…and the Malaiyoos poor
Now, one graph flips everything around!
Statistics & Rahman Dahlan Myth-Making
One bar — Perak — in the graph above, produced by Khazanah and drawn from the statistics by the Department of Statistics (DoS), so shocked and surprised Rahman Dahlan, a Najib Razak minister in charge of the Economics Planning Unit, that he promptly called into question the chart’s veracity. Consequently, he has threatened to summon Khazanah and the Perak government to sit before him to explain.
Why pick on Perak? Why is Rahman refuting Khazanah on statistics supplied by the DoS after all, then adding that the graph was both ‘unreasonable’ and ‘illogical’?
The answer has to come from Umno and from Rahman himself, he being a Sabah Malaiyoo.
For 40, 50, 60 years, it has been the Umno political trope and bell-ringer that Umno made Malaysia, Malays in particular. Concomitantly, if the Chinese got rich, and they made the Forbes’ Top 20 Richest Malaysian every year, then their wealth came from and was permitted by Umno. (One reads this reproduced endlessly in Kadir Jasin, Apanama, Petra Kamarudin, Ahirudin Attan, Helen Ang, other Najib sycophants, and countless others.)
That sort of myth-making has a throwback, a boomerang effect: If the Umno made Chinese rich, so they must have made the Malay poor. The like of Ahi and Helen Ang can’t see the argument’s flip side of course. (They are just reporters.) Nor will RPK’s still-growing up daughter Sara Petra see it as an Umno betrayal of the Malays. In the Petra household, stupidity is inherited.
Not Rahman, it seems.
Each year, as the statistical results roll in, Umno, willingly and happily, will let everyone see Kelantan, Perlis, Kedah, Pahang bunched together among the poorest lot. Suddenly and out of the blue comes Perak, almost half Chinese, and it gets next to Kelantan among the poorest — shockingly, 15 percentage points above the national mean (‘average’ is the street word).
Pause a moment here and imagine the implications, especially in this respect: According to Umno et al, the Chinese are always rich, they are a money-grubbing lot, stealing from the Malays.
The graph related to Perak flies in the face of this Umno myth-making. What could be Rahman’s response, therefore? That stupid motherfucker Malaiyoo has taken in as the truth and so deeply internalized the Umno myth that anything else, even if statistically accurate, is either ‘illogical’ and ‘unreasonable’.
Question: What is illogical about Perak? What is it to be unreasonable? To Rahman, and to almost all Malaiyoo bloggers, being reasonable and being logical have their own definitions. Truth, including any objective fact, is only for them to define, even if it is a tree or a stone.
Perak’s statistical presence next to Kelantan simply doesn’t fit their definition. It is like a square peg in the round shit hole of Umno’s myth that all Chinese are rich. In another phrasing, Rahman’s remark was being political, not statistical. Therefore, he doesn’t find it odd that Perlis is up there among the poorest so he blames instead not the statistical veracity but calls in Khazanah and the Perak government: What are you fuckers doing? You are suppose to make Malays look poor. Not the Chinese!
If Rahman were to blame the DoS, then it calls into question not just the entire graph, but every piece of statistics coming from the department. This might just mean that Malays are now, on average, actually richer than the Chinese. Imagine, again, what this does to Umno’s raison d’etre. (Rahman, of course, is just another of those third-rate minds who filled Umno and national leadership and almost all were schooled by Mara, by Umno, by New Straits Times, by Utusan especially during Mahathir’s era so that is it any wonder none of them regard 1MDB as theft but rather as ‘political funding’.)
Next thing to tackle: Is the household as a means of charting poverty or wealth flawed at all? Short answer: it is. Absolutely. Textbook macroeconomics never, never, never, never, never uses households to determine or to fix relative incomes. Why?
We won’t supply the answer. But here’s a hint: on your next trip to Kelantan or Kedah, look into and at the characteristics of a typical Malay household then compare that to any Chinese household whether in Perak or Bangsar. More hints: compare household — and family — sizes, number of children in each, and number of income-earning adults (has to be income-earning and not a 22-year-old Sara Petra loafer or a Riza Aziz Mat Rempit thief)? And also, what makes for a family and what makes a household? Is there a difference between a Malay household and a Chinese household? How many families live in a Chinese household versus a Malay?
After which, answer the question: what do those characteristics mean to and how do they translate into income? How is income per household affected by household demographics and by family demographics? (Malaiyoo bloggers, don’t bother with this test. Thinking, even at the most elementary, is too hard for you. Go eat your KFC chicken; it’s all prepared and ready.)
Those answers lead to another question: if household is a fraudulent measure of relative incomes, why do the DoS and the Government keep using it and the newspapers and Umno and Khazanah keep regurgitating it? If, at this stage, you must ask that then… this entire post has been a waste of time. Our time.
Update. For the record…
Thank you, Old Horse