Friday, November 29, 2013

Highlighting positive, but concern and cautious

When only bad news pervade the air space and Internet, it is only fair that the positive side of it is made known and propagated. One cannot be too sceptical or critical all the time. It only makes one unrealistically negative.

The problem is there is a rising segment of the population that refuse to listen to both sides of an issue but quick to make conclusion and pass judgement on limited information. The national leadership should be made aware or it will be their last term in government.

In a previous posting "Bought and sold on rating agencies", it was a sceptic tone against rating agencies. Such is the mood set, the positive part may have been overshadowed.

And there are the positives like current account surplus, reducing fiscal deficit, stable growth, increase private sector investment, etc.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

7-Eleven listing again?

Talking about money laundering [read yesterday's posting here], look whose making the headlines these days?

If it isn't long suspected money launderer turned legit, Tan Sri Vincent Tan himself. He was suspected then because he had interests in night clubs, pool hall, entertainment related investment, retailing, and many typical money launderers front. However it is too late for anyone to investigate.

Vincent Tan has done hundreds of deals and build many layers of walls for more than two decades as corporate player for MACC to trace back. Furthermore, he is an influential and powerful man. Politically well-hedged in both sides of the political divide.  

The big news on Vincent Tan was last Monday's Securities Commission rejection of 7-Eleven's RM700 initial pubic offering (IPO). The scheduled listing was before the year end. It seems, as reported by The Star here, SC is not convinced of the valuation.

Another issue is how many rounds of listings and delistings of 7-Eleven would SC allow Vincent Tan to deceive the public?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Crime pays

A typical Mike Spillane TV series or movie loves to use the line "crime doesn't pay". As long as the long arm of the law does not catch-up, crime pays well and pays really well for school droputs and kids from wrong neighbourhood and urban slums.

Tian Chua's political portal, Malaysia Chronicle here reported or spinned a study by a French researcher, Sophie Lemiere claiming that the majority of the underworld support BN, thus the blame on underworld activities could be deviated from Pakatan Rakyat.

Whether Lemiere has the credential or expertise to talk, she delivered a public talk at USM. Maybe it is a spin by MChronicle. If MChronicle is in the know of her study, did they helped to bring her in contact with the local hoodlums?

It is pointless to bring politics in because underworld is about making illegal money and their superficial political support will naturally be to individuals with authority and access to resources.

How would Tian Chua answer to the drastic rise in underworld-suspected businesses in Selangor and Penang since Pakatan Rakyat took over?

In agreement with Bukit Katil

The issue of spying by the American and Australian intelligence networks is spiraling to another level. This time it had implicate Singapore. Wisma Putra had summoned SIngapore High Commissioner yesterday to explain.  

It is no more use of embassies or High Singapore's Straits Times or long suspected spies like Dato Kalimullah gathering intel information. Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad revealed Singapore is an important link in the international surveillance network by US National Security Agency (NSA). [Read on in Just Read here. and Bigdog here.]

Meanwhile, PKR Member of Parliament for Bukit Katil, Shamsul Iskandar Akin had submitted under Peraturan Mesyuarat 18(1) to condemn the spying act. According to blogger Putera Merdeka [read here], urgent motion could be submitted for specific matter, public interest and need urgent action.

In concurrance with Putera Merdeka, we agree with Bukit Katil. On matter of national security and sovereignty, partisanship should be cast aside and all should be united. While the executive deal through diplomatic channel, Parliament could make a stand as another branch of government under the separation of power. 

But ... but ... chicken butt ....

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Bought and sold by rating agencies

On October 30, Fitch Ratings ignored government's steadfast effort to reduce fiscal deficit and the planned introduction of GST for 2015 as announced in the 2014 budget presented to Parliament to maintain a negative outlook for our foreign and local bonds downgraded in July. [Read FMT here]

Someone up there must be fuming thus for an article distributed to bloggers and media entitled "From stable to positive" to counter Fitch rating with Moody's latest upgrade. To them, government had heed warnings from Fitch by taking various necessary drastic steps like reducing subsidies.

