For the past two years during my classes, talks and seminars, I have on numerous occasions stressed that it is wrong for the government to have a blanket subsidy for petrol and diesel.
My logic is very simple. I do not agree with any blanket subsidy per se. The rich should not be subsidized for anything, period.
Let me put it in simple terms. For example, anyone who can enjoy luxuries like
RM 40.00 per hour foot or body massage,
RM 6+ coffee at Starbucks,
Eat at fancy restaurants,
Air-conditioning in the home,
Fancy hair cut or do,
Expensive hand phones and PDAs,
Smoking cigarettes and enjoying ‘happy hours’ at a waterhole,
Owns a car that is other than a small engine locally made or cheap second hand ones, etc
does not deserve a fuel subsidy. Anyone who thinks otherwise is naïve, irresponsible or plain selfish. Why should we be subsidized to indulge?
Subsidies should only be for the real needy: lower income groups, small business operators and start up companies. Accordingly 27% of Malaysians earn less than RM1000.00 per month. These people should be given direct subsidy not just to help them bear the additional fuel cost but also the probable increase in cost of living affecting from the new price of fuel.
It was a mistake that the subsidy was allowed in the first place. It is still wrong for the government to continue the current practice of subsidizing RM 0.30 per litre. The non-gradual manner of lifting the subsidy is also not very smart. But smart or not smart, the blanket subsidy is still wrong.
Ironically, while many Malaysians who are economically comfortable and passionate about the call to stop rich bumiputra students and businesses from getting government sponsorships and handouts; fail to see the subsidy for fuel that they themselves enjoy is pointing back at them. This is the classic example of the inability to be ‘honest on both sides’. We must not agree with any form of blanket subsidy, handouts and aid!
"Let each man direct himself first to what is proper, then let him teach others; thus a wise man will not suffer" The Buddha – Dhammapada 158
To be true, the next time we go and fill up petrol, feel guilty that we are still taking 30 sens per litre away from the real neediest!!!