Saturday, May 11, 2013

Election & Emotion: What Gives

I was reluctant to comment on the election result immediately. 1. Knee-jerk reactions tend to be the same. 2. Too emotional to be clear. 3. Would be repeating the same old things; tautological. 4. Most likely going to be wrong re venting.

Now that the dust has settled a bit, and after some discussions, there may be some clarity.

Those who think there is going to be a change are obviously disappointed. It takes a lot of force to dislodge an incumbent. I think the results are good, losing the two-thirds. It may be a two-step process, or this may be a dead-end.

Structural issues drive the results. The structure of the constituencies gives undue weight to the rural voters. But, the critical structural issue is the demography of the voters. We are seeing the consequences of the old economic policy of 1970. It ruins the bureaucracy. And one man single-handedly destroys the judiciary, the finance ministry and the private sector. Most of all, we are seeing new voters who have been baptised by the old economic policy - those who have not benefited from it are angry and are coming back with vengeance and those who have benefited from it are now educated and can think for themselves.

The economic problems are serious and requires urgent answers. I don't think one person can solve it. We need to reconstruct our institutions. For a start, give money to the department of statistics so that they can do a proper job of tracking where the economy is. Second, the PM should relinquish the FM post. Third, stop printing money and let the ringgit rise to its proper value. Fourth, manage the asset inflation.

Whoever comes in must solve problems like these. Being honest is good, but not enough.


james chua said...

Ethorists, Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I am inclined to believe that Malaysia must do the following: 1. Resource allocation: To reduce energy costs by shifting towards green energies - WTE, Geothermal, and Wind to ensure continual energy competitive advantage (2) improve transportation efficiencies through professional management and capital improvement of the rail and port infrastructures (3) reinvest in competitive advantages for the plantation sector especially mechanization of rubber and palm production and innovation product use and export facilitation (4) improve human capital through specialization for industries instead of churning out the average graduate with no specific skills - revamp the collegiate system and skills (5) exit from government supported industries that Malaysia cannot gain competitive advantages - car manufacturing (6) Clean up our environment and engage in value development to entice growth in the tourism industry (7) reduce leakages from criminal and corrupt activities. (8) strictly enforce our laws and level the competitive field to allow influx of investments.

Malaysia has spent too much resources in investments that do not drive competitiveness and that hampers innovation in our industries. Politically biased projects must stop, we must be driven by industrial competitiveness so as to attain sufficient revenues to foster an environment that is clean, healthy and harmonious for all. If BN truly will exit from the rampant thievery and corrupt activities, this can be achieved. But to convert thieves and bigots is an impossibility at best, the only way is to replace them with new faces where there is likelihood of leaders working for their country instead of stealing from it.

james chua said...

I am no economist, nor do I profess to have such knowledge. But economic development and structural change can only come from the energies of leaders seeking economic improvements and the welfare of the country; that is clearly lacking from BN. The true choice for Malaysians lies in the leaders of Pakatan and they can achieve greatness for the country only if the people are willing to stand up together and bring greatness to our country. That is why ethorists, we must not give up. Your understanding of what needs to be done will give us insights as to the structural reforms that is needed.

And Walla, I am just astounded at the level that you operate on. You probably in the top percentile of the intellects in the country. If all Malaysians can think and write like you, we would not have the problems that the country is having.


walla said...

The blogger has made some suggestions on things to do going forward. I am sure they already knew of them. The only reason they haven't done them all these years is because doing so would instantly reduce their power base.

For example, they have already brazenly admitted it was salah at pains of kalah to have money politics. That's also the only reason why Najib has held onto the finance post as well, especially when it makes it easier for him to approve special projects like Permata, MRT and 1MDB.

Which as you will immediately realize are black holes. Money gets sucked in but no light comes out. Except in places like Hermes of Paris and Jacobs of New York.

Similarly, Petronas, a major income earner and yet opaque. When a government depends for over forty percent of its income on a particular commodity from a single entity which has been supporting a ballooning federal budget that chases only asset inflation year after year while distorting national competitiveness through subsidies, you can be sure that country is heading for disaster.

AND that's why the rakyat voted against corruption which has never ever been seriously addressed by the incumbent because as a syndicate what more a protectorate, the perps have made themselves untouchables in the eyes of a law so far good only for threatening simple folks and socially conscious citizens.

In the coming weeks, Putrajaya will be toting up the bills. As before, they have two. Economic and political. Somehow or other, they will sweep the economic bills under the carpet, window dressing even a supplementary budget. Surely they must realize people will know because none of the jokers was even born when people who know were already writing international manuals on public finance.

It's the political bill that will break their arrogant jaws. They must realize the rakyat know they have been cheated. When movements like Bersih were fighting for electoral reforms, the federal response was only consigned to shadow-play and foot-dragging so as to block and bury the two critical demands - restructuring constituencies to break the inequality of gerrymandering, and allowing more media channels for the opposition to expand democratic debate and uplift voter consciousness in the net-poor rural areas.

And exactly on account of those two critical factors, the Opposition were mill-stoned in GE13. Yet it managed to win the popular vote nation-wide.

Anyone's inevitable conclusion? Barisan frauded, and Umno cheated the Rakyat Of Malaysia. INCLUDING those who had voted for them because these were roundly anaesthesized to remain clueless clods, soon cannon fodder.

