|GE14 and the politics of ikan kembung|
Something fishy about Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's latest blog posting, The Comfort of Some:
"1. The country is facing a serious crisis. Democracy has been replaced with kleptocracy. Laws intended to protect the people are now used to threaten and oppress people. The GST now burdens the people. And the price of ikan kembung is now RM20 per kilo.
2. Yes the people are suffering. Almost all of them. But there are some who feel nothing. So what is so bad about the RM20 ikan kembung. Its only a few Ringgit more. A few Ringgit is nothing. Just a drop in the ocean. Rising cost is normal. You just have to put up with it. "
The person with the opened Apple sitting across the table was startled by my question. "Is the mackerel a staple for us Malaysians?"
"I don't eat ikan kembung. I don't like the taste but I know how it looks like. Why?"
"Tun M said it's RM20 a kilo now and it is causing almost all the people to suffer."
"Tell him to tell that to Kit Siang lah."
Ah, ok, so this person is still mad with 4th Malaysian Prime Minister for sleeping with the DAP to bring down Malaysia's current and 6th Prime Minister Najib Razak so that he can become the 7th Malaysian Prime Minister. Well, actually, almost all the people are still mad. But that aside, I'm not a big fan of ikan kembung, either. And Mahathir himself, as some of us may know, doesn't eat fish. Hasn't touched fish since he was a kid. He does take the occasional sushi and sashimi ...
But back to the ikan kembung logic, HishamH in his latest posting touched on the same issue. more or less. It must be noted that the author of the blog Economics Malaysia was not responding to Dr M's posting. He couldn't have because he posted his article hours before chedet did.
But the conclusion of HishamH's More on Seafood Prices is compelling, nonetheless:
"Nobody can deny inflation in good prices, and seafood is a major contributor to that. The biggest reason behind seafood price inflation is a supply-demand mismatch - the world as a whole is eating more than the seas can provide, with obvious long term consequences unless this is managed. But China is a major factor behind that mismatch.
[HishamH goes on to provide a link to an article to illustrate his point. The Bloomberg article is entitled China's Real Offshore Disaster]
Lesson 1: Unless we do something to manage fisheries on a sustainable basis, the situation will only get worse.
Lesson 2: Politicians can say what they like, but no amount of fiddling with cases or the local economy will make a difference. This is a global problem and needs a global solution."
What the fish, kan?