The Lazy Choosy Malays
The Hidden Message Behind Mahathir’s Latest Blog Article...
Silly Mahathir has spoken again. The 94-year-old Prime Minister of Malaysia has again mocked and insulted his own community – ethnic Malays – for being lazy (*yawn*). Yes, it’s quite silly repeating the mantra again and again about a disease which he knew how to cure but refuses to prescribe. If he cures the disease, the Malays will be too smart for him to control.
Sharing some of his historical observations, Mr. Mahathir wrote on his blog that when the British colonist opened rubber estates and tin mines, no Malay was interested to work there. The local Malays had chosen instead to continue being rice farmers and fishermen, while a small number worked in the civil service as clerks. They were proud of earning a fixed salary and pension.
The premier said that the Malays looked down on jobs in the mining and plantation sectors as it required hard labour and were considered dangerous, dirty and difficult. As a result, the British had no choice but to bring in workers from China and India. The Malays were relief and happy that the 3Ds jobs – dangerous, dirty and difficult – were undertaken by foreigners.
The hiring of Chinese and Hindus saw a sudden booming of business in the cities. Mahathir recalled – “Due to their attitude, there were not many Malays living in the city. At that time the cities were developed and filled with Chinese grocery shops and all kinds of handyman. There was no Malay working as hard labour, let alone Malay businessmen. There were only a few Indian restaurants and spice shops.”
PM Mahathir’s remark is an indirect confession that without the Chinese and Indians, Malaysia’s landscape today might be very different. The country might look like the state of Kelantan at worst, or Brunei at best. But we know oil-rich Brunei has only 500,000 mouths to feed while Malaysia has more than 16-million Malays. So it’s an overstatement to say Malaysia could be like Brunei.
Despite being called a “coolie”, the ethnic Chinese were willing to take on 3Ds jobs. Even Chinese women worked as maids or nannies in the households of Malay nobles during the British era, says Mahathir. In his message to fellow Malays, the world’s oldest prime minister said the Chinese would normally migrate to any country if they find opportunities to make a living.
Chinese Women Work in Tin Mine - Malaya
He also revealed that in his younger days in Alor Star during the British rule, there was a desire to see Malays doing business and thus Pekan Rabu was built to enable villagers to sell some bananas, other fruits and baskets made by them. However, Mahathir said – “Their business did not become big. They traded part time. They did not have the desire to expand their business, just to eke out a living, that’s it.”
Mahathir slammed the Malays for not only being choosy in their jobs, but also not bothered at all by the wealth and progress made by the foreigners. He wrote – “Their belief was that their state remains under their ownership. That was what I saw … but their thinking was wrong. Because they were not willing to work hard, to do business seriously, they remained poor.”
“The gap between them and other races that worked hard and did business became wider. What happened was the rich became richer and the poor Malays became poorer. By right the Malays should realise what is happening to them. Unfortunately, they have not realised. Even until now Malays have not woken up. They still refuse to work,” – complained Mahathir.
“The Malays are still willing to surrender all work to foreigners. And foreigners have flooded our country. Seven million foreigners are still here. They work. What will happen to the Malays? Obviously, what had happened to the Malays and the country in the past will continue to happen,” – Mahathir continued his lengthy lecture on his blog.
The premier said – “There are some who claim that Malays are the master. What master? Poor people, people who lack capability, people who depend on the sympathy of other people. Is that master? Our fate is in our own hands. Getting angry with other people will not solve our problems. Our number is said to have increased, but a big number of poor people cannot compete with a small number of rich people.”
So, what are the messages that Mahathir wanted to send across with his latest babbling and bitching, besides his penchant for mocking the Malays as being lazy, depend on crutches, “syiok sendiri” (self-absorbed), inferior, dishonest, untrustworthy, corrupt and whatnot? Actually, this is not the first time he wanted the Malays to wake up from their slumber land.
