Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Party & State

My dearest children,

I started off my life by asking the question of what is the best. For if I wanted to do good in the world, if I wanted to do the best for the people, then I have to put them before myself. This is when I started to find a way of how to turn a swamp into a modern and vibrant city.

Of course, our place was not just a swamp like a lump of mud but a lump of mud that is strategically located in the middle of the most important trade route of the world. This is when it is opened to receive that trade as a means for our people to earn a living by working hard to provide a service.

The economic story is well-known. But the politics is a bit more complicated.

I had decided that I should be the philosopher-king as propounded by Plato. If wisdom should befallen the political leader, the society shall benefit from that wisdom. It has been shown that democracy, while the idea is good for being all encompassing and inclusive, is a dilution of perfection and the end result is always mediocrity but of the type that the common people find acceptable. But if we were to pursue economic prosperity through economic efficiency, we must have perfection that is characterized by meritocracy. That perfection and meritocracy must be seen to culminate in at least one place and that one place must be the political leader who is both wise and selfless.

When my eldest son decided to be a politician and ultimately the political leader, I had no choice but to open up the route for him. If he could do the job, why not? But of course, there were criticisms which I did not hear which would suggest that there might be others who were better than him and who, as a result of my son being earmarked for the top post, might have sensibly withdrawn volunteering their talents to the state. How much is this opportunity cost worth no one will ever know. The real cost must lies in the future of this state.

The problem of having a son succeeding his father in politics is that the son is under pressure to do better than his father, and this better must be seen as a much harder line instead of a veering away from the old path and taking the country onto a more enlightened path as it was then on a much firmer footing. If the son were to presume to take a similar premise as the father had taken, then the whole future is staked upon a single platform which may or may not be as relevant now as it had been in the past. The likelihood of making an error in future projection is very real, the further time moves away from the origin. But this is now for the government to decide.

In my case, for my own legacy, I had already made it very clear - that I did not wish to be glorify in any grandiose scale, for to do so will distract the attention of the people from what they have to do for themselves in the future if they have to keep looking backward into the past. It was for this reason that I had decided that any physical monument that had come to represent me should be removed so as to prevent any idol worshiping.

However, I was aware that there could be considerations by the party that its history should be preserved as part of the national history. That is very well and good when you imagine that the party is the best representation of the interest of the people and the nation in the future as it had in the past. But it may not be so. New parties may rise up and take over our party as the people demand their new aspirations to be met and which may be best served by new representations which they may create in the future. The party may not even be as important in the future as it had been in the past, unless the ideology of the party evolves with the times.

I know now that the quarrel among my children is a quarrel between the party and the citizens. I would say, son, let the citizens win.

Your loving father, etc.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

End of Civilisation

Clever economists cook up fantastic ideas about accelerating economic growth through competition. Adam Smith conjectured that public interest can be served by the pursuit of personal interest. Now we know Adam Smith had got it wrong.

Competition is now extended to the global level. First, we have nations conquering other nations to ensure their own prosperity. Second, we have companies conquering the world to ensure their own corporate profitability. Third, we have politicians hand in glove with global companies conquering their own nations in pursuit of their own personal gains. Clever politicians are now global companies in their own right.

The second layer of competition is people competing with companies. Marx said people should rise in arms to take over companies, because in the end there are no profits and all gains go to labour because there will be more capital than people. Now we know Marx had got it wrong.

While there is indeed much more capital than needed thanks to decades of money printing, it seems that human beings have been much more productive. This is a perfect situation for capitalists as they now can pay zero wages for people to work, as they take back the wages through inflation. Thanks to the help of politicians who now control economic policies as they raise taxes in order to pay for the services of firms. There is a great pretense in paying wages. The new phenomenon is the working poor; those who work can still be poverty stricken. In the past, the poor can pick from the land; now they have to pick rubbish from the streets.

There is the great sickening concept of the aging population is no good because they cannot feed themselves. This is utter rubbish. The fact is that the population has not been properly paid and what they have been paid is not sufficient to live on over their entire life. What happens to the profits that they have helped to make? Companies get richer and they have no where to invest. So they start buying countries from politicians. Corporatisation of the world? Big Brother is coming.

The aging population is good. It reduces the population in the world and conserves scarce resources so that they are sustainable in the long run. That you need a faster rate of population growth and lower wages in the future to take care of the old folks is a pathetic idea. Some financial consultants have got their calculations all wrong.

And now, people competing with people. There is no more gentlemanly fights or womanly fights. No more boxing; it is now kick boxing and mixed martial arts. There are no more rules. You can do anything to bring your opponents down. You have the right to be abusive and disruptive.

The clever people is no more a person who knows many things and be honourable and polite. The clever people is now a person who does not have to know a lot, but that the little that he knows is good enough for him or her to abuse others and remove any threat perceived. There is no more at improving knowledge; there is everything to do with acts of destruction.

So now we have politicians calling people whom they do not like all kinds of ugly names. The ones who are abusive and foul mouthed win. Those who can lie and cheat win. People who can be abusive of fellow citizens are national heroes. Those who can insult their customers in a language their customers cannot understand is a great sign of disrespect; they are a product of the political environment in which they are brought up.

Is this the end of civilisation where people have forgotten to be civil? Has the respect for each other gone? Are we in the middle of a war of one group of people against another group where is only goal is to destroy the other? Is there no hope for people to live in peace and harmony and work hard to raise their families? Is it our way of life to steal from others and destroy them so that we can live off the fruits of their hard work? Are we in the midst of a fight to death for scarce resources as we encourage faster population growth in order to fight an aging world? Is the human race going to choke in death in their own toxin as we have seen in some countries? Is the world messing up its own back garden?