When Moody raised Malaysia foreign bond to A3 and local bond to A1 from 9 categories of rating Aaa, Aa, A, Baa, Ba, B, Caa, Ca and C and effectiveness rating of 1, 2 or 3, it is acknowledged as positive re-rating. Minister Dato Abdul Wahid Omar (AWO) gloated with joy and called Fitch the "number 3 rating agency".

Two concerns came to mind: First, why is the government so focused on what the rating agencies have to say? Is our economic management based on reaction to rating agencies recommendations? Secondly, why must we believe too much on what the rating agencies say when their credibility is still in question?

They have never governed a country or managed an economy or probably run a company, but the Minister seemed to be bought and sold by these rating agencies.

U-Custom tender raised in Parliament

On September 24th, 2013, this blog exposed a typical leakage in a contract for Custom's IT system called as U-Customs. [Read again here]

After Customs's had set the technical specifications and short listed the tenders by the technical merits and ranked it, it is send to the Ministry of Finance (MoF). They are supposed to rank the tenders by pricing and determine the most rightful tender to win.

However, there is a funny bit and that is where the leakage which allowed those with the insider contacts to steal the tender from the rightful winner. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Ask what you can do to fight corruption

To all those that kept having expectation on government, the famous quote of the late American President John F Kennedy, whose 50th anniversary of his death was just remembered, is a good reminder.

Do not kept expecting on the government. The Malaysian public should also do their part. It applies for those concern with corruption.

"Ask not what MACC can do to address corruption - ask what you can do to fight corruption."

We had stumbled on an article on the same message and wish to share it in this blog. At the same time, the issue of Datin Seri Rosmah's Qatar trip is getting a bit over done.

Big bully at Salt Lake City

Replicating President Suharto forced to agree to IMF

This blog warned that the TPPA negotiators' talk in Salt Lake City from 19th-23rd will be nasty. [Read here.]

Otherwise, the Americans won't be too sure of TPPA getting signed by December and Carlye becoming more confident with their entry into Malaysia. [Read here.]

MITI briefed everyone, including the media that everyone are equal in TPPA talk.

However, unlike the negotiation at other locations, it was different in Mormon country, USA. As predicted by Auckland University Prof Jane Kesley, the US was bullying using conniving negotiation tactics. By the look of things, there was no horse trading but gunpoint negotation.

Trade has and lawsuits has yet to commence under TPPA terms, but the bullying has began.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Contempt judgement cast negative perception on judiciary

Dato Ibrahim Ali after serving his 1-day prison term and paying his RM20,000 penalty
Judges decisions and judgements cannot be questioned or debated openly in public or via the media. That is what contempt of court basically means.

That is the predicament Perkasa had to faced when Perkasa's webmaster and editor, Zainuddin Salleh singlehandedly wrote and publish an article on an impending judgement from Justice VT Singham in the RM50 million lawsuit by Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim against Utusan Malaysia on their portal on January 7th, 2013. [Read in The Star here.]

Contempt of court is seldom applied and usually judges ignore public comments. This is different but the judgement on Ibrahim and Perkasa cast a perception of ill intent and inconsistency.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Why no face of Mat Zain on google?

Former CID for Kuala Lumpur, Dato Mat Zain Ibrahim have been making many controversial statements that was promoted by the pro-opposition media.

Obviously, they would love to report on issues which relate to Anwar's black eye incident, issues discrediting former Inspector General of Police, Tan Sri Musa Hassan dan Attorney General, Tan Sri Gani Patail, and many other issues.

It was disclosed recently that he met Tun Dr Mahathir in August in the presence of Matthias Chang and Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah. No news is heard on what had transpired.

Friday, November 22, 2013

NST should apologise in the obituiry

Most of the comments against our harsh criticism of NST for chickening out from BERSIH NGOs lawsuit should look beyond one level. As far as detractors whose interest is not for NST's betterment, their comments are of no relevence. 

Surely it is not about us wanting to takeover the editorial positions in NST. That is a shallow argument and cheap diversion. Jobs, bosses and subordinates does not interest us. Neither do we want to manage nor be managed by others. Get real!

The opposition are laughing at NST because they saw them bought their bluff.

Friday weekend

Masjid Abu Bakar from the view of our former home

Ever since a document leak by a blogger of a plan to change back Johor's weekend holiday from Sunday to Friday, it has become the talk of Johor just like the time the plan to change from Friday to Sunday was made known.

