Monday, November 27, 2023

Declining productivity: Worrisome economics beyond politics

Perhaps, this blogger had not explained the rationale of our current political/partisan position. There are likely to be readers and political comrades (in which many gone different ways) are surprised. Some speculated or even conjure up unfounded allegations for this observed change to tolerate Anwar Ibrahim as Prime Minister.  

Do perish such thought, we plead you'll. At this stage of our life, the priority for rationale and sensible thinking, and the priority of rakyat, national and ummah interests far outweigh partisanship and ideologies. More so, we are faced with a chaotic and topsy turvy situation of the day.   

After BN lost the general election in 2018, Malaysia had three Prime Ministers under Pakatan Harapan and later two Perikatan Nasional governments. The so-called Selamatkan Malaysia campaign worsened the economic situation. 

Mahathir's half-bake and conveniently selective reforms over 22 months was followed by PN's politics-at-all-cost during the Covid pandemic crisis and put the national debt at RM1.5 trillion. It is a major indication of the economic mess and became a fiscal constraint that straitjacketed the country from getting out of the present rut. 

Anwar is not the best and ideal option, but the other options are not tenable, morally and ethically. Time to forget the past and attempt at moving forward. To those who have yet to realise, Malaysia is in a political and social mess with the state of the economy in a frightening decline. The reason politics should take a backseat! 

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Thursday, November 23, 2023

Thought Papagomo is unafraid to face Sajat in court

Gone viral is the news of Minister for Communication and Digital Economy, Fahmi Fadzil serving a substituted service notification in The Star on Tuesday to summon Wan Muhammad Azri Wan Deris, the blogger,  social media personality, and popularly known as Papagomo.  

According to MMO here, he is to appear in court on December 6th for making allegation Fahmi made political speech in a mosque prior to the six state elections against the directive of his Highness the Sultan of Selangor. 

However, Fahmi's lawyer have not been able to serve the summon at his known home. Though Papagomo cannot resist from landing himself in endless stream of trouble, the 6-year suspended former Member of UMNO Youth exco and now serving Tun Dr Mahathir is not one to run from the law. 

It is nothing new for the accused or defendant to evade being served the summon to tire out the plaintiff or buy time. Apparently, his co-conspirator Chegubard too is evading from being served a certain summon at his family home in Seremban and registered address in Penang for criminal defamation.

But not Papagomo.

In his episode with Sajat, the transvestite that ran from the law to migrate to Australia, Papagomo was unperturbed by the threat of a lawsuit and be taken to court. 

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Monday, November 20, 2023

Is Hamzah behind "support crossover" to topple Muhyiddin?

Why was the last posting given the title "More to leave PN, but Hamzah refused to negotiate MP allocation?"

If readers couldn't pick up from the info-loaded previous posting, then the title for this posting is more straight forward. Usually the serious political watchers prefer info over simple narrative and storyline.  

Hamzah could intentionally refuse to negotiate the MP allocation and is the hand behind the four MPs offering support to Anwar Ibrahim in order to pressure Muhyiddin to quit.

It is to make way for himself to takeover the Presidency of PPBM @ PM-in-waiting for PN as raised by Raja Petra. And RPK believe or more accurately, wants to believe Anwar will not last his term. 

Although Anwar has 151 MPs support and the number 168 by year end has been thrown in, it is not merely a hunch to sense Hamzah is preparing for the four MPs to repeat of the 2009 Nasaruddin Hashim reverse in his home state of Perak.  

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Friday, November 17, 2023

More to leave PN, but Hamzah refused to negotiate MP allocation?

The High Court dismissed application from BERSATU to seek judicial review to force Parliament Speaker Tan Sri Johari Abdul to proclaim the seats of four BERSATU MPs giving support to Prime Minister, Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim as vacant.

