Archive for September, 2012

Pakatan Rakyat: Building an Economy for All

by Liew Chin Tong
Sept. 30, 2012

Barisan Nasional paraded its “55 years” of track record” in “fulfillment of promises” – Janji Ditepati – during the Prime Minister Najib Razak’s recent roadshows and on National Day 2012.

One would expect a government with such a long experience in office would have long term strategies for the nation. Unfortunately, apart from arguing that i) change of government is not good for the economy and ii) that it is better to elect the known devils than the unknown angels, BN offers very little beyond the status quo.

BN’s economic platforms today can be summed up as follow:

1) Criticising Pakatan Rakyat’s economic policies as populist (while not offering concrete economic policies and strategies);

2) Offering more handouts to win the general election (which will cost billions of ringgit);

3) Preparing to introduce Goods and Services Tax (GST) after the general election (GST means every single person in Malaysia will be taxed).

Read the rest of this entry »


Budget 2013: Same old formula, with no solutions

Tony Pua
Sep 28, 2012

Over the past few years, the government has been able to increase its budget tremendously to achieve record expenditures annually.

This has allowed the government to prop up the economy as we face challenges in attracting private investments, as well as a drop in our trade contributions.

However, Budget 2013 has projected an increase of only 0.7 percent (2012: 11.8 percent; 2011: 16.1 percent) in projected revenues from RM207.2 billion to RM208.6 billion in 2013.

This is the slowest projected increase in the tabled budget since 1999, barring the global financial crisis in 2009.

Consequently, the government is forced to table a smaller budget than the prior year. The proposed operating expenditure has been reduced by 0.3 percent from RM202.6 billion to RM201.9 billion, while the development expenditure is also reduced from RM46.9 billion to RM46.7 billion or 0.4 percent.

The marked decline in revenue growth will have a very significant impact on the government’s ability to impact growth in the Malaysian economy through fiscal means.

The fact that we have not been able to reduce our budget deficit below four percent over the past few years reflects the years of wasted opportunities, where we have failed to curb our expenditure through reduced wastage, abuses and corruption. Read the rest of this entry »


Tunggu sahaja penggal ini tamat tempohnya

— Aspan Alias
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 30, 2012

30 SEPT — Najib Razak adalah Perdana Menteri pertama yang menjadi ketua negara yang tidak mendapat mandat kepimpinan beliau dari rakyat walaupun sesudah menjadi PM selama empat tahun. Beliau hanya meneruskan mandat Abdullah Badawi dan ini sudah cukup menunjukkan yang Najib menjadi PM dengan meminjam mandat Abdullah Badawi dahulu sahaja.

Najib memangnya tidak pernah di uji dalam kepimpinannya. Beliau selama ini mendapat kedudukan secara percuma dengan bermain dengan sikap “play safe” dan tidak pernah melalui ujian melalui krisis besar dalam kepimpinannya.

Najib mendapat segala-galanya dengan percuma dan menaiki kedudukan sekarang melalui permainan selamat dan tidak menunjukkan sikap tegas dalam mana-mana krisis yang telah dilalui oleh Umno.

Najib bermain politik mengikut resmi air, “di mana lekok di situ dia berhenti dan berkumpul”. Dia tidak pernah menentang arus semasa perlu menentangnya. Beliau akan sentiasa mengintai untuk memihak “the buttered side of the bread”.

Kali ini beliau telah berjaya menjadi Perdana Menteri dengan permainan selamat itu, tetapi sekarang sudah sampai waktunya beliau untuk membuat keputusan yang “decisive” untuk negara.

