Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Value Conflict- We Sometimes Undo Our own efforts..

On the one hand we are trying to make Malaysians, especially the Bumiputras, self-reliant, competitive, and not depend on subsidies or government assistance to seek progress. Special rights and quotas are being weeded away to give way to open competition and meritocracy. Even the concept of achieving an equity in capital shares has been thrown overboard just like ensuring bumiputra participation in any new capital venture. A foreign company can now operate in the country without any bumiputra share or involvement at all...

Yes indeed. The Bumiputras have been so dependent on government protection, subsidies, grants, quotas etc such that they cannot compete on their own. (That's the assumption anyway). So now let them learn to compete on their own steam, no handicap whatever, no special treatment. We race on the same ground - all races, one Malaysia.

But are we (or the government) not at the she time undoing some of the new values we are trying to nurture? So many funds are being set up to help those for whom each specific fund is established. I wonder how the Auditor-General can be able to audit all those funds since they are not being controlled by specific government agency. But more. Government seems to be giving assistance here, there and everywhere, mostly in cold cash, like giving school children a handout of RM100 each. So mush money seems to be splashed around in the spirit of "Yohoho, Merry Christmas." Big projects.big spending and big money seem to be the talk of the town, while at the same time government is encouraging people to save and spend money wisely in view of the anticipated global recession.

Everywhere around I see the signs of conspicuous consumption with the increasing number of shopping malls and complexes cropping up in KL and other major cities. Is this the harbinger of the arrival of a high income nation with inflation fast tagging along on its heel? And yet our growth rate is not reaching anywhere near what it sued to be at 7-8%. We will be lucky to achieve a 5-6% growth rate in the next few years.

Well, I hope I'm totally wrong and off the mark. Only that will give us some comfort that things will always be much better than before. This itself is a value conflict - one aspiring for a better life hoping that he is wrong and not hoping to be right.


kaykuala said...

Akhi Norzah,
Many a time I asked myself, how come that is done and done in a certain way? How come that is the reason given and not what I have in mind?

Somehow the conflict in my mind persists trying to ascertain or to understand the reason something is done in a certain way.

Akhi, you and I and many others reasoned logically and wonder why, and rightly so.

The reasons and explanations differ from our thinking all because theirs are stained of politics and political considerations.

Before UMNO was kafir to associate with MCA and MIC, but not too long ago PAS said it was ok for the DAP to quote the surah at the Perak State Assembly. PAS said it did not matter if they said it or read it wrongly, at least it'll be easier if they convert later on. Other ulamaks said it was not ok for non-Muslims to quote let alone interpret.

The silent majority is left wondering about such conflicting statements which in effect is a rationalization. It may even be seen as a treating a basic issue lightly, like a joke in fact. But why rationalize or make a joke of it? They are Islamic scholars who should speak with authority. Tell boldly whether it is right or wrong from the Islamic point of view. This is just one example.There are others from both the govt and the opposition sources. It is not confined to Islamic issues but all others as well. This is not a monopoly of either party. Both glaringly do it many times!

A political statement I imagine should be taken with a grain of salt.Irrespective if it emanates from the govt or otherwise it is just bunkum. We believe (I do) in what we see on the ground and not what we hear from the politicians.

I'll just comment on political statements. There may be many other issues.


norzah said...

Political statements or statements with political motives are always aimed at gaining support and popularity, Akhi Hank. As such truth is often laced with sugar coatings and flavors that would support the policy objectives of the party concerned. One can identify at least four types of truth: political truths i.e. truths supported by a political party, media truth i.e. truth drummed up by the media, scientific truth where logic and rationality reign, and absolute truth as encapsulated in the book of religion and preached by the followers of a faith. All except the last are debatable
and usually equivocal.

Well, conflicting political views are the norms today rather than the exception. That can certainly confuse us on any issue, political, economic, social and religious. That is bad for us but imagine what the young Malaysians must go through. The Malays are still uncertain as to whether Hang Tuah or Jebat is our hero, and the fiends in some movies play a more active role than the hero that finally brings about a happy ending.

Just keep our eyes and ears open to see what comes up next in the drama of a nation saturated with the dreams of rapid material development to become a high-income nation. Remember the case of low performing students being kept out of examination to ensure a good and high performance score for the school? Get rid of the poor and Malaysia will become a rich nation. But who are most of the poor?

So long as we know and understand the score, we can keep our sanity.