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Sakmongkol ak 47

ariff.sabri@gmail.com

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Najib's 2013 Budget: Promises Made, Promises Broken



This is my budget which aims at “improving the quality of life of the people, ensuring sustainable growth, spending prudently and reducing the fiscal deficit,” said the PM cum Finance Minister in his address to parliament. Only I and UMNO can. Hear, hear!
He doesn’t promise the moon and the stars, says he. But at least he is aware that people want to ride the Rocket to go to the Moon to get Justice. Naik Roket pergi Bulan untuk dapatkan Keadilan!
The PM is lying on all counts. Or isn’t forthcoming. No sustainable growth, no prudent spending, no change in structural deficit. Can our economy sustain growth on the backs of undertrained labor force with MCE standard on average? The economy is sabotaged for want of productive labor force. Our own plantation sectors are short of 500,000 workers. High end growth is not possible if we have under-qualified labor force. Spending prudently is impossible for a government intent on riding the reindeer driven sleigh all year round.
PM Najib thinks he has proposed a fantabulous budget. I have dubbed it as the best budget since Adam in an article written in Malay. It’s more pronounced in its overarching agenda to give out monies to various selected groups. These are one off payments though- rebates, bonuses, one off payments to ex-servicemen etc. it seems every Ahmad, Ah Chong and Muthu get some tiny morsel which the master throws about.  He has promised RM500 payments to all low-income families, RM100 each to 5.4 million schoolchildren and handed a 1.5 month bonus to the country’s civil servants among other steps.
Take the money. They are all yours. For every Ringgit this government gives us, they take RM 100 back. After the euphoria wears off, everyone will still face the grim realities of increased cost of living. Just look around, the price of sugar has gone up as a result of subsidy in sugar being withdrawn. The price of Ikan Kembong has settled around RM 17 per kilo. The bag of 10kg price has gone up by RM7. The price of beef is around RM 24-26 per kilo in certain parts of the country. Aren’t all these included in the basket of goods when accounting for the official rate of inflation?
All food and beverage using sugar as its ingredient will go up in price. Will the increase in the price of sugar appeased the  makciks and the small traders selling foodstuffs using sugar as a main ingredient? They know when the price of sugar goes up, the person holding the monopoly on sugar will get richer.
How does this government justify the withdrawal of sugar subsidy which results in sugar price going up? The government is alarmed at the growing incidence of diabetes among Malaysians!
I read that former Trade and Industry Minister Rafidah Aziz complimenting the government on its agenda to reduce budget deficit. On what basis does she based her exuberance? On last year’s government’s success at reducing deficit? If she has been more diligent, she would have realized that was a fluke and luck. The government was able to keep its deficit below 5% at 4.7% for 2012 only because of an unplanned increase in revenue by RM21 billion for the year. If not for the above, based on the government’s expenditure in 2012, our deficit would have increased to 6.7%.
Do we have faith in this spendthrift government containing its inclination to overspend? The government has announced its plan in the 2013 budget to keep the deficit at 4.0%.  It appears this promises-made- promises- fulfilled government has reneged on its promise which is to reduce our deficit to 2.5% by 2015. That promise was made last year in 2011.
The government certainly did not take into account, of a decrease in our country’s revenue.  How not to if this is a government that lives on structural deficit? It builds this country up around amassing debt.
Our country is going to make less money. That isn’t going to allow the government to reduce spending. We have seen how Najib appears to ignore this fact as he reveled in playing the role of Santa Claus in parliament. He has offered no thoughts on how his government plans to undo the structural deficit. The budget demonstrates no political will on the part of the federal government to make the necessary structural changes to the way we manage our budget. We also do not see a serious effort to tackle federal government debt which has neared the 55% of Najib’s `tipping point’
The country’s public debt as a percentage of GDP is just short of its self-imposed ceiling of 55 per cent — up from 43 per cent in 2008 — while its expected budget deficit of 4.5 per cent in 2012 is among Asia’s biggest.
This government doesn’t have the political will to dismantle our overbearing bureaucracy. The civil service is already 1.4 million strong. We are certainly not reducing big government- so what Najib promised that his government will not be a government that knows what is best, was a lie. We are already into the stage of over-governed society.
Haven’t any of the Najib advisers heard of the Theory of Bureaucratic Displacement? In a bureaucratic society like ours, increase in expenditure will be matched by a fall in production. Can we justify absorbing all those lowly educated persons into RELA organizations paid out of government coffers? What role exactly do JASA members play other than serving as propaganda apparatchiks to UMNO. Other than serving as teachers for pre-schooling children, what role do the KEMAS people play other than serving as propaganda tools for UMNO. Why are we supporting an oversized unproductive lot?
Because under a bureaucratic society, these adjuncts to officialdom will act like black holes in the economic universe, sucking in resources but shrinking in terms of emitted production.

18 comments:

Anonymous,  4 October 2012 at 11:39  

Just back from Kuching. Earlier in a Kuching supermarket a standard packet of 10 frozen chicken frankfurters, from Denmark cost Rm3.15 while other local equivalents including those processed in Kuching can range from Rm 3.85 to Rm 5.30.