The MPs are still member and claiming loyalty to their party so it is not valid. It was a loophole in the Anti-Hopping Law enacted by the Muhyiddin-led PN government. Wan Junaidi said Muhyiddin refused to plug it as though he appears inconsistent. He was preparing for something

The ensuing drama on MPs' "crossover of support" seemed to be an attempt to divert attention from the issue of MP allocation. Opposition MPs have been harping on it in Parliament. A three men team to negotiate was formed by PN in May, but Hamzah refused to negotiate.

When they finally do, Takiyudin triggered the dealbreaker by refusing government side request to write in their term, but insisted government side put their proposal first. It was obviously an excuse. Why and what is PN up to?  

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Tuesday, November 14, 2023

If GST's rebate inflationary, SST has tax-on-tax effect. What solution now?

Before the tabling of Budget for 2024, there were talk that government is considering to reintroduce the GST that was abolished by the Pakatan Harapan government in 2018. Rafizi was reported by the press of government not rejecting the possibility of bringing it back. 

The hope was towards doing away with income tax and GST will replace. Corporate tax to be competitive as other countries in the region. The government need the tax revenue from GST to address the declining revenue and worsening fiscal position.

Though it is the most efficient tax system and adoped by more 90% of the countries in the world, the workload from changing the system again made civil servants reluctance. This is also speculating and that is GST system leaves little room for intervention and negotiation.     

After Budget was presented in Parliament, the KSP Dato Johan Merican said in an interview that there were not even any effort to pass out any law on GST yet to expect it to be reintroduce. After Anwar announced an increase in SST by 2% and gave the final blow to GST. 

The belief is the PH-led Unity Government dare not take the political suicide to do a U-turn and upset their main support from the Chinese business community. Prior to the budget, official said the failure of GST then was the rebate system. However, during GE14, this was not impressed on but the PH argument then was the compounding effect on prices. 

Edge Weekly in their November 6-12th issue highlighted the invisible tax-on-tax effect of SST. With the government in dire needs for revenue, in which only 19% of the population contribute to the national coffer as tax but almost 80% benefited immensely by subsidy burden shouldered by the government, is there an alternative?   

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Sunday, November 12, 2023

MOA's high handed DG, Rice shortage ahead

This blog warned on Thursday that rice shortage problem is far from over and this time it is due to shortage of seedlings. It was explicitly touched in the October 27th posting here.

The problem should have been anticipated at the time millers complained on the high cost of padi. That resulted in Kedah millers unable to sustain operation and lowered seedling production.

Again, MOA's Director General for Padi and Rice Regulatory Division, Dato Azman bin Mahmood is back in his dictatorial mode of solving problems. Done in silo manner, he ignored the impact on the rice supply chain and lay the blame on a bogeyman.

When Azman raised price of imported rice and subsequently put a price ceiling on padi, it disrupted supply and production. Expect the same with his high-handed ways on padi seedlings.

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Friday, November 10, 2023

The derogatory history of Kafir, Kaffir and Caffer

The MP for Kinabatangan, Bung Mokhtar is not a politician one is comfortable to praise, but his advise in Parliament on October 17th, 2023 is commendable. 

It was directed to Ahmad Murzak, the PN government's former Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department in charge of Islamic Affair and MP for Pengkalan Chepa, Kelantan for his snide remark to call DAP kafir.

Bung appropriately quoted a verse from the Surah Kafirun (Disbeliever) of the Quran. 

"I do not worship what you worship, nor are you worshipper of what I worship, nor will I be worshipper of what you worship, nor will you be worshipper of what I worship." With that laid out, the surah ended as, "For you is your religion, for me is my religion". 

In the nutshell, it means mutual respect for each other's belief. One should be mindful that each person's belief is predetermined from the parent's religion and the environment they grew up. [Read here] The difference is fated thus it should be accepted, respected and celebrated. Each should be left with their way to live their life and adhere to the true spirit of their faith for peace and harmony.  