The long and short message was to tell the Malay folks to forget about boycotting non-Muslim products, at least for now, because it would fail. That was why the old man said it’s useless to get angry with other people, presumably the minorities Chinese and Hindus, to the extent of starting a boycott campaign on non-Muslim products. Why?
Mahathir’s lecture reveals the basic foundation as to how his community can become a force to be reckoned with. If the Malays were not willing to work in 3Ds jobs like those in mining, plantation or construction sector, exactly how can they succeed in more complicated jobs like running a business? Can they work 7 days a week for 12 hours a day like the Chinese-owned grocery stores?
Some might argue why didn’t Mahathir tell the ethnic Chinese to work in such hard laboured industry too, and only discriminate against the ethnic Malay? Actually, as highlighted by Mahathir, the first generation of Chinese coming to what was known as Malaya back then had done precisely that, and they’ve now moved into the next phase of business.
Today, you don’t see Chinese men working as coolies in mining or construction sites, or Chinese women working as maids in Najib Razak’s house anymore. They had gone past that stage. Now, they would hire foreign labours to do the 3Ds jobs that their ancestors once did. They would also pay the Filipinos or Indonesians as maids to do house chores and take care of their kids.
That’s exactly why Mahathir was incredibly concerned because the 7-million foreigners – Indonesians, Bangladeshi, Burmese, Pakistanis, etc. – are repeating the history of the Chinese immigrants during the British era. If you care to look around, the Burmese is learning – even taking over – some of Chinese businesses at food stalls and grocery stores.
Yes, as the Malays still scream of “ketuanan Melayu”, the ideology of Malay supremacy espoused by the United Malays National Organization (UMNO), even their hardworking “brothers” from Indonesia are snatching jobs opportunity which the Malays considered as low-class. Heck, some Bangladeshi and Pakistanis have actually graduated to selling IT gadgets or repairing computers.
Foreign Workers in Malaysia
As the Chinese business owners fast climb up the value chain from their original role in managing, replicating and innovating business, cheap foreign workers were imported to do all the heavy lifting and dirty tasks. As described by Mahathir, the Malays are still proud – even desperate – of working in the civil service where they can earn a fixed salary and pension.
Everything is interrelated. If you don’t work hard, you don’t appreciate hard-earned money. And when you don’t value hard-earned money, you will tend to dishonour business agreement. And when you lack honesty, you can’t expect suppliers to give you credit terms simply because you’re untrustworthy. Trade credit is vital to ease cash flow, which can help improve a small business’s profitability.
Most Malays would complain that they lack capital to start a business. So the government gives them easy loans. However, the same group of Malay businessmen would more often than not use the easy money to buy a new car, get a nice office, renovate own house – even marry a new wife – before their business could even make any profit. To them, style (“gaya”) must come first.
Worse, when they earned some profits, they refused to pay their creditors or suppliers. They would celebrate with a bigger car and a nicer office or sexier furniture. They buy more debts and liabilities. Naturally, their credit terms would be terminated and any new product purchases have to be paid upfront. Their business would eventually go bust because they can’t roll over their business.
More importantly, not only certain groups of Malays are filled with anger and envy towards the Chinese for their successes, they also feel jealous of fellow Malays’ achievement in business. Spiteful jealousy exists within the Malay community for as long as one can remember, as admitted by former Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi in 2015.
Instead of helping each other to build a formidable network of supply chain and ecosystem like the ethnic Chinese, most short-sighted Malays would rather destroy fellow Malay business rivals – cutting off the nose to spite the face. Lack of competition breeds complacency and inefficiency. More players will create awareness of new products and increase consumers’ consumption.
Boycott Non-Muslim Products but...
So when Mahathir said the Malay community is a big number of poor people, but cannot compete with a small number of rich people, he was saying the majority ethnic Malays have chosen the easy way out to become consumers while the hardworking minority Chinese become the producers and suppliers. There’s one thing that the premier didn’t tell the Malays.