Tetapi malangnya beliau begitu lembek dan tidak berupaya melakukan apa yang sepatutnya beliau lakukan dalam krisis keyakinan rakyat yang sedang beliau lalui sekarang ini. Krisis keyakinan rakyat ini di tambah pula dengan masalah dalaman yang sedang dihadapi oleh Umno iaitu masalah keyakinan kepimpinan di bawah-bawah beliau serta ahli Umno keseluruhannya. Najib tidak mendapat dukungan padu dari barisan pimpinan Umno diperingkat tertinggi dan ahli-ahli Jemaah Kabinet yang bersama-sama membarisi kepimpinan dalam kerajaan. Read the rest of this entry »


If Najib really believes that PR’s Buku Jingga is “not worth the paper it’s printed on”, he should stop shying away from a debate with Anwar and agree to have one within a fortnight

At the 44th Gerakan national delegates conference in Kuala Lumpur today, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak made two remarkable statements, viz:

• That the Pakatan Rakyat’s Buku Jingga is not worth the paper it is written on; and

• That Pakatan Rakyat is not a credible alternative to Barisan Nasional.

Both assertions are easily disposed of, viz:

Firstly, if PR’s Buku Jingga is not worth the paper it is written on, then why is Najib shying away from a public debate with Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim which would give him the opportunity to tear both Anwar and PR’s Buku Jingga “to pieces”?

Secondly, if Pakatan Rakyat is not a credible alternative to BN, why he keeps postponing calling for the 13th General Election, keeping the country on an election-mode for the longest period under any Malaysian Prime Minister – even to the extent of gaining the dubious record of being the Prime Minister without an elected mandate of his own for the longest period when compared to all the previous four Prime Ministers after Tunku Abdul Rahman, including his father Tun Razak, Tun Hussein Onn, Tun Mahathir and Tun Abdullah? Read the rest of this entry »


The Budget 2013

— Lim Guan Eng
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 30, 2012

SEPT 30 — Even though many goodies where announced during yesterday’s Budget 2013 speech by Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, this budget has failed the Malaysian people by not addressing three crucial areas which are necessary to guarantee the long term well-being of our country and its people — namely fiscal prudence, economic sustainability and cost of living increases.

Firstly, even though the budget deficit is projected to come down from 4.5 per cent in 2012 to a ‘mere’ 4.0 per cent in 2013, this figure masks the poor track record of the BN government in sticking to its spending plans.

For example, total expenditure for Budget 2012 was announced at RM232.8 billion in last’s year’s budget speech. But in this year’s Economic Report 2012 / 2013, total expenditure for 2012 is projected to total up to RM252.4b.

This is almost RM20b more than the projected expenditure announced last year. We were fortunate that projected revenue is expected to be RM207 billion for 2012, RM20 billion more than the RM186.9 bilion projected revenue announced last year. Without this tax ‘windfall’, our budget deficit would have ballooned up to 6.7 per cent of GDP rather than the projected 4.5 per cent for 2012.

But we cannot expect that actual revenue will continue to exceed projected revenue especially given the slowing global economy. Furthermore revenue from oil related tax revenue is likely to decrease given the change in the dividend policy of Petronas as well as political uncertainty in Southern Sudan which could decrease Petronas’s bottom line by as much as US1 billion. Read the rest of this entry »


Parents know best; the days of government knows best are over

— May Chee
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 29, 2012

SEPT 29 — The first part of the topic above is my belief; the second is espoused by our honourable Prime Minister himself. I mean what I say and I hope he does, too.

The Malaysian New Education Blueprint unveiled recently has promised to depoliticise the education system, vowing equal opportunities for all. Hmmm…I like how it sounds.

Now, I’ve nothing against those who support the MBMMBI. I do understand that our national language is important to us Malaysians, being the medium of communication that unites. In fact, being an advocate of PPSMI does not bring one in direct conflict with MBMMBI. I believe PPSMI can aid the noble aim of MBMMBI.

