Fuel Hike 2008: Here is Why Fuel Hike Protest is So Wrong

fuel hike

It is just so wrong – it is reported that a massive anti fuel hike rally will be held on 2nd July 2008. Image & Updates from Malaysiakini:-

Thousands of people would be mobilised for a mass protest against the shocking increase in fuel prices at the iconic KLCC Twin Towers on July 12.

Organisers Coalition Against Inflation (Protes) hopes to gather 100,000 people to call on the government to reduce fuel prices to its original levels before the hike today.

“We believe that with such a drastic hike in fuel prices, we will get the support of the masses.

Well, I could be missing something here but the way I see it, this proposed protest rally is simply pointless, a waste of time and money and certainly illogical. It is simply not the same with last year’s BERSIH and HINDRAF’s rallies where the rally was for the uphold of ideals. The only thing “ideal” about fuel price is the complete removal of subsidies.

Why Wrong?

The Government increased the price of fuel, not because they had an itchy bum or someone had said “I had an “oily” dream”. Any increase in price will go down as an unpopular move with the people. Still reeling from the hard whack they got from the last general election, the Government knows that they have made a decision that will only invite another whacking.

It is not a secret that the international fuel price has been steady rising for sometime now (read wikipedia entry here). As to how much of it has impacted Malaysia is however not clear for we are also oil producing country. We should be able to enjoy the high “fluctuations” in fuel price and yet we are still paying through our noses for many basic things. Where all the money has gone to? Let’s keep the issue of mismanagement and wastages aside for now.

Much has been riding on wasting public funds to keep the local fuel price artificially low. There is a better use of the money elsewhere in nation building – education, health, housing, employment, etc. At end of the day, the subsidy has to go! Keep things at the actual but realistic price but if it is not within your control, then there is nothing much anyone could do – unless the whole world decided to do things otherwise. International fuel price works the same way.

So, what is the point of oppositions and NGOs hope to achieve with doing a massive street protest on the fuel price hike? Other than creating awareness (something that ordinary Malaysians have already know about it), what else the organizers hope to achieve? Able to pressure Pak Lah to reduce the recently increased fuel price? Well, that is not going to happen now, today and probably for forever! Unless of course if the Government wants to do a populist move, they can always dump public funds to keep the fuel price low but at what price?

Protest This!

Instead of wasting the effort to organize protest rally against the fuel hike, the organizers should organize a street protest for something that the Government DO have control over with, namely the following:-

  • Increase of toll price (where is the impact of international price on this, other than greed & arrogance?)
  • Increase of price of basic food items (it is a mystery that basic items like rice and palm oil is grown locally and yet we are facing shortages. Who is doing the sabotage?)
  • Spending of public funds on wasteful projects (like sending a tourist to an expensive trip to space. What’s next? Sending a monkey to space in the pretext of “Malaysia Boleh”?)
  • Spending of public funds on unnecessary expenses (like all paid learning trip to Europe for Government officials. Just look at state of Selangor for fine examples)
  • Gross misappropriation of public funds for the benefit of large corporations (like cronies paying lower than market price for public property – clue: IPP)
  • Mismanagement of funds for personal use (you may not realize this but it seems like we are paying taxes so that politicians can enjoy a luxury life – new plane, unwanted renovations, etc)

And (in relation to Malaysia) many more…

Read Also

Yes, let us get angry, but about the right things

Frugal Living Guide for Malaysians

You change your lifestyle first Lah

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23 Comments

  • You are certainly right! There has been no point for such a protest; there is a point actually, that Malaysians are heading for the worse. I believe most Malaysians do not understand the underlying causes of oil price changes; the subsidy provides the illusion that the government can control the oil price. The protest strengthens such a belief, and worse, it prevents reasonable people from persuading our fellow Malaysians about the truth – that illusion has become strongly entrenched in the minds of most spectators and participants of the protest.

    I’m very happy that I’m still able to find a like-minded person – there has been too few that I met. Hopefully we’re able to convince the public that the government [and maybe ruling-party-would-be] should no longer implement price-distorting policies that produce no benefits but illusion to the people!

    By the way, I had written a letter “A sound currency better than subsidies anytime”, hope that would add to the constructive discussion of economic problems facing us!

  • I guess we would be better off now if they had found oil in another planet. Instead of just doing some useless experiments in space.

  • Why Protest? No just remove the cancer, throw out the rotten tyranny

    It is the right time that this grossly corrupt and incompetent tyrant government that remove the fuel subsidies & increase the electricity tariffs should also be removed by whatever means necessary to accomplish this as well. Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim & Pakatan Rakyat, it is your call now and as all the people of Malaysia are firmly behind you. Cannot imagine that a nett producer & nett exporter of Crude Oil has to do this, look at Brunei, Saudi Arabia and many other crude oil nett exporters, there are no increases of prices of Petrol & Diesel at their pumps as both & all are nett producers and nett exporters of Crude Oil and they are now enjoying a boost to their economies with a whopping windfall in oil prices of the current US$137/- per barrel that earned them huge foreign exchange reserves from their Crude Oil exports. But in Malaysia the reverse is true as there is no boost to the economy, but only sadness prevailed because the foreign exchange reserves from Crude Oil nett exports earned are poorly managed or badly mis-managed and no one knows where all the profits over the years had gone and we are saying all the 700 or more Billions earned had disappeared and there is no accountability by the tyranny power that be.

  • Sigh… I am sick of these news. Are they gonna spend on the money saved from fuel subsidy to buy more submarines this year?

