Walkabout Versus Makan Angin Management

by M. Bakri Musa

It is commendable that Prime Minister Najib Razak is periodically leaving his air-conditioned office to experience first hand what ordinary citizens have to put up with in their daily lives. Last week saw him riding the Light Rail Transit; the week before, a stroll down Petaling Street. All these so he could “understand the pulse of the people.”

Najib would like us to compare him to his late father with his legendary working visits to the various “Operations Rooms” throughout the country to monitor development projects. Whether Najib would prove to be like his father or closer to Abdullah Badawi, the country’s most inept leader, remains to be seen.

Recall that Abdullah too made frequent well-publicized visits to various governmental agencies. One of those was to the Immigration Department, notorious for its less-than-stellar public service, where he announced that all its problems were miraculously solved following the impromptu visit. The tragic part was that Abdullah believed it; Malaysians of course were much wiser.

At least thus far Najib had the sense not to wear a three-piece dark suit like Abdullah did on his walkabouts. Instead Najib opted for the more casual batik look. While Abdullah appeared formal and imperious, like a sultan showing the flag, Najib was more like someone out for an evening stroll, more jalan jalan (leisurely stroll) and makan angin (lit. eat wind) than a working visit. Both Najib and Abdullah looked like they were not ready for serious work.

Emulate His Father

I suggest that Najib (or his aides) look at the archives of Filem Negara to see how his father did it. The image we have of the Tun was of a leader who was serious, brooked no nonsense, and most of all ready to do some heavy lifting. It was not just an image. As many who had worked with the late Tun would readily attest, that was also very much the reality.

The Tun did it long before Tom Peters and Robert Waterman popularized the term “managing by wandering about” in their bestseller In Search of Excellence. Never mind that twenty years later Peters would confess that he faked the whole data on which their book was based, or that many of the “excellent” companies he cited no longer existed! Later, the movie Crocodile Dundee brought to the American mainstream the Australian Aborigine’s expression “walkabout.”

A prominent feature of the late Tun’s walkabouts was that they were working visits, not “photo ops” designed for the day’s prime news cycle. The Tun’s trademark gear was the bush jacket, not dark suits or casual batik. Aware of the blasting heat of the tropical sun, the Tun often wore a hat or carried an umbrella. The Malaysian sun is still as hot today even though I do not see our leaders appropriately attired on their various “official” visits.

Tun Razak’s frequent visits to the field were focused. He would first hear the official briefings; and then visit the various projects. Woe to the official whose glowing reports did not match the reality! At the same time those visits were also opportunities for junior officers to show off their stuff. The late Tun effectively used those trips to scout for promising talents.

How does Razak Junior measure up? Too soon to tell, but I wish that he would dispense with his colorful batik shirts and three-piece dark suits, have a more purposeful stride, and do away with the media hype. He should also severely trim his entourage, to a security person, a secretary to jot notes, and the head of the visited department.

I would also like him to be more prepared. Surely he did not need to visit the LRT station to know that our commuter trains are overcrowded and frequently late. What he should have done instead was to query management as to what steps they were taking to rectify the problems, and how could he help solve them.

Short Reading List for Najib

Najib has one thing going for him as compared to his immediate predecessor; he is an avid reader. I suggest that he read how some great leaders did it. From our own tradition he could read the various celebrated accounts of the night time walkabouts of our second Caliph, Omar (May Allah be pleased with him!). Closer to home, Najib could emulate his father. Unfortunately as not much has been written by Tun’s contemporaries on his unique management style, Najib has to rely on Filem Negara’s archives.

There are two old books that I would recommend for Najib in developing his own walkabout management. One is Robert Townsend’s Up the Organization, first published in 1970. Townsend was the CEO of Avis Corporation, the car rental company whose advertising jingle, “We’re Number Two; We Try Harder!” changed the fortune of the company.

Townsend related how whenever he was out of town to visit the various franchises, he would phone his headquarters incognito to see how his staff would handle customers’ queries. This was of course long before the days of outsourcing where such complaints would be routed to service centers in India. Townsend would also go to the local counters to experience the services his customers were receiving, or not receiving! When he found that wanting, he did not harangue the poor receptionists but would bring the matter up with their local managers.

The other book is Jack Welch’s Jack: Straight From The Gut, co-written with John Byrne. Welch was the legendary CEO of the giant conglomerate GE Corporation. Under his leadership, GE’s revenues increased five-fold; and market value, 30 times!