Though English is the dominant global language, it should not dominate every sphere of our lives. That’s why both PPSMI and MBMMBI can complement each other. We know for a fact that those who want to write for a world audience, e.g. to gain international recognition; need to have their efforts published in English. Though these works have a better chance of being published in their mother tongue in their homeland, but for a global audience, these efforts have to be translated into English. Read the rest of this entry »


2013 Budget hides a very unconfident Najib who is haunted and hounded by the phobia that his fourth budget speech may be the last Umno/BN budget in Parliament

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s barefaced denial yesterday that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 2013 Budget was an “election budget” illustrated what is wrong with the UMNO/Barisan Nasional government after 55 years in power – that the Umno/BN government leaders suffer from the dual terminal ailments of denial complex and unprecedented credibility gap.

Even UMNO/Barisan Nasional Ministers, MPs and members would not believe Muhyiddin’s brazen denial that Najib’s 2013 Budget was not an “election budget”.

Why then is the Deputy Prime Minister making a denial that is completely bereft of credibility, whether in Pakatan Rakyat or Barisan Nasional camps?

The only answer is that UMNO/BN leaders continue to suffer from the false sense that they could transform Malaysian politics into a world of make-believe and get ordinary Malaysians to believe what the UMNO/BN leaders decreed, although totally divorced from the world of reality.

It is because of this misguided and misplaced complex that caused UMNO/BN leaders to continue to deny that the growing fear of crime among Malaysians as well as rampant corruption in the country are major problems in the country, falling back on discredited GTP and NKRA statistics and claims of falling crime index and progress in the war against corruption. Read the rest of this entry »


Buying love on a Budget

— Gomen Man
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 29, 2012

SEPT 29 — Is this it? This is not a Budget, what was announced yesterday by Finance Minister Najib Razak was vote-buying through the liberal use of taxpayers’ funds.

Yesterday was making Malaysians more addicted to handouts, the opiate of the masses.

Idris Jala, aka the salesman, can talk all he wants about GST and Malaysia’s readiness to wean itself of subsidies and Najib can go on about cutting the budget deficit but this government did this country a great disservice yesterday: it mortgaged the future for short-term gain.

And it also did the virtually impossible: it cut taxes, gave out more money and said that it would still cut the deficit. Najib should bottle this miraculous potion and sell it to the US. Read the rest of this entry »


Budget 2013 showdown: BN vs Pakatan

Review by Lee Wei Lian
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 29, 2012

SEPT 29 — Now that both Budget 2013 from the ruling coalition and the shadow budget from the opposition have been presented, let’s take a look at how the two budgets stack up against one another.

This is the last budget before the general election and the stakes are high. Barisan Nasional (BN) has had a lot of experience in crafting budgets and surprised no one when it dished out cash and other goodies, particularly to the younger generation who are a significant chunk of the newly registered electorate and are an unknown quantity in terms of their voting inclinations.

It scored some points however for not going overboard with spending as expected by some economists and still managed to pare down its expected budget deficit to four per cent from an estimated 4.5 per cent this year.

Pakatan Rakyat (PR) is a relative novice when it comes to federal budgets and presented one that appears to be much more geared toward reforming the economy than the one from the Najib administration which appeared to have more-of-the-same type policy tinkering rather than sweeping fundamental changes.
Read the rest of this entry »


Candied Budget unlikely to sweeten GE13 for BN, say analysts

By Amin Iskandar, Hafidz Baharom, Md Izwan and Nomy Nozwir
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 29, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 29 — Voters have grown more discerning and are unlikely to be swayed by cash incentives and other one-off perks into casting their ballot for the Barisan Nasional (BN) government at national polls due soon, pundits said in weighing in on the impact of Budget 2013.

Political observers interviewed by The Malaysian Insider wholly agreed that the RM251.6 billion announced yesterday, which promised a slew of cash handouts and tax cuts spread across the board, was trained to appeal to key demographic groups in the run-up to the 13th general election, but said voters had become increasingly shrewd and capable of weighing the short-term personal gains against the long-term fiscal impact on the national economy.

“There are only two words to describe it — election budget,” said Monash University’s political science lecturer James Chin.

He noted that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has “pulled out all the stops and given the voters their sentiments, to let them think twice about voting for the opposition” in elections that must be held by next April when BN’s five-year mandate won in March 2008 runs out.

