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Friday, November 1, 2013

Budget2014: Dark days ahead for rakyat

October 28, 2013

Some theorists tout that Najib Tun Razak’s strategy of ‘investing’ in a larger ‘brainwashing training camp’ in the guise of the civil service is to ensure BN's 'fixed deposit'.

By Howard Lee

The 2014 budget would have been the ideal opportunity and a crucial platform for Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak to convert the promises he made on the c pre-PRU13 campaign trail of ‘transformation’ and reform into reality.

With the budget for the forthcoming year tabled before our eyes, not only do we see that it was all a lie, it is also clear that there was no intention to transform in the first place.

Since the 5th of May, the BN government has not only refused to right the wrongs but has seen very little ‘transformation’ if not none at all.

The government’s own figures showed that 60% of the nation are eligible for BR1M . That means 60% of Malaysians earn less than RM3000 per month and are below the tax paying threshold.

With the introduction of GST, they will now be paying tax.

We can see through the tabling of the GST, that BN is adversely affecting, in effect robbing the general masses including the poor and struggling lower middle class, to further enrich the super rich, as seen from 1% reduction of corporate tax.

What is also damningly worrying is the general direction of the BN government’s economic rationale.

In simple terms, the ratio between operational expenditure (OpEx) and development expenditure (DevEx) is akin to a business ration, which is between money allocated for overheads and paying the bills (OpEx) and money allocated to buying assets and equipment to improve or expand and develop.

The general rule of thumb when looking at administrative budgets is that a year-on-year increase in the OpEx budget, means that the organisation is focused on the present less on the future.

Naturally, the higher percentage of DevEx signals a stronger focus on improving the organisations capacity to grow or develop, thereby less of a focus on the future.

What we know is that there has been a systematic and orchestrated decrease in DevEx since 2010.

Not only is this trend apparent in terms of DevOp percentage of total budget, but in absolute currency term, the BN Government is cutting DevOp by RM3.2 billion, a whopping 6 % year on year.

This is counter-characteristic to a developing nation claiming to gun for developed status within the next six years, and clearly shows that Najib is abandoning investments in future growth.

Conspiracy theory

Corresponding to that is the year-on-year increase in OpEx sounding another spine-shivering alarm bell.

The systematic increase in OpEx is from 73.6% when Najib first tabled a budget as Finance minister-cum- Prime Minister, to its current crippling 82% signaling an unsustainably ballooning government bubble, heading for inevitable explosion.

Some conspiracy theorists have touted this as Najib’s strategy of ‘investing’ in a larger ‘brainwashing training camp’, in the guise of a growing civil service.

BN views the civil service as a fixed deposit constituency.

In political-economic term, this is simply too much government, with no governance, at the expense of the nation’s future.

The general outlook on this particularly budget is that it is the tip of an enormously huge RM264.3 billion iceberg.

Najib’s only interest is in maintaining power. His near-blind-shortsightedness in fatally cutting DevEx, indicative of an abandonment of any investment in the future beyond this election cycle.

Najib is nursing his desperation and maintaining the 56-year-old lie that is BN at the expense of not just the Malaysians today, but generations to come.

GST, rising fuel costs and abolishment of sugar subsidies are frightening but is a small part of the darkness in the coming four years ahead.

Those walking the corridors of power are laughing at us whilst we face dark prospects ahead.

We the people have limited options in voicing our fears and choosing an alternative path, one of which is through the process of democratic elections.

And that has failed.

The writer is DAP’s Pasir Panji assemblyman

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