The Muslim-Kafir description or antonym should be harmless. However, it has been inappropriately expressed in derogatory manner in the past that it became an insult and divisive. Similar undertone can lead into a violent Gentile vs Goyim narrative explicitly expressed by the Israeli Zionist Rabbi below:

The genocide in Gaza is the manifestation of the deep-rooted hatred arising from extreme us vs them narrative. Similar to Kafir, "Goyim", which is non-believer in Hebrew, is offensive to Jews too

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Thursday, November 9, 2023

Too soon to claim rice supply crisis over

Malaysia's price controls keep rice production low, exacerbating shortages

Reuters / Updated: Nov 8, 2023, 13:38 IST

The rice industry in Malaysia is facing a crisis due to the government's price control measures, which have eroded profit margins and prevented expansion. The shortage of white rice has worsened after India restricted rice shipments, causing global prices to soar. However, industry players cannot increase production due to rising costs and low prices. The government acknowledges the issue but has no immediate plans to raise the price cap, citing the need to protect consumers. The industry is calling for a review of the price cap to encourage higher output and ensure food security.

Malaysia's rice mill operator and wholesaler Allen Lim started receiving calls from supermarkets asking for additional supplies. But he had to turn them down (Representative photo: BCCL)

KUALA LUMPUR: In September, amid a shortage of white rice in Malaysia, rice mill operator and wholesaler Allen Lim started receiving calls from supermarkets asking for additional supplies. But he had to turn them down.

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Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Did Tun M help or steal from a Malay entrepreneur?

The Halim Saad Story (Part 1)

By Abd Rahman Sidek

IF YOU ask Tan Sri Halim Saad the above question, he would probably yell at the top of his voice, “Dr Mahathir stole from me big time!!!”

Any reasonable bystander would feel very sorry for Halim after checking out PLUS Malaysia Bhd’s financial report after it was snatched off from him.

For example, PLUS’ total assets were at RM33.22 bil as of Dec 31, 2016. For its financial year ended end-December 2016, the group registered a profit after tax of RM288.2 mil and RM4.07 bil in revenue.

To recap, the tycoon filed a suit at the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Aug 2 in relation to the government’s takeover of United Engineers Malaysia Bhd (UEM) and Renong Bhd by naming twice former premier Dr Mahathir, then finance minister II Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop and the government as defendants.

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Monday, November 6, 2023

Mas Ermieyati cover-up Muhyiddin, Ismail Sabri for Covid 19 procurement

On October 30th, PAC Chairperson, Mas Ermieyati from Bersatu tabled a report on the management of the Covid 19 procurement of unusable Ventilators, RM505 million expired vaccine, and over purchase PPE. 

She exonerated Khairy for the ventilators purchase to pass the blame to Adham Baba. 

The early political frog that jump from UMNO to Bersatu in fear of being charged for allegedly receiving 1MDB money conveniently held back the names of the Ministry's top officials. 

Names such as the then KSU Dato Seri Dr Chen Chew Min, and Procurement SUB, Dato Wan Hashim Wan Rahim were the the talk within the close circle of Chinese businessmen for dictating the short-listing of suppliers and procurement. 

Had it not for the expose by The Corporate Secret portal on Saturday, they would remain hidden from public eye. 

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Thursday, November 2, 2023

Podcast reply raises more questions for KJ

Khairy Jamaluddin immediately responded to PAC Chairman, Mas Ermieyati's press conference on PAC findings with regard to the irregular purchases of ventilators and over purchase of vaccine.

He responded to deflect the purchases of defective ventilators to the then Minister of Health, Dr Adham Baba. He said it was not purchased during his tenure as Minister of Health. 

As far as vaccine, it is fair to seek answers from him as he was in charge as Minister of Science, Technology and Innovations and later as Minister of Health.  

A pro-PKR You Tuber, Iswardy Morni questioned why as Minster of Health, he did not mitigate the problem of the dysfunctional ventilators. 

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