On his frequent visits out of headquarters, Welch would ask the local managers to name three or four of their promising subordinates. He would then meet them privately to get a firsthand assessment. Following that he would ask their managers what they were doing to groom the promising talents they have under them.

Welch went further. Whenever young talents were “fast tracked,” he would make sure that their immediate superiors would also be appropriately recognized and rewarded for having played an important role. Were Najib to subscribe to that, he would help reduce the pernicious habit endemic in our civil service where promising young subordinates would be banished to the ulus lest they would pose a threat to their superiors.

Najib should also adopt one of Welch’s favorite practices. He would spend one whole morning addressing about 70 of GE’s “fast tracked” managers attending a three-week development course at the company’s “university” at Croton-on-Hudson, New York. Those were no cheerleading or pep rallies, rather he would challenge the future leaders of his company, inspire them, and most all get fresh ideas from them. It was his relished assignment, one he rarely missed.

Likewise Najib should regularly visit INTAN and challenge those young civil servants. Get them before they become corrupted by the corrosive civil service work culture.

I would also suggest Najib heed one of Welch’s more brutal practices, weeding out the bottom ten percent “underperformers” every year. Were Najib to do that, he would reduce the terrible bloat and greatly enhance the civil service’s efficiency.

I would not advise Najib emulate another celebrated CEO, Southwest Airline’s Herb Kelleher. In an attempt to get close to his employees and customers, Kelleher would often fly as an ordinary passenger and also take on temporary assignments as baggage handler and counter clerk. Najib does not have Kelleher’s charm or sense of humor to carry that out. Air Asia’s Tony Fernandez could, but not Najib.

Management by walkabout is a powerful and effective tool, but only when it is done right. As the management guru Edward Deming put it, “If you wait for people to come to you, you’ll only get small problems. You must go and find them. The big problems are where people don’t realize they have one in the first place.”

Were Najib to do anything less than what have been presented here, his frequent forays would quickly degenerate into makan angin or jalan jalan outings. All you get with makan angin is foul flatus. Worse, those visits would only disrupt the normal workings of the visited agencies. God knows, our leaders have already engaged enough in those already.

  1. #1 by Godfather on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 6:42 am

    Compared to the other nicknames of “Mongolian”, “C4” or “Aminah”, the nicknames of “Makan Angin PM” or “Jalan-jalan PM” are not bad at all. That’s what Najis needs – photo-ops to change the image of a person with plenty to hide.

  2. #2 by k1980 on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 7:50 am

    To really “understand the pulse of the people” he has to put on his sarung and stay in a rubber estate for a year, earning RM10 a day tapping the trees while fending off snakes and mosquitoes. And Lim Keng Yaik will ask what the hell he was doing behind the rubber tree when he asks for a pay increment.

  3. #3 by DAP man on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 8:16 am

    This walkabout is ‘main wayang’ or ‘sho he’ (in Hokkien). There is no need to walk about to gauge the pulse of the people.

    If Najib is sincere he should, by now, know the pulse of Perakians – that they want fresh elections.

    If Najib pretends that all is well in Perak then he is a fake and all his pronouncements of 1Malaysia is all one big bull to fool us.

    He can only redeem his image and dignity if he concedes to fresh state elections in Perak,even if BN has to lose it.

  4. #4 by Godfather on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 8:25 am

    In his first week in power, he said he didn’t want billboards with his face on them because that would be a waste of money. Of course he didn’t say that the states where billboards are the most effective are all generally under PR control. Now you can see full page advertisements being taken out by corporate leaders and even chief ministers congratulating Najis on his appointment. These advertisements are also photo-op opportunities which must have the blessing of his office since they all have the same photos of him and Rosie in their constipated poses.

  5. #5 by boh-liao on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 9:09 am

    “Ciak pa pa” then “kia kia” and “ciak hong”.
    Main-main saja and show show only.

    NR and RM should go to Ipoh this week, 7 May, and experience the welcome of “ang tau peng”. Enjoy the massive crawling traffic jam and butter, enjoy the body search (raba raba), enjoy the free bath ala water cannon paid for by the rakyat, and enjoy the kai-see sar hor fun there.

    Baru ini NR is the people’s PM!

