Sunday 29 December 2013

Musings: Of the Future that I See

I finally managed to get some quiet time with the boys away on a trip with Mummy and Daddy.

Actually there was no reason whatsoever for this particular post, other than to remind myself that I do have an outlet for my thoughts, albeit a rather public one, since I have entirely missed all the possible sensational stuff which I have not found interesting enough to waste any cerebral activity on.

That's the problem about our political scenario - nothing out of the ordinary is happening.

The toll hike, the recent price increases of daily goods, the implementation of GST - all are the expected things that come with our drive towards becoming a high income nation.

What I have been spending some cerebral activities on is pondering on the possible scenario of the future of Malaysia and Malaysians based on what is happening right now.

What I am seeing right now is the possibility of the government continuing to increase their focus on the development of pockets of 'high-income' areas and Malaysia will gradually move to become a more open capitalistic free-market nation, removing the more socialist-related trappings of the previous administrations such as subsidies and government assistance.

These pockets of development areas will be centred around what they term as growth areas, namely the Iskandar Region, the Klang Valley and Pulau Pinang.

Select urban and semi-urban areas in the outlying region will be developed to become feeders for resources and materials, while the rural areas will be provided with minimal development to quiet any possible grumbling as they hold the key to political stability.

The privileged and disgruntled urbanites will continue to be rewarded with better facilities, improved infrastructure, more access to all the trappings of good living, while the number of urban poor will increase to serve the high living that mark the life of urban elites.

True to a free-market capitalistic society, capital is what will make the difference between making it or slogging your years away for a decent living.

Connections and networking has always been the key to business success, but this will be far more important in the future that I see, with talent and abilities being far more dependent upon who you know and how much financial backing you can garner, as all the government's support mechanism will gradually be removed in the name of meritocracy.

Meritocracy will also mean academic scholarships will no longer go to those who can't afford the high cost of education, but will become a reward for academic excellence, meaning parents will spend an enormous amount of resources on private tuitions, private schools, lessons aids to ensure their kids can win a scholarship to a prestigious college to kick-start their future.

Those who can't afford or do not have access to these extras, will have to be content with their children taking up PTPTN loans to pay off tuition fees for the less expensive programmes - which will earn their kids a diploma - or even working immediately after school to expand the household income.

The gap between the haves and the have-nots will increase and we will eventually have a society of a small group of elites, while the presently large middle-class will eventually be squeezed with rising costs of living to merge into the growing working class.

I guess my nephews are lucky that their dad could give them all these little extras that will ensure them a decent future if they apply themselves hard enough, but to the less fortunate children of some of the rural places I have been to, the future seems rather dim.

I sincerely hope that I am wrong, for I cannot imagine wanting to live within that future environment.