The Chinese can certainly profit from poor Malays. But they can profit even more if the Malays are rich or business-savvy. How? The current Chinese-Malay situation is like the relationship between China and Malaysia. But a very rich and business-savvy Malay community will create a relationship like China-US (before the trade war started).
Hence, it’s not true that the minority Chinese hate to see the Malays become successful. When the Malays become rich, they create a huge pool of customers with incredible buying power. Can you imagine the type of economic impact when 16-million rich Malays like the American consumers splash money for products at Chinese shops?
Do you think the Malays will still shout about boycotting non-Muslim products when they’re as rich as the Americans or Singaporeans? They would have created their own ecosystem by then. But first, the Malays need to get out of the cocoon of demanding handouts from the government and start working hard like a coolie. There’s no shortcut to success except hard work.
Dr. Mahathir’s prescription to fix the Malay’s laziness is not to help them at all. But that would mean a political suicide for the old man. After 62 years, the Malays are too addicted to special rights, privileges and handouts. That’s why the premier can only moan, whine and bitch about Malays being lazy and choosy of jobs. He can never give the medicine to cure the disease.
However, get ready for any new surprise from the cunning old fox. His grumbling drama could be his evil plan to justify giving more handouts or crutches to the Malays to win their support. There could be a plan to introduce a newer NEP (New Economic Policy), the discrimination and racist policy which officially ended in 1991 but restructured as NDP (national development policy). - FT
1. Semasa saya berumur belasan tahun, saya dapat perhatikan keadaan di Alor Star. Masa itu Negeri-Negeri Melayu sedang dijajah oleh British. Negeri-Negeri Melayu terima baik penjajahan British.
2. Yang tidak dapat dinafi ialah British membawa sistem Pemerintahan yang lebih baik danNegeri-Negeri mengalami sedikit sebanyak pembangunan.
3. British membuka ladang-ladang getah dan lombong bijih timah. Yang anehnya tidak ada orang Melayu yang bekerja dalam ladang dan lombong ini. Pekerja terdiri dari orang India dan Cina. Perniagaan kedai runcit dan aneka jenis tukang-tukang semuanya terdiri dari orang Cina.
4. Dimanakah orang Melayu? Mereka bekerja dalam sawah padi mereka, dan ada sedikit yang menjadi nelayan. Sebilangan kecil dari mereka bekerja dengan Kerajaan sebagai kerani. Lebih kecil lagi ialah bilangan merekayang memegang jawatan tinggi dalam Kerajaan. Mereka ini semua berbangga kerana dibayar gaji tetap dan pencen.
5. Yang tidak terdapat ialah orang Melayu yang berniaga atau bekerja sebagai buruh kasar. Orang Melayu pandang hina bidang-bidang ini.
6. Oleh kerana sikap ini tidak terdapat ramai orang Melayu yang tinggal di bandar-bandar. Pada masa itu pun bandar-bandar didiri dan dipenuhi dengan kedai Cina. Tidak ada kedai Melayu. Ada beberapa buah kedai makan dan rempah cabai orang India.
7. Raja-Raja Melayu tidak iktiraf orang Cina dan India sebagai rakyat. Kepercayaan mereka ialah orang ini, akan kembali ke Negara masing-masing apabila khidmat mereka tidak diperlu lagi.
Dah lah tulisan Dr.M siap dgn tajuk "TAK BEKERJA",
tapi yg terrasa ialah Melayu yg BEKERJA.
8. Orang Cina biasanya berhijrah ke Negara lain jika mereka nampak peluang mencari makan. Mereka berhijrah ke Amerika dan Australia dan ke Negara-Negara jajahan British. Melihat kestabilan pemerintahan British dan peluang kerja, mereka datang dengan ramai ke Negeri-Negeri Melayu. Mereka sanggup bekerja keras. Dikenali sebagai kuli mereka sanggup buat kerja kotor, kerja berat dan merbahaya. Mereka sanggup menarik “langca”, dan apa sahaja yang memberi pendapatan kepada mereka. Ramaiperempuan Cina yang menjadi “amah” di rumah pembesar Melayu, menjaga anak dan membersih rumah.
