Monday, July 02, 2007

my writing in Malaysiakini letter.

Saw it in Malaysiakini letter section today. Here is it.
If you find it a bit intense, yes, I fell the passion behind this issue.
To me its about justice and equality, heck, I sound like a French revolutionary already.
Did anyone read about the French Revolution? Tales of Two Cities, Les Miserables and The Count of Monte Cristo? Maybe only me.

Human Resources Minister Marie Antoinette
Noor Yahaya Hamzah
Jul 2, 07 1:10pm Adjust font size:

I have written about minimum wage a couple of times. Here is an interesting theory put forth by no less than our Human Resources Minister Fong Chan On as published by the local media recently.

'He said that if the government were to comply with the demand (for minimum wage), the country would lose its competitive edge.' His theory says that if the government sets minimum wage at RM900 a month, Malaysia would lose its competitive edge.

More or less he is implying that ‘let the workers eat grass, so that the ruling class can eat cake, drive Mercs and live happily ever after’. That sounds like Marie Antoinette, isn’t it? When she was informed that the poor working class don’t have bread to eat, she retorted, ‘Let them eat cake instead’.

Let us inform our beloved minister that our workers are practically eating grass already. We are more or less an open economy. We import our needs, food, clothing and lately (for the past 20 years) a labour force. To earn our way, we export electronics, services, palm oil and sand (to Singapore) and lately land titles (IDR). Our currency had been fixed until lately when it was floated because China gave up pegging the yuan to the dollar (after much pressure from the US).


Competitiveness is the sum of all things that we do better than others. Competitiveness has nothing to do with paying our factory workers RM300 per month. Yes, it’s true that our factory workers get paid that low. Wages that are not enough to buy food for one person for more than a week.

Let me digress a bit. During the economic crisis of ’97, what did the government do to regain competitiveness? Answer: It devalued the ringgit. The ringgit was free-floated so when everyone - including our own corporations - sold the ringgit, we let the value fall. Other countries did the same thing, South Korea let their won fall, so did Indonesia for its rupiah.

What does recent rise in the value of ringgit vis a vis the US dollar tell us? Answer: The flow of funds into US is slowing down.

Let me tell our human resources minister that to maintain and improve competitiveness we must continue to invest in our human resources capital, as well as our financial and infrastructure capital.

By keeping our workers’ wages low, our companies will choose to employ more workers to increase production instead of improving efficiency and getting better return per capita. Workers would have to work longer hours to keep up with the rising cost of living meaning they would have to work longer and harder instead of smarter. As such, we don’t move up the economic ladder.

Let me make it clear, this issue of minimum wage is not about competitiveness. Minimum wage is about fair distribution of income between owners of capital, managers and workers. It’s about social justice. Workers are only demanding for fair wages, wages that pay for a decent living.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

MUSLIMS OUT!! you are not relevent to our proud society. take your traitor wife with you too. camel fucking kids too.
im running for mayor and ill make sure you muslims are not a treat to us and we will make sure your mousque goes down!!
kyle chapman.
027 257 9269

Anonymous said...

AN eighth suspect connected to a plot to blow up car bombs in London and Scotland has reportedly been arrested in Brisbane.

British police have confirmed an eighth man has been detained but would not say where the man was arrested.

But the Seven Network this morning reported the man was arrested in Brisbane.

Queensland Police Minister Judy Spence and Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson were being briefed on the arrest, Seven has reported.

British police said in a statement the man was arrested at an undisclosed location in connection with the investigation into the incidents in London and Glasgow. You could be the nineth one for what i know. Fuck off muslims!!
You just breed more terrorist!!

nooryahaya said...

are you sure you are kyle chapman? as far as i know he is white supremacist.

AbuAsran said...

Cakap melayulah, supaya orang putih tak boleh nak menyibuk.

Kata nak melabur dlm modal insanlah, knowledge worker la, tapi kenapa pulak tak nak letak gaji minimum utk pekerja swasta?

Rasanya sempena 50 tahun kemerdekaan, bukan ke kita patut bagi 'bloody nose' sikit kpd negara orang putih yg mengaut hasil bumi negara kita selama berpuluh tahun? Paling tak pun, sokong mereka yg buat kerja tu, walaupun mereka bergelar 'terrorists'.

Anonymous said...

Just in case anyone is gullible enough to think that the comment above claiming to be from Kyle Chapman is genuine, let me make it clear that it is not. Kyle has good relations with the Muslim community in Christchurch, and moreover, in the 14 years I have known him, I have never once heard him use the f-word. He is one of the few people I know who doesn't swear - ever. One of the problems of the internet is that anyone can pretend to be anyone else...take things with a pinch of salt.