Wednesday, December 30, 2015

New Year 2016 – Is there still hope?

Engulfed in an environment of gloom

As the year 2015 comes to a close it may be pertinent for us to reflect on the events in the year that affected us; in our own lives, in our families and in the nation. Some may be good others bad but they all affect us in some way or another. The end of the year is a time to reflect what went wrong and try to make amends to do better in the coming year. 

To me the most significant lesson that I learnt in 2015 is the one that is based on the “Cash is King” phenomenon that is prevalent at all levels of our society. It was there before but on small scale but now it has blossomed to become a national phenomenon with the involvement at the highest level in the government and private sectors. The events that unfolded during the year goes to prove that anything can be achieved with money, it is just a matter of the quantum involved. It reminds me of an old saying, ‘’every man has his price ‘’. This simply means that it is possible to bribe anyone as long as you know how much or what to bribe him or her with.

In this phenomenon of ‘’Cash is King”, corruption was accepted initially as commission and now as donation. Sadly it has been even described as charity whereby you share your fortunes with those less fortunate who support you of course for something in return.

Spill over from this Cash is King Phenomenon is the fact that money seems to have magical powers that can turn bad into good and wrong into right. What has been taught as good may not be so anymore as money can change that like a magic wand. If you give money, there will be enough people to say you are right despite knowing well you are obviously wrong. Yes, cash is truly the king today.

Even crimes of hate and racism are hailed as just and necessary to defend one’s race and religion. Respect and tolerance for those different from us are no more esteemed principles anymore. Law and order are no more sacred as it used to be as those connected can afford to breach them blatantly with impunity as no actions will be taken against them.

Speaking up the truth which was rewarded before is now being punished, by the very people entrusted to defend the laws that were meant to protect the people. Loyalty and gratitude are no more rewarded anymore. Experience is not appreciated and those who can contribute through long experience are side-lined if they are of no use to those in power.
Due to this misguided phenomenon of this “Cash is King” policy the country is going backwards. Failed education, mismanaged economy, loss of cherished values and discrimination based on race, religion and political affiliation are making Malaysia less competitive in the region and the world which is more globalised. Furthermore the high cost of living, due in part to uncontrolled corruption makes living in the country really difficult.

Sadly what makes the “Cash is king” policy a success today is our inherent greed coupled with the breakdown of values and law and order. What is needed to fight this evil that is causing the downfall of our nation is for us, the citizens, to get rid of this greed in us and replace it with a sincere desire to elevate our nation with the cherished values of a developed one. This to many is an impossible task with little no chance of success. 

As we enter into the New Year 2016, there is a generalised feeling of uncertainty, gloom and fear for our future in the country. The fear and anxiety is further aggravated by the exodus of many of our close friends, colleagues and relatives who have decided with heavy hearts to seek the peaceful way to greener pastures for their children elsewhere, where they are more welcome. A loss for us is indeed a gain for others.

The question in the minds of those who decide to stay back and fight is, “Am I doing the right thing?” Unfortunately as the events continue to unfold more and more Malaysians are convinced the answer to the question is negative.

Is there any hope for us to recover from the gloom our nation is facing today? It all lies in the hands of the silent majority who seem to be comfortable in slumber. Will they wake up, if ever, and take a firm stand to say enough is enough to the present abuses in the country?

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