It got Johor civil service officers embarassed with the leak. Secretary to the Johor Royal Council, Dato Abdul Rahim Abdul Aziz told the press that they are investigating the leak.

Menteri Besar, Dato Khaled Nordin had to come forward to explain that it is still at the proposal stage and still under deliberation.

They should just lighten up. There is something good with the leak. It got the public to discuss the proposal.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

If too coward to defend, NST should be in 'jual ayam' business

Before the general election and on February 7 this year, "BERSIH group" filed a lawsuit against New Straits Times Press (Malaysia) Berhad and Farrah Naz Karim, the author of a September 21, 2012 article titled “Plot to destabilise government”.

Brave girl!

One lawsuit against one of NST's most provocative writing and a court case would spill out the facts and evidences for the public to view, yet they did not defend their article and reporter to admit defeat and apologise. Ayam betul ....

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Who will gain the respect - Malaysian or Indonesian?

After Indonesia recalled its ambassador from Canberra on Monday, BBC reported Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono announced suspended co-operation with Australia.

This is in reaction to spying allegations by Australia as reported in the Australian media from documents leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

On October 29, The Guardian of UK and Des Spiegel of Germany 's exposed American spying operations in countries including Malaysia. [Read in Outsyed the Box here.]

Dato Hishamuddin immediately made a statement to request for an answer. There have been answers as reported.

Our reaction?

Problems with late night mamak teh tarik

The cartoon clip above claim that without the mysterious mamak, "life would be quite impossible in Malaysia." That could be reworded and still remain true as these mamak shop made life impossible.

In our last appointment with the doctor, he raised concern of our weight. He asked the time of our last meal. Our's is usually around 8-9 PM.

However, we did tell that we had a past bad habit to go for late night teh tarik at mamak shop that could stretch till the wee hours in the morning. Early in our working life and after being abroad for a long time, we had this bad habit of having nasi lemak every day.

The doctor's question reminded us of an NST article few days ago about 24 hours eateries.

Consumers Association of Penang president S.M. Mohamed Idris called on the authorities to not allow eateries to operate round-the-clock to check the rising cases of diabetes and obesity. These eateries serve food with high in fat, salt and sugar content, plus people tend to overeat.

For a start, how about tightening the operations of mamak shop. Would SM Idris agree to tighten up on his fellow "countrymen"?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

TPPA: Suspicion of SOE fire sale

Yesterday's posting [read back here] on Carlyle entry into Malaysia via Middle East and American confidence that TPPA will be signed in December are serious matters.

Carlyle's move is deceptive and gullible Malaysian could be hoodwinked into believing the country is getting flow of investment from Muslim brothers in the Middle East. Knowing so well that Arab are difficult lots.  When it comes to money, there is no Islamic brotherhood sentiment.  

The American statement confirmed our posting, "New twist to the American TPPA manouvre." Dato Najib commented that he did not see the TPPA be signed in December. But, the Americans are confident that the Salt Lake City special meeting that is to today till Sunday, 24th will be successful.

It means the American planned arm twisting, conniving, and horse trading manouvre on the chief negotiators will work. It could mean Malaysia maybe willing to compromise on something in exchange for something else.

Monday, November 18, 2013

US expect TPPA signed: Carlye to bolt on Malaysia

Reuters reported the infamous Washinton-based private equity firm Carlye Group is looking to acquire more businesses via their invested companies in the Middle East after their initial foray to buy a lighting company.

Carlye had businesses operating Malaysia before like their oil and gas subsidiary of Haliburton, Brown and Root Engineering. However, Brown and Root packed up many many years ago.

The name Carlye Group ignites back the memory of the Gulf War in Iraq, father and son Presidents, Goerge Bush and his son, George W, former Vice president Dick Chenney, Director Michael Moore's documentary Farenheit 911 and Ben Laden.

Race and religion matters ....

Lim Kit Siang came from a Bintang Tiga area in Batu Pahat

The punchline "Why is it always about race" by Guan Eng to respond to Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin remark should not be left unanswered and continue to be discussed. [Read the exchanges here and here.]