Barisan stole the federal seat by default of structural faults in an election system of its machination. Yet despite that, the Opposition managed to improve on its results.

Were things fairer and more just, there would be no need for any analysis today for the Opposition would have walked into Putrajaya, borne on the wings of the rakyats' collective support.

Isn't that what democracy should be in the first place, we can ask in sheer irony?

walla said...

But then again, remembering how a poor foreign lady was bombed to bits while a local family was left with unanswered questions on how a young man at the crest of his life can fall off a highrise, one can imagine it's a cinch for some to cheat the masses.

walla said...

One is therefore reminded of that nebular thing called karma.

On which matter wasn't it not too long ago some of the Umno politicians had said they can do without non-Malay votes?

Today it indeed has happened. With the exit of MCA and Gerakan, and the denudation of MIC, Umno is left to fulfill its final fantasy.

Lest the MIC think it can get ambitious, its Saravanan should await his karma for what he had done in the Perak state tally centre.

That, after another karma on the murder of an aid to the opposition member who had pitted against him.

In this country, politics makes life cheap but living costly.

What was once said? Political mafia, wasn't that the description?

walla said...

But celebrations for them are not in order. Because what they have now has no anchor and cannot be sustained.

The citizenry are still seething; there will be no closure unless and until the election results are re-scrutinized. For not allowing electoral reforms, the incumbent has brought this on itself.

The citizenry are the majority. They run the private sector, industries beyond the ken of the remnant bleeding GLCs which have only so far been shored up by subsidies and slanted support to avoid keeling under. Note with precision the support means taxpayers money. Today, fresh from GE13, the more that is abused and misused, the more likely GE14 will be the final curtains for we-know-who.

The citizenry where it matters are today the nerve centre of the nation. The educated urbans, professionals, thinkers, doers and movers. They shape and make the economy of this country, and have gained increasing confidence to shape its political landscape as well. And were their hands not tied a week ago, they would have made history in one stroke.

So what can a federal mono-racial government do in a polyglot society most of whose thinking, creative and productive members are so-the-against it?

If it panders to those given pre-election promissory notes, the Opposition representatives will have a field day hammering it for all to see in today's high-definition digital age technicolor.

If it tries to woo one and all with some suspicious national reconciliation claptrap, the citizenry will announce trust ended long ago so start with electoral and anti-corruption reforms first before anything else to be even remotely considered.

If it ignores the citizenry, it immediately cancels its role as a government.

And if it does that, none of its self-vaunted ETP projects will take off for lack of inclusive participation save for a diminishing coterie of cronies aka mahathir's chummy-chimps who will however stick out like sore thumbs in a society which has already made the irreversible decision to clean up this country.

All of which as one can easily deduce will mean the rural belts will start to wake up, for it is inconceivable they can still be rip-van-winkled when eighty percent of the population including many of their relatives are seeing everything in the urban zones.

walla said...

I can write a bit more....what the Opposition can learn from GE13, and what it can do moving forward. But let's leave that to the blogger and friends.

Thanks, James. Good suggestions.

james chua said...

Walla, you should visit Din Merican's blog. Your comments will educate quite a few people - and I think you really should allow people to read the really top stuff you and Ethorist write about. Its from Dins Blog that I got here to Mr. Ethorist Blog - an outstanding but low profile blog. Thanks for the continuing education. Really appreciate. God Bless you and Ethorists. And I live a few thousand miles away on the lovely island of Saipan, far away from the bigotry of home, but if there is a change in government, home I will come.

james chua said...


If you have any stuff on reincarnation I would really appreciate. JRR Tolkien "Not all that wander are lost" but in my case, I am lost in a maze of my own making and I cannot get out. Thanks

walla said...


If he allows his inner self to shine, etheorist can be a definitive force in our cyberworld albeit with some idiosyncrasy but then everything comes at a price (;P).

Din's blog is just as good but the black background strains the eyes and the format intimidates.

I don't have my own blog because it'll consume me, what with the housework as well (said on behalf of women on this special day).

I am trying to move on virtually. If we don't make real and honest progress, anything said will again be just variations of the same theme. Meanwhile others leap forward.

It's not for me to clarify pathways; we each have our own lessons of life to learn, convictions to make, performances to surpass, and wisdom to accumulate.

But having said that, i was just thinking of what you wrote above and these things came up:

- be kind and understanding;
- keep an open and healthy mind;
- exercise good habits;
- make a difference somehow somewhere;
- it'll all pass soon enough.

If you can on your own package things like that and hold them with you every day, then the journey to come out of any maze may be lighter and easier although it may still not be shorter.

We live on who live more for others.

james chua said...

Walla, thanks for the links and Happy Mothers Day to you. Rio de Jenairio World Cup 2014 is where I will head, so your pdf link is most useful. Its kind of an enlightenment from a recent encounter of the past.

I sense that there is more to Ethorists despite the short blogs he is making recently. Its like he run out of energy and despair is making a mark.

Thats why we must continue our stance for true leadership and good governance, before endemic despair and negatively sets in.


james chua said...

Ethorist, it is not a negative remark, I know there are lots to do, and updating blogs in the current negative environment dont help. Just keep up the good effort. Thanks

walla said...

james chua said...

Ethorists and Walla, please look at the analysis of Sarawak Report and tell us what you think.


Thank you,