Thursday, November 8, 2012

Crumbs for the masses | Free Malaysia Today

Crumbs for the masses

Mohd Ariff Sabri Aziz | November 8, 2012
Every business and economic project undertaken by Umno is a means by which a small powerful group enrich itself at the expense of the majority.

Bread for the political aristocrats and crumbs for the masses. That’s the economics practised by Umno leaders who display the characteristics of economic crimes.

The recent listing of Felda Global Ventures, for example, will go down in history as a wilful conspiracy to shortchange the Felda settlers.

What do common Felda folks know about the stock market because now all the physical assets that constitute the basis of Felda’s business are converted into paper assets.

The assets traded over the counter do not reflect the integrity and soundness of the physical assets, but reflect the manipulations and agility of stock market players.

Why place a known corrupt person as chairman and replacing conscientious Felda officers with obliging conspirators?

The fact that Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak agreed to this reflects his complicity in suckering the Felda settlers. It’s a premeditated plan to plunder Felda.

Every business and economic project undertaken by Umno is a means by which a small powerful group enrich itself at the expense of the majority.

That’s the idea behind Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s economics. Mahathirism is the centralisation of power, emasculation of the judiciary, arrogance, rampant corruption, feigning inclusiveness while actually fanning divisiveness.

This is a Malaysia founded on the principle of natural selection turned on its head.

Instead of free competition, Mahathir carries out selective breeding – now this is Mahathir’s economics. Economic deprivation of the majority is Umno’s agenda.

It’s all about wealth and power for the selected few, economic injustice for the majority.

Umno and Mahathir have created a society consisting of a few millionaires and billionaires while more than 8.5 million Malays live with a monthly income of RM1,500 and a further 3.2 million non-Malays living on the same monthly income.

Simply put, 40% of the population lives under the RM1,500 monthly income level. How would this group fare in Najib’s high-income driven agenda?

Najib is a poor copycat of Mahathir

His New Economic Model (NEM) is but a continuation of Mahathirnomics – the use of absolute and discretionary power to create winners from a selected field of friends and cronies.

It is the same rapacious greed displayed by politicians that is behind the decision to award the Automatic Enforcement System (AES) business to two private companies.

The government has contracted out the income generating resource to Beta Tegap Sdn Bhd and Commercial Circle Sdn Bhd.

If this revenue source earns the country RM50 billion a year, why outsource it?

And what do we do with the over 3,000 cameras already installed by the police at so many places in the country?

Najib’s NEM is just an extension of Mahathirnomics – the same selective life-giving patronage for friends and cronies in business. Should these friends fail, there are always the contingent funds to bail them out.

We have a government that is lazy, driven by rapacious greed, eager to surrender revenue-earning assets in order to support the leisurely life of the rich and powerful political aristocrats.

The writer is a former Umno state assemblyman but has now joined DAP. He is a FMT columnist

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