“People will compare the budget to Pakatan Rakyat’s and will also see how the second round of Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia (BR1M) will fuel inflation,” Chin added. Read the rest of this entry »


Can there be a SPM trial exam question: Is it appropriate for police to use tear gas, water cannon or physical violence against peaceful demonstrators?

Would the Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and his two deputies, Puad Zarkashi and Datuk Wee Ka Siong give their tacit approval or close their eyes and shut their ears if any of the following questions had appeared in a SPM trial examination paper for Moral Education:

• Is it appropriate for the police to use tear-gas or chemically-laced water cannon or used physical violence against peaceful demonstrators comprising all races, religions, age and gender who merely wanted to send a clear and unmistakable to the government that they want free, fair and clean elections?

• Is it appropriate for any government to misuse public funds for political party purposes especially in the run-up to a general election?

• Is it appropriate for voters in a general election to support candidates from a political coalition which is responsible for Malaysia having the lowest Transparency International Corruption Perception Index ranking of No. 60 as well as lowest CPI score of 4.3 in 2012?

• Is it appropriate for any Minister or MP to go against national unity efforts as publicly dissociating from the 1Malaysia policy, declaring that he or she is Malay first and Malaysian second?

Of course not. There can be no shadow of doubt that if such questions had appeared in any school SPM trial examination paper, there would be an orchestrated howl of protest and condemnation in the mainstream mass media of Utusan Malaysia, New Straits Times, Berita Harian and the Star as well as on government/Barisan Nasional radio and television channels, followed by a witch-hunt to expose, penalise and even criminalise those responsible for setting the questions. Read the rest of this entry »


Di antara bajet BN dan bajet Pakatan Rakyat

— Aspan Alias
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 27, 2012

27 SEPT — BN dan Pakatan Rakyat memperagakan bajet 2013 masing-masing. Pihak Pakatan Rakyat telah membentangkan bajet bayangannya dua hari sebelum Najib membentangkan bajet pihak BN. Najib akan membentangkan bajetnya pada Jumaat ini dan dijangka bajet itu adalah bajet pilihanraya. Tanda-tanda bajet itu akan memasukkan banyak peruntukan pemberian tunai kepada rakyat itu adalah jelas dan telah pun diakui oleh beberapa orang pemimpin-pemimpin BN.

Itu tidak memeranjatkan sesiapa kerana Najib begitu popular dengan membeli hati dan jiwa rakyat dengan wang ringgit. Bagi Najib bayar sana, bayar sini adalah cara yang beliau selalu lakukan baik dalam kerajaan mahu pun didalam kegiatan parti. Najib mentadbir kerajaan seperti beliau mentadbir Umno bahagiannya di Pekan.

Dalam pada itu PR juga mengemukakan bajet pihaknya untuk membezakannya diantara bajet yang selalu di bentangkan oleh BN. Beberapa pemimpin kerajaan termasuk menteri-menterinya telah mengkritik bajet Pakatan Rakyat dan menuduh PR sedang cuba untuk menarik undi dan bajet anjuran PR itu adalah bajet yang tidak realistik.

Saya hanya hendak memberi komen tentang isu realistik atau tidaknya bajet PR yang di katakan oleh pemimpin samseng BN seperti Nazri Aziz dan beberapa “hulubalang” BN itu sebagai bahan lawak itu. Nazri membuat komen yang tidak beretika sehinggakan dia mengatakan bajet anjuran PR itu adalah bajet bodoh. Bagi saya hanya orang bodoh sahaja yang mengenali si bodoh yang lain. Read the rest of this entry »


2013 Budget tomorrow – not whether there will be 2nd payment of BR1M but whether it would more than double RM500 and benefit more people than just 4.2 million households earning less than RM3,000 a month?

The single question all Malaysians are asking about the 2013 Budget to be presented by the Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak in Parliament tomorrow is not whether there will be a second payment of BR1M (1Malaysia People’s Aid) but whether the second BR1M will be more than double the first BR1M of RM500.