9. Orang Melayu berasa senang kerana kerja berat, kotor dan berbahaya serta perniagaan dilakukan oleh orang asing. Jika mereka lihat kekayaan dan kemajuan orang asing ini, mereka tidak berasa khuatir sedikit pun. Kepercayaan mereka ialah Negeri mereka kekal sebagai milik mereka. Itu yang saya lihat. Semasa saya muda di zaman British timbul keinginan melihat orang Melayu berniaga juga. Di Alor Star dibina Pekan Rabu, pekan sari dimana orang kampung boleh menjual sedikit sebanyak pisang dan buah-buahan bakul dan raga anyaman mereka. Perniagaan mereka tidak menjadibesar. Mereka berniaga secara sambilan. Mereka tidak berniat pun untuk membesar perniagaan. Setakat kais pagi makan pagi, kais petang makan petang, itu sahaja.
10. Tetapi anggapan mereka meleset. Kerana mereka tidak sanggup bekerja kuat, tidak sanggup berniaga secara serius mereka terus miskin. Jarak antara mereka dengan kaum lain yang bekerja kuat dan berniaga menjadi semakin luas. Yang berlaku ialah yang sudah kaya menjadi lebih kaya dan orang Melayu yang miskin menjadi lebih miskin. Ini sudah ditakdir. Tak perlu buat apa-apa.
11. Sepatutnya orang Melayu sedar terhadap apa yang berlaku kepada mereka. Malangnya mereka tidak sedar. Sehingga sekarang pun orang Melayu masih tidak sedar. Mereka masih enggan bekerja. Orang Melayu masih rela serah segala kerja kepada orang asing. Dan orang asing pun membanjiri Negara kita. Tujuh juta orang asing masih berada di sini sekarang ini. Mereka bekerja. Apakah akan terjadi kepada orang Melayu. Tentulah apa yang sudah jadi dahulu kepada Negara dan orang Melayu, yang akan terus jadi. Ada yang dakwa orang Melayu adalah Tuan. Tuan apa? Orang miskin, orang yang tidak ada kebolehan, orang yang bergantung kepada belas kasihan orang lain, Tuankah.
12. Nasib kita di tangan kita. Memarahi orang lain tak akan menyelesai masalah kita. Bilangan kita dikatakan bertambah. Tetapi jumlah besar orang yang miskin tidak dapat bersaing dengan jumlah kecil orang yang kaya. - chedet
Melayu malas? Aku buat empat kerja tau!
Camna Melayu nak maju...
Ada melayu tu meniaga workshop... lepas tu mai satu melayu hantar repair keta.. mintak tolong murah sikit.. takkan melayu tak blh tolong melayu kan.. lepas tu melayu tadi pun rekemen la melayu lain.. situ murah.. so ramai lah melayu p repair situ sebab blh dpt harga adik beradik.. adik beradik nye pasal.. melayu pomen tadi pun repair murah2.. bila keta siap.. melayu adik beradik tadi mintak hutang pulak.. tapi melayu pomen kena bayar cash kat cina sparepart pasai bukan rega adik beradik, sebab melayu pomen tu bukan adik beradik cina tuu.... lama kelamaan.. melayu pomen tu terpaksa tutup kedai.. hutang tak blh cover.. sebab repair kebajikan sesama melayu... bila da tutup.. melayu yg kerap repair disitu pun berkata “ niee laaa melayu meniaga.. suka hati meniaga suka hati tutup .. camana melayu nak maju?? .masibaiiiiiii.sesetengah je mcm tu. X semua pon. Ada yg steady - Zaman Atan#kisahBENAR
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