  6. #6 by wesuffer on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 9:12 am

    if he sincere to walk and feel what normal citizen suffering.
    he can do it when was DPM.
    5 years as DPM. he done nothing as second powerful man in country.

  7. #7 by sotong on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 9:20 am

    It is hard sitting in the office knowing that BN will be in Opposition in the next election…….jalan jalan and makin angin help.

    Decades of bad leadership and narrow, divisive and damaging politics had permanent, long term and far reaching consequences…..BN had no credibility and integrity to be in government.

  8. #8 by TheWrathOfGrapes on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 9:26 am

    /// On his frequent visits out of headquarters, Welch would ask the local managers to name three or four of their promising subordinates. He would then meet them privately to get a firsthand assessment. Following that he would ask their managers what they were doing to groom the promising talents they have under them.

    Welch went further. Whenever young talents were “fast tracked,” he would make sure that their immediate superiors would also be appropriately recognized and rewarded for having played an important role. Were Najib to subscribe to that, he would help reduce the pernicious habit endemic in our civil service where promising young subordinates would be banished to the ulus lest they would pose a threat to their superiors. ///

    Hi Bakri – these are just so academic. It is a non starter.

    Just do a reality check – ask yourself this question – can non-Bumis be fast tracked? I think you know the answer. Why waste your bandwidth?

  9. #9 by the reds on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 9:54 am

    Najib, solve the LRT problems!!! Misleading estimated arrival time, long waiting time, overcrowded shall be solved immediately!!! Lame and incompetent Transport Minister, Ong Ta Kut, shall be asked to leave his position if he is incapable to adress these problems effectively!!! Malaysians deserve a better public transportation facility!!!

  10. #10 by AhPek on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 10:03 am

    Bakri Musa,
    Please don’t get carried away! Our friend hasn’t cleared his name yet.That baggage of his he brought with him into office is still weighing heavily on his shoulders.Get real,Bakri how could our friend perform with that load still on.

  11. #11 by taiking on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 10:04 am

    Walk round time is wayang time. Remember the muhideed experience with education fund allocation in exchange for votes? Its useless. Chinese would not be fooled. Neither would indians. Now even malays are frustrated with the umno ways. Jalan-jalan buat apa? Nasi atas meja takkan tambah dua kali. But do away with NEP by not feeding umnoputras with billions unnecessarily and wastefully would definitely see the nasi on everyone’s meja tambah dua kali or even more. Not only the common malays would be happy. Chinese and indians and the rest of malaysians too would be happy. Itu cara yang betul ke arah 1malaysia. Not jalan jalan makan angin. Angin kalau makan terlalu banyak perut akan besar – kosong. Tak selesa. Mungkin sakit. Just go back to office dan BUT KERJA. And one more thing. Let the media report to us on your performance. Bukan you instruct the media what to report. That is all we want.

  12. #12 by a g on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 10:13 am

    Missing from the prescribed list of books are some ”How To’s” books such as : ‘How To Walk Your Talk’, ‘How To Be a Sincere Leader’, ‘How To Stop Becoming a Hypocrite’…on and on.
    What a shame!

  13. #13 by Loh on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 11:13 am

    ///I suggest that Najib (or his aides) look at the archives of Filem Negara to see how his father did it. The image we have of the Tun was of a leader who was serious, brooked no nonsense, and most of all ready to do some heavy lifting. It was not just an image. As many who had worked with the late Tun would readily attest, that was also very much the reality.///–M.bakri Musa

    Yes Najib should look at the archives of Filem Negara. He should see where his father visited and when Malays were less than 60% at that time, whether his father did spend even a quarter of his visit looking after the interest of non-Malays. That should confirm why his father Razak was considered racist at that time. Of course TDM outdid Razak as mamak defending the interest of Malays. TDM was a true mercenary who gave up Indian identity as claims to be Malay. TDM adopted two children from Pakistan, and they are now ‘pure’ Malays. Why did not TDM adopt Malay children?

  14. #14 by AhPek on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 11:33 am

    From your comment above I presume that you take the Malay population to be 60% of total malaysian population,and if you do then you must have taken from some local source which is erroneous or probably have an agenda to project the malay population bigger than it is!
    The source from CIA of the United States is as follows:
    (a) Malay 50.4%
    (b) Chinese 23.7%
    (c) indigeneous 11%
    (d) indian 7.1%
    (e) others 7.8%

    But if it is the Muslim population then yes it is 60.4% with the contribution coming from the others much bigger than from the indigeneous (possibly 3 to 4%).