Furthermore, whether the second BR1M payment would benefit more people than just the 4.2 million households earning less than RM3,000 a month as provided for under Budget 2012 . i.e. households earning up to RM4,000 or RM5,000 a month.

The Barisan Nasional government, through their representatives at various levels in the country, have led Malaysians to expect these second BR1M benefits from Budget 2013 tomorrow, and if the second BR1M payment is not more than double the first BR1M payout of RM500 or does not benefit more than the 4.2 million households earning less than RM3,000 a month, Najib and the Umno/BN government should expect an adverse backlash from the Malaysian people.

Najib has himself to blame that the country’s annual budget presentation in Parliament has become an annual Santa Claus occasion, all because of Najib’s indecisiveness and obsessive fear of the 13th General Elections, causing him to transform his 42-month premiership into an prolonged and unending electioneering campaign. Read the rest of this entry »


Mengundi Umno itu bukan wajib hukumnya! (Bhg. 1)

Oleh Sakmongkol AK47 | September 26, 2012
The Malaysian Insider

26 SEPT — Rakyat sudah bertanya, kenapa kita mesti mengundi Umno? Ye — kenapa mesti? Why at all? Adakah orang Melayu akan mati jika tidak menyokong Umno?

Umno guna 3 isi — bangsa, agama, raja Melayu. Bangsa Melayu akan terancam jika Umno kalah. Agama Islam akan tergugat jika Umno kalah, dan Raja Melayu juga akan musnah jika PR jadi kerajaan.

Jika Umno bercakap kepada rakyat bodoh, mungkin pembohongan mereka akan berjaya. Jika semua orang baca Utusan Malaysia sahaja dan tonton TV3 sahaja, mungkin juga penipuan mereka akan berjaya.

Tapi ini zaman, rakyat yang bijak. rakyat terdedah kepada internet. Mereka baca harakah, Roket dan Suara Keadilan. Orang tak baca Straits Times yang tidak ada kredibiliti. Orang tak baca Utusan Malaysia atau Berita Hairan yang jadi saluran propaganda murahan Umno.
Read the rest of this entry »

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BFM interview Koon Yew Yin

Follow Koon Yew Ying’s BFM interview. Koon said: “There are hundreds of big buildings and structures, can you tell me which buildings or structures are won by Bumiputera contractors through open tender? There are hundreds of K. meter of highway, can you point out the stretch of highway awarded through competitive tender?

“Record shows that it is easy to produce doctors, surgeons, lawyers, engineers and other professionals but it is very difficult to produce competent contractors or entrepreneurs.

“Bumiputeras must be willing to start from the bottom and learn the business. Tan Seri Yeoh Tiong Lay started as a small time contractor. Tan Seri Lim Goh Tong started as a scrap iron dealer in Sungei Besi.

“I, Koon Yew Yin and 3 other small time contractors started with Rm 200,000 capital in 1966. As a result, I was one of the founders of IJM Corporation Bhd.

“I am completely retired from business and I hope you are not offended by what I have expressed here. I trust we will elect politicians who will not simply give out large contracts or concessions without open tenders.”

Video: Read the rest of this entry »


Marks of a good Malaysian leader

By Ooi Kee Beng | September 26, 2012
The Malaysian Insider

SEPT 26 — There is an anecdote told among close acquaintances of the late Tun Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman, Malaysia’s feared and respected deputy prime minister and home affairs minister in the early 1970s, that he once in confidence said that he felt he was at heart a greater racist than in his actions, unlike most of his politician colleagues, who were more opportunistic and were racists in words and deeds, but not at heart.

And yet, he was the Malay leader that Chinese Malaysian leaders of his day trusted. In fact, even Lee Kuan Yew of Singapore has often reiterated that Tun Dr Ismail was the only Malaysian leader he had faith in.