  • BJ was right. 80% of his view is imagination. So need to protest. BJ is happy to pay RM2.70/litre of petrol. BJ is also happy with badawi dan rakan rakan plundering the country. If badawi is a honest and just pewrson who uses the increased profits of Petronas for betterment of malaysians, in the long run malaysia will be OK. But isn’t badawi the biggest liar in Malaysia?

  • Venezuelans pay a heavy price for cheap oil -23 May 08 (AlJazeera)

    While motorists around the world are feeling the pain at gas pumps, Venezuelan drivers are enjoying the cheapest petrol in the world.

    However, it’s not all good news, as Al Jazeera’s Lucrecia Franco explains from Caracas.

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=hwxXN4NM8fc

  • Lets all, 6,000,000,000 homo-sapien, pray to our Omnipotent God, Tuan Allah and Great Shang Ti that crude oil price will return back to USD50 per barrel by coming Autumn.

    amen

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  • I can only say 3 words for all the above comments.”correct….correct…correct”.

  • we doi not mind paying more for petrol but all money saved should go for the betterment of the rakyat.. In addition, forget about the national car and invest more in public transport.. there are now viable schemes where algae which sucks up CO2 can be converted to diesel; inaddition, Malaysia should launch a protest against the manipulation of the crude oil prices by the greedy hedge funds in America which is making up 60% of the current price.. and the dirty ways they use to spook the market – Israel warning Iran ; etc… read this :http://onlinejournal.com/artman/publish/article_3325.shtml

  • Bj, you stink and you’re a retard obviously..

  • hi..
    everybody
    just come along to join…
    just support
    what rakyat to show gvment what are they doing too “bul*****”

    and to say to rakyat
    PADAHNYA PILIH BN…….

  • well said.

    i’ve got only one thing to add.
    Where has all the petronas money gone? although we must leave that aside and concentrate on the immediate issues t hat the govt “CAN CONTROL OVER”…. justice must still be done.

    all in due time i hope.

  • Shahrir – you missed the point of the post. BJ did not say he is happy with Badawi and his gang of “bandits” – run through this blog and you can find more “evidence” to this. But the thing is, even Badawi proclaimed that fuel is free, would it be realistic? Obviously public funds would be used to bridge the difference with market price (as I mentioned, let’s set aside the mismanagement of Petronas funds for now – there is nothing we can do about it except if a new Government comes in power and decides to do a proper “audit” on this GLC). We should instead protest on how the Government is running the country with public funds and keep them on toe. Always!

    Ronson – True, cheaper fuels means more car on the road leading to traffic jams and more wastage of fuel. Vicious cycle when the days of cheap, easy to get fuel are gone.

    Hunnybee – I don’t get your point, perhaps you are retard yourself. No further comments.

  • Agree with you 111% on your post. Wake up people, this IS the real world. Life’s not easy and it will only get tougher when price hits USD150 by the end of the year. So what then? Plunder Petronas till they become like the Indonesian state petrol companies? So many complain of prices yet I do not see our shopping malls empty of window shoppers or mat rempit’s cutting down on their stupid acts.

    Wake up. Malaysia bukan mudah lupa tapi sangat MANJA! 😉

    Cheers!!! 😀

  • An interesting wake of anger over the net – at first most of us were angry on the price hike but as the reality kicks in, the anger now being pushed on the Government and how they been mis-managing with our money.

    From malaysiakini, one is even asking why the Government is paying on projects where it has been fatten up many times of it’s actual cost. So whatever “savings” you get, it gets wiped out by the same very Government we elect to managed and safeguard public funds.

  • New Cabinet:

    Prime Minister – Anwar

    Deputy Prime Minister – Lim Kit Siang

    Culture Minister – Farish Noor

    Defence Minister –

    Education Minister – Nga Kor Ming

    Environment Minister – Teresa Kok

    Finance Minister – Tony Pua

    Foreign Minister – Ramasamy

    Health Minister – Tan Seng Giaw

    Home Minister –

    Information Minister – Jeff Ooi

    Law Minister – Teng Chang Khim

    Manpower Minister –

    Sports Minister –

    Technology Minister –

    Trade Minister – Khalid

    Transport Minister – Liew Chin Tong

    (Penang Chief Minister – Lim Guan Eng)

  • I totally agree with you. There is nothing wrong with the decision to reduce subsidy but I am disgusted with the hasty implementation by the government. What is the rush? Can’t even wait a day or two to avoid such a massive traffic jam at the petrol stations at night on 4th June?

    For those who have been nagging about Malaysia having Petronas and thus we should not pay more than UAE, Qatar etc, correct me if I am wrong. Although we are an oil exporter, we cannot compare ourselves with UAE, Eygpt, Brunei etc because we have less production per capita. In other words, we have bigger population as compared to our export.

    According to http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/ene_oil_exp_net_percap-oil-exports-net-per-capita , we are at same level with the UK in terms of export per capita… and UK’s fuel price is at RM10/liter?

    Don’t get me wrong, I am all for cheap fuel but lets be give government some credit for being bold with their hasty decision 🙂

  • Oil Contest – the government was indeed hasty on this one. Have anyone also considered the strength of the currency of the oil producing countries against USD? Stronger currency means cheaper oil per barrel in USD terms.

    Another thing that seem to be “missed” by many is the question whether all the oil produced in Malaysia is re-routed for local usage? As we know, Malaysian oil is of higher quality, so Malaysia exports this and imports lower quality (at market price) for local consumption. The difference of this is what the government uses for national development.

    Hopefully all of the difference is used for national use, and not for personal use.

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