Archive for August 29th, 2011

Salam Aidilfitri & Selamat Hari Merdeka-54

Maaf Zahir Batin & Happy Merdeka Day!

Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Maaf Zahir dan Batin to all Muslims in Malaysia.

The coinciding of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, the 54th National Day and the 48th Malaysia Day should be a special triple occasion of joy and celebrations for all Malaysians.

It must be a matter of concern to all Malaysians, however, that this is not the case with the recent irresponsible and incessant ramping-up and incitement of race and religious hatred and tensions through baseless and incendiary allegations by certain media.

A call must urgently go out to all Muslim and non-Muslim Malaysians to dedicate themselves to promote the values of justice, freedom, love and compassion on the triple occasion of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, 54th National Day and 48th Malaysia Day – values which are common to all the great religions which have found a home in the country.

Whether we are Malays, Chinese, Indians, Kadazans, Ibans or Orang Asli, whether Muslims, Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Taoists or Sikhs, let us unite as one Malaysian people first and last to give real meaning to the triple occasion of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, the 54th National Day and 48th Malaysia Day.


Air Asia MAS tie-up – ordinary Malaysian consumers will be the losers?

By Teh Chi-Chang | REFSA

Ordinary Malaysians must view the MAS-Air Asia Collaboration announced on 9 August with dismay. When previously fierce competitors such as MAS and Air Asia choose to collaborate instead, consumers tend to be the losers. This arrangement, called the MAS-Air Asia Comprehensive Collaboration Framework might be more appropriately named the MAS-Air Asia Comprehensive Collaboration Framework Against the Rakyat:

REFSA believes at least some of the synergies and savings to be reaped by MAS-Air Asia will be paid for by Malaysians in the form of higher ticket prices, less frequent flights, poorer service levels and reduced job prospects. Read the rest of this entry »


Islamic Financial Intermediaries

by Bakri Musa
Malaysia in the Era of Globalizat​ion #80
Reform in Islam
Chapter 9: Islam in Malay Life

Trade had been flourishing for centuries in Arabia, immediately before and after the prophet’s time. All that buying and selling, together with the caravan expeditions, could not have taken place without there being a satisfactory financing mechanism. There must had been a system for connecting the owners of money (savers) and the users of cash (investors and traders). Yet despite that flourishing head start and seemingly workable system, Islamic finance later went into decline. It is instructive that the decline in Islamic economics parallels the decline in Islamic civilization.

Today Western financial institutions are preeminent. Western banks and other financial intermediaries did not develop overnight. They have been refined, modified, and strengthened over the centuries. The process continues to this day. Today’s banks are a far cry from what they were a century earlier. The essential ingredient to the success of banks is the faith people have in them. Absent that, not even the strongest institution could survive. All the regulations and innovations in banking serve only one purpose: to strengthen that faith and confidence.

Bank failures and runs on banks were common in America during the depression. Those events are thankfully rare today, in part due to the diligence of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Depositors Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the regulatory agencies of the federal government, together with strengthened prudential rules on reserves, heightened fiduciary responsibilities, and improved auditing. These refinements have been incremental, each in response to specific problems and crises. Banks still fail today, but thanks to the FDIC, depositors (at least the retail consumers) simply transfer their accounts to another bank without any hitch. The system is by no means perfect, as was painfully demonstrated by the massive Savings and Loans scandal of the 1980s. Read the rest of this entry »


Revised law rewards judiciary’s top three, works other judges longer

By Debra Chong
The Malaysian Insider
Aug 29, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 29 — Unlike his predecessors, Tun Zaki Azmi will retire on a full pension when he clocks out for the last time from the Palace of Justice on September 12 despite serving less than three years as Chief Justice, thanks to a recent revision of a remuneration law for the country’s judges.

It used to be a minimum of 15 years for judges from the High Court upwards to get their full pensions but few in the courts appear aware of the revisions to the Judges’ Remuneration Act (JRA) 1971, passed in Parliament two months ago, that gave senior judges a shorter time to get pensions while junior judges now have to spend 18 years to get their full pension.

“The whole thing is purposely catered to Zaki,” DAP federal lawmaker Lim Kit Siang told The Malaysian Insider when contacted. Read the rest of this entry »