So much for productivity of our local workforce, and who is to be blamed for this?

The BN government is living in its own surreal world. This time the rakyat must take a stand even after receiving $$$$ gifts from the government because as Pak Sak says the money is ours in the first place, by voting BN out. Take the money, but vote Pakatan. We owe BN nothing. Let Pakatan take over to prove that things could be better and should have been better for everyone, not just BN Tuns, Tan Sris, Datuks, ex-KSUs,and all the multi-millionaire business cronies.

An Asian Greece in the making, for sure.

bumi-non-malay 4 October 2012 at 13:44  

Orang kampung hanya perlu tahu berapa Hutang Malaysia HARI INI.....

Pada Tahun 1957 - Kosong...

Lepas UMNO-BN memerintah selama 55 tahun - $500,000,000,000 atau 1/2 TRILLION Ringgit....

setiap tahun faedah principal kena bayar 15,000,000,000 atau $15 Billion Ringgit...hutang masih $setengah Trillion.......Padan muka orang Malaysia kalau undi lagi UMNO-BN!!...macam mana boleh bayar?? 15 Billion boleh bina berapa LRT...Boleh beli semua TOL dan bebaskan rakyat dari TOL....

timor 4 October 2012 at 14:13  

Ooo, lambatnya PRU 13 ni !
Tak sabar nak tengok puak puak ni yg didahului olih Kera la di heret ke Sg Buloh!!!

OneMalaysian,  4 October 2012 at 16:27  

Dear Sakmongkol

The budget is the government’s annual financial plan to reach its ultimate or declared strategic destination. As enunciated in the New Economic Model it is to get Malaysia out of the so-called middle-income trap into the ranks of the developed nations. When seen in this light this budget is a total failure. The over-riding impression of it is that its entire purpose was designed to throw small immediate cash benefits – financial panadol - to a large portion of the population to win their vote at the coming election. We shouldn’t belittle this tactic. It works with many of these folks because of the desperate position they are in - a situation caused entirely by this UMNO/BN-led government that has been in power for 55 years. The blame cannot be shifted on to anyone else.

How many people read or understand the entire budget, its thrusts (or lack of it), its spending priorities, and the ever growing and worrying budget deficit and its implications? So many people are literally living from hand to mouth that they have no time or inclination to worry about tomorrow’s deficits or cumulative debt. The national debt is going to be RM500 billion? We are going to be the Asian Greece? Who cares? But they better care because if UMNO/BN is re-elected they will introduce GST, a tax that will hit everyone irrespective of whether they now pay income tax or not. That’s how Najib hopes raise taxes to reduce fiscal deficits. PR’s more attractive way is to cut waste and corruption.

This is the position the UMNO/BN government has put 40-50% of the population. We cannot blame these people for being dependent on handouts or subsidies. Handouts are demeaning. Subsidies speak of our inability to pay market prices because we lack sufficient income. It is the role of government to create an environment that can provide good jobs at good pay. But it has not. We have plenty of low-paying jobs that Malaysians shun but are attractive to foreigners, so we have 3 million of them. They drive down wages. Foreigners set our salary/wage levels. 40% of our people are only as rich or poor as these foreigners! That’s why we are such an attractive country to jobless Bangladeshis, Indonesians, Filipinos and Burmese. They would all want to vote for UMNO/BN/Najib if they could, and some can.

Anonymous,  4 October 2012 at 18:14  

Dear Dato,
US aircraft carrier at Kota Kinabalu very recently, can ah? Since when we allow them here with open arms?

Anonymous,  4 October 2012 at 22:03  

Good, the 2013 Budget is out. May Najib have more white hair,more white moooostache, more white armpit .air, more white arm .air, leg .air, and more white public hair - malu to use the 5-letter word.

Anonymous,  4 October 2012 at 22:37  

At the 6th Annual Conference and General Meeting of the International Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities(IAACA)on 4th Oct 2012 at KLCC, where 100 countries were represented, P.M. Najib made the following points:

1)Leaders must exemplify the values they wish their constituents to follow in the fight against corruption.

2)The behavior of those in power was important as it could influence and shape societal norms and values.

3)The importance of cultivating the appropriate social norms and values are critical for the war against corruption.

4)This makes the behavior of those in positions of leadership, be it in politics, government, business, civil society, education and the home, especially important in instilling the right values and basics of ethical conduct.

5)Mere laws and punishment were inadequate to eradicate the problem of corruption.

6)While an effective system would be an invaluable ally in the fight against corruption it is only part of the solution.

7)What was also needed, was to instill a natural abhorrence to corruption in society.

8)Indeed, there is strong evidence to suggest that in societies that have managed to reduce corrupt behavior, the reliance is to a great extent dependent on entrenched codes of behavior and a strong civic consciousness.

9)Battling corruption is part of a larger whole; and that is, to ultimately create a truly ethical and responsible progressive society.

Cantik punya cantik, hebat punya hebat,Datuk Sri Perdana Menteri ACTION!

Anonymous,  5 October 2012 at 00:09  

Someone should make a list of all the PM promises since 2008 to list out which is Janji Ditepati and which is Janji Dicapati !