In addition, the debate between Lim Kit Siang and Tun Dr Mahathir on Mahathirism [read our response here] should continue to occupy Kit Siang's time and mind, who never fails to try to pretend not to be racial and draconian. Let Lim Guan Eng defend his father's draconian ways in the selection of DAP's Central Committee.

Kit Siang's latest act is to try to pretend that he is suprised to be called a Communist [read here]. The usual response will be to look back at history and DAP's recent adamant call to allow the return of Lim Chin Peng. Communist Bintang Tiga had a colonialist intention to assume power in Malaya.

To those from Batu Pahat, they know Kit Siang came from an area called Lim Poon and MCA leaders are aware not to talk of past communist stories there. During emergency era, Batu Pahat was a hot-bed for the Bintang Tiga that no Malays can enter Bandar Penggaram safely.  

Most Malays, with the probable exception of the less historically conscience younger set, see DAP leaders' surmon for multiracialism as pretensious and down right hypocrit. DAP's adamant claim is merely a ploy to claim the universally perceived high moral ground. [Read out take on CHOGM at Sri Lanka here.]

Saturday, November 16, 2013

TPPA: ACCCIM's notion of protecting national interest

Government insist on defending state rights, national policies like whatever is left of the Bumiputera affirmative action policy, and nation's sovereignty and constitution.

If the TPPA is signed, Malaysia will have to dismantle it's SOE or State owned enterprise, which goes counter to their economic model for a Temasek-like organisation to lead the local economy.

There are many other troubling issues but the Malaysian government is reluctant to withdraw from negotiation. For a world top 20 trading nation, Malaysia is dependent on trade for economic sustainability.

It is to Malaysia's interest to be part of the negotiation to form the partnership agreement. That is the way to protect the nation's interest. If Malaysia is to cop out now and then rejoin later, it will have to accept without question what other countries have agreed.

The pro-TPPA claim that it is good for trade but does TPPA really help trade?

A stone throw could hit a Datok

In our posting on the stripping of Datokship here, blogger Life of Annie left a note to remind that there is always two side to a story.

Although the posting was just us rambling our thought and not definitive like journalist reports, we appreciate the reminder.

It would have been great had she shared what she knew. If we had made up our mind, at least for the benefit of readers. Other sources did came to tell us more stories on the stripping of Datokship.

However, we are were never interested to write about it in the first place. It is after all his Highness's prerogative.

Nevertheless, the incident had brought to light the issue of abundance of Datokship.

Friday, November 15, 2013

DAP's insincere concern for Sri Lanka Tamil

DAP had called upon Putrajaya to boycott the Commonwealth Summit in Sri Lanka to start today till  November 17. Secretary General, Lim Guan Eng urged Malaysia to join Canada and India in the boycott. [Read in The Malay Mail Online dated 12/11 here.]

On a quick look, it could be consistent with the observation of Ye Lin Sheng in his book, The Chinese Dilemma [read here].

In one of the many blogs here repeating the same 7 "bad" habits of Malaysian Chiinese, Ye viewed the tendency of "orang cina Malaysia", as represented by DAP, to accept anything spitted out by the "orang putih" than acknowledging the wisdom behind the actions of a Malay-led government. 

Since India is boycotting, let us allow some leeway for Guan Eng. He had lately been complaining "why must it all be about race" in his critic to Dato Zainuddin Maidin. [Read the exchanges here and here.]

He may have just come to the realisation that DAP should not be about Chinese since Indian members are giving him much headache on the CEC election and damn should he have to purge them out of DAP.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Ramli Yusof perception game against Gani?

Instead of thanking his lucky star for escaping conviction and move on, the infamously acknowledged corrupt cop, Dato Ramli Yusof intend to sue the government for alleged conspiracy suit and defamation for a humongous amount of RM128.5 million. [Read Rocky Bru here]

In the heat of the expose against Ramli's asset, there is a rumour going around in early November that the former CCID Director had a meeting with Tun Dr Mahathir.

It seemed to get coverage by Malaysian Insider and Malaysiakini as though Ramli had convinced Dr Mahathir to take on Attorney General, Tan Sri Gani Patail. OutSyed the Box [read here] wrote about the rumoured meeting but denied such meeting.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

PKR imitating Mahathirism on TPPA

Lim Kit Siang is going about town with his punchline to pray to see Tun Dr Mahathir live to be a 100 to see the death of an idealogy he contributed to label as Mahathirism [read LKS here].

