distribution of wealth in this country is deteriorating in this country because the political class has colluded with big businesses to maximise their profits by underpaying sub-contractors and contract workers. We are now back square one. This economy is not about the welfare of the ordinary people any more. This economy is not about training local citizens with good skills and paying them decent salaries on which they and their families can live on. This economy is now about making big money by not working but by creating fantastic ideas on which to make use of other people's savings as capital and other people's efforts as labour. The big banks colluded with this politics and big businesses to create extraordinary profits for bankers and for which the future generations will have to pay for the bad loans that are surely on the way to hit all of us as the economy deteriorates. Those with no access to big bank loans and depending on their meagre wages and salaries who have whatever little they have squeezed further by the GST, the hike in tolls and the imported inflation. The worst part of this skewed distribution of wealth is that the loot has been squirrelled away in overseas assets to avoid taxes and is the main cause of the persistent depreciation of the value of the ringgit. In return, we import cheap unskilled labour to generate more profits for the capital employed in property development and mega infrastructure projects. The spending addiction of the government helps to distort the distribution of wealth and destroy the future potential of the economy.
3. The key to the growth of the economy is always investments and investment opportunities always arise from new territories that emerge from the mixing of two or more spheres of seemingly incongruous nature. This nation should not be reduced to a mono-culture, and not be seen to allow such tendency even to have a toe-hold. It is unfortunate that top politicians have allowed themselves to play with the fire of racism if only to again momentary political mileage but at a tremendous cost to society cohesion and the future of the economy. This nation needs the confidence of its people to sink the future of their children here. This nation needs to exploit the tremendous opportunities that exist from having probably one of the richest cultural mixture in the world by allowing that diversity to bloom in its full splendour. For a start, we should introduce bilingualism in all our public communications - the national language and English. We should have Malay and English in all our official letters and public signs. Even the Japan that Malaysia has followed in the past into mono-culture is now anglicising its street signs. Malaysia seems to have lost our common sense, not being able to respond to the market logically but being enslaved by an ideology that is bringing us back to the Stone Age. This nation needs to shake out of its spell of doom.
4. I think I have written enough to give an inkling of how I feel about the state of the nation. There are many more things to write but they will just be more words. To cut the whole thing short, I will make this simple policy recommendation. I disagree that the GST should be reduced from 6% to 5% or 3%. I strongly believe that the GST should be abolished although and the person who sold this idea to the PM should be sacked. This one simple act will do much good in bringing back some hope for this economy. It will also demonstrate that the PM has some sense and guts to do the right thing.