Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wake Up - Daily Con Job In The Making!

KUALA LUMPUR: The government is studying all options available to avoid increasing the price of RON95 petrol in the near future although oil prices are rising globally, said Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

He said his ministry was working closely with the Finance Ministry on the matter to ensure Malaysians were not adversely impacted following rising oil prices.

"We have to maintain a balance because we fear if fuel prices go up, prices of goods will go up in tandem and this will be a burden on the people.

"My ministry and the Finance Ministry are studying all options available to stabilise fuel prices to avoid any price hikes in the near future," he told a press conference here Tuesday.

Ismail Sabri was asked about rumours swirling around that the price of RON95 petrol would be increased soon. Also present were his deputy Datuk Tan Lian Hoe and the ministry's secretary general Datuk Mohd Zain Mohd Dom.

Earlier, Ismail Sabri had witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding on an automotive workshop modernisation project the Intellectual Property Training Centre here. - Bernama 



Kerajaan dalam keadaan tertekan untuk mengekalkan subsidi minyak petrol berikutan kenaikan berterusan harga minyak mentah di pasaran dunia ketika ini.

Justeru itu, kata Pensyarah Kanan Kolej Pengurusan Bisnes dan Perakaunan Universiti Teknologi Nasional (Uniten), Dr. Rusinah Siron, rakyat perlu bersedia menerima kemungkinan kenaikan harga petrol di pasaran tempatan meskipun kerajaan memberi jaminan tidak akan sewenang-wenang menaikkan harganya.

"Kita bercakap soal globalisasi yang mana Malaysia juga tidak boleh mengelak daripada kesan negatif daripada kenaikan harga petrol di pasaran dunia.

"Kerana itu, orang ramai perlu rasional dalam menerima kenaikan harga minyak dunia ini serta kesannya kepada ekonomi negara," kata beliau.

Beberapa negara telah pun mengambil langkah menaikkan harga minyak masing-masing termasuk China kelmarin sebanyak 4.6 peratus iaitu kenaikan kedua dalam tempoh tiga bulan selepas kenaikan sebesar 14.4 peratus pada Disember lalu.

Sepanjang tahun lalu pula, kerajaan memberi subsidi RM6.3 bilion termasuk untuk petrol dan diesel termasuk RM3.3 bilion bagi subsidi petrol RON95.

Bagaimanapun, berdasarkan situasi semasa harga minyak dunia, subsidi kerajaan dijangka bertambah pada tahun ini.

Dr. Rusinah menambah, beberapa faktor sama ada secara langsung atau tidak langsung ketika ini juga semakin memperlihatkan bahawa harga minyak dunia akan terus melonjak pada masa depan.

Antaranya, kata beliau, ketidaktentuan politik di negara-negara Arab yang merupakan negara pengeluar minyak terbesar dunia, bencana alam, kemerosotan sumber bumi dan tekanan ekonomi global.

"Faktor-faktor ini sangat sukar untuk dijelaskan oleh kerajaan terutamanya di kalangan rakyat berpendapatan rendah dan sederhana yang akan menanggung kesan daripada kenaikan harga minyak tempatan walaupun lima sen," kata beliau.

Pada masa sama, katanya, kerajaan juga perlu memberi jaminan harga barang keperluan yang pasti naik bersama kenaikan harga minyak akan kembali kepada harga asal selepas penurunan harga bahan mentah itu.

Anything can be possibly and manipulated as to keep people in the dark, as example of what this Yong Soo Heong-headed news agency would say. However, not many will know that this petrol price related thing is the daily con job that is in the making, something that we are not clearly aware of.

What can really find from reading the MSM piece above? Who is the reporter in that agency who wrote that? Unfortunately, not disclosing the identity of the person who wrote that simply shows the agency's lack of accountability of who's writing it. These are among the few questions, that a critical thinker will have to know to make an analysis of a trend.

What is said above is merely a loudspeaker of what is to come. And what is written will be revealed, eventually as:

1. This is a way of manufacturing consent. This term, originally coined by Walter Lippman and  famously spoken by acclaimed American thinker Noam Chomsky refers to with using the propaganda model, as what Barisan Nasional is doing right now, the mass media is subjected to internal censorship, and it can be manipulated, biased. News that not in favor of the ruling government will never see the light on the main print. In other countries, the concept is similar except that the news, except it is mainly noted for competition of revenue and profits.

2. How manufacturing consent happens in that above is that the Ministry, Ayah Dafi (the minister) and some analysts will say such statement above. This is clearly a hint and indication (to make a normal average Joe comfortable) that it will be in the matter of a few weeks that the petrol price of RON 95 will go up again. Ayah Dafi's statement also has a subtle message that implies to the mass public that to get them not get very angry the moment the price of RON 95 goes up.

3. In the last few occasions, the government got scolded by the public (this was prominently documented during the Abdullah Badawi years) when announcing the price increment. Now, in the last few occasions, the announcement is not made by the government, but by the petrol dealers association. Why? It's simply a con job and a public relations move, in order to divert the move of having people pointing fingers at Najib's administration. You should know since it's a public relations matter, which PR company would advice Malaysia? It's a con job, and a crime of withholding certain piece of information that the public should know, and it's more dangerous than having information under the Official Secrets Act! You can notice the similarities if you compare this to having a piece of land taken, it would be another neutral third-party, not a ministry that might make a statement.

4. A key piece of information that is highly withheld is the implication of increasing petrol prices. PEMANDU might say reduced subsidies can be used for development or something (a common argument we would hear) but many "thinkers" forgot to remind the public that by increasing petrol prices, other prices including essential goods will also go up. They also forget to remind the public while people-target subsidies are reduced, the subsidies for corporates (e.g IPPs) would go up. Like mentioned previously, withholding or not telling the public the correct information is more dangerous than keeping it secret from public eyes in the name of safety.

5. In the situation, the question and solutions to how can we get out from the web of globalization is never answered at all. These "thinkers" who are supposed to do a service to the public have failed to provide real answers and the problem of globalization has yet to be solved.  Therefore, there are certain people that should not be only the yes-men to the government at all.

Summary: Inflation problem has yet to be solved,  and there's a daily con job in the making.

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