By now, most people that bother about such things would have read Micheal Backman’s article in The Age regarding Malaysia’s not-so-frugal waste of the country’s monetary resources and highlights some of the reasons for it, mainly the fact that Malaysians are essentially stupid.
The thing is, I don’t think that Malaysians are stupid. I’m Malaysian and I know for a fact growing up in Malaysia for most of my life that most Malaysians are the deviously shewed and could con you out of your wallet when you’re not looking at it. They are frugal, independent and hardworking. Then again, they aren’t your usual suspects of Malaysians
It’s not that I’m trying to put down the majority of Malaysians as a whole, but it’s just that like Backman said and I have said this so many times, Malaysia has a “grossly inflated sense of its place in the world”. Like blogging, nobody really cares when no one knows what it is you’re doing. We always tend to put stock in the wrong things. We’re so driven to be the first at something, we always fail to see what it is we’re threading on to get there. It’s like building house without realizing the foundation you’re on is basically made of cardboard. It doesn’t really work the moment you put more weight on it. And a lot of Malaysians know something like that is going to happen one day, the question is really about when rather than how.
Yet Malaysia continues to turn an individuals feats into some sort of propaganda for our “Malaysia Boleh” slogan. Not that we can’t do it. We can do it. There has never been any doubt on that. Not that it’s wrong to instill pride in one’s nation. But come on, we’ve got more pressing things to attend to now because no one else really cares. So one Malaysian can sail around the world. So we have a Malaysian born international actress. So what. Good for them. They should be proud of themselves. What are you as individual Malaysians proud about? I don’t know about you, but I’d like to be proud of my own achievements, not someone else’s.
If I didn’t know any better, all these things like sending a Malaysian into space for instance are nothing more than smokescreen for more pressing issues back home that no one wants the public to focus on. We got economy issues. We got racial issues. We got religious issues. We got governmental issues. We got education issues. We got unemployment issues. We are a whole nation of issues. But none of that seems to matter to the majority of the Malaysian public. Probably because while half the population doesn’t know what’s happening, the other half is sitting down in food stalls arguing the problems of Malaysia and how they know someone in the system who told them this, all over a cup of tea. None of this really does anything to solve the problem…but strangely enough it keeps the country moving, even if we are limping.
But like I said, Malaysia isn’t stupid. We know that this is what we do. We know that this is somehow part of our culture. We know that we aren’t doing anything. We also know that one way or another, Malaysia’s infrastructure is going to collapse at one point and reveal cesspool of its core. We know this enough to try and send our kids to other countries and hope they come back bringing something good along with some nice guy or girl back home or stay where they are and bring us along with them away from things.
Even with all the pointless waste of time and money that Malaysia puts its brains into just for that false sense of the 15 minute fame for reasons that can range from political smokescreens to just because we can shows that Malaysia isn’t stupid. We are still a nation that despite our incredible lack of foresight, still can keep a country running. We were never stupid.
What we are is “kiasu“ and for better or for worse, that sings a whole different tune altogether.