Typical propaganda style of Kit Siang to ignore exchanges with the old man but had his "chorus girls" repeat it all over the blogosphere. Before a debate could actually take place, Anwar boo boy here declare Kit Siang as winner.

It only denigrates Kit Siang as a childish coward in a children playground's quarrel.

The Unspinners yesterday [read here] described Kit Siang as short on the intellectual senses. They highlighted that Dr Mahathir have long acknowledged in 2010 that such a thing called Mahathirism have ended.

Monday, November 11, 2013

New twist to the American TPPA manouvre

The TPPA has been described in many ways but these You Tube video titles and content - "A Corporate Trojan Horse" and "A Backroom Deal For The 1%." - accurately described the true intention of the TPPA

In late September, MITI Minister, Dato Mustapha Mohamad had an evening session with media and bloggers to repeat assurance the government will not compromise the nation's interest by signing the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). Jinggo here described the evening as enlightening.

In the evening session, yours truly had highlighted an article by Professor Jane Kessley, a Law Professor of the University of Auckland claiming the TPPA negotiation will tank and looks likely to fail to reach any form of agreements on the outstanding issues.

Subsequently in the discussion later, it was suggested that the government consider an exit plan. Maybe it is too soon.

The American and their capitalist backers are not ready to resign to fate. They have been manouvring quietly to break up the outstanding issues into different highly technical sessions.  

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Royal purge in Johor?

Former state secretariat office in the midst of Johor Baru central business district

The stripping of the Datokship of CEO of Yayasan Pelajaran Johor Holdings Sdn Bhd (YPJ), Hamsan Seringat took frontpage of the Utusan Malaysia. [Read Utusan Malaysia here.]

Such news usually becomes the talk of Johor. Unlike other states like Pahang and Melaka, the award of Johor Datokship is far and few but periodically there will be Datokship retracted. The last was Datok Chua Jui Meng (still has another Dato from other states.) 

Hamsan was the District Officer for Pontian and Batu Pahat from 2005 to 2006, before assuming the position of Director, State Economic Planning Unit in 2006. He was appointed CEO of YPJ from 2011 till today.

Secretary for the Johor Royal Council (or Majlis Jumaah Diraja Johor), Datuk Abdul Rahim Ramli explained that his Highness the Sultan of Johor has the sole power to retract honours given to those who failed in their duties and responsibilities.

Friday, November 08, 2013

A Malay genius pay tribute to a past Malay genius

Still plain lazy to write after being away for more than two weeks.

To keep this blog up-dated, we like to share this You Tube link sent to us from Mus, an old friend that we met more than 30 years ago at his home in Long Island, New York.

He was excited to introduce Dr Afifi Al Akiti, a student of the pondok from Perak that went on to study in several countries under many great teachers and finally landed lecturing at Oxford.

Although not widely known in Malaysia, Dr Afifi made significant achievement at his young age. Perakian Mus was proud to highlight Dr Afifi as an example to dispel the stereotype labeling of "Melayu bodoh."

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

MUSICAL INTERLUDE: "Tuesday's gone with the wind..."

Train roll on, on down the line,
Won't you please take me far, far away.
Now I feel the wind blow, outside my door,
I'm leavin' my woman at home, oh yeah.
Tuesday's gone with the wind,
My baby's gone, gone with the wind.
And I don't know, oh, where I'm goin'.
I just want to be left alone.
When this train ends, I'll try again.
I'm leavin' my woman at home.
My baby's gone

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Sungai Limau: The Lost Message of Poverty

Few friends had just returned from performing their Haj in Makkah and Medina and are at the height of their soulful bliss.

It inspires us to share the enlightenment experience a Cabinet Minister's upon his return from Haj as told to us by a friend.

Due to their busy schedule, Cabinet Ministers usually go for short Haj trips. Unlike the rest of us that usually go for as long as 45 days, their's could be less than 10 days.

However, his Haj had such a profound effect on him that it is worth sharing. It relates closely to the situation and by-election in Sungai Limau.

My Say