  15. #15 by Godfather on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 11:51 am

    While Najis is doing his walkabout and makan angin, Rosie is busy redecorating the Airbus A319 plane in her favourite colours.

  16. #16 by Godfather on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 11:55 am

    While Najis is doing his walkabout, the cost of the new Istana in Sri Hartamas has ballooned to over RM 1 billion from the original RM 440 million announced by Semi Value several years ago. The cost of the new LCCT is now at RM 2 billion AFTER they shelved the Labu LCCT proposed by AirAsia at RM 1.6 billion. The cost of PKFZ is now at RM 8 billion AFTER the bailout at RM 4.6 billion.

    Carry on walking, Mr Prime Minister. You are truly the head of the Barang Naik coalition.

  17. #17 by Onlooker Politics on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 12:50 pm

    “I would also suggest Najib heed one of Welch’s more brutal practices, weeding out the bottom ten percent “underperformers” every year. Were Najib to do that, he would reduce the terrible bloat and greatly enhance the civil service’s efficiency.” (M. Bakri Musa)

    I think it is still prematured for you to make such a suggestion for 10% trim-down exercise on civil service workforce because noone is able to know so far whether Dr. Koh Tsu Koon’s System of Key Performance Indices (KPI) will work in a fair and just manner. What will happen if Dr. Koh’s KPIs indicate that all MCA-affiliated officers in the DPP office and in the Police Force are underperformers but Gerakan-affiliated officers in these two government departments are rated as the top performers? Will Ong Tee Keat permit all the rated “inefficient officers” of MCA-affiliation be sacked immediately? Will Najib permit all rated “Top Performers” of Gerakan affiliation be given a job promotion immediately?

    I guess even Najib himself will not be able to provide you a good answer now!

  18. #18 by sotong on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 12:52 pm

    There are Malay Malay, Pakistani Malay, Indian Malay and etc..

    Like Malaysia Boleh…….Melayu Boleh, Cina Boleh, India Boleh and etc..

    Thanks to decades of bad leadership, our country is too divided to move forward for a long time to come.

  19. #19 by zak_hammaad on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 1:47 pm

    I smell Pakatan’s envy in seeing Najib doing the right things and beginning to make an impact after only 30+ days in office. Maybe Pakatan leaders can do the same and lift themselves out of their mediocre performance of the last 13 months!

  20. #20 by Taxidriver on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 2:03 pm

    Mr PM,

    To gauge the effectiveness of your “jalan-jalan” style of leadership, try walking the streets with Rosie in Perak or any PR-controlled states, impromptu. Then try other states in like manner to see the reception you will get from the rakyat

    The things you are doing now and your honey-coated words are just empty talks by a desperate PM to dilute your sins, to give yourself a brand new image to win back the confidence of the people. You will FAIL! as ‘sincerity’ is not in your heart.

    Although your reputation and image in the clogged and stinking longkang, you can salvage them by doing what your predecessors (Mahathir or Badawi) dared not do. Have strong political will to weed out Malaysia of the corruption culture that has permeated through all the government institutions and, not forgetting, to clean up your own UNMO party and the whole BN.

    The present Perak political crises is the best time to show the rakyat that you mean what you say: 1Malaysia..People First..Performance Now. Instruct Zambry to dissolve the state assembly to make way for a state wide election to allow perakians to choose who they want rule over them. Whichever way the outcome of this election will give your image a boost.

    Next, you must treat PR-controlled states and their governments any differently from other states. Bear in mind that these states are also states of Malaysia. As a PM of the people you would surely want to see all states progress and the rakyat happy what their PM is doing.

    There will be very strong resistance coming from your own party members including corrupt leaders in BN coalition parties, but do not flip-flop this time.You may lose their support, but only in the beginning because once they see the rakyat have confidence in, and support you, these rebels will come ‘swarming’ back to you.

    If, Najib, you want to leave behind a good name, being known as the best PM in 52, ‘sincerity’ and ‘political will’ you must have. All other bad sides of you, although cannot be erased from history, will at least be ‘diluted’ And over time, people will want to forget your mistakes because they appreciate your concern for their welfare.