Anonymous,  5 October 2012 at 00:10  

What kind of a PM we have that is a coward to defend his budget by MIA in parliment during the debate session ?

Anonymous,  5 October 2012 at 00:11  

Common, why all the delay to call for PRU13 - let's just it over and vote BN out of its misery !!!!

Anonymous,  5 October 2012 at 00:12  

what is the point of providing a RM200 rebate for smartphone when we have 100% plus mobile phone peneration in Malaysia.

bruno,  5 October 2012 at 00:38  

Dato,Najib can make all the promises as he has nothing to lose.All the goodies he has given out and yet he is giving and promising more to come,and in the end all will be paid for by the taxpayers.Najib is going for broke,as he has to lead Umno/BN to win big in the GE.Anything less that a 20-30 seats gain and Najib will be shown the revolving door.

Muhyiddin and gang are all hoping Umno/BN will just scrape through the GE with the slimmest of minority to retain the federal gomen.That is the only way to chase Najib out.And Muhyiddin can fulfill his hope of becoming PM.Or else Najib will find a way to get rid of him if his Umno/BN wins the GE.Najib knows who his enemies are in Umno.That is why it is called a dogs eat dogs world.Either way,because of the infighting and internal sabotaging Umno will self implode sooner than later.

Nazry,  5 October 2012 at 01:57  

Tuan Sak, It is an uphill task to disseminate info and inculcate political awareness especially among the kampong folks/Felda settlers. They are very complacent within their daily activities, surroundings and do not care much on issues related to economic matters, budget deficit and so forth. But your Malays version of the budget is commendable and direct-related to the hearts of these people. The longer the GE13th is withheld, the greater the possibility of capturing PUTRAJAYA. As for me, I have to brainwash 8 potential voters of my in laws in one of the Felda Scheme in Lanchang to vote for the opposition.
Harakah today published a reader lambasted PR leadership for wasting times in making police reports and conducting ceramahs in cities. He argued that city folks have made up their mind and their IT savvy enable balance information reached the masses. The bold critic published in the party official newspaper demonstrated the openness of PR to constructive critic and should be applauded. Hence, I hope Tuan SAK can publish more of Malays write up in the coming months as the GE13th is round the corner. The write up can be used for us in the Felda Scheme as tools to persuade our parents/neighbours. They are still within reach.

Anonymous,  5 October 2012 at 15:22  

I am in the city but my the majority of my friends are Malays so, yes I agreed with Nazri too about the Malay write ups...and thank you Dato for all the eye and mind opening of the readers - like me.

Alan Newman 5 October 2012 at 15:30  

http://www.transparency.org/country#NZL I speak under NZ’s credentials - rated No. 1 in the world for non-corruption.
Your PM’s Impeachment is long overdue. Scorpene scandal is only the tip of the iceberg. Think, before the arrival of internet media, twitter & blogs, how much has been plundered, squandered and hidden by Sarawak’s PBB & KL’s UMNO. Howard Zinn: “….…Our problem is that people are obedient all over the world in the face of poverty and starvation……….obedient while the jails are full of petty thieves…(and) the grand thieves are running the country. That’s our problem.” You should call for the resignation or arrest of UMNO, MACC, Sabah & Sarawak leaders now.

Alan Newman 5 October 2012 at 15:31  

http://www.transparency.org/country#NZL I speak under NZ’s credentials - rated No. 1 in the world for non-corruption.
Your PM’s Impeachment is long overdue. Scorpene scandal is only the tip of the iceberg. Think, before the arrival of internet media, twitter & blogs, how much has been plundered, squandered and hidden by Sarawak’s PBB & KL’s UMNO. Howard Zinn: “….…Our problem is that people are obedient all over the world in the face of poverty and starvation……….obedient while the jails are full of petty thieves…(and) the grand thieves are running the country. That’s our problem.” You should call for the resignation or arrest of UMNO, MACC, Sabah & Sarawak leaders now.

Alan Newman 5 October 2012 at 15:32  

The Scorpene case is coming to your doorstep, sooner or later….Isn’t God Almighty wonderful? Ceausescu, Mussolini, Saddam & Gaddaffi executed, Marcos & Suharto disgraced, Mubarak & sons in jail, Philippines’ Arroyo back in jail again. Just watch… The Malaysian show has begun.
http://www.transparency.org/country#NZL I speak under NZ’s credentials - rated No. 1 in the world for non-corruption.

Alan Newman 5 October 2012 at 15:33  

http://www.transparency.org/country#NZL I speak under NZ’s credentials - rated No. 1 in the world for non-corruption.
Your PM’s Impeachment is long overdue. Scorpene scandal is only the tip of the iceberg. Think, before the arrival of internet media, twitter & blogs, how much has been plundered, squandered and hidden by Sarawak’s PBB & KL’s UMNO. Howard Zinn: “….…Our problem is that people are obedient all over the world in the face of poverty and starvation……….obedient while the jails are full of petty thieves…(and) the grand thieves are running the country. That’s our problem.” You should call for the resignation or arrest of UMNO, MACC, Sabah & Sarawak leaders now.

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