As a reflection of the Malaysian culture prevalent during his time perhaps, many of his best friends throughout his life were non-Malays. When Tun Dr Ismail was growing up in Johor Baru, among his family’s closest friends were the Cheahs, the Kuoks and the Puthuchearys.
Read the rest of this entry »

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Kepercayaan Umno adalah segala-galanya adalah pemikiran usang

— Aspan Alias
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 26, 2012

26 SEPT — Kenyataan Dr Mahathir terhadap apa yang beliau katakan sebagai ‘Melayu tidak berterima kasih’ dan ‘tidak bersyukur’ memberikan reaksi yang sangat besar terhadap kewibawaan BN dalam menghadapi PRU yang akan datang. Bagi Mahathir Melayu yang tidak menyokong Umno itu adalah Melayu yang tidak bersyukur dan Melayu yang tidak berterima kasih.

Kenyataan Dr Mahathir itu telah memisahkan ramai Melayu diantara dua pihak yang bertentangan dengan lebih dalam lagi dan kata-kata Dr Mahathir itu sangat menyentuh ramai Melayu yang sedang dalam pencarian sekarang ini. Mengatakan Melayu tidak bersyukur dan tidak berterima kasih itu adalah kenyataan yang tidak bertanggungjawab kerana adalah tidak wajar untuk menuduh Melayu yang betul-betul Melayu itu tidak bersyukur. Hanya orang Melayu yang benar-benar Melayu sahaja yang tahu isi hati orang Melayu sendiri.

Jika benar Umno telah berjuang dan berusaha untuk menyatukan orang Melayu tidak akan berlaku perpecahan seperti yang kita alami sekarang ini. Enam puluh enam tahun mengaku sebagai parti yang menyatukan orang Melayu tetapi apa yang kita sekarang ini hanya menunjukkan kegagalan Umno untuk melakukannya. Bagi Mahathir dan pemimpin Umno yang lain bersatunya Melayu itu ada beberapa cara:

Pertamanya Melayu mesti menyokong Umno bulat-bulat dan jangan mengambil kira samada Umno itu jujur atau tidak. Mereka menganggap Melayu mesti dipenjara dan diberi makan sikit-sikit untuk mengelak orang Melayu dari berfikir dan bertindak mengikut kehendak zaman dan waktunya. Kalau pemimpin rasuah di tabur benih-benih nilai yang membunuh orang Melayu sendiri seperti ada setengah Melayu yang berkata, “kalau Melayu rasuah itu Melayu, orang Melayu juga yang kaya. Apa yang hendak di cemburukan?” Read the rest of this entry »

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On the secular state controversy

― Ahmad Fuad Rahmat
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 26, 2012

SEPT 26 ― Some weeks have passed since the release of our rather controversial call for a secular state. Naturally, we encountered many comments along the way. Many were constructive, while one particularly from HAKIM was nothing short of vitriolic.

In the interest of furthering democratic debate, we shall take the opportunity here to clarify the misconceptions we encountered along the way in hope that our position will be more clearly understood. Read the rest of this entry »


Umno’s Nation of Traitors

By Martin Jalleh


Pakatan Rakyat 2013 Budget pledges a New Deal for Sabah and Sarawak

The Pakatan Rakyat’s 2013 Budget recognises and addresses the three “Cs” of corruption, crime and competitiveness – the trio of problems which are the bane of the Malaysian economy and if unresolved, will condemn the country to mediocrity and even towards the direction of a failed state.

The PR 2013 Budget is also a pledge for a New Deal for Sabah and Sarawak, comprising five elements:

(1) Reaffirmation of the Kuching Declaration of Pakatan Rakyat of 16th September 2012 to fulfil the hopes and aspirations of the people of Sabah and Sarawak in terms of infrastructure development and protection of their fundamental rights in forming Malaysia 49 years ago in 1963;

(2) Pakatan Rakyat pledge to honour the increase of petroleum royalty to Sabah and Sarawak (as well as to Terengganu and Kelantan, the other oil producing states) from 5 to 20%; Read the rest of this entry »