    Are you ready to be the best PM, or a ‘puppet’ PM manipulated by those around you; Also, do you want to become the last UMNO PM and die a tyrant with people spitting at your grave?

    Najib, the choice is yours to make.

  21. #21 by Loh on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 3:12 pm


    Thanks for the statistics. From the way UMNO members behave, and the call for pendatang to leave, one would thought it safe to assume that Malays account for 90% of the population.

    In the early 1950s when Alliance party sought independence from the British, Malays and chinese had almost equal number. That was the reason why Singapore had to be kept out of Independent Malaya. Sabah and Sarawak were brought into Malaysia to balance Singaporean Chinese, and through TDM project M, Sabah is still being used to bring in NEWMalays.

    The racial structure of the population has been changed, so is the country. We are now the sister-country with Zimbabwe.

  22. #22 by raven77 on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 3:42 pm

    This walkabout is for people who read the main stream media and kampong folks…this fella is not conning us…..surely you neednt take the LRT ride to know that it is truly screwed up…….just like know that C4 doesnt come by at TESCO….

  23. #23 by raven77 on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 3:43 pm

    This walkabout is for people who read the main stream media and kampong folks…this fella is not conning us…..surely you neednt take the LRT ride to know that it is truly messed up…….just like you know that C4 doesnt come by at TESCO….

  24. #24 by AhPek on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 4:44 pm

    And if I were to quote you,Loh the population statistics of Malaya in 1938 taken from ‘Postscript Malaya’ written by Ian Morrison,an Australian war correspondent, you will be surprised to know that chinese 2.2 million,malay 2.1million,indian o.7 million,orang asli 0.4million.The Chinese itself is more than the Malays without including the Indians.That it has reached this state of affairs today is due to none other than Mamak Kutti,the chief architect in the marginalisation of non Malays.2 million non Malays have migrated out of the country due mainly to the condition he created for non Malays here.At least 2 million if not much more Indonesians he brought into the country to increase votes for UMNO as well as to dilute the influence of Christianity in West Malaysia plus the fertility rate of the malays have resulted in the Malay population bigger than all the rst combined!

  25. #25 by Onlooker Politics on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 4:55 pm

    As part of Najib’s walkabout and makan agin itinerary, Dr. Koh Tsu Koon and Ong Tee Keat will take Najib to a famous Taiwanese Sect Buddhist Temper at Janjarum, Banting, Selangor this weekend!

    Dr. Koh and Ong please remember to ask Najib to say repentance to Buddha over the C4 sinful act being done by the murderers on Altantuya. Better still, Najib should get the Buddhist monks of moral high ground to say prayers for Altantuya so that her soul might be appeased and would not be haunting Najib and Rosie so much so often!

    After all… making a swear with the holy book may not necessarily give one the sober and peaceable mind.

  26. #26 by Loh on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 5:09 pm

    Sorry off-topic
    From Chedet.co.cc

    Dr. Mahathir Mohamad
    on May 4, 2009 1:02 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
    (This is the fourth instalment in a series on the trends that led to the present financial crisis)

    ///1. The business done by the hedge funds are more complex. But they too can borrow up to 30 times the investors’ money they hold. They are therefore able to earn for the investor the profits from 30 times the investors’ money. Even after paying interest to the banks and taking their share or commission, the earnings to the investor from 30 times his money would be very big – certainly far bigger than if the investor were to invest directly himself.

    2. It is estimated that the 8000 hedge funds manage a total of 620 trillion dollars. Such is their game that the investors are assured of high profits. How they invest is often shrouded in secrecy. Much use is made of tax haven where they need not submit accounts of their study business.

    3. The poorer countries are not much involved in the shadow businesses and their indices would reflect their economy much more accurately.///–TDM

    {Wikipedia states: Hedge funds, as a class, invest in a broad range of investments including shares, debt, commodities and so forth. As the name implies, hedge funds often seek to offset potential losses in the principal markets they invest in by hedging their investments using a variety of methods, most notably short selling.}

    There are reasons why share markets and commodities future are established, and they have served the economy of the countries which have them. In opening up the formerly planned economies, the countries never fail to establish share and commodity future markets. Are the economists in those countries misled?

