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Sakmongkol ak 47

Monday 12 January 2015

The Breakdown of Government

Francis Fukuyama wrote an article about the decay of American political institutions in the magazine The American Interest. (December 2013) He tells of the story about the decay of American political institutions which contribute to the overall decline of America into a state of parties, courts and lobbyists. The governing of America is overtaken by unelected courts and interest groups. The power of the executive is usurped by the courts and the congress and by powerful interest groups.
Malaysia has not reached the stature of a United States of America- but on a smaller scale and not on a dissimilar note, the decline of the UMNO led government has been caused by the decay in some political institutions. The usurpation of power, unlike the America Fukuyama cited, is not brought about by the judicialization of administrative powers, but is largely brought about by the weak leadership of the PM.
The PM is weak and is bullied by a conglomerate of powerful interest groups operating on the fringes of political lunacy and more recently by the unelected fraternity of ustazs inhabiting the various Islamic bodies in the country. The religious fraternity using the powerful tool of religious fealty, is now exercising the new political tool of vetocracy. Exercised on a weak and timid PM, the secular government founded on civil laws is caving in to the vetocracy of the theocratic romantics.
While in America, the judiciary is seen as playing an outsized role, here in Malaysia, the judiciary is seen as an instrument furthering the interests of the executive. It allows the executive to play dumb to allow the rise of dysfunctional ministers, ministries and departments.
There is decay in some of the ministries and government departments in the sense that they have become dysfunctional and out of control. The recent exposure about a letter of endorsement by the Home Minister written in bad and confused English on behalf of a known lawbreaker, is worrying. The not so smart ustaz in the government in charge of religious affairs gave a contradicting statement about the Paris massacre which serve to show the PM has lost control. That’s indicative of his failure to communicate clearly what the government stands for.
There are so many voices of government- the government has become so large that it is no longer accountable. So many institutions are behaving as independent power centres that they become alternative instruments for the expansion of government. We have ended up with a government that is very large, but one that is actually less accountable because it is largely in the hands of unelected parties. JAKIM , and the equivalent jakims at state levels are speaking about implementing laws, which authority ought to lie only with federal government agencies.
The check and balances to government do not come from elected reps but from these various administrative bodies, created in the first place by the overriding government, and are now exercising unchallengeable vetocracy. .
The decision system has become too porous giving too many actors the means to stifle adjustments in public policy. We need stronger mechanisms to force collective decisions but, because of the judicialization of government and the outsized role of interest groups, we are unlikely to acquire such mechanisms short of a systemic crisis.
In that sense these operate to render the government weak. It does not help us to have a timid and weak PM. The PM does not seem to have what it takes to govern.


bruno 12 January 2015 at 22:01  

When a corporation with one thousand workers have a management and staff of one hundred.Producing or manufacturing goods of five hundred millions a year.

A new CEO comes in and say that the company wants to expand it's production facilities by fifty percent.So he adds his strategic and marketing staff,adding another thirty to the workforce.

While the planning for expansion is in process,the strategic team got down to work.Construction of additional factory space.Ordering or adding machineries and training of additional staff.

When everything is said and done,the world's economy comes to a halt.In other words,recession kicks in.

But this corporation borrowed heavily and mostly from foreign banks and in foreign currency too.And the ringgit has plunged from Rg3.10 to Rg3.50 and rising.This corporation is now in deep trouble.

The gomen is the same spot.To entertain corruption and cronyism,with less income from black gold,rising debt and falling commodities,if it was this same corporation it would have bankrupted umpteen times already.

Anonymous,  13 January 2015 at 09:27  

How is that the Perak Mufti, Isma, Perkasa, can say what they want and get away with it?
Why should Kassim Ahmad, an old man, be dragged out in the middle of the night?
Why are they against everything - ballet, concerts, girls dressing, yoga, swimming, hugging, liberalism, pluralism, GLBT and still claim to be non extremists?

Anonymous,  13 January 2015 at 09:30  

As-salam Dato'...

Tiba-tiba saya rasa nak bertanya...

Saya yakin sebagai orang lama dalam politik Malaysia, Dato' boleh membantu...

Apa beza Islam Agama Persekutuan dengan Islam agama rasmi Persekutuan?

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