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Thursday, September 29, 2011

The doktor supports corporate welfarism

Screw the professor who said this country was never colonized. Screw too the elder statesman who said, technically this country was never colonized, yet in fact it was. This was the same statesman who pontificate us for many years during the UMNO GA, that we have been colonized for over 400 years. Altogether now people- tiuuu kau!

Well now, I can have some fun too at the verbal gymnastics game. Technically UMNO was the running dog of British imperialism, but in fact it wasn’t. In fact it was a nationalist party. Technically, all the other leftist political parties then were freedom fighting organizations, but in fact they were terrorists. Bahaman, Mat Kilau, Tok Gajah, Tok Janggut,Tokku Paloh were technically true nationalists butin fact they were common rogues.

That, my friends are UMNO arguments especially when you catch them in a bind and when they are caught with their pants down cupping their balls. Technically we can have many versions of history, but in fact, the only history is how the victors defined it to be.

When Dr Mahathir came out with his memoirs, I wrote a number of critical essays. I was widely criticized for those articles with one blogger saying the articles were unfortunate writings written by one blogger whom he respects. That respect is much valued- but we are recipient for such homage for as long as the giver is pleased with us. It’s no skin of my nose, if that respect is rescinded. You take back what you can give. No big deal.

I didn’t answer his critical assessment of my article believing that perhaps he may have some valid points. We can’t change our basic beliefs. He holds on to his, I to mine. Many people believe Doctor Mahathir was our messiah- after all I said he can walk on water. But there are also many people (maybe not as many as the first group) who think technically Dr Mahathir is a farce. I happen to think he is. So we live by our basic beliefs.

Furthermore I think, time is on my side as the Rolling Stones song say- I have only written on the basis of Dr Mahathir’s first 3 chapters. Since he has written 62 chapters, I can respond with 59 other essays each corresponding to his remaining chapters. Time is on my side brother. They will be written up till the next GE. I have this belief that Dr Mahathir was never pro Malay businessmen and businesses. I will develop that theme in the coming months.

At one time Dr Mahathir was regarded to have socialist tendencies. So many years ago, when comrade Kassim Ahmad then the leader of scientific PSRM expressed his satisfaction about socialistic tendencies in UMNO, Dr Mahathir challenged Kassim to show where. Kassim responded by asking Dr Mahathir to look for them, himself. Mahathir then was DPM.

Dr Mahathir was right and kassim was sadly wrong. Dr Mahathir has never been a socialist. That was why he was livid with comrade kassim. He has always been the petty trader and the merchant mentality sticks onto him every second of the day. That’s when the trouble begins for our market economy.

Since then, the country and Dr Mahathir have moved farther to the right of free market economics. The threat to our market economy doesn’t come from socialistic tendencies; Dr Mahathir made sure of that. Joseph Stiglitz in his preface of Schumpeter’s Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy cited the very threat- from the right wingers such as Dr Mahathir, who is the unashamed champion of a certain species of welfarism. It started since Dr Mahathir’s time- the economics of statism evolving into corporate welfarism. Under this version of welfare, the power of the state is used to protect the rich and powerful rather than the poor and the society in general. Dr Mahathir is now the spokesman of welfarism. But its welfarism of a different kind- its corporate welfarism.

So I am not surprised when Dr Mahathir came out in support of Air Asia gobbling up MAS. He detests MAS alluding to its stinking management. But there is an endgame to Mahathir’s shifting of the goal psost. Next month, he will say he’s fed-up of stodgy and limbering PETRONAS. So he will say he supports Kencana-Sapura the new evil axis that will eat up PETRONAS. How? All new fields will be declared marginal fields and Mahathir will no doubt support a bill and law to give a monopoly over marginal fields to Sapura and Kencana.

Come on, if its management being the problem, one doesn’t invite your competitor to sit on board and manage your business. On what basis do you confine your selection as manager, the owner of a rival but different modeled business entity? Sudahlah Doktor M. why don’t we bring in the man or persons running EMIRATES who operate on a similar business model like MAS?

The real Mahathir is emerging. Dr Mahathir looks out for the welfare of the corporate world- the big businesses, the crony capitalists. He wants to ensure subsidies go to IPPs, juiciest of deals go to highway toll operators, big business continue to get bigger businesses. He will support the Gamuda-isation of Malaysia. Yes sirree folks- Mahathir is the champion of corporate welfarism.

Dr Mahathir continues to be the embodiment of contradictions. He moves from one extreme to another without being burdened with the feelings of guilt. He is generally seen as the man responsible for breeding the culture of corruption, yet he can also be the spokesman for a clean government. Ex ministers who listened to his solemn intonation that the government is corrupt from the top to bottom, could have puked all over the place in one of those gatherings of ex ministers.

He quits UMNO when he thinks UMNO is rotten to the core. Each level of the UMNO leadership is corrupt he says. That would include PM Najib. He said this at one of those social gatherings of ex ministers. When UMNO was led by Pak Lah, he left UMNO. Dr Mahathir wants to have his cake and eats it- all the time. Therefore the world is how he defines it.

MAS was good once and it will always be a national asset. Ownership over MAS must always be with the government because of its strategic and other symbolic reasons. For a number of years, MAS was the benchmark for golden services. But that soon changed, when Mahathir implemented his next step towards corporate welfarism.

He was instrumental in handing MAS over to Tajuddin Ramli. But beyond just handing out a good business to a private businessman, what is the principle involved here? The public piece if business is injected with an important element of a private business model leading inevitably to clash of interest. That was why, MAS kargo which was supposed to be part of the public business of MAS, was converted by Tajuddin into a private business because of the enormous profit potential.

Now, we are temporarily blinded by the wunderkind Tony Fernandez who ran a music business originally. Everyone including Mahathir, the merchant believe that one asset of skills suitable for a different business model; can be applied with any loss in efficacy on a public business.

Just as in the UMNO lead government, Dr Mahathir thinks every level of MAS is infested with vested interest and various schemes to milk the cow. Everyone is quick to attribute whole and complete blame to Tajudin. Tajudin couldn’t steer MAS out of losses. What was Tajudin’s biggest mistake? It was to make the private business interests bigger that public portion of the business. Mas kargo for example could have become an important revenue earner for MAS but for Tajudin’s rapacious business appetite, it was made his private business portion. That happens when ownership is mixed up with the management of the business.

The same potentially destructive principle is allowed to operate in MAS with the AA-MAS deal. Of course Dr Mahathir is fed up with MAS. Its fits into his overall plan. Next he says he is fed-up with PETRONAS. That will pave the way for Kencana and the Sapura group to invade the hunting ground of PETRONAS. All fields will be marginal oil fields where only the Kencana-Sapura axis can exploit.

Posted by sakmongkol AK47

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