    Service sector including those of financial and related services formed a significant proportion of developed economies. GDP are computed such that the number should be consistent with those obtained through three separate approaches, namely, the production, consumption and income. All countries compile their national accounts and GDP based on SNA, and the accuracy and reliability of the final statistics depends on the quality of the surveys, and competence of the statisticians. The contribution of the ‘shadow business’ in terms of income, say, would influence the production and consumption; they are no difference from other sunny business. It cannot be true that hedge fund is able to borrow 30 times its deposit from the banks, though it is possible to gamble such as in margin where the nominal value of share might be many times that of the capital. They are no difference from what is placed on the casino black jack table; one wins or loses all that is placed on the bet on every turn.

    It would be misleading to say that one would lose the nominal value of shares that were sold short, because that could only be true when the shares became worthless. The impression created that since the hedge funds could borrow up to 30 times its deposit (even if true), a huge proportion of the GDP are the results of such gambling is also wrong. Obviously the winning and losing of the investors cannot be added up to be part of the GDP. If that was so the GDP of Malaysia with all the four-digit outlets paying out millions ringgit in prizes, and others losing the same magnitude every draw would have boosted Malaysian GDP. Or are we to believe that the moderate GDP level was indeed aided by the turnovers in four-Ds?

    ///4. The present crisis is brought about by the right to create more money by the banks being too great that despite securing their business through insurance etc, their losses could not be covered even by the bank.

    5. For example when they invest 30 times more than the money invested with them, the losses too would be 30 times more. They would still have to pay back to the banks the huge loans they had taken. There is no way they can do this. The money invested with them would not be enough. They would therefore drag down the banks with them.///– TDM

    The present crisis is not caused by hedge funds which have lost more than their capitals. That would be simple because they will just be declared bankrupt, since there was neither Petronas nor a dictator to bail out their friends.

    The present problems originate from subprime loans. It started during Bill Clinton presidency where a populist policy of home-ownership democracy was implemented whereby home owners were pushed up the housing ladder even when they did not qualify. There were no problems in a property inflationary environment. As property value fell since 2007 house owners ended up with negative equity. When that became widespread bad loans snowball and banks suffer losses so too are insurance companies which guarantee mortgage-backed securities. The crisis has nothing to do with hedge funds borrowing money to place bets.

    ///6. Although the poor countries will be less affected, the crisis would still impoverish them.

    7. The United States and other rich countries are trying to restore their wealth by trillions of dollars in bailouts. The world must know the trillions are not from taxes and other revenue collected by Governments. They are created.///– TDM

    The moral hazards in uplifting the housing ladder of the people have come back to haunt the governments. Maybe the government there were trying too hard to please their people; but they should be praised that they did not use them to divide their people, by race or religion.

    These countries had the choice to let the banks and insurance companies fail, to nationalise the bank, or to loan them money on easy terms so that the effect of the wrong policies could be ameliorated. The komuntang government in China in the 1930s failed because it nationalised the banks. It was lucky that the countries in the west could use the ‘created money’ to sort out the problems, rather than to have to await tax collection. That was a smart use of monetary policy.

    ///8. Unfortunately the bailouts with this created money will not succeed in reviving the failed banks and businesses. This is because they cannot redeem themselves through normal legitimate businesses. The earnings would be too small. They can only do so by the same kind of dubious shadowy business they had been doing. But if they do this there would be another crisis, far worse than the present.///– TDM

    The government uses its financial resources and created money to allow the economy to function as it had done since the depression in the 1930s. They have not learned how to do shadow business even if that term carries vague meaning.

    ///9. Because we allowed a group of selfish greedy people to abuse the system, this is the inevitable result. ///– TDM

    The insurance companies did not do the proper job in assessing risks, which allowed the risks to become systemic. But it is always perfect vision on hindsight. The system was not abused rather it was not robust in detecting risks.

  27. #27 by Onlooker Politics on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 5:39 pm

    What is the big deal for a hedge fund manager to borrow up to 30 times of his asset? It is so common for a Big Tipu businessman to borrow up to 30 times from a commercial bank in Malaysia. Don’t believe me? Then I show you how:

    In 1995 and 1996, a government-linked commercial bank in Malaysia allowed borrowing of about 4 times the value of the fixed deposit collateral. Assumed FAT CAT owned 3 companies A, B and C.

    1) Company A pledged RM1 to borrow RM4.
    2) Company B pledged RM3 to borrow RM12.
    3) Company C pledged RM8 to borrowed RM40.

    FAT CAT borrowed up to a total of RM56 with the RM1 cash on hand. However, the net disposable cash available to him was only RM40 because he spent RM5 to pay bribe to the bank managers and banked in RM12 to fixed deposit and then pledged that RM12 to the bank.

    FAT CAT’s gearing factor is 56 times of his net asset of RM1.

    So, what is the big deal for Hedge Fund Manager to go debt financing? Dr. Mahathir is just a lousy professor of Banking and Finance.

  28. #28 by Godfather on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 5:39 pm

    “I smell Pakatan’s envy in seeing Najib doing the right things and beginning to make an impact….” Zak Hammaad the foreigner

    Zak Hammaad has been smelling his hero Mamakthir’s fart for so long he thinks that Mamakthir’s fart is odorless. Zak is trying to impose the same condition on Najib’s fart. We are not fooled.

  29. #29 by frankyapp on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 6:45 pm

    Hey M.Bakri Musa,I love to read your article.Please do write and contribute more to this blog. I really appreicate it. You know in our mother land especially our Umno/Bn politicians are concern,”walkabout and Makan Angin Management are the same.Hence there’s no versus . You know the AAB’s Taiwan case,right ?. Need me to elaborate, definitely not,you know better than I.You know guys,our Umno/Bn politicians whenever they go visit certain place or places,these guys just walkabout aimlessly,shaking hands with the rakyat and looking else where.with this kind of attidute,what can we expect from them.Many visits,many promises but things still remain empty and nothing. Thus what deference does it makes when these Umno/Bn politicians walkabout your areas and left things empty years after years. To them walkabout is just makan angin only.To show my real case for you guys….take Kg cendrakasik,Likas,Umno/Bn politicians come and go hundreds of time since the opening of this settlement, complaints after complaints by the settlers ,promises after promises by these visitors to impprove the very unhealthy and static drainage system but until now nothing has been done.

  30. #30 by TomThumb on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 7:39 pm

    “Why did not TDM adopt Malay children?” Loh

    Because he didn’t want to??

  31. #31 by lopez on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 7:43 pm

    what adversary…..what deeds….common dont write like school text books so damn predictable

    what is else is new….walk around …turun padang….see anything you like ..just give the signal it we be delivered….

    petaling street bring about by starchy affairs after the civil wars in 1870’s.
    No more tin means no more work, so these pioneers cut the jungle and grow tapioca.
    And one time the street almost becomes defunct , and even the name was nearly changed on some pretentious cheapo schema.
    Tourist minister should walk there more often and see what GDP means.
    And the minister of human resource must also drop by so he can see how many immigrant labour are needed.
    MOH dtl lai liao must drop by to see the quality of life , many of the peddlers are descendants of yap ah loy clan , wonder if their forefathers gave consent that m see air represent them….dont ask them ….if you know what i mean.

    it is too late , we have to see at GE 13….things just have to change….

  32. #32 by katdog on Monday, 4 May 2009 - 8:52 pm

    “Likewise Najib should regularly visit INTAN and challenge those young civil servants. Get them before they become corrupted by the corrosive civil service work culture.”

    Najib has got so much excess baggage and problems it would be freaking ironic if he decided to go and give pep talks to the young. It is him and his UMNO warlords that need a good talking to.

    They’re the ones that need the real help. They are lost and have no idea how to get this country out of the mess they created while partying and enjoying the excesses during the periods of high growth. Najib proposed in the economic stimulus plan to hire more civil servants as one of the action items in order to help keep Malaysians employed. What a joke!

  33. #33 by ringthetill on Tuesday, 5 May 2009 - 2:54 am

    “Former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has been appointed as Advisor, Malaysia Airlines effective May 1.”

    And MM is the special advisor to Petronas?

    Come-on enough of this gravy train. Take your pension, live ahappy life and ride onto the sunset.
    What special wisdom have both of you got to give to improve our lives, b****** scroungers. As if you haven’t made enough money to last you a life time. Retire quietly and enjoy your being grandads, like we commoners do!

  34. #34 by Taxidriver on Tuesday, 5 May 2009 - 6:43 am


    That is only one of the many ways to take the peoples’ money to give to their own members-UMNOputras. While Robin Hood robbed the rich to help the people, UMNO does the opposite!…